The Persian Empire was established by Cyrus the Great who defeated Croesus
of Lydia in 546 BC and Babylon in 539 BC. The empire stretched from India
to the Mediteranian. After the defeat of Lydia, the great king took notice
of the use of coins and liked the idea. The Persians continued production
of Lydian siglos, at first with the facing lion and bull, but slowly replaced
with the Persian archer which continued to the fall of the empire. Cyrus
died in 529 BC. His son Cambyses, who was a spoiled and poor
ruler, died while invading Egypt. Following Cambyses death
there were some palace intriques, but eventual Darius I came to the throne.
Darius I planned to continue the expansion of the empire by invading Greece,
but he died in 485 BC, and Cyrus's grandson Xerexs became king in 485 BC.
Xerexs led the unsuccessful invasion of Greece and died in 465 BC. The
last king of Persia was Darius III who was defeated by Alexander the Great
at the battle of Gaugamela in 331 BC. After the battle he fled to Media, but
was killed en route by his own men.