DADYSETH ĀTAŠ BAHRĀM, the oldest Ātaš Bahrām of Bombay, consecrated and installed according to Kadmi (see dadyseth) rites in the district of Fanaswadi on the day of Sarōš, month of Farvardīn 1153 A.Y./29 September 1783 (Patell, 1888, p. 86; idem, 1906, pp. 15-17). The cost was borne entirely by Dadibhai Noshirwanji Dadyset. Mulla Kaus brought Kadmi priests from Surat to perform the long consecration rites and was himself installed as the temple’s first dastūr, or high priest. At his death in 1802 he was succeeded in this office by his son Mulla Feroze and he in 1830 by his nephew and heir, Rustomji Kekobadji, the dasturship remaining in their family until 1897 (Seervai and Patell, p. 193 n. 2). The temple was administered by the same trustees as the Dadyseth Agiary. The last member of the Dadyseth family to serve among them died in 1989.
For nearly half a century this was Bombay’s only Ātaš Bahrām, and, despite dissension between Shenshahis and Kadmis, it was a center of Parsi religious and communal life. A number of meetings of the general anjoman of Bombay were held there.
In 1916 the sacred fire was moved for the first time since its installation, for repairs to the sanctuary. The old fire vase was of copper, and seven copper coins were found beneath it (Paymaster, p. 498).
B. B. Patell, Pārsī prakāš (Parsi luster), Bombay, 1888.
Idem, Pārsī dharmasthālō (Parsi places of religion), Bombay, 1906.
R. B. Paymaster, Ahēwālē khāndānē dādīšēth (History of the Dadyseth family), Bombay, 1931.
K. N. Seervai and B. B. Patell, “Gujarat Parsis,” in Gazetteer of the Bombay Presidency IX/2, Bombay, 1899, pp. 183-288.
(Mary Boyce and Firoze M. Kotwal)
Originally Published: December 15, 1993
Last Updated: November 11, 2011
This article is available in print.
Vol. VI, Fasc. 5, p. 560