After a declaration of the Romans' approval of 6 P. Grenade, Essai sur les origins du principat, Paris, , By their very nature both texts, whose literary genre is still the subject of research autobiography, encomion, apotheosis, res gestae, elogium, cursus honorum, formal report, memoir, testament, resume, mini-history and so on , are less objective history and more propaganda, self- 7 congratulation, self-advertisement and pride.
We think of each one of them as an autocommemorative self-encomion, dictated by the king or emperor to his scribes in praise to himself, in order to preserve his memory for the future. Both of the rulers attempt to influence how future generations will perceive and judge not only their achievements, but also their ideology, auctoritas and virtues, all of which were in line with the mentality of the people they ruled. Earlier texts which display common elements are Babylonian.
No trace of any inscription survives, and there is considerable disagreement as to the exact wording of the text. Strabo reports that it spoke of Cyrus, who gave the Persians an empire, and was king of Asia. Later on, during the Arab hegemony, the inscription in the tomb was replaced by a verse of the Qur'an, and the tomb became known as Qabr-e Madar-e Sulaiman, or the tomb of the mother of Solomon.
The second comparable text is carved into the Ka'ba-ye Zartosht, meaning the "Cube of Zoroaster". This is an Achaemenid-era tower-like construction at Naqsh-e Rustam, an archaeological site just northwest of Persepolis, about one kilometer away from Naqsh-e Rajab see above. The structure, which is a copy of the building at Pasargadae, was built by Darius I ca. It was originally in thirty-one books, but the first thirteen are lost. The surviving eighteen books cover the period from to Thus it is not an account of the achievements of a person, but a description of events by a contemporary.
For more details, see two recent contributions: G. Cambridge University Press, ; T. A later imitation is Res gestae saxonicae sive annalium libri tres, a chronicle of 10th century Germany written in Latin by Widukind of Corvey, who wrote as a Saxon, proud of his people and history, beginning his annals, not with Rome, but with a brief synopsis derived from the orally-transmitted history of the Saxons. According to older theories, the structure was once alternatively a fire altar, an eternal-flame memorial to the emperors whose tombs are located a few meters away or a safety box for the "paraphernalia of rule".
Today, most scholars consider the structure to be an Achaemenid royal tomb. The Sassanid-era wall surrounding the structure has four inscriptions dating to the 3rd century. The trilingual inscription9 of Shapur I who ruled from to AD is on the eastern Middle Persian text , western Parthian text and southern Greek text walls. In 29 paragraphs stretching on 70 lines , we learn about Shapur, king of kings of Iran and non-Iran, whose lineage is from the Gods, son of the Mazda.
It gives a meticulous account of his genealogy, and lists the countries that form his empire some of which also appear in other texts, e. His empire even included an area captured from the Roman Empire. He also gives a detailed list of influential rulers and persons who had lived under Papak, his father, and then lived under his own rule This part reminds us of the —shorter- list found in the Res Gestae Divi Augusti He refers —in exhaustive detail- to his three military campaigns, the innumerable battles he fought and all the towns he defeated, giving special emphasis to the victory over Gordian III, Valerian I and Philip the Arab.
There is a Middle Persian inscription of the high priest Kartir below Shapur's on the eastern wall of the "Cube of Zoroaster".
Bīsotūn Dedication to Heracles Callinicus
Kartir, the Magi-master, describes, in 19 paragraphs, his loyalty to the King of the Kings an expression found also in the Behistun inscription and in the Res Gestae Divi Saporis , namely Shapur or Shalpuhr , who gave him authority and power in matters of divine services throughout the whole empire in the magus-estate. Ahura Mazda also mentionned in the Behistun Inscription reappears here as well, as Kartir functions as the magus-master of the deity.
Goldman, "Persian Fire Temples or Tombs? Herzfeld, Archaeological History of Iran, London, The Greek text formed the basis of the translation by A. Over the years, Kartir established his divine power throughout the kingdom and augmented his titles and honors. The text is written in the first person. A large part of the inscription is repeated almost word for word, every time the priest finds himself in the service of a new King of the Kings.
At the end he confirms that he has written this inscription so that future readers would know who he was. An important difference, at first sight, is that the narrator is a religious and not a political leader, even though, it is quite obvious that he also had strong political influence. He was one of the two elected Roman consuls in BC, who led the Roman army to victory against the Etruscans near Volterra.
His sarcophagus was discovered in the Tomb of the Scipios the only one to survive intact there , and is now in the Vatican Museum. It preserves his epitaph, in four lines, written in Old Latin Saturnian meter. It is written in the third person and refers briefly to his genealogy, his virtus in relation to his 11 The most important inscription can be found in W.
