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Hormizd-Ardashir, better known by his dynastic name of Hormizd I (also spelled Hormozd I or Ohrmazd I; Middle Persian: 𐭠𐭥𐭧𐭥𐭬𐭦𐭣‎; New Persian: هرمز دوم), was the third Sasanian King of Kings of Iran, ruling from May 270 to June 271. He was the third-born son of Shapur I (r. 240–270), under whom he was governor-king of Armenia, and also took part in his wars against the Roman Empire. Hormizd I's brief reign was largely uneventful; he built the city of Ohrmazd-Ardashir (present-day Ahvaz), which still remains a major city today in Iran. He promoted the Zoroastrian priest Kartir to the rank of chief priest (mowbed) and gave the Manichaean prophet Mani permission to continue his preaching.

Hormizd I
𐭠𐭥𐭧𐭥𐭬𐭦𐭣
King of Kings of Iran and non-Iran
HormizdICoinHistoryofIran.jpg
Coin of Hormizd I
King of Armenia
Reignc. 252 – 270
PredecessorTiridates II (Arsacid dynasty)
SuccessorNarseh
Shahanshah of the Sasanian Empire
ReignMay 270 – June 271
PredecessorShapur I
SuccessorBahram I
DiedJune 271
IssueHormozdak
HouseHouse of Sasan
FatherShapur I
MotherDaughter of Mihrak
ReligionZoroastrianism

It was also under Hormizd I that the title of "King of Kings of Iran and non-Iran" became regularized in Sasanian coinage; beforehand the royal titulary had generally been "King of Kings of Iran." Hormizd I was succeeded by eldest brother Bahram I.

EtymologyEdit

The name of Hormizd (also spelled Ōhrmazd, Hormozd) is the Middle Persian version of the name of the supreme deity in Zoroastrianism, known in Avestan as Ahura Mazda.[1] The Old Persian equivalent is Auramazdā, whilst the Greek transliteration is Hormisdas.[1][2] His personal name was "Hormizd-Ardashir", a combination of "Hormizd" and "Ardashir", the latter being the Middle Persian form of the Old Persian Ṛtaxšira (also spelled Artaxšaçā, meaning "whose reign is through truth").[3][4]

BackgroundEdit

Hormizd was the third-born son of Shapur I (r. 240–270).[5] According to folklore, Hormizd's mother was a daughter of the Parthian dynast Mihrak.[6] His two elder brothers were Bahram (the eldest) and Shapur Meshanshah, whilst Narseh was his younger brother.[7] Hormizd had two sisters named Adur-Anahid and Shapurdukhtak.[8][9] His grandfather was Ardashir I, the founder of the Sasanian Empire.[10] The Sasanians had supplanted the Parthian (Arsacid) Empire as the sovereigns of Iran in 224, when Ardashir I defeated and killed the last Arsacid King of Kings Artabanus IV (r. 213–224) at the Battle of Hormozdgan.[10]

RiseEdit

Hormizd is first mentioned during the wars of Shapur I against the Roman Empire.[1] He was made the king of Armenia after its conquest by Shapur I in 252.[1] Hormizd is believed to be many modern historians to have taken part in Shapur I's second Roman expedition, which took place in the Roman provinces of Syria, Cilicia, and Cappadocia, lasting from 253 to 256.[1] This is somewhat supported by the reports of the Cappadocian conquests.[1] Cappadocia does not appear to be have been the only area that Hormizd fought in: according to the Latin Scriptores Historiae Augustae, the Roman rebel Cyriades assisted Shapur I and a certain Odomastes in the conquest of Antioch.[1] The name Odomastes is an incorrect transliteration of Hormizd, and may thus suggest that after plundering Cappadocia, Hormizd took part in the siege of Antioch in 253.[1] Hormizd is mentioned in an inscription on the wall of the Ka'ba-ye Zartosht at Naqsh-e Rostam near Persepolis in southern Iran, which Shapur I had created in order to praise his sons by citing their names and titles.[11][1] In the inscription, Hormizd is given the title of Wuzurg Šāh Arminān ("Great King of the Armenians").[1][12] The 4th-century Armenian historian Agathangelos states that this title was only given to the heir of the shah.[12] When Shapur I was on his deathbed, he crowned Hormizd as the new king of Iran, in May 270.[13][10]

ReignEdit

Little is known of Hormizd's reign.[1] He reportedly gave the Zoroastrian priest Kartir clothes that were worn by the upper class, the cap and belt (kulāf ud kamarband) and appointed him as the chief priest (mowbed).[14][1] Like his father, Hormizd also granted the Manichaean prophet Mani permission to continue his preaching.[15] It is unclear why Hormizd catered to these two figures, both of whom represented a different religion.[16] The Iranologist Touraj Daryaee has suggested that it was possibly part of his attempt to control both religions, which were both seeking to become the main religion in the empire.[16] According to the Norwegian Iranologist Prods Oktor Skjaervo, Hormizd was like his two predecessors, a "lukewarm Zoroastrian".[17] Hormizd is usually given the epithet of nēw or yaxī/yaxē (both meaning "brave") in Manichean Middle Iranian sources, possibly indicating his accomplishments in warfare.[1] It was seemingly under Hormizd that the two New Year festivals (Nowruz) in the month of Farvardin were linked together to design a festival that lasted six days.[18] Hormizd is credited as the founder of Ohrmazd-Ardashir (present-day Ahvaz), however, in some instances Ardashir I is also attributed as its founder.[1] Modern historians consider Hormizd to be its actual founder.[1] Hormizd was not succeeded by his son Hormozdak, but by his brother Bahram (who became known as Bahram I), who ascended the throne with the aid of Kartir.[7][10]

