Table of Contents


    Multiple Authors

    the legal, political, and social status of every person who belongs to a state.



    See ČEHR.


    Rüdiger Schmitt

    Iranian personal name meaning “with shining splendor.”





    Hūšang Aʿlam

    in Persia, only the citrus trees and fruits of the genus Citrus L. (family Rutaceae, subfamily Aurantioideae) need be considered.


    Ḥosayn Farhūdī

    (anjoman-e šahr) in Persia.


    Naser Yeganeh

    (qānūn-e madanī) of Persia, a series of regulations controlling all civic and social relations between individuals in the various circumstances of their lives.


    Multiple Authors

    (ṭabaqāt-e ejtemāʿī), a generic term referring to various types of social group, including castes, estates, status groups, and occupational categories.

  • CLASS SYSTEM i. In the Avesta

    Prods Oktor Skjærvø

    The evidence for the existence of a highly developed class structure in the community in which the Avestan texts were composed is very slight, and the available information must be culled from sources chronologically as far apart as the Avesta itself and the Pahlavi texts.

  • CLASS SYSTEM ii. In the Median and Achaemenid Periods

    Pierre Briant

    There are strong grounds for supposing that, for some purposes at least, Persians still defined their class structure in terms of the ancient Iranian social divisions outlined in parts of the Avesta, where individuals are classified by basic function as priests, warriors, and farmers.

  • CLASS SYSTEM iii. In the Parthian and Sasanian Periods

    Mansour Shaki

    The scant and fragmentary information available on the Parthian period does not permit a comprehensive descrip­tion of social structure; in fact, the vast but decentralized empire encompassed a variety of social structures.

  • CLASS SYSTEM iv. Classes In Medieval Islamic Persia

    Ahmad Ashraf and Ali Banuazizi

    A new social stratification and conception of inequality seems to have gradually emerged under the influence of: (1) Islamic ideals of equality and merit; (2) pre-Islamic Persian and Arabian ideals and practices of social inequality; and above all (3) rivalries among social groups over wealth, prestige, and power.

  • CLASS SYSTEM v. Classes in the Qajar Period

    Ahmad Ashraf and Ali Banuazizi

    During the Qajar period there continued to be a fundamental division between a narrow stratum of courtiers, state officials, tribal leaders, religious notables, landlords and great merchants at the top and the vast majority of peasants, tribespeople, and laborers in agriculture, traditional industries, and services at the bottom.

  • CLASS SYSTEM vi. Classes in the Pahlavi Period

    Ahmad Ashraf and Ali Banuazizi

    The major social classes leading to the revolution in 1979, consisted of professionals, bureaucrats, the bourgeoisie, the traditional middle and lower-middle classes, the heterogeneous working classes, and the agrarian classes.

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    Beatrice Forbes Manz and Margaret L. Dunaway

    (d. 2 April 1412), ambassador from King Henry III of Castile and Leon to Tīmūr in the years 805-08/1403-06 and author of an important travel account.


    Multiple Authors

    This article treats cleansing practices in Zoroastrianism and in Islamic Persia.

  • CLEANSING i. In Zoroastrianism

    Mary Boyce

    Cleansing is conceived as a cosmic and individual activity is an essential element in Zoroastrianism, which teaches that the assault of the Evil Spirit, Angra Mainyu, brings defilement on all the good creations of Ahura Mazdā and that they, in their struggle for salvation, must ceaselessly strive to rid themselves of it.

  • CLEANSING ii. In Islamic Persia

    Hamid Algar

    The identification of unclean objects (najāsāt) and of the factors or agents that, within certain limits, may cleanse them (moṭahherāt) depends more on the interpretation of prophetic tradition and on juristic deduc­tion than it does on clear Koranic injunctions.


    Rüdiger Schmitt

    (b. ca. 390 or 410 BCE, the latter date based on Memnon’s report of his age as fifty-eight years at his death in 352), tyrant of Pontic Heracleia (modern Ereğli) in 363-52 BCE.


    Rüdiger Schmitt

    (b. Sparta ca. 450 BCE, d. Babylon 401 BCE), son of Rhamphias, Greek general in the service of Cyrus the Younger.


    Rüdiger Schmitt

    (Gk. Kleítarchos), Greek histo­rian of the 4th century BCE, son of the historian Dinon of Colophon and author of a history of the exploits of Alexander the Great.


