Table of Contents

  • BALUCHISTAN i. Geography, History and Ethnography

    Brian Spooner

    Baluchistan is generally understood by the Baluch and their neighbors to comprise an area of over half a million square kilometers in the southeastern part of the Iranian plateau, south of the central deserts and the Helmand river.

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  • BALUCHISTAN i. Geography, History and Ethnography (cont.)

    Brian Spooner

    appears to have been divided throughout history between Iranian (highland) and Indian (lowland) spheres of influence, and since 1870 it has been formally divided among Afghanistan, Iran, and India (later Pakistan). Parts 8-11.

  • BALUCHISTAN ii. Archeology

    J. G. Shaffer

    may have been inhabited first during the Pleistocene as proposed by Hume (1976), based on Paleolithic sites found in the Ladiz valley.

  • BALUCHISTAN iii. Baluchi Language and Literature

    J. Elfenbein

    Baluchi is the principal language of an area extending from the Marv (Mary) oasis in Soviet Turkmenistan southward to the Persian Gulf, from Persian Sīstān eastward along the Helmand valley in Afghanistan, throughout Pakistani Makrān eastward nearly to the Indus river, including in the south the city of Karachi.

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  • BALUCHISTAN iiia. Baluchi Poetry

    Joseph Elfenbein

    divided into 4 periods: (1) classical, from ca. 1550-1700; (2) post-classical, from 1700-1800; (3) 19th century to early 20th century; (4) modern, after ca. 1930.

  • BALUCHISTAN iv. Music of Baluchistan

    M. T. Massoudieh

    usually connected with particular ceremonies (marāsem), religious rites, festivals, or holidays. The relationships between melodies and particular ceremonies are reflected in their names.

  • BALUCHISTAN v. Baluch Carpets

    S. Azadi

    a distinct group of carpets, woven by Baluch tribes in the northeastern Iranian province of Khorasan and the Sīstān area. These were not made in Makrān, where the main body of the Baluch tribes live.





    H. Aʿlam

    common designation in New Persian both for acorn and oak, Quercus L. In west and southwest Iran, where well-defined stands of oak exist, their total surface area has been estimated at 3,448,000 hectares, divided into two main areas: west Kurdistan and the Sardašt region, and on the southwestern slopes of the Zagros.


    Denise Aigle

    (d. 1345), a famous Sufi who lived at the time of the Inju dynasty in Fars. The principle source for his life is Meftāḥ al-hedāyat va meṣbāḥ al-ʿenāyat, written in 1346 by his disciple Maḥmud b. ʿOṯmān.


    H. W. Bailey

    (Khotan Saka), bārza- (Tumšuq Saka), a word adapted to Buddhist use for the transcendental Buddha, translating Buddhist Sanskrit buddha- and also several epithets of the Buddha.


    M. Momen

    (1908-1980), Bahai author and administrator.

  • BAM (1)

    W. Eilers

    (also written bām) “bass,” the lowest-pitched string in music. The etymology is discussed.

  • BAM (2)

    X. De Planhol, M.-E Bāstānī Pārīzī

    (in Arabic, Bamm), a town in southeastern Iran, located on the southwestern rim of the Dašt-e Lūt basin at an altitude of 1,100 m. i. History and modern town. ii. Ruins of the old town.


    Manuel Berberian

    OF DECEMBER 26, 2003  A moderate-magnitude (Mw 6.6) earthquake struck the city of Bam and its surroundings at 05:26 AM local time (01:56 GMT) on Friday, 5 Dey 1382 Š./26 December 2003, resulting in the highest casualty rate and the most profound social impact in the recorded post-1900 history of devastating urban earthquakes in Iran.

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    See BĀNBIŠN.


    N. Parvīn

    a weekly Persian newspaper published in Tehran, 1907.


    ʿA.-A. Saʿīdī Sīrjānī

    (d. 1973), civil servant, author of the multi-volume dictionary of national biography of Iran.


    Ali Ferdowsi

    The book’s title is taken from a famous line by Saʿdi: Šab-e šarāb nayarzad be bāmdād-e ḵomār (The night of inebriation is not worth the morning of hangover). Encased by a frame story within which the main story is narrated, Bāmdād-e ḵomār, a love story with a moral lesson, is set in Tehran in the 20th century.

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    N. Parvīn

    a Persian journal of news and political comment published in Tehran, 1915-24.


    H. Aʿlam, N. Ramazani

    (or bāmīā), okra, the edible unripe seed-pods of Hibiscus esculentus of the Malvaceae or mallows. i. The plant. ii. In cooking. iii. The sweet.  It was introduced into the culinary art of Persians by Arabs from Baghdad in the 19th century.


    Multiple Authors

    town and province in central Afghanistan. Bāmīān’s position midway between Balḵ and Peshawar at the approach to the most difficult passes and the resultant opportunities to purvey provisions and accommodation for caravans explain why it became a particularly important stopping place.

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    B. de Cardi, ʿA.-A. Saʿīdī Sīrjānī

    i. Prehistoric Site. ii. In Modern Times. Bampūr is a baḵš and qaṣaba (borough) in the šahrestān of Īrānšahr in the province of Balūčestān o Sīstān. The plain of Bampūr is encircled by several high mountains.


