How Cyrus the Great Turned Ancient Persia Into a Powerful Empire

Through far-reaching military conquests and benevolent government, Cyrus the Great transformed a small group of semi-nomadic tribes into the mighty Persian Empire, the ancient world’s first superpower, in less than 15 years.

The Ascension of Cyrus the Great

Born around 600 BC. BC, the founder of the first Persian Empire (also called Achaemenid Empire) belonged to the semi-nomadic Pasargadae tribe, who raised sheep, goats and cattle in present-day southwestern Iran. Little is known about the youth or lineage of Cyrus the Great (also known as Cyrus II), except that he was part of the Achaemenid royal family by birth or marriage.

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