Pahlavi Texts Part V
Category: Zoroastrian
6:14 h
This is part V of the Sacred Books of the East Pahlavi Texts translation. This volume contains translations of a number of very late Zoroastrian texts, some prophetic in nature, others providing clues to the chronology of the religion. As such, the texts here, the Dinkard and Selections of Zad-Sparam, make interesting reading. They will be of use both to scholars looking for information about the development of Zoroastrianism, and those looking for non-traditional books of prophecy.

Pahlavi Texts

Part V

Marvels of Zoroastrianism

Translated by W. E. West


1. IN the summary account of the Spend Nask, given in the eighth book of the Dînkard, chapter XIV, it is stated in § 4 (see S.B.E., vol. xxxvii, p. 32) that many marvels, owing to Zaratûst, are published therein, ‘just as there are some which, collected and selected, are noticed by the Dînkard manuscript.’ This statement evidently refers to the seventh book of the Dînkard, which contains the legendary history of Zaratûst and his religion, related as a series of marvels extending from the creation to the resurrection of mankind. A much briefer account of some of the same details occurs at the beginning of the fifth book of the Dînkard, and appears to have been abridged from a compilation which was either derived partially from a foreign source, or prepared for the use of foreign proselytes. A third compilation of similar legends is found among the Selections of Zâd-sparam. And a careful translation of these three Pahlavi Texts constitutes the Marvels of Zoroastrianism contained in this volume.

2. As the extent of Dk. VII is about 16,000 Pahlavi words (without allowing for one folio lost), it probably contains about four-fifths of the details included in the Spend Nask, the Pahlavi version, of which has been estimated, in S.B.E., vol. xxxvii, p. 469, to extend to 20,500 words. It says very little about Zaratûst’s conferences with the sacred beings (mentioned in Dk. VIII, xiv, 5, 6), and gives no description of the other world and the way thither (as reported ibid. 8). But it probably contains many verbatim extracts from other parts of the Pahlavi version of the Spend Nask, which appear, however, to have been previously collected in the Exposition of the Good Religion, an older MS. than the Dînkard, which is quoted as an authority in Dk. VII, i.

3. This seventh book commences with a detailed statement of the descent of the glorious ruling dynasty from the primeval man Gâyômard, through his descendants, the Pêsdâdian and Kayânian rulers, to Kaî-Vistâsp. Among the individuals, rarely mentioned elsewhere, are the sacred being Hadish (the protector of homesteads in the Visperad), Vâêgered the brother of king Hôshâng, Pâtakhsrôbô king of the Arabs, and Aôshnar the chancellor of Kai-Ûs. Zaratûst and the three millennial apostles are also mentioned, but the contents of this first chapter are probably derived from the Kitradâd Nask (see Dk. VII, xiii, 20) and from Yt. XIX, 25-93.

4. Chapter II begins the legendary history of Zaratûst with the descent of his glory, from the presence of Aûharmazd to the house in which Zaratûst‘s mother was about to be born; and, alarmed at her radiance, the Kavîgs and Karaps, or ruling priests of the district, oblige her father to send her away to another valley, where Pôrûshâspô resided, to whom she was afterwards married; and several legends are related, in which both the archangels and archdemons are active agents, which lead on to the birth of Zaratûst, thirty years before the end of the ninth millennium of the universe, and his complete genealogy is given.

5. Chapter III begins with his laughing at birth, and describes the ill-will of the Karaps, or priests of those times, and their many attempts to destroy him during his childhood, till he openly defied them at the age of seven. At the end of the ninth millennium, when he was thirty years old, as he was bringing Hôm-water out of the fourth effluent of the Dâîtî river, he met the archangel Vohûmanô who had come to invite him to a conference with Aûharmazd, about which no details are given.

