Four Levels of Astyages Revenge

Astyages Revenge Four Levels

Astyages’ revenge is an ancient story that is related to the revenge or reprisal of King Astyages.

Four levels of Astyages Revenge – literal comprehension, interpretation, critical thinking/analysis, and assimilation are mentioned below:

Literal Comprehension

The story ‘Astyages Revenge’ was written by ‘Herodotus (484 BC-425BC)’. In this story, the king ‘Astyages’ daughter ‘Mandane’ married a Persian called ‘Cambyses’.

The king’s dream interpreter ‘Magi’, said his daughter’s urine flooded the whole of Asia & her child would evolve like a king in his palace. After interpreting with his dream interpreter he called back his daughter from Persia.

When the daughter gave birth to a child. He said his faithful officer ‘Harpagus’ to expose the child. He also warned him not to give this task to anyone but Harpagus didn’t want to kill the royal child & so he decided to send a herdsman whose name was Mitradates to expose the child to the loneliest part of the hill.

But the herdsman exposed his child as a royal child & he took a royal child as his child because unfortunately, his wife birth to a dead child.

When the child Cyrus was 10 years old, he played with his friends as a king & he punished his friend, who was a child of Artembars. Artembars said to the king about the events when Herdsman & Cyrus came into the palace.

Finally, the king knew about Cyrus, but he became too furious with the Harpagus & so he cut the throat of the Harpagus’s son which is the penalty given by the king to the Harpagus for mishandling his task.

Again King interprets with his dream interpreter & he sent Cyrus to Persia to meet his parents. When he reached Persia his parents became very happy and he was welcomed fully with joy.


Maybe this story trying to reflect the superstitious nature of the king.

If we have destiny whoever tries to kill us however we survived. In that condition, Cyrus was presented.

Also, it displays the bad effects of absolute power. Also, it interprets that everyone has equal power, and rights it should be used in a way no one can misuse their right.

Critical thinking

In terms of moral & religious points of view, this story is not well appreciated.

In this story whatever the king had done, it is dreadful. He keeps his country’s men under his rule. But in the present world, people do not follow others’ rules.

In this way, I have some questions about this text

  • Is the king so merciless to expose his child?
  • Is the king’s dream acceptable?
  • Can we believe a father easily neglects his own daughter’s pleasure?
  • How is it possible the Herdsman decided to expose his child instead of the royal one?


Before reading the text “Astyages Revenge” I used to think that kings are responsible for their palaces & people & they work for the development of their palaces & people.

But after reading this text I came to know that. KingĀ is involved to fulfill his or her revenge not for conscious toward their people. Therefore, I have developed bad things about the kings.

Read More: The Library Card Four Levels

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