Cassandane or Cassandana (Origin: Persian/Iranian Ancient Greek: Κασσανδάνη Kassandanē) was an Achaemenian Persian noblewoman and the "dearly loved" wife of Cyrus the Great. She was a daughter of Pharnaspes. She bore four children for Cyrus (it may be 5 based on the documented children listed under Cyrus the Great): Cambyses II, who succeeded his father and conquered Egypt; Smerdis (Bardiya), who also reigned as the king of Persia for a short time; a daughter named Atossa, who later wed Darius the Great; and another daughter named Roxana.[1]

Her daughter Atossa later played an important role in the Achaemenid royal family, as she married Darius the Great and bore him the next Achaemenid king, Xerxes I. Atossa had a "great authority" in the Achaemenid royal house and her marriage with Darius I is likely due to her power, influence and the fact that she was a direct descendant of Cyrus.[2] When Cassandane died, all the nations of Cyrus' Persian empire observed "a great mourning". This is reported by Herodotus. According to a report in the chronicle of Nabonidus, there was a public mourning after her death in Babylonia lasting for six days.[citation needed] According to a suggestion by M. Boyce, Cassandane's tomb is located at Pasargadae.[1]


  1. ^ a b Dandamaev, M. A. (1992). "Cassandane". Encyclopaedia Iranica. Vol. 5. Encyclopaedia Iranica Foundation. ISBN 0-933273-67-3.
  2. ^ Schmitt, Rüdiger (1989). "Atossa". Encyclopaedia Iranica. vol. 3. Encyclopaedia Iranica Foundation. ISBN 0-7100-9121-4.