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Dittenberger ed. Hildesheim, , I, , 1. The same scholar rejected any direct connection suggested by M. Wilcken concerning the formula primus et solus feci RG, 16 , between the Roman text and the inscription of the founder of Axoum at Adoulis in Ethiopia see Dittenberger, I, , 30 , because the formula also exists in several Greek orators such as Demosthenes or Isocrates 13 Somnium Scipionis is a part of the sixth book of the philosophical treatise De Re Publica; see D.
It is possible that the Res Gestae Divi Augusti included some elements receptions taken from this text, although the intertextuality with other texts outside the Roman Empire is more than obvious, as we have already shown.
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A final text can be found in the New Testament, proving one more time that the Greco- Roman and the Biblical tradition have common background at various levels, from somewhat similar legends and elements, to the depiction of characters and situations. Among them we find Parthians, Medes, Elamites, Romans, Jews and Arabs together with inhabitants of Mesopotamia, Asia, Phrygia, Egypt, Libya, and Armenia or Syria the last two countries do not appear clearly and have been included on the basis of reconstruction of the text by experts.
In addition, Paulus Alexandrinus17 offers a list of countries matched with the signs of the zodiac and Curtius Rufus18 describes the kingdoms conquered by Alexander the Great, the number of which coincides with that of the Persian and the Latin text From a later date there are examples from the Meroitic kingdom ca. The 15 See the interesting article by J.
He is the second after M. We would like to expand this line of thinking to include the Res Gestae Divi Augusti as well. Ad Gaium, He cites the partial list of Persian lands found in Xen. In addition, from a philological point of view, we can observe that the two translations or versions of the Behistun inscription, apart from the difficulties in language, reveal two literary monuments which are not just mechanical copies of the original but, rather, texts with their own characteristics, especially the Babylonian one The same is true of the Res Gestae Divi Augusti, the Greek version of which is a paraphrase and not a strict translation of the Latin original text.
These versions reveal the desire and aim of the central mechanism of administration to take the texts to each and every corner of the Empire in languages that could be easily understood by the largest possible number of speakers. They are challenging to philologists due to the problems of text transmission and restoration they pose, but they are also intriguing to historians and even sociologists, as they offer a direct or indirect view of the ancient societies they refer to, societies which formed part of a greater imperialistic empire or kingdom.
They are primarily significant because they give an insight into the image Darius and Augustus portrayed to their people. They are, perhaps, the most comprehensible and authoritative legacy of these leaders preserved for posterity. Related Papers. Left behind in translation? The image of Augustus in Asia Minor.
By Olivier Hekster. By Peter Edwell. Used for general trade and interchange, the Silk Road acquired particular significance by bringing silk fabrics into the Mediterranean, where it was highly prized, particularly in Rome silk had been known there since the 1st cent. BC; for evidence see Seres.
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It is not known when the use of these trade routes began - it presumably goes back to the 4th millennium BC; it is documented until the 16th cent. HN 6,50, among others. Derived from the Persian name for the nomads of central Asia, possibly called after the tribal group's name for itself.
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For Str. The Amardi migrated out of Ariana in the time of the Persian empire and settled by the Caspian Sea and in the mountainous area to the south. Weltatlas I, 15 c. Unidentified river in Hyrcania or Bactria Str. FGrH F 4. Brentjes, Burchard Berlin Bibliography J. Sturm, s. Oaxus lacus, RE Suppl.
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Author s : Brentjes, Burchard Berlin [German version] Village in Iraqi Kurdistan with an expanse of ruins around a stepped altar in the form of a tower now also in ruins. The remains were interpreted by E. Herzfeld as a victory monument to Narseh. Brentjes, Burchard Berlin Bibliography E. Herzfeld, P.
Hall open at the front with a barrel vault, mostly accessible from an internal courtyard. Characteristic building form of the Parthian and Sassanid period 2nd cent. BC-7th cent. Brentjes, Burchard Berlin Bibliography O. Grabar, s. City mentioned in Ptol. Castle and residence on the crest of a mountain, the city below it on the slope leading down to the River A. Brentjes, Burchard Berlin Bibliography A. According to Arr. Possibly a venue for chariot-racing.
Not located. Nomads are wandering shepherds leading a special form of non-sedentary life, which is adapted, thanks to herd raising, to arid steppe regions of Eurasia and Africa. We may distinguish between: 1. Greeks, Romans, and Byz….
Author s : Brentjes, Burchard Berlin [German version] Legendary term for the border fortification from the coast of the Caspian Sea km inland to the mountains of Pishkamar. Probably Parthian and Sassanid in origin. Today still km long, 2.