Category Archives: Articles

Mithra and the Arrangement of Geographical Lists in the Achaemenid and Sasanid Inscriptions

Tamari, Nazanin. 2017. “Mithra and the Arrangement of Geographical Lists in the Achaemenid and Sasanid Inscriptions“, Journal of Historical Researches 8(4), 111-130.

The division of the world is one of the issues that began with the social life of human in all over the world and still continues. The oldest division has mythical and legendary aspects that shows the geographical knowledge or religious and ethnic beliefs of their predecessors.
Various geographical divisions can be seen in the ancient Iranian traditions. Each of these divisions follow the specific arrangement of listing the geographical areas, which discussed in this paper. The arrangement of geographical areas in Achaemenid and Sasanian inscription and in the Mihr Yašt, the oldest of Avestan hymns (Yašts), are the same. Because of this similarity cannot be accidental, in this paper the cause of the similarities has been investigated.
The arrangement of geographical areas in two lists (inscriptions and Mihr Yašt) shows clockwise (sunwise) fashion, that investigated in religious view in this study. Due to the Mithra’s influence on cultural and religious context of the ancient Iranians, for the first time in present paper investigated the role of this god and his influence on the writing the geographical lists in the Achaemenid and Sasanin inscriptions.

In origianl:

تمری، نازنین. 1395.   ایزد مهر و آرایش فهرست های جغرافیایی در کتیبه های هخامنشی و ساسانی. فصل‌نامه پژوهش‌های تاریخی، 8(4) 111-130

The Middle Persian words xwarrah and farr

Shavarebi, Ehsan & Ahmad Reza Qaemmaqami. 2016. Les mots moyen-perses xwarrah et farr: un nouvel argument onomastique. Folia Orientalia 53. 261–274.

This article analyses Ardašīr-Farr, the honorary title attributed to Abarsām, a high-ranking dignitary at the reign of Ardašīr I, and its similarity to the name of the city of Ardašīr-Xwarrah.

Gemelli Careri’s Description of Persepolis

Colburn, Henry. 2017. Gemelli Careri’s description of PersepolisGetty Research Journal 9. 181–190.

This article examines the description of Persepolis, one of the capital cities of the Achaemenid Persian Empire (ca. 550–330 BCE), by Giovanni Francesco Gemelli Careri (1651–1725) in his illustrated travelogue Giro del mondo (1699–1700). Gemelli Careri’s extensive description of the site—some twenty pages of text accompanied by two plates engraved by Andrea Magliar (fl. 1690s)—is compared with the accounts of contemporary travelers and with present-day archaeological knowledge. Gemelli Careri’s visit to and description of Persepolis are now largely forgotten in the modern study of Achaemenid Persia, but they shed light on a transitional moment in the development of a more scientific approach to travel writing about archaeological sites: his work straddles the more imaginative approaches of earlier travel writers and the more scientific approaches of subsequent ones.

Imagining the Ancients in the Iranian Popularization of Pre-Islamic History

Rezakhani, Khodadad. 2016. The present in the mind’s past: Imagining the ancients in the Iranian popularization of pre-Islamic history. In Sonja Brentjes, Taner Edis & Lutz Richter-Bernburg (eds.), 1001 distortions. How (not) to narrate history of science, medicine, and technology in non-Western cultures (Bibliotheca Academica – Reihe Orientalistik 25) 97–106. Herausgeber: Würzburg: Ergon.

 

The Cults of Alexander the Great in the Greek Cities of Asia Minor

Kholod, Maxim. 2016. “The Cults of Alexander the Great in the Greek Cities of Asia Minor“. Klio. Beiträge zur Alten Geschichte 98(2), 495-525.

