We call them parties; but who would call the Duke of Devonshire or Lord John Russell, in a bad sense, a party man?" "It seems to me," said Carlton, "that the formation of a party is merely a recurrence to the original mode of forming into society. You recollect Deioces; he formed a party. He gained influence; he laid the foundation of social order."
Even the list of Herodotus requires curtailment. His Deioces, whose whole history reads more like romance than truth the organizer of a powerful monarchy in Media just at the time when Sargon was building his fortified posts in the country and peopling with his Israelite captives the old "cities of the Medes" the prince who reigned for above half a century in perfect peace with his neighbors, and who, although contemporary with Sargon, Sennacherib, Esar-haddon, and As-shur-bani-pal all kings more or less connected with Media is never heard of in any of their annals, must be relegated to the historical limbo in which repose so many "shades of mighty names;" and the Herodotean list of Median kings must at any rate, be thus far reduced.
Divided into various tribes, each dependant upon the Assyrian sceptre, was a warlike, wandering, and primitive race, known to us under the name of Medes. Deioces, a chief of one of the tribes, succeeded in uniting these scattered sections into a single people, built a city, and founded an independent throne.
Gyges reigned thirty-eight years, and was succeeded by his son Ardys, during whose reign was an extensive invasion of the Cimmerians, and a collision between the inhabitants of Lydia and those of Upper Asia, under the Median kings, who first acquired importance about the year 656 B.C. under a king called, by the Greeks, Phraortes, son of Deioces, who built the city of Ecbatana.
Arbaces, Maudaces, Sosarmus, Artycas, Arbianes, Artseus, Deioces Median monarchs, according to Ctesias or Herodotus, during the space of time comprised within the years B.C. 875 and 655 have to be dismissed by the modern writer without a word, since there is reason to believe that they are mere creatures of the imagination, inventions of unscrupulous romancers, not men who once walked the earth.
Such, for instance, are the royal names mentioned by Herodotus, Deioces, Phraortes, Astyages, and Cyaxares; and such also are the following, which come to us from various sources; Amytis, Astibaras, Armamithres or Harmamithres, Mandauces, Parsondas, Eama-tes, Susiscanes, Tithaous, and Zanasanes. Dahaka means in Zend "biting," or "the biter," and is etymo-logically connected with the Greek.
The Median princes paid tribute to the kings of Nineveh, or withheld it, according to their circumstances. The revolt of Media from Assyria was followed by the election of Deioces, who reigned fifty-three years. The history of this king is drawn through Grecian sources, and can not much be depended upon.
And this is done by the same right that Deioces had to collect people about him; it does not interfere with the existing territory of the law, but builds where the constitution has not made provision. It tends, then, ultimately to be recognised by the constitution."
It may be thought perhaps that the description which Herodotus gives of the building called by him "the palace of Deioces" should be here applied, and that by its means we might obtain an exact notion of the original structure.
According to the legends, the seven tribes of the Medes, scattered over separate villages, suffered all the evils of anarchy, till the reputation of Deioces made him the arbiter of their disputes. He then retired into private life; anarchy returned, a king was called for, and Deioces was elected.