HYRCANIA. (i) An ancient district of Asia, south of the Caspian Sea, and bounded on the E. by the river Oxus, called Virkana, or " Wolf's Land," in Old Persian. It was a wide and indefinite tract. Its chief city is called Tape by Strabo, Zadracarta by Arrian (probably the modern Astarabad). The latter is evidently the same as Carta, mentioned by Strabo as an important city. Little is known of the history of the country. Xenophon says it was subdued by the Assyrians; Curtius that 6000 Hyrcanians were in the army of Darius III. (2) Two towns named Hyrcania are mentioned, one in Hyrcania, the other in Lydia. The latter is said to have derived its name from a colony of Hyrcanians, transported thither by the Persians.
Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)