 

The paper deals with the cults of Alexander the Great in the Greek cities of Asia Minor (on the coast and the nearby islands). The author argues that although some cults in these cities could be set up after the Macedonian king’s death, at least most known to us (or supposed) cults of Alexander in them were instituted still in his lifetime, in all likelihood, in 324-323 BC. It seems that the cults of the king were established only in a certain, probably far from overwhelming, number of the Greek cities of Asia Minor in this period. In turn, it should be believed that the do ut des principle played an important role when these cities introduced such cults. At the same time, their institution was also caused by a sense of gratitude of the inhabitants of the Greek cities of Asia Minor to Alexander for the liberation of them from the unpopular power of both the Persians and pro-Persian oligarchs or tyrants and, in addition, for those general and particular benefactions that were given by the Macedonian king to the communities.

Persianisms: The Achaemenid Court in Greek Art

Llewellyn-Jones, Lloyd. 2017. Persianisms: The Achaemenid court in Greek art,380–330 BCE. Iranian Studies 50(1). 1–22.

The Persians held sway over the Greek imagination for more than 200 years. The image of Persia shifted in that time from xenophobic hostility, caused through fear of the encroaching presence of the Persian empire, through to curious acceptance of its dominance. Much study has been given to the formative decades of the construction of the Persian “Other” in Greek art, but the fourth-century image of Persia has remained relatively unexplored. This paper demonstrates how Greek artists of the period 380–330 BCE fixated on the life and accomplishments of the court of the Achaemenid Great Kings and argues that instead of offering an orientalist clichéd view of Persian life, it attempted to understand and disseminate bone fide Iranian images of court society.

The history of the Parthians in the Geography of Strabo

Dabrowa, Edward . 2015. “L’ histoire des Parthes dans la Geographie de Strabon“, Studi Ellenistici 29, 285-303.

Signaling Theory and Dress in Period IVb at Hasanlu Iran

Cifarelli, Megan. 2017. Costly choices: Signaling theory and dress in period IVb at Hasanlu Iran. Cifarelli, Megan & Laura Gawlinski (eds.), What shall I say of clothes? Theoretical and methodological approaches. Boston: The Archaeological Institute of America.

A growing body of work on dress in antiquity has probed more deeply the embodied experience of wearers, the relational aspect of the way dress communicates, and the role of dress as an active element in, rather than a passive reflection of, the construction of identity. It remains challenging, though, to interpret material evidence that shows abrupt changes in
dress practice. This article explores the potential of costly signaling theory, borrowed from evolutionary archaeology, for interpreting the gendered, militaristic dress-related artifacts introduced in the burials of the early first millennium B.C.E. at Hasanlu, Iran, a period of external threatand internal upheaval. Rather than characterizing these changes as simply evidence of “militarization” in a time of crisis, this article argues that a seemingly unwearable type of dress item participated in an effective, mutually beneficial form of communication by which men and women negotiated identity and power at the site.

Proto-Elamite writing in Iran

Desset, François. 2016. “Proto-Elamite writing in Iran“, ArchéoNil 26, 67-104.

In the Near East, the most ancient writing systems currently known in the world appeared at the end of the 4th millennium BC: the proto-cuneiform writing in Southern Mesopotamia and the proto-elamite writing on the Iranian Plateau. Both used for administrative and accounting purposes, these writing systems displayed important parallels, such as the numerical systems and the numerical value signs, and dissimilarities since most of their signs differed from each other. Because of the apparent break in the scribal tradition on the Iranian Plateau around 2800 BC, the proto-elamite writing did not give birth to any offspring which could have helped us in its decipherment, contrary to the proto-cuneiform writing and its heir, the cuneiform writing. For this reason, although it is known for more than one century thanks to the French excavations in Susa, the proto-elamite writing remains still largely undeciphered and only the shared elements with the proto-cuneiform writing (such as the numerical systems) are finally well understood.

Iranian and Jewish Apocalyptics

Agostini, Domenico. 2016. On Iranian and Jewish apocalyptics, again. Journal of the American Oriental Society 136 (3). 495–505.

The relations between the Iranian, in particular Zoroastrian, and Jewish apocalyptic literature as well as their mutual influences have, since the beginning of the twentieth century, constituted a rich and exciting battlefield for the scholars of
these respective traditions. This article aims to present some topics concerning the definition of Iranian apocalyptics and its relation with its Jewish counterpart, as well as to establish an updated starting point for a new scholarly debate.