On this day in ancient history - October 1:
Following the usurpation of the Persian throne by a magi, in 522 B.C., the Achaemenid Darius killed him and started a magi massacre, according to early versions of the story. Herodotus says this occasion was celebrated each year with a festival called the Magophonia. Ctesius confirms this. He was a late 5th century B.C. Greek physician thought to have served at the court of the Persian King Darius II. He is also an early source on the unicorn.
It may not have been this day. It seems to be the same day as an ancient festival of Mithra, and may rightly have been not on the first of October (or 16th day of the 7th month), but on the fall equinox. It may have been on the 10th day of the 7th month of the Old Persian calendar [S. H. Taqizadeh].
- "Evolution of Rituals and Theater in Iran," Farrokh Gaffary; Iranian Studies, Vol. 17, No. 4 (Autumn, 1984), pp. 361-389.
- "The Murder of the Magi," by W. B. Henning; Journal of the Royal Asiatic Society of Great Britain and Ireland, No. 2 (Oct., 1944), pp. 133-144.
- "The Old Iranian Calendars Again," by S. H. Taqizadeh; Bulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies, (1952), pp. 603-611.
- The Zoroastrian Festival of Mihragan (Jashan-e Mihragan)
- Old Iranian Calendars