This was the woman for whom Dareius asked, and he gave offence thereby to his father; for the Barbarian folk are terribly jealous in all that pertains to the pleasures of love, so that it is death for a man, not only to come up and touch one of the royal concubines, but even in journeying to go along past the waggons on which they are conveyed.
And yet there was Atossa, whom the king passionately loved and had made his wife contrary to the law, and he kept three hundred and sixty concubines also, who were of surpassing beauty. However, since he had been asked for Aspasia, he said that she was a free woman, and bade his son take her if she was willing, but not to constrain her against her wishes. So Aspasia was summoned, and contrary to the hopes of the king, chose Dareius. And the king gave her to Dareius under constraint of the custom that prevailed, but a little while after he had given her, he took her away again.
That is, he appointed her a priestess of the Artemis of Ecbatana, who bears the name of Anaïtis, in order that she might remain chaste for the rest of her life, thinking that in this way he would inflict a punishment upon his son which was not grievous, but actually quite within bounds and tinctured with pleasantry. The resentment of Dareius, however, knew no bounds, either because he was deeply stirred by his passion for Aspasia, or because he thought that he had been insulted and mocked by his father.
And now Teribazus, who became aware of the prince's feelings, sought to embitter him still more, finding in his grievance a counterpart of his own, which was as follows. The king had several daughters, and promised to give Apama in marriage to Pharnabazus, Rhodogune to Orontes, and Amestris to Teribazus. He kept his promise to the other two, but broke his word to Teribazus and married Amestris himself, betrothing in her stead to Teribazus his youngest daughter, Atossa.
But soon he fell enamoured of Atossa also and married her, as has been said,1
and then Teribazus became a downright foe to him. Teribazus was at no time of a stable disposition, but uneven and precipitate. And so, when he would be at one time in highest favour, and at another would find himself in disgrace and spurned aside, he could not bear either change of fortune with equanimity, hut if he was held in honour his vanity made him offensive, and when he fell from favour he was not humble or quiet, but harsh and ferocious.