By Michael Axworthy

ISBN-10: 0465098770

ISBN-13: 9780465098774

Iran is a land of contradictions.

It is an Islamic republic, yet one during which in simple terms 1.4 percentage of the inhabitants attend Friday prayers. Iran's spiritual tradition encompasses the main censorious and dogmatic Shi'a Muslim clerics on this planet, but its poetry insistently dwells at the joys of existence: wine, good looks, intercourse. Iranian ladies are topic to 1 of the main restrictive costume codes within the Islamic international, yet make up approximately 60 percentage of the coed inhabitants of the nation's universities.

In A heritage of Iran, acclaimed historian Michael Axworthy chronicles the wealthy background of this advanced country from the Achaemenid Empire of 6th century B.C. to the present-day Islamic Republic. In enticing prose, this revised version explains the army, political, spiritual, and cultural forces that experience formed one of many oldest carrying on with civilizations on the earth, bringing us up sleek occasions.

Concluding with an overview of the colossal alterations the state has passed through because the revolution in 1979, together with an in depth examine Iran's ongoing makes an attempt to turn into a nuclear energy, A heritage of Iran deals common readers a necessary consultant to realizing this unstable country, that's once more on the heart of the world's consciousness.

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Iran is a land of contradictions.

It is an Islamic republic, yet one during which just one. four percentage of the inhabitants attend Friday prayers. Iran's non secular tradition encompasses the main censorious and dogmatic Shi'a Muslim clerics on the planet, but its poetry insistently dwells at the joys of lifestyles: wine, good looks, intercourse. Iranian ladies are topic to at least one of the main restrictive costume codes within the Islamic global, yet make up approximately 60 percentage of the scholar inhabitants of the nation's universities.

In A historical past of Iran, acclaimed historian Michael Axworthy chronicles the wealthy background of this advanced kingdom from the Achaemenid Empire of 6th century B. C. to the present-day Islamic Republic. In attractive prose, this revised variation explains the army, political, non secular, and cultural forces that experience formed one of many oldest carrying on with civilizations on the planet, bringing us up glossy instances.

Concluding with an evaluation of the tremendous adjustments the country has gone through because the revolution in 1979, together with an in depth examine Iran's ongoing makes an attempt to develop into a nuclear energy, A background of Iran deals basic readers a necessary advisor to figuring out this risky kingdom, that is once more on the middle of the world's awareness.

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The satraps, who often inherited their offices from predecessors within the same family, ruled their provinces according to pre-existing laws, customs, and traditions. They were, in effect, provincial kings, while Darius was king of kings (Shahanshah in modern Persian). The empire did not attempt, as a matter of policy, to Persianize as the Roman Empire, for example, later sought to Romanize. The certainties of religion, the principle of sublime justice that they underpinned, and the magnificent prestige of kingship—these were the bonds that held together this otherwise diffuse constellation of peoples, languages, and cultures.

In the decades that followed, the Parthians were attacked by the Sakae in the east and by the Seleucids in the west. Fortunes swung either way. At one point in 128 bc the Parthians defeated a Seleucid army, captured it, and attempted to use the prisoners against the Sakae—only to find that the Seleucid troops had made common cause with the Sakae. Together, they defeated and killed the Parthian king, Phraates. But Mithradates II (Mithradates the Great) was able to consolidate and stabilize Parthian rule in a long reign from about 123 to 87 bc, subduing enemies in both east and west.

Parthian kings later used the title philhellenos (friend of the Greeks) on their coinage. qxp_Layout 1 3/7/16 9:36 AM Page 33 The Iranian Revival 33 chose to ally with them or even to submit, rather than to confront them. But the Seleucids were always drawn back to the west, and in the reign of the Arsacid Mithradates I (171–138 bc) the Parthians renewed their expansion, taking Sistan, Elam, and Media. Then they captured Babylon in 142 bc and, one year later, Seleuceia itself. In the decades that followed, the Parthians were attacked by the Sakae in the east and by the Seleucids in the west.

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A History of Iran: Empire of the Mind (Revised & Updated Edition) by Michael Axworthy


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