    Rüdiger Schmitt

    (1865-1940), Ger­man Protestant theologian and historian of religions who compiled the classical passages on Iranian reli­gion.

  • CLEMENT of Alexandria

    Marie Louise Chaumont

    (Titus Flavius Clemens, probably b. Athens ca. 150 C.E., d. Cappadocia ca. 215), Greek convert to Christianity who became the leading theologian of his time, a polemicist particularly noted for his attempts to reconcile Greco-Roman thought with Christian teachings.


    Marie Louise Chaumont

    the unknown author of a work of fiction falsely ascribed to Pope Clement I (88-­97 CE) and now generally known as the Pseudo­-Clementines, which contains passages reflecting myths and teachings of Persian origin.



    in Roman sources a designation for a Parthian armored cavalryman. See ASB; ASB-SAVĀRĪ.


    Eckart Ehlers

    The Persian national weather service first began publishing its observations only in the year 1956, when a network of synoptic observation stations was first constructed in confor­mity with international standards; detailed data for many parts of the country are thus available for only about twenty-five or thirty years.

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    Aḥmad Tafażżolī

    (kešvar), ancient division of the earth’s surface.


    Willem Floor

    devices for measuring and registering time.


    Lutz Richter-Bernburg

    (1818-1855), French anatomist and French minister to the court at Tehran 1846-55, serving as personal physician to Moḥammad Shah (r. 1834-48) and Nāṣer-al-Dīn Shah Qājār (r. 1848-96).


    Multiple Authors

    (Ar. and Pers. lebās, Pers. pūšāk, jāma, raḵt). The articles in this series are devoted to clothing of the Iranian peoples in successive historical periods and of various regions and ethnic groups in Afghanistan, Tajikistan, and Iran.

  • CLOTHING i. General remarks


    Of the twenty-seven subsequent articles in this series eleven are devoted to clothing of the Iranian peoples in successive historical periods and fourteen to modern clothing of various regions and ethnic groups in Afghanistan, Tajikistan, and Persia. The remaining two are compilations of terminology for various types of garment in these settings.

  • CLOTHING ii. In the Median and Achaemenid periods

    Shapur Shahbazi

    Several overgarments were associ­ated with court dress. The vest was worn by Darius the Great, the Persepolitan monster-slaying hero, and the Persian and Elamite throne bearers represented on the tombs. IBeing sleeveless, it left the wearer free to move quickly.

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  • CLOTHING iii. In the Arsacid period

    Trudi Kawami

    The Parthian period, when the Arsacid dynasty ruled, or claimed to rule, Persia, was the period in which trousers and sleeved coats became common garb throughout the Near East. These garments, the direct ancestors of modern dress, crossed political and ethnic boundaries and were worn from northern India to Syria, continuing Achaemenid styles.

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  • CLOTHING iv. In the Sasanian period

    Elsie H. Peck

    Variation of the veiled tunic is seen on a series of silver-gilt vases and ewers depicting female dancers and generally dated to the 5th and 6th centuries. In these images the veil, instead of being worn over the shoulder, is draped below the hips, with its ends wrapped around the arms.

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  • CLOTHING v. In Pre-Islamic Eastern Iran

    Gerd Gropp

    Modern knowledge of the dress of the eastern Iranian peoples is derived from literary and archeological sources, which can be compared, though with caution. Although there were regional differences, as well as a broad change over time, on the whole the costume remained fairly uniform.

  • CLOTHING vi. Of the Sogdians

    Aleksandr Naymark

    The most common type of male outer garment was a caftan with long, tapered sleeves; a round neck; and slits on the sides of the skirt. The neckline, lapels, cuffs, hem, and side slits were trimmed with fabric of another pattern. The caftan was worn belted.

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  • CLOTHING vii. Of the Iranian Tribes on the Pontic Steppes and in the Caucaus

    S. A. Yatsenko

    Both sexes wore caftans open in front, trou­sers, and a tunic with a round neck opening and long side slits, convenient for riding horses.

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  • CLOTHING viii. In Persia from the Arab conquest to the Mongol invasion

    Elsie H. Peck

    There is evidence that styles of the late Sasanian period in Persia continued to be worn for some time after the Islamic conquest. The costume worn by “Bahrām Gōr” in a relief from the same site probably reflects that of a man of high rank.

