Episode 2

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Episode 2 – Ardashir I

In this episode I will discuss the life and the reign of Ardashir I, the first shahan shah of the Sasanian Empire, who ruled from 224 (226) – 242 CE.

Maps:

All maps are obtained from Google Maps and are copyrighted by Google.

Map showing the location of the cities mentioned in this podcast.

Map showing the respective locations of the ancient city of Susa, Ramhormoz (where some think the Battle of Hormozdgan took place), Ahvaz (ancient city of Gondi Shapur), capital of Khuzestan. I’ve also included the location of Masjed Soleyman, where I was born!!

Map showing the location of Istakhr with respect to Persepolis. The distance between the two cities, as the crow flies, is less than 3 miles. Istakhr is at the northern end of a “caterpillar” whereas Persepolis is on the caterpillar’s western edge.

Map showing the relative locations of Darabgerd and Gūr with respect to modern Shiraz.

Satellite image of Darabgerd. The diameter of the city is about 1.1 miles (1.8 km).

Satellite image of Firuzabad (modern town) with the round ruins of Gūr on the left. The city diameter is the same size as Darabgerd.

Ardashir’s palace in Gūr.

Main fire temple in Gūr.

Here’s a list of person/place/thing names of relevance to this episode:

In the order as they appear in the Episode:

In alphabetical order

Ardashir I: The founder of the Sasanian Empire.

Al-Tabari (Aboo Ja’far Muhammad ibn Jarir al Tabari): Famous early Islamic historian who wrote The History of the Prophets and Kings.

Hormozdgan: A flat plain region in the Zagros mountains and site of the decisive battle between the Arsacid emperor, Ardavan IV and Ardashir.

Anahita (Anahid): Old Persian Goddess of the Waters, associated with ertility, healing and wisdom.

Sasan: Reputedly Ardashir’s grandfather and the namesake of the dynasty.

Ardashīr ī Pābagān: Middle Persian for “Ardashir son of Babak.” This is a well-known name for Ardashir.

Al-Tabari (Aboo Ja’far Muhammad ibn Jarir al Tabari): Famous early Islamic historian who wrote The History of the Prophets and Kings.

Ardashir I: The founder of the Sasanian Empire.

Istakhr: The administrative center of the Kingdom of Pars.

Argbed: Castellan.

Anahita (Anahid): Old Persian Goddess of the Waters, associated with ertility, healing and wisdom.

Babak (Papak, Poopak, Pabag): Ardashir’s father.

Babak (Papak, Poopak, Pabag): Ardashir’s father.

Caracalla: Roman emperor who reigned 28 January 198 – 8 April 217 CE. Succeeded Septimius Severus and was succeeded by Macrinus.

Shapur: Ardashir’s older brother AND Ardashir’s older son.

Darabgerd: Town in Pars, now in ruins.

Darabgerd: Town in Pars, now in ruins.

Gūr: Town in Pars, now in ruins, near modern day Firuzabad.

Argbed: Castellan.

Guzihr: The last Shah of Pars, ousted by Babak.

Gūr: Town in Pars, now in ruins, near modern day Firuzabad.

Hormozdgan: A flat plain region in the Zagros mountains and site of the decisive battle between the Arsacid emperor, Ardavan IV and Ardashir.

Guzihr: The last Shah of Pars, ousted by Babak.

Istakhr: The administrative center of the Kingdom of Pars.

Vologoses VI: Ardavan IV’s older brother, claimant to the Arsacid throne.

Kerman: Kingdom to the east of Pars.

Caracalla: Roman emperor who reigned 28 January 198 – 8 April 217 CE. Succeeded Septimius Severus and was succeeded by Macrinus.

Macrinus: Roman emperor who reigned 11 April 217 – 8 June 218. Succeeded Caracalla and was succeeded by Elagabalus.

Macrinus: Roman emperor who reigned 11 April 217 – 8 June 218. Succeeded Caracalla and was succeeded by Elagabalus.

Marv (Marw): Modern day Mary, Turkmenistan, the ancient administrative center of Khorasan.

Nisibis: A very important border town between Iranshahr and the Roman Empire, located in northern Levant.

Nisibis: A very important border town between Iranshahr and the Roman Empire, located in northern Levant.

Kerman: Kingdom to the east of Pars.

Ramhormoz: Small town in the Khuzestan province, thought to be the site of the Battle of Hormozdgan.

Ramhormoz: Small town in the Khuzestan province, thought to be the site of the Battle of Hormozdgan.

Sasan: Reputedly Ardashir’s grandfather and the namesake of the dynasty.

Weh Ardashir: New town built by Ardashir across the Tigris from Ctesiphon.

Shapur: Ardashir’s older brother AND Ardashir’s older son.

Marv (Marw): Modern day Mary, Turkmenistan, the ancient administrative center of Khorasan.

Vologoses VI: Ardavan IV’s older brother, claimant to the Arsacid throne.

Ardashīr ī Pābagān: Middle Persian for “Ardashir son of Babak.” This is a well-known name for Ardashir.

Weh Ardashir: New town built by Ardashir across the Tigris from Ctesiphon.

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