6. Chapter IV, however, proceeds to mention that, in two years, he returned from his first conference, by order of Aûharmazd, to preach his religion to the Kîgs and Karaps in the presence of their ruler, Aûrvâîtâ-dang the Tûr. They seem to have listened attentively till he advocated Khvêtûkdas, when they demanded his death, andwere supported by the Tûr‘s brother; but the Tûr‘s son, who presided, remonstrated with them, and Aûrvâîtâ-dang himself protected him, but refused to be converted. Zaratûst was afterwards sent to demand slaves and horses from Vêdvoîst, a rich Karap, who refused them arrogantly; he also went to Parshad-gau in Sagastân and cured his bull with Hôm-water, whereupon Parshad-gau joined him in worship, but not in public. Zaratûst repulsed the demons as in Vd. XIX, 1-4; he is then tempted by a Karap in the form of Spendarmad, whom he also repulses. And he is finally sent to the court of Vistâsp, where he is relentlessly opposed by the Kîgs and Karaps who obtained his imprisonment, during which he is saved from starvation by a miracle; then some of the sacred beings arrive to assist him, and Vistâsp is at last converted, twelve years after the coming of the religion when Zaratûst went to his first conference with Aûharmazd.

7. Chapter V refers to the marvels of the last thirty-five years of Zaratûst’s life, after Vistâsp’s conversion, but says nothing about his own death, except that he departed to the best existence at the age of seventy-seven. It mentions the establishment of ordeals of thirty-three kinds, the victory of Vistâsp over Argâsp the Khyôn, the useful works and advice of Zaratûst, the compilation of the Avesta, and the birth of Pêshyôtan, the immortal ruler of Kangdez.

8. Chapter VI continues this account of marvels till the death of Vistâsp, which occurred forty-three years later. The legends related are about the presentation of a heavenly chariot to Vistâsp by the soul of an old hero Sritô who had been killed about 350 years before; and regarding the coming of two high-priests from the southern regions of the earth, ten years after the departure of Zaratûst, to enquire about the religion.

9. Chapter VII relates the marvels occurring after the death of Vistâsp until the end of the sovereignty of Irân; mentioning king Vohûmanô, who was a grandson of Vistâsp, the high-priest Sênôv who lived throughout the second century of the religion, the devastator Alexander the Great, the four successive high-priests who restore orthodoxy in the fifth and sixth centuries of the religion, the apostate Rashn-rêsh of about the same period, king Artakhshatar the founder of the Sâsânian dynasty, his chancellor Tanvasar, Atûrpâd-î Mâraspendân and his son surnamed Avarethrabau, with an anonymous arch-apostate of their time, and then king Khûsrô Anôshêrvân. Finally, it condemns the proceedings of the devastators in later times, whose names are not mentioned.

10. Chapter VIII deals with the ninth and tenth centuries of the religion, which bring the millennium of Zaratûst to a close. After a bitter lamentation over the anarchy in religion and government — in which parts of §§ 34 and 36 are taken from the Varstmânsar commentary on Yas. XXXII in Dk. IX, xxxii, 17, 20 — it refers to the arrival of Kitrô-mêhônŏ, ‘him of the racial home,’ a title of Pêshyôtanŏ, son of Vistâsp, and immortal ruler of Kangdez, who arrives with 150 disciples to restore the religion and destroy the wicked, including the Turkish demons, the Arabs, and the ecclesiastical Shêdâspô (Theodosius?). In the thirtieth year before the end of this tenth millennium Aûshêdar, the Developer of Righteousness, is born, and confers with the archangels at the end of the millennium, when the sun stands still for ten days and nights.

11. Chapter IX describes the eleventh millennium, that of Aûshêdar, who produces much prosperity and progress which continue until the fifth century. Then the wizard Mahrkûs appears for seven years, and produces awful winters in four of them, in which most of mankind and animals perish, till he is himself destroyed by the Dâhmân Âfrîn. Afterwards, Yim’s enclosure is opened to replenish the earth with animals and men who then begin to subsist more upon the milk of cattle, which is plentiful; and Ashavahistô interferes to diminish the slaughter of cattle. At the end of the fifth century two-thirds of the Irânians have become righteous, and in the thirtieth year before the end of this eleventh millennium Aûshêdar-mâh, the Developer of Worship, is born, and confers with the archangels at the end of the millennium, when the sun stands still for twenty days and nights.

12. Chapter X describes the twelfth millennium, that of Aûshêdar-mâh, during which mankind continue to improve, are better supplied, and have fewer wants, while deaths occur only through old age and the executioner. During the last fifty-three years, they leave off eating meat and subsist upon vegetables and milk, for which latter they substitute water for the last three years. But the old tyrant Dahâk breaks loose, and Kerêsâspô has to be roused to smite him. In the thirtieth year before the end of this twelfth millennium Sôshâns, the Triumphant Benefiter, is born; Kaî-Khûsrô and his companions afterwards arrive to assist him, and the sun stands still for thirty days and nights.

13. Chapter XI describes how Sôshâns and his assistants destroy all the evil remaining in the world, during the course of fifty-seven years, while mankind subsist for seventeen years on vegetables, thirty years on water, and ten years on spiritual food. And, at the end of these fifty-seven years, Aharman and the fiend are annihilated, and the renovation for the future existence occurs.

14. Several of the details described in Dk. VII are briefly mentioned in Dk. V, i-iv, where they are introduced by a statement of the siege of Jerusalem by Nebuchadnezzar (Bûkht-Narsîh) assisted by Kaî-Lôharâsp, father of Vistâsp. Excepting this account of the siege, in which the Jews are evidently called ‘a congregation or tribe’ (ram), and some remarks about the same ‘tribe’ at the end of Chapter IV, all the other details which are mentioned have reference only to Irânians; but they are said to be the sayings of Âtûr-farnbag as to the MS. which that tribe call really their Gyêmarâ (Chaps. I, 2, 3; IV, 8), as the name can be most plausibly read. Most of the strictly Irânian details have manifestly been derived from the same sources as were consulted by the writer of Dk. VII, that is, from the Pahlavi versions of the Spend. and Kitradâd Nasks. It would probably be hazardous to suppose that the Jewish compilers of the Gemara could have had access to these sources, and it might be preferable to assume that Âtûr-farnbag was himself compiling a record of Zoroastrian traditions for the use of some converts from Judaism, to take the place of the Gemara of their former faith.

15. The Zaratûst-nâmak of Zâd-sparam is contained in the latter half (Zs. XII-XXIII) of the first series of his Selections, the former half of which, being a paraphrase of the first half of the Bundahis, has been translated in S.B.E., vol. v, pp. 155-186. In Chapter XII Zâd-sparam relates two of the earliest legends referring to Mazda-worship, which he had found in old MSS. The first of these describes the appearance of the archangel Spendarmad, wearing a golden sacred girdle, at the court of king Mânûskîhar, 428 years before the coming of the religion to Zaratûst when he went to his conference with the sacred beings. The other is the legend of the warrior Sritô, the seventh brother, who was sent by Kai-Ûs to kill the frontier-settling ox which threatened him, 300 years before the coming of the religion, with future execration by Zaratûst.

16. Chapter XIII refers to the descent of Zaratûst‘s glory upon his mother at her birth, and the combination of his spiritual and worldly natures; also detailing his genealogy. Chapter XIV describes the attempts of the demons to destroy him before and at his birth, when Vohûmanô entered his reasoning powers and made him laugh with delight and utter one form of the Ahunavair formula. Chapter XV is about the five Karap brothers, with their first cousins the Aûsikhshes, all descended from the demon of Wrath and a sister of king Mânûskîhar; also about the four brothers of Zaratûst who seem to be unmentioned elsewhere.

17. Chapter XVI details the attempts of one of the Karaps to destroy Zaratûst during his infancy, and the means by which he is preserved; it also explains who Râgh and Nôdar were. In Chapter XVII one of the Karaps foretells the future success of Zaratûst. In Chapter XVIII his father bears him accused of folly, and takes him to a Karap to be cured. In Chapter XIX the chief Karap comes to the house of Zaratûst‘s father, and is invited to consecrate the food set before him; but Zaratûst objects and a quarrel ensues, which so much disturbs the Karap that he leaves the house, and drops dead from his horse on the road home. In Chapter XX instances are given of Zaratûst‘s righteous desires, his compassionate assistance of people fording a river, his liberal disposition, his abandoning worldly desires, his pity for dogs, his wish for a good-looking wife, and his acceptance of progress even from the wicked, during his youth.

18. Chapter XXI relates that, at thirty years of age, on his way to the festival of spring, he saw in a vision all mankind following Mêdyômâh, his first cousin, into his presence. He then went on to the bank of the Dâîtîh, and crossed its four channels, when he met Vohûmanô who led him to the assembly of the archangels, where he received instruction from Aûharmazd and saw the omniscient wisdom; the archangels also subjected him to various ordeals.

19. Chapter XXII refers to his conferences with the seven archangels, each at a different place, and extending over ten years. In Chapter XXIII, Mêdyômâh is converted at the end of these ten years. The next two years are spent on the conversion of Vistâsp, in which Zaratûst is assisted by some of the sacred beings, and the narrative ends by giving the dates of several other conversions, births, and deaths. But after its 300th year the religion is disturbed and the monarchy contested; referring. no doubt, to the effects of Alexander‘s conquest of Persia.

20. These three narratives appear to be the only connected statements of the Zoroastrian legend that remain extant in Pahlavi, and all three seem to be chiefly derived from the Sâsânian Pahlavi version of the Spend Nask, with some probable additions from the similar version of the Kitradâd Nask, as may be gathered from the-summary accounts of the contents of these Nasks given in Dk. VIII, xiii, 20-xiv, 15, and translated in S.B.E., vol. xxxvii, pp. 31-34. There are, however, allusions to other legends regarding Zaratûst to be found scattered about in Pahlavi literature, to which we shall return after mentioning the manuscript authorities for the texts translated in this volume.

21. The chief existing authority for the Pahlavi text of the Dînkard, Books III-IX, and the only independent one for Book VII, is the MS. B in Bombay, which has been fully described in S.B.E., vol. xxxvii, pp. xxxiii-xxxvii; it will therefore be sufficient here to give a short statement of the information which was there detailed at full length. This MS., written in 1659, was an unbound quarto volume of 392 folios when it was brought from Irân to Surat in 1783; after which time 70 folios became detached from various parts of the MS., but nearly all these had been discovered more than twenty years ago.

22. The writer of the MS. not only recorded the date of his own work, but also copied two previous colophons of his predecessors, with dates corresponding to A.D. 1516 and 1020, and it appears that there had been an intermediate copy about 1355. The MS. of 1020 had been copied at Bakdâd, possibly from the original MS. of the last editor of the Dînkard, which must have been completed about A.D. 900.

23. For the text of Dk. V we have a second authority, independent of B, in the MS. K43 at Kopenhagen (see S.B.E., vol. xxxvii, pp. xxxvii-viii), written shortly after 1594 and also descended from the MS. of 1020.

24. The Selections of Zâd-sparam are found in some of the old MSS., which also contain the Dâdistân-i Dînîk (see S.B.E., vol. xviii, pp. xv-xvii). of the two MSS. used for the text of Zâd-sparam‘s Zaratûst-nâmak, K35 was brought from Irân to Kopenhagen in 1843. It has lost many folios, both at the beginning and end; but, before it was so mutilated, a copy (BK) of it was made, which is now in Bombay and contains a copy of its colophon, the date of which corresponds to A.D. 1592. For the text of Zs. xxii, 4-xxiv, 19, which has been lost from K35, the translator is indebted to this old copy. The other MS. authority T, belonging to Ervad Tehmuras in Bombay (a copy of which has been used), is dated two generations earlier.

25. Regarding the period of Zâd-sparam‘s career we are well informed by the date of the third Epistle of Mânûskîhar, corresponding to A.D. 881, at which time Zâd-sparam was probably in the prime of life; but his Selections were certainly compiled as late as A.D. 900, or about the same time as the completion of the Dînkard. So that the Pahlavi texts, from which these three narratives of the Zoroastrian legends have been translated, were no doubt all written about A.D. 900, and the information they contain was nearly all derived from the Pahlavi versions of two of the Nasks.

26. We have reason to believe that the Pahlavi versions of Avesta texts were completed in the fourth century and revised in the sixth, after the downfall of the heretic Mazdak. This may not only be clearly inferred from the traditional account of the compilation and restorations of the Avesta and Zand, preserved in Dk. IV, 21-36, and translated in S.B.E., vol. xxxvii, pp. 412-418; but is also in accordance with the actual condition of the Pahlavi versions of the liturgical Avesta texts. With the exception of a few interpolated passages, the whole of these Pahlavi versions might have been written, or revised, in the time of king Shahpûhar II (A.D. 309-379). And the exceptional passages mention no persons or events of a later date than the reign of king Khûsrô I (A.D. 531-578); being merely references to such persons as Mazdak, the heretic, and certain commentators who lived about that time.

27. If we examine the Zoroastrian legends, translated in this volume, we shall also find it difficult to discover a passage that clearly alludes to any historical personage of later date than Khûsrô I, who is named in Dk. V, iii, 3; VII, vii, 26, although the compiler of the Dînkard had the traditions of 250 years of Arab rule to draw upon for facts, if he had been disposed to continue the statements of the Pahlavi Spend Nask down to his own time. No doubt, these traditions may have intensified his denunciations of the devastators in Dk. VII, vii, 29-38; viii, 4-9, but, like most Pahlavi writers, he is careful not to mention Muhammadanism. Dk. VII, vii, 33, 34 seem to refer to some particular individual of this later time; but the references to Kaîsar and Khâkân, the Turkish demons with dishevelled hair, the Arab, and Shedâspô (Theodosius?) of Arûm, may all have been taken from a Pahlavi version revised in the time of Khûsrô I.

28. That the original Pahlavi version was translated from an Avesta text, though many Pahlavi commentaries were intermingled, appears certain. Apart from the numerous quotations from revelation (dênô), which may be safely assumed to have had an Avesta original, there are many passages interspersed with glosses, such as the Pahlavi translators habitually used, as well as numerous sentences beginning with a verb, an Avesta peculiarity which generally disappears in an English translation. Regarding the age of this Avesta text it would be hazardous to speculate without further information than we yet possess.

29. The principal details connected with the Zoroastrian legends which have been noticed in other Pahlavi and Pâzand texts, with references to the passages where they occur, are as follows: —

Gôsûrvan informed of the future coming of Zaratûst in Bd. IV, 4.
Z.‘s genealogy and family in Bd. XXXII, 1-10.
Summary account of Z. and Zoroastrianism, from the creation to the resurrection, in Dk. VIII, xiv, 1-15.
The abode of Z.‘s father, when Z. was born, was on the bank of the Dârega river (Bd. XX, 32; XXIV, 15).
150 demons were prevented from destroying Z., before his birth, by the presence of a fire in his father‘s house (Sls. X, 4; XII; ix; Sd. XVI, 3).
Detailed account of the birth of Z. in Dk. IX, xxiv, 1-18.
When Z. first saw the archangels, he thought they were archdemons (Ep. 1, x, 9).
Omniscient wisdom temporarily conferred upon Z., and what he then saw (Dk. IX, viii, 1-6; Byt. I, 1-5; 11, 5-22).
He saw the soul of Davâns tormented in hell, excepting one foot (AV. XXXII, 1-6; Sls. XII, 29; Sd. IV, 3-11.)
He also saw a mortal with children and an immortal without any, and preferred the former (Dd. XXXVII, 43).
And he beheld the terrible condition of Keresâsp‘s soul (Dk. IX, xv, 1-4).
Advice of Aûharmazd to Zaratûst (Sd. XXV, 6-9; LXXXI, 2-16).
The demon Envy (Aresh) converses with Z. in Dk. IX, xxxi, 6-11.
Aharman tempts Z. with the promise of 2000 years dominion, in Mkh. LVII, 24-29.
About Maîdôk-mâh, in Dk. IX, xliv, 19.
Z. coming to preach to king Vistâsp, in Sg. X, 64-68.
Archangels assist Z. in converting Vistâsp, also the war with Argâsp, in Dk. VIII, xi, 2-4.
The war of the religion with Argâsp mentioned in Bd. XII, 33-
The families of Zaratûst, Hvôv, and Vistâsp mentioned in Dk. VIII, xxix, 25.
About Frashôstar and Gâmâsp in Dk. VIII, xxxviii, 68; IX, xlii, 8, 9; xliv, 17, 18.
About Kaî-Vistâsp, Frashôstar, Porûkâst, Gâmâsp, and Hûtôs in Dk. IX, xlv, 3-5.
Brâd-rûkhsh, or Brâdrô-rêsh the Tûr, mentioned as destroying the righteous man, in Dd. LXXII, 8