    Daniel T. Potts

    Since Beatrice de Cardi’s excavations in 1966 (de Cardi, 1968; idem, 1970) no new work has taken place there. Nevertheless, objects recovered at Bampur in the 1960s can now be better dated and understood, thanks to discoveries in recent years at sites in Central Asia, the Indo-Iranian borderlands, and southeastern Arabia..


    A. Tafażżolī

    named as a musician at the court of the Sasanian king Ḵosrow II Parvēz (r. 591-628).

  • BĀMŠĀD newspaper

    N. Parvīn

    a Persian newspaper and a news and public affairs magazine published in Tehran, 1956-68.


    L. Vanden Berghe

    a necropolis of the Early Bronze Age, excavated in 1967 by the Belgian Mission in Iran. By analogy with the funeral furnishings from the Old Elamite period at Susa IV, the  tombs must be situated in the Early Dynastic III period, about 2600-2400 B.C. 

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  • BĀNA

    ʿA. Mardūḵ

    a šahrestān in the province of Kurdistan, located in a mountainous, well-forested region of western Iran (lat 35°59′ N,  long 45°53′ E).


    H. Aʿlam

    “violet,” common name for the genus Viola L. in New Persian. From certain botanical features of violas there have developed some violet-based similes and metaphors in classical Persian literature.


    Z. Safa

    (1453-1512), KAMĀL-AL-DĪN ŠĪR-ʿALĪ, noted poet at various courts of Persia and Transoxania.


    C. E. Bosworth

    or BENĀKAṮ, the main town of the medieval Transoxanian province of Šāš or Čāč; it almost certainly had a pre-Islamic history as a center of the Sogdians.

  • BANĀKATĪ, Abū Solaymān

    P. Jackson

    Dāwūd b. Abi’l-Fażl Moḥammad (d. 1329-30), poet and historian.


    M. Caton

    (1911-1986), one of the foremost Persian singers of the 20th century, known for the quality of his voice and vast knowledge of āvāz repertory.  


    W. Sundermann

    Middle Persian “queen”: etymology and occurrences in Middle Iranian.

  • BAND “DAM”

    X. De Planhol

    “dam, ” something that factually or figuratively binds, ties, or restricts (cf. Av. banda- “bond,” Eng. bond). In geographical nomenclature it is applied to ranges (mainly in Afghanistan),  passes (darband), and old dams and barrages built to store or divert water.

  • BAND-E AMĪR (1)

    J. Lerner

    (the amir’s dike) or Band-e ʿAżodī (for the Daylamite ruler ʿAżod-al-Dawla, r. 949-83), a dam or weir constructed across the Kor river at the southeast end of the Marvdašt plain in Fārs.

  • BAND-E AMĪR (2)

    X. De Planhol

    the chain of natural lakes 90 km west of Bāmīān in Afghanistan (lat 30°12’ N, long 66°30’ E).


    K. Afsar

    an ancient dam built on the Qara Āḡāj river nearly sixty km south of Shiraz, attributed to the legendary king Bahman son of Esfandīār.


    X. De Planhol

    (boundary wall of Turkestan), the mountain range in northwestern Afghanistan which runs in a west-east direction for 200 km between the upper valley of the Morḡāb to the south and the plains of the Āmū Daryā to the north.


    W. Eilers, C. Herrenschmidt

    “servant.” i. The term. ii. Old Persian bandaka. Banda (NPers.) and its precursors bandak/bandag (Mid. Pers.) and bandaka (OPers.) meant “henchman, (loyal) servant, vassal,” but not “slave.”


    W. Eilers

    “harbor, seaport; commercial town.” The concept of bandar probably continues an old Oriental tradition. Its double meaning of “harbor” on a river or a sea and “town, center of commerce and communications” (also in the inland) agrees well with that of Akkadian kārum.

  • BANDAR ABBAS ii. Basic Population Data, 1956-2011

    Mohammad Hossein Nejatian

    Bandar Abba has experienced a very high rate of population growth, increasing more than twenty five-fold from a population of 17,710 in 1956 to 435,751 in 2011.

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  • BANDAR-E ʿABBAS(I) i. The City

    X. De Planhol

    At the entrance to the Persian Gulf, Bandar-e ʿAbbās extends about 2 km along the shallow Clarence (ūrān) strait between Qešm island and the mainland.


    Multiple Authors

    a port city and capital of Hormozgan province on the Persian Gulf.


    X. De Planhol

    a port on the southern shore of Astarābād Bay in the southeastern Caspian Sea, a few kilometers from a group of nine hamlets known collectively as Gaz. The installation of Russians on the Āšūrāda islands after 1837 made it very important strategically.


    D. T. Potts

    (lat 26° 33’ N, long 54° 53’ E), a small port on the coast of Lārestān.


    X. De Planhol

    (Bandar-e Maʿšūr), a port at the western end of the Persian Gulf, on the northern bank of the Ḵor-e Mūsā tideway, which forms the lower course of the Jar(r)āḥī river.



    See ANZALĪ.


    X. De Planhol

    (now Bandar-e Torkaman), a port on the southeastern Caspian Sea at the entrance of Astarābād Bay and about eight km south of the mouth of the Atrak. It was constructed from scratch during the 1930s at the terminus of the trans-Iranian railroad.


    X. De Planhol

    (Bandar-e Emām Ḵomeynī since the revolution of 1979), a port at the terminus of the trans-Iranian railroad, about 70 km from the Gulf along the northern shore of the Ḵor Mūsā, the outlet of the Jarāḥī river, which flows down from the Zagros mountains.