Book 1 (Cyrus)

Chapter 1.1: The Problem of Ruling Humans and the Solution of Cyrus

1. Forms of government are difficult to maintain…

2. While many animals are easy to herd, humans regularly resist authority…

3. Cyrus is the one great exception because he united diverse nations over vast distances…

4. Cyrus was far different from other kings who found it difficult to consolidate their own people…

5. Cyrus ruled by inspiring both fear and a desire to please him…

6. What I know about Cyrus’ birth, nature, and education…

Chapter 1.2: The Persian Moral and Martial Education

1. Cyrus’ Birth and Nature…

2. Cyrus received a Persian education…

 3. The Persian system develops a moral character; the system begins with a “Free Square”…

4. The square is divided into four parts, belonging to boys, adolescents, mature men, and elders…

5. Each division has twelve officers, corresponding to the 12 Persian tribes…

6. The boys learn justice by bringing charges against one another…

7. The boys bring one another to trial for lack of gratitude, which the Persians think most hateful…

8. The boys also learn self-control and self-mastery as well as how to shoot a bow and throw a spear…

9. The adolescents spend ten years passing the night in the Free Square in order to develop self-control, and serve the authorities as necessary…

10. The hunt is paid for at public expense, because it is seen as the best preparation for war…

 11. The adolescents learn self-mastery over their appetite for food while on the hunt…

12. The adolescents also engage in contests for prizes in the skills they learned as boys…

13. The adults serve the commonwealth as necessary for 25 years…

14. The elders do not perform military service but serve as judges…

15. All Persian nobles may attend the schools, but must pass each course to advance to the next stage…

16. Contemporary Persian habits reflect this training

Chapter 1.3: Cyrus Has His Persian Education Tested among the Medes

1. Cyrus received the Persian education until he was twelve or so; he excelled the other boys…
2. Cyrus greets Astyages with a spontaneous kiss, being naturally affectionate…

3. Astyages clothes Cyrus in the Medan garb and gives him a beautiful horse to ride on…

4. At dinner, Cyrus remarks that the Medes, with their delicacies, have a much more difficult path to satiety than the Persians…

5. Cyrus argues that the food cannot be pleasant because it must be wiped off the hands…

6. Astyages gives Cyrus an abundance of meat as an alternative…
7. Cyrus redistributes the meat to all the servants in turn, as a token of gratitude…

8. Cyrus neglects to give any meat to the cup-bearer Sacas and Astyages asks him why…

9. Cyrus explains that he can pour the wine just as well and would not consume the wine itself…

10. Cyrus further criticizes Sacas by serving wine which renders Astyages not like himself and beneath his subjects…

11. Cyrus finally confesses that he hates Sacas because he keeps him from seeing Astyages when he wants to…
12. Cyrus does everything he can to anticipate his grandfather’s needs and even  13. Astyages asks Mandane to leave Cyrus behind in Media, but she is reluctant to do so against his will…

14. Astyages attempts to convince Cyrus to stay with him…

15. Cyrus decides to stay primarily in hopes of becoming a better horseman…

16. When Mandane expresses concern that he will not learn justice, Cyrus explains that he has already thoroughly learned it…

17. Cyrus learned that what is lawful is just when he was whipped for approving of how a big boy took a matching cloak from a little boy…

18. Mandane objects that justice is different in Media; Cyrus regards Astyages’ tyranny as proof of his pedagogical skill…

Chapter 1.4: Friendship with Medan youths, Hunting, and Distinguished Warfare

1. Cyrus becomes friends with the Medan youths and ingratiates himself to their fathers by acting as an ambassador for them to Astyages…

2. Cyrus comes to “possess” Astyages entirely by weeping for him in his illness and tending to his every need…

3. Cyrus’ fondness for talking explained and evaluated…

4. Cyrus becomes more modest with age; his company was nevertheless charming…

5. Cyrus raises the prospect of hunting with his uncle in the wild…

6. Cyrus is more tentative and respectful about approaching Astyages and becomes beloved by Sacas in the process…

7. Astyages allows Cyrus to go hunting with his uncle, and Cyrus eagerly asks about what animals to pursue…

8. Despite learning these lessons eagerly, Cyrus behaves recklessly during the hunt…

9. Cyrus is chastised by his uncle for his recklessness, but asks permission to show his quarry to Astyages, even if it means he will be beaten for it…

10. Cyrus presents his spoils to Astyages, who accepts them with pleasure but regrets that Cyrus had risked his life foolishly…

11. Cyrus shares his spoils with the other boys and invites them to hunt as well…

12. Cyrus is reluctant to ask Astyages for a big hunting expedition, but his friends threaten to ask someone else…

13. This convinces Cyrus to petition Astyages…

14. Astyages agrees to take him on a hunt; he insists that A. allow all his friends to hunt together in equal competition…

