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On this page: Asterius – Asterope – Asteropeia – Astraea – Astraeus – Astrampsychus – Astyages

ASTRATEIA.

quently returned to the Christian faith, and joined the Arian party, but on account of his apostasy was excluded from the dignity of bishop to which he aspired. He was the author of several theolo­ gical works. There was also an Asterius of Scy- thopolis, whom St. Jerome (Epist. 83, ad Magnum Orat.) mentions as one of the most celebrated eccle­ siastical writers. [C. P. M.j

ASTERIUS, TURCIUS RUFUS APRONI- A'NUS, was consul a. d. 494, devoted himself to literary pursuits, and emended a MS. of Sedulius, and one. of Virgil, on which he wrote an epigram. (Antfi. Lot. No. 281, ed. Meyer.) [C. P. M.J ASTERODIA. [endymion.] ASTEROPAEUS ('A<rT6po7ra?os), a son of Pe- legon, and grandson of the river-god Axius, was the commander of the Paeonians in the Trojan war, and an ally of the Trojans. He was the tallest among all the men, and fought with Achilles, whom he at first wounded, but was afterwards killed by him. (Horn. 11, xxi. 139, &c.; Philostr. Heroic, xix. 7.) [L, S.]

ASTEROPE ('Ao-Tepo'Tn?), two mythical per­sonages : see acragas and aesacus. [L. S.J

ASTEROPEIA ('A(7Tep&reta), twa mythical personages, one a daughter of Pelias, who in con­ junction with her sisters murdered her father (Pans. viii. 11. § 2); and the second a daughter of Deion and Diomede. (Apollod. i. 9. § 4.) [L. S.] ASTRA'BACUS ('Acrrpctecwaw), a son of Irbus and brother of Alopecus, was a Laconian hero of the royal house of Agis. He and his brother found the statue of Artemis Orthia in a bush, and be­ came mad at the sight of it. He is said to have been the father of Damaratus by the wife of Aris- ton. He had a sanctuary at Sparta, and was worshipped there as a hero. (Herod, vi. 69 ; Pans, iii. 16. §5, &c.) [L. S.]

ASTRAEA ('Ao-rpcua), a daughter of Zeus and Themis, or according to others, of Astraeus by Eos. During the golden age, this star-bright maiden lived on earth and among men, whom she blessed; but when that age had passed away, Astraea, who tarried longest among men, withdrew, and was placed among the stars. (Hygin. Poet. Astr. ii. 25; Eratost. Catast. 9; Ov. Met. i. 149.) [L. S.]

ASTRAEUS ('Aa-TpaTos), a Titan and son of Crius and Eurybia. By Eos he became the father of the winds Zephyrus, Boreas, and Notus, Eos- phorus (the morning star), and all the stars of heaven. (Hesiod. Theog. 376, &c.) Ovid (Met. xiv. 545) calls the winds fratres Astraei, which does not mean that they were brothers of Astraeus, but brothers through Astraeus, their common fa­ ther. [L. S.]

ASTRAMPSYCHUS, a name borne by some of the ancient Persian Magians. (Uiog. Lae'rt. prooem. 2; Suidas, s. v. Mdyoi.) There is still extant under this name a Greek poem, consisting of 101 iambic verses, on the interpretation of dreams ('CVeipo/cpmKo/'), printed in Rigault's edition of Artemidorus, in the collections of Obso-poeus and Servais Galle, and in J. C. Bulenger, de Ration. Divinat. v. 5. The poem is a compara­tively modern composition (not earlier than the fourth century after Christ), and the name of the author is perhaps an assumed one. Suidas (s. v.} also ascribes to the same author a treatise on the diseases of asses, and their cure. (Fabric. Bibl. Graec. iv. p. 152, v. p. 265, xi. p. 583.) [C. P. M.] ASTRATEIA ('Ao-Tparei'a), a surname of Arte-

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ASTYAGES.

mis, under which she had a temple near Pyrrhichns in Laconia, because she was believed to have stopped there the progress of the Amazons. (Paus. iii. 25. S 2 \ FT S 1

ASTYAGES ('Aortas), king of Media, [called by Ctesias 'AoTwfyas, and by Diodorus o-TraSas), was the son and successor of Cyaxares. The accounts of this king given by Herodotus, Ctesias, and Xenophon, differ in several important particulars. We learn from Herodotus (i. 74), that in the compact made between Cyaxares and Aly-attes in B. c. 610, it was agreed that Astyages ihould marry Aryenis, the daughter of Alyattes. According to the chronology of Herodotus, he suc­ceeded his father in b. c. 595, and reigned 35 years, (i. 130.) His government was harsh, (i. 123.) Alarmed by a dream, he gave his daughter Mandane in marriage to Cambyses, a Persian of good family, (i. 107.) Another dream induced him to send Harpagus to destroy the offspring of this marriage. The child, the future conqueror of the Medes, was given to a herdsman to expose, but he brought it up as his own. Years after­wards, circumstances occurred which brought the young Cyrus under the notice of Astyages, who, on inquiry, discovered his parentage. He inflicted a cruel punishment on Harpagus, who waited his time for revenge. When Cyrus had grown up to man's estate, Harpagus induced him to instigate the Persians to revolt, and, having been appointed general of the Median forces, he deserted with the greater part of them to Cyrus. Astyages was taken prisoner, and Cyrus mounted the throne. He treated the captive monarch with mildness, but kept him in confinement till his death.

Ctesias agrees with Herodotus in making Asty­ages the last king of the Medes, but says, that Cyrus was in no way related to him till he married his daughter Amytis. When Astyages was at­tacked by Cyrus, he fled to Ecbatana, and was concealed in the palace by Amytis and her husband Spitamas, but discovered himself to his pursuers, to prevent his daughter and her husband and chil­dren from being put to the torture to induce them to reveal where he was hidden. He was loaded with chains by Oebaras, but soon afterwards was liberated by Cyrus, who treated him with great respect, and made him governor of the Barcanii, a Parthian people on the borders of Hyrcania. Spitamas was subsequently put to death by the orders of Cyrus, who married Amytis. Some time after, Amytis and Cyrus being desirous of seeing Asty­ages, a eunuch named Petisaces was sent to escort him from his satrapy, but, at the instigation of Oebaras, left him to perish in a desert region. The crime was revealed by means of a dream, and Amytis took a cruel revenge on Petisaces. The body of Astyages was found, and buried with all due honours. We are told that, in the course of his reign, Astyages had waged war with the Bac-trians with doubtful success. (Ctes. ap. Phot. Cod. 72. p. 36, ed. Bekker.)

Xenophon. like Herodotus, makes Cyrus the grandson of Astyages, but says, that Astyages was succeeded by his son Cyaxares II., on whose death Cyrus succeeded to the vacant throne. (Cyrop. i. 5. § 2.) This account seems to tally better with the notices contained in the book of Daniel, (v. 31, vi. 1, ix. 1.) Dareius the Mede, mentioned there and by Josephus (x. 11. § 4), is apparently the same with Cyaxares II. (Compare the account in the

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