Coinage and imperial ideologyEdit

 
Coin of Hormizd I

While Ardashir I and Shapur I generally used the title of "King of Kings of (Iran)ians" on their coinage, Hormizd had the title slighty modified, adding the phrase "and non-Iran(ians)".[19][20] His full title thus read "the Mazda-worshiping, divine Hormizd, King of Kings of Iran(ians) and non-Iran(ians), whose image/brilliance is from the gods."[19][20][a] The phrase "and non-Iran(ians)" had already been in use in the inscriptions of Shapur I,[21] and in rare cases his coin mints,[22] but was first regularized under Hormizd.[21] The extended title demonstrates the incorporation of new territory into the empire, however what was precisely seen as "non-Iran(ian)" (aneran) is not certain.[1] The reverse of Hormizd's coin portrayed two attendants, an addition that was first made by Shapur I, on whose coinage both attendants are depicted wearing mural crowns, whilst looking away from the fire temple between them.[23] They most likely represented the shah.[23] In the coinage of Hormizd, the attendants face the temple and are wearing different crowns.[23] The figure on the left side represents Hormizd, whilst the figure on the right—depending on its portrayal—represents the Iranian deities Mithra or Anahita.[24]

NotesEdit

  1. ^ In Middle Persian: Mazdēsn bay Ōhrmazd šāhān šāh Ērān ud Anērān kēčihr az yazdān.[19]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p Shayegan 2004, pp. 462-464.
  2. ^ Vevaina & Canepa 2018, p. 1110.
  3. ^ Schmitt 1986b, pp. 654-655.
  4. ^ Wiesehöfer 1986, pp. 371-376.
  5. ^ Shahbazi 2016a, pp. 514–522.
  6. ^ Pourshariati 2008, pp. 46-47.
  7. ^ a b Shahbazi 1988, pp. 514–522.
  8. ^ Brosius 2000.
  9. ^ Gignoux 1983, p. 472.
  10. ^ a b c d Shahbazi 2005.
  11. ^ Kia 2016, p. 233.
  12. ^ a b Weber 2016.
  13. ^ Al-Tabari 1985–2007, v. 5: pp. 39, 43.
  14. ^ Daryaee 2014, p. 76.
  15. ^ Kia 2016, p. 246.
  16. ^ a b Daryaee 2014, p. 10.
  17. ^ Skjærvø 2012.
  18. ^ Stausberg, Vevaina & Tessmann 2015, p. 383.
  19. ^ a b c Schindel 2013, p. 836.
  20. ^ a b Shayegan 2013, p. 805.
  21. ^ a b Curtis & Stewart 2008, p. 21.
  22. ^ Curtis & Stewart 2008, p. 23.
  23. ^ a b c Schindel 2013, p. 835.
  24. ^ Curtis & Stewart 2008, p. 24.

SourcesEdit

  • Al-Tabari, Abu Ja'far Muhammad ibn Jarir (1985–2007). Ehsan Yar-Shater (ed.). The History of Al-Ṭabarī. 40 vols. Albany, NY: State University of New York Press.
  • Brosius, Maria (2000). "WOMEN i. In Pre-Islamic Persia". Encyclopaedia Iranica. London et al.
  • Curtis, Vesta Sarkhosh; Stewart, Sarah (2008). The Sasanian Era. I.B.Tauris. pp. 1–200. ISBN 9780857719720.
  • Daryaee, Touraj (2014). Sasanian Persia: The Rise and Fall of an Empire. I.B.Tauris. pp. 1–240. ISBN 0857716662.
  • Gignoux, Ph. (1983). "Ādur-Anāhīd". Encyclopaedia Iranica, Vol. I, Fasc. 5. London et al. p. 472.
  • Kia, Mehrdad (2016). The Persian Empire: A Historical Encyclopedia. ABC-CLIO. ISBN 978-1610693912. (2 volumes)
  • Pourshariati, Parvaneh (2008). Decline and Fall of the Sasanian Empire: The Sasanian-Parthian Confederacy and the Arab Conquest of Iran. London and New York: I.B. Tauris. ISBN 978-1-84511-645-3.
  • Schindel, Nikolaus (2013). "Sasanian Coinage". In Potts, Daniel T. (ed.). The Oxford Handbook of Ancient Iran. Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0199733309.
  • Shahbazi, A. Shapur (1988). "Bahrām I". Encyclopaedia Iranica, Vol. III, Fasc. 5. pp. 514–522.
  • Shahbazi, A. Shapur (2005). "Sasanian dynasty". Encyclopaedia Iranica, Online Edition.
  • Shayegan, M. Rahim (2004). "Hormozd I". Encyclopaedia Iranica, Vol. XII, Fasc. 5. pp. 462–464.
  • Shayegan, M. Rahim (2013). "Sasanian Political Ideology". In Potts, Daniel T. (ed.). The Oxford Handbook of Ancient Iran. Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0199733309.
  • Skjærvø, Prods Oktor (2012). "Kartīr". Encyclopædia Iranica.
  • Stausberg, Michael; Vevaina, Yuhan Sohrab-Dinshaw; Tessmann, Anna (2015). The Wiley Blackwell Companion to Zoroastrianism. John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
  • Vevaina, Yuhan; Canepa, Matthew (2018). "Ohrmazd". In Nicholson, Oliver (ed.). The Oxford Dictionary of Late Antiquity. Oxford: Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-19-866277-8.
  • Weber, Ursula (2016). "Narseh". Encyclopaedia Iranica.
Hormizd I
Preceded by
Shapur I
King of kings of Iran and non-Iran
270–271
Succeeded by
Bahram I