15. Astyages delights to see Cyrus hunt and to encourage his companions by name…

16. When Cyrus was 15 or 16, the son of the Assyrian king goes hunting on the Assyrian-Median frontier…

17. On the following day he extends his hunt into Median territory…

18. Astyages marches out to meet them and Cyrus eagerly joins him…

19. Cyrus suggests attacking the Assyrian forces, who look weak to him, rather than wait for reinforcements…

20. Astyages marvels at how shrewd Cyrus is, and orders Cyaxares to make an attack, which Cyrus leads…

21. Cyrus attacks like a well-bred but untrained hound; the Assyrians aid their comrades…

22. Cyrus pursues and Cyaxares follows him; Astyages comes in as reinforcement…

23. The Assyrians flee, with some being overtaken…

24. Cyrus gloats over the slain and incurs Astyages’ disappointment despite being the cause of the victory…

25. Cyrus is summoned home by his father Cambyses; Astyages sends Cyrus home and everyone, full of tears, comes out to escort him…

26. Tearfully, Cyrus gives many of his presents to his comrades…

27. Cyrus kisses a Medan man who had fallen in love with his beauty…

28. The Mede coaxes one more kiss from Cyrus who departs tearfully and promises to return soon…

Chapter 1.5: Cyrus Prepares to Join the Medan Campaign against the Assyrians

1. Cyrus is initially teased by his Persian peers, but he wins them over…

2. When Astyages dies and Cyaxares succeeds him, the Assyrian king decides to subjugate Media…

3. He rouses up anti-Medan sentiment among other nations and bribes those who would not otherwise align with him…

4. Cyrus, now among the class of mature men, is asked by Cyaxares to come as a commander…

5. The Persians vote to send Cyrus with nearly thirty thousand other soldiers…

6. As soon as he is chosen, Cyrus consults the gods…

7. Cyrus addresses his men…

8. He praises the virtues of their forefathers…

9. Cyrus says that all virtues aim at some good…

10. He disdains the farmer who never engages in harvest or the well-trained athlete who never engages in competition…

11. He enjoins his comrades to put their good training to the test…

12. As lovers of praise they must be willing to undergo any sort of hardship and danger…

13. Cyrus feels confident in their victory…

14. He reassures them that he has begun with approval from the gods…

Chapter 1.6: Cyrus Recalls the Lessons of Cambyses and Seeks Further Knowledge

1. Cyrus prays and receives favorable auspices as he departs his house…

2. Cambyses recalls having taught Cyrus the art of divination…

3. Cyrus recalls having been taught to remember gods and friends also in times of prosperity…

4. Cambyses remarks that attentiveness to the gods gives one more confidence in prayer…

5. Those who prepare themselves as necessary have the right to ask blessings from the gods…

6. Cyrus agrees, noting several relevant examples…

7. The great labor worthy of a man is to govern men such that they have all the necessities of life…

8. Cyrus acknowledges this and points out how many are unworthy of rule…

9. Cambyses explains that the leader must take account of all the facts…

10. Cambyses advises Cyrus to increase supplies when he has the most…

11. Cyrus vows to provide for his men…

12. Cyrus recalls the time he had wanted to pay a man to learn the art of being a general…

Cyrus similarly recalls how Cambyses had questioned him on the teacher’s ability…

14. Cyrus explained that the teacher only taught tactics…

15. Cyrus followed Cambyses’ advice to consult masters of generalship…

16. Cambyses reminds Cyrus that he must ensure that his army does not become sick…

17. Cyrus explains further how he will take care of himself…

18. Setting up contests will ensure that the soldiers practice hard…

19. Cyrus is also advised to fill his men with true hopes…

20. Cyrus recalls that his education has been in how both to govern and to be governed…

21. Willing obedience a much better path than compulsory obedience…

22. Cyrus asks if there is no better way of securing willful obedience than to appear wiser…

23. Wisdom comes from learning as much as possible and then learning the rest from the gods…

24. Cambyses explains that one’s subjects should be treated, and won, just like friends…

25. The general must show that he can endure better than his men…

26. Cambyses advises Cyrus to attack when his soldiers are at the peak of their ability…

27. Cambyses advises Cyrus to cheat his enemies to get the best of them…

28. Cambyses likens this to the way Cyrus was trained to treat animals on the hunt…

29. They were trained to hunt as practice for war…

30. Cyrus suggests that he should have been taught to do evil to men…

31. Cambyses recalls that there was once a teacher who taught both justice and injustice…

32. The effect of this was to induce some men to take advantage of their friends…

33. Now the system is to teach the boys only to tell the truth, not to deceive…

34. By the time they reach adulthood, they are trained to deceive enemies…

35. Cyrus would learn these ways to hunt the enemy…

36. The times when the enemy may be caught off guard…

37. There are other pretenses and ways to give the enemy over-confidence…

38. Like a musician Cyrus is instructed to invent new compositions…

39. All that Cyrus has learned in hunting birds will make great in-roads against the enemy…

40. The analogy with hunting the hare is also made…

41. Cambyses explains that Cyrus will succeed if his men have been well trained…

42. Those obedient to Cyrus will expect him to have taken constant thought for them…

43. Cyrus has already been instructed in the particulars of strategy…

44. Cambyses concludes by reminding Cyrus to take the auspices…

45. Cambyses enumerates many examples of those who have failed on campaign…

46. Cambyses stresses that human wisdom is limited and must be supplemented by divine information…

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