The Circle for Late Antique and Medieval Studies presents a discussion with Professors Almut Hintze, Martin Schwartz and Peter Jackson Rova on the oral traditions in Zoroastrianism. The panel discussion is online and open to the public. The website is here.
How should we conceive of Prophet Zoroaster? What was the context in which he lived and composed the Gathas of Zoroaster? Do they provide a unique window into oral composition and transmission of tradition(s)? Can the early poetry attributed to Zoroaster teach us something about the cryptic techniques of Indo-European poetry and the beginnings of Greek philosophy? How did orality sustain the Zoroastrian community through millennia?
While the typology, syntax, and morphology of Iranian languages have been widely explored, the sociolinguistic aspects remain largely understudied. The present companion addresses this essential yet overlooked area of research in two ways: (i) The book explores multilingualism within Iran and its neighbouring countries. (ii) It also investigates Iranian heritage languages within the diasporic context of the West.
The scope of languages covered is vast: In addition to discussing Iranian minority languages such as Tati and Balochi, the book explores non-Iranian minority languages such as Azeri, Tukmen, Armenian and Mandaic. Furthermore, the companion investigates Iranian heritage languages such as Wakhi, Pashto, and Persian within their diasporic and global contexts.
This title is also available as Open Access on Cambridge Core.
In this book, Monika Amsler explores the historical contexts in which the Babylonian Talmud was formed in an effort to determine whether it was the result of oral transmission. Scholars have posited that the rulings and stories we find in the Talmud were passed on from one generation to the next, each generation adding their opinions and interpretations of a given subject. Yet such an oral formation process is unheard of in late antiquity. Moreover, the model exoticizes the Talmud and disregards the intellectual world of Sassanid Persia. Rather than taking the Talmud’s discursive structure as a sign for orality, Amsler interrogates the intellectual and material prerequisites of composers of such complex works, and their education and methods of large-scale data management. She also traces and highlights the marks that their working methods inevitably left in the text. Detailing how intellectual innovation was generated, Amsler’s book also sheds new light on the content of the Talmud.
Registered as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the 6th-century Derbent (Darband) fortification complex is considered the largest defensive structure of Sasanian Persia (Iran) in the Caucasus. “Derbent: What Persia Left Behind”, also explores the unique architecture of the massive fortress, and how it has been preserved for some fifteen centuries by Persian, Arab, Turkish and Russian rulers. Built strategically in the narrowest area between the Caucasus Mountains and the Caspian Sea, the fortification includes the northernmost Middle Persian (Pahlavi) inscriptions in the world, which are in danger of destruction. The 42-km defence wall of the complex that extended toward the Black Sea had already been destroyed in the Soviet era.
This book considers Gandhāran art in relation to its religious contexts and meanings within ancient Buddhism. Addressing the responses of patrons and worshippers at the monasteries and shrines of Gandhāra, papers seek to understand more about why Gandhāran art was made and what its iconographical repertoire meant to ancient viewers.
From the archaeologists and smugglers of the Raj to the museums of post-partition Pakistan and India, from coin-forgers and contraband to modern Buddhism and contemporary art, this fourth volume of the Gandhāra Connections project presents the most recent research on the factors that mediate our encounter with Gandhāran art.
Schindel, Nikolaus. 2022. Khusro I. (Sylloge Nummorum Sasanidarum, Paris-Berlin-Wien 4). 2 vols. Wien: Österreichische Akademie der Wissenschaften.
The fourth volume of the series Sylloge Nummorum Sasanidarum, Paris-Berlin-Wien, covers the period of Khusro I (531–579). His long reign is generally considered the high point of Sasanian history. So far, numismatic research has only covered his coinage in overviews, but no detailed treatment has been compiled. Similarly, the number of coins properly published did not do justice to the importance of Khusro I’s coinage. For the first time, a detailed numismatic analysis based on a representative collection of material can be presented. While the numismatic documentation is still far from complete, some developments now become visible for the first time. One focus is on the mint abbreviations, because analysis of these gives access to important new information for Sasanian administrative and regional history. The observation of numismatic parameters is of particular importance in this respect, and while style no longer offers relevant clues, some other topics, such as the patterns of minting, do; as a result, the important and productive mint signature WH can be firmly located in the region Khuzistan. The value of Sasanian coinage for the reconstruction of political history is also evaluated. One chapter is dedicated to material analysis. The catalogue covers about 880 coins from the collections in Paris, Berlin, and Vienna, as well as about 1200 additional coins. This is the most substantial documentation of the coinage of Khusro I compiled so far. The typology, legends and additional marks are documented and discussed in detail, with the text and catalogue divided into two separate volumes.
The Routledge Handbook on the Sciences in Islamicate Societies provides a comprehensive survey on science in the Islamic world from the 8th to the 19th century.
Across six sections, a group of subject experts discuss and analyze scientific practices across a wide range of Islamicate societies. The authors take into consideration several contexts in which science was practiced, ranging from intellectual traditions and persuasions to institutions, such as courts, schools, hospitals, and observatories, to the materiality of scientific practices, including the arts and craftsmanship. Chapters also devote attention to scientific practices of minority communities in Muslim majority societies, and Muslim minority groups in societies outside the Islamicate world, thereby allowing readers to better understand the opportunities and constraints of scientific practices under varying local conditions.
Through replacing Islam with Islamicate societies, the book opens up ways to explain similarities and differences between diverse societies ruled by Muslim dynasties. This handbook will be an invaluable resource for both established academics and students looking for an introduction to the field. It will appeal to those involved in the study of the history of science, the history of ideas, intellectual history, social or cultural history, Islamic studies, Middle East and African studies including history, and studies of Muslim communities in Europe and South and East Asia.