Artabazos I of Phrygia

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Artabazus (Ancient Greek: Ἀρτάβαζος; fl. 480 BC - 455 BC) was the name of a satrap of Hellespontine Phrygia (now northwest Turkey), under the Achaemenid dynasty of Persia. He was the son of Pharnaces, who was the younger brother of Hystaspes.

Artabazus, was one of the generals in Xerxes' invasion of Greece, in charge of the reserve forces guarding the route back to Asia, and responsible for suppressing a revolt in Potidaea.[1] The invasion ended with Mardonius, ignoring advice from Artabazus and others, meeting the Greeks in pitched battle at Plataea and being defeated (479 BC). The Greeks followed up their victory by sailing to Ionia, where they destroyed the garrisoning forces under Tigranes at Mycale in the same year. Artabazus, however, managed to lead the remnant portion of a greatly reduced Persian army out of Greece and back to Ionia.[2] According to Herodotus and Plutarch this force consisted of 40,000 men. Herodotus claims in Thessaly he did not reveal the defeat as he would have been attacked, but claimed he needed to go to Thrace on a special mission. He was able to return to Persian territory despite losing men in attacks in Thrace.

As a reward, Artabazus was made satrap of Hellespontine Phrygia. This office was passed down to his descendants. He was succeeded by his son, Pharnabazus (fl. 455 BC - 430 BC), of whom little is known, and then by his grandson Pharnaces II of Phrygia (fl. 430 BC - 413 BC), who is known to have been satrap at the outset of the Peloponnesian War. Pharnaces was in turn succeeded by his son, another Pharnabazus (fl. 413 BC - 373 BC), who is well known for his rivalry with Tissaphernes and wars against the Spartans.

See also


  1. Herodotus 8,126-129
  2. Herodotus 9,89