Pre-Islamic Iran from the Creation to the Parthians

Hameen-Anttila, Jaakko (ed.). 2017. Al-Maqrīzī’s al-Ḫabar ʻan al-bašar. vol. V, section 4: Persia and its kings, part I (Bibliotheca Maqriziana 5). Leiden: Brill.

Al-Maqrīzī’s (d. 845/1442) last work, al-Ḫabar ʿan al-bašar, was completed a year before his death. This volume, edited by Jaakko Hämeen-Anttila, covers the history of pre-Islamic Iran from the Creation to the Parthians. Al-Maqrīzī’s work shows how Arab historians integrated Iran into world history and how they harmonized various currents of historiography (Middle Persian historiography, Islamic sacred history, Greek and Latin historiography).

Among al-Ḫabar’s sources is Kitāb Hurūšiyūš, the Arabic translation of Paulus Orosius’ Historiarum adversum paganos libri vii. This source has only been preserved in one defective copy, and al-Maqrīzī’s text helps to fill in some of its lacunae.

Table of contents

  1. al-Maqrīzī and the Ḫabar
  2. The Pre-Islamic History of Iran in Arabic and Persian Sources
  3. al-Maqrīzī’s Sources
  4. al-Maqrīzī and Orosius
  5. al-Maqrīzī’s Use of Sources
  6. Description of the Manuscripts
  7. Notes on the Translation
  8. Names

Critical Edition and Translation of al-Maqrīzī’s al-Ḫabar ʿan al-bašar, vol. V, section 4: Persia and Its Kings, Part I

Persia and the Four Classes of Its Kings

  • The First Class, the Pīšdādians
  • Mention of the Second Class of Persians, the Kayanids

The Third Class of Persian (kings), the Ašġānians

List of Quoted Manuscripts
Index of Qurʾānic Verses
Index of Prophetic Traditions
Index of Verses
Index of Names (People and Places)
Index of Quoted Titles in al-Ḫabar ʿan al-bašar
Index of Sources in al-Ḫabar ʿan al-bašar
Index of Glosses
Index of Technical Terms

Facsimile of MS Fatih 4340 (Istanbul, Süleymaniye Kütüphanesi), fols. 76b–127b, 47*ab, 128a–131a

Jaakko Hämeen-Anttila, PhD 1994, is the Iraq Chair of Arabic and Islamic Studies at the University of Edinburgh. His publications include Maqama (2002), The Last Pagans of Iraq (2006) and several articles on pre-Islamic Iran in Arabic sources.