Ancient Persia / Edition 1

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Josef Wiesehofer, one of the most respected scholars of the ancient world, provides here a comprehensive survey of the Persian Empire under the Achaemenids, the Parthians and the Sasanians. By focusing on the indigenous sources - written, archaeological and numismatic evidence from Persia - he avoids the traditional Western approach which has tended to rely so heavily on foreign and sometimes prejudiced Greek or Roman sources. Part of the freshness of this book comes from its presentation of a historical discussion of pre-Islamic Persia from a Near Eastern perspective.
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Editorial Reviews

Focusing on written, archaeological, and numismatic evidence from Persia, the author avoids the traditional Western approach (relying on Greek and Roman sources) in this survey of the Persian Empire under the Achaemenids, the Parthians, and the Sasanians. A range of different topics are covered over the 1200 year period, including: language, writing systems, kingship and the relationship between ruler and subject, religious belief and practice, and everyday life and gender relations. Distributed by St. Martin's Press. Annotation c. by Book News, Inc., Portland, Or.
From the Publisher

"His account of a millennium of Persian history is highly readable, balancing a broad, clear and authoritative overview...."-- James Davidson, London Review of Books
"I strongly recommend this book. . . It is scholarly, well-written, engaging and will stimulate specialists and general readers alike." -- Maria Brosius, St. Hugh's College, Oxford University

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781860646751
  • Publisher: I. B.Tauris & Company, Limited
  • Publication date: 8/28/2001
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 344
  • Sales rank: 882,911
  • Product dimensions: 6.10 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 1.20 (d)

Meet the Author

Josef Wiesehöfer is Professor of Ancient History at the Institute of Classical Antiquity at the University of Kiel, Germany.

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Table of Contents

Introduction: The Beginnings of Iranian Supremacy in the Ancient Near East 1
Pt. 1 Iran from Cyrus to Alexander the Great: the Reign of the Achaemenids 5
1 The Testimonies 7
2 The King and his Subjects 29
3 Xsaca, Dahyava and Bagi: the Kingdom, the Peoples and the Tributes Paid to the King 56
4 Everyday Life in Achaemenid Persis 66
Pt. 2 Interlude 103
5 Macedonian Domination over Iran 105
Pt. 3 Iran from Arsaces I to Artabanus IV: the Parthian Reign 115
6 The Testimonies 117
7 The King and his Subjects 130
8 Satraps, Traders, Soldiers and Priests: Administration, Economy, the Army and Cults in Arsacid Iran 144
Pt. 4 Iran from Ardashir I to Yazdgird III: the Reign of the Sasanians 151
9 The Testimonies 153
10 The King and his Subjects 165
11 Eranshahr: the Empire, its Inhabitants and their Way of Life 183
Conclusion: The Survival and Rediscovery of Ancient Iran 223
Postscript 243
Abbreviations 247
Bibliographical Essays 251
Chronological Table 307
Dynasties and Kings 313
Index 318
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