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  • CLOTHING ix. In the Mongol and Timurid periods

    Eleanor Sims

    The few Mongol and Timurid garments that survive almost all come from tombs; they reveal more about material and weaves, designs and colors, than about cut.

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  • CLOTHING x. In the Safavid and Qajar periods

    Layla S. Diba

    Pictorial sources for both the Safavid and Qajar periods provide a comprehensive survey of costume types and are thus an important tool, as long as it is remembered that Persian painting is often idealized and standardized. 

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  • CLOTHING xi. In the Pahlavi and post-Pahlavi periods

    ʿAlī-Akbar Saʿīdī Sīrjānī

    Office workers and other urban residents who favored modernity gradually adopted the sardārī (frock coat), trousers, and even on occasion Western suits. In 1928 the cabinet resolved that all male Persians dress uniformly in Western style.

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  • CLOTHING xiii. Clothing in Afghanistan

    Nancy Hatch Dupree

    The most diagnostic item of clothing is headgear; and even the ubiquitous turban (Pers. langōtā, dastār, Pashto paṭkay, pagṛi), which can vary in length from 3 to 6 m, takes on distinguishing characteristics, depending on the arrangement of folds.

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  • CLOTHING xiv. Clothing of the Hazāra tribes

    Klaus Ferdinand

    In the 1950s Hazāra women made all the family clothing, and they also wove barrak on a horizontal loom of a type common in Afghanistan. Cotton is cultivated in the warmer southern part of Hazārajāt, for example, in Šahrestān (formerly Sepāy) in Dāy Zangī and farther south in Orūzgān and Jāḡūrī; profes­sional male weavers make the traditional cotton cloth called karbās on a loom of a type found extensively in southern and western Asia.

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  • CLOTHING xv. Clothing of Tajikistan

    Guzel’ Maĭtdinova

    The most common traditional garment is a straight dress, widening at the bottom, worn over trousers. The long, full sleeves generally cover the hands, though in some mountain regions sleeves are closely fitted to the wrists. Another type of dress is cut straight, with a yoke and inset sleeves.

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  • CLOTHING xvi. Kurdish clothing in Persia

    Shirin Mohseni and Peter Andrews

    In western Azerbaijan Mahābād is the main urban center for the Kurds. Women there wear balloon-shaped trousers (darpe), 4-6 m wide, fitted at the ankles, and a long pleated dress (kerās), 4-5 m wide, with a round neck­line and long sleeves.

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  • CLOTHING xvii. Clothing of the Kurdish Jews

    Ora Shwartz-Beeri

    Everyday men’s clothes were made from handwoven sheep’s wool. Suits for weddings and other festive occasions were of handwoven mohair. These suits were embellished with embroi­dery. According to infor­mants, expensive fabrics for women’s and children’s clothes were also handmade of wild silk, from worms that feed on oak trees in the region.

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  • CLOTHING xviii. Clothing of the Baluch in Persia

    Iran Ala Firouz and Mehremonīr Jahānbānī

    The basic garments are variations of the traditional and tribal costume characteristic of Persia as a whole: a long, loose robe with a round neckline, a slit down the center of the bodice, and long, wide sleeves tapering toward the wrists, worn over a chemise and wide trousers narrowing at the ankles and with a drawstring at the waist.

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  • CLOTHING xix. Clothing of the Baluch in Pakistan and Afghanistan

    Pamela Hunte

    There is some variation in apparel among tribes, especially in specific embroidery designs and in the terminology applied to garments and embroidery patterns. The northern tribes wear heavier clothing as protection in the colder climate. 

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  • CLOTHING xx. Clothing of Khorasan

    Ḥosayn-ʿAlī Beyhaqī

    The male costume includes either a tasseled black cap, around which a shawl is wrapped; a hood woven of black lamb’s wool, which covers the head from above the eyebrows to the neck; a traveling hood, which covers the face, with an opening for the eyes; or a hat made of lambskin.

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  • CLOTHING xxi. Turkic and Kurdish clothing of Azerbaijan

    P. A. Andrews And M. Andrews

    Traditional costume, now worn largely in a tribal context, retains the form of garments as they were at the end of the 19th century; it is only among Kurdish, rather than Turkic, men that elements have survived the reforms of Reżā Shah in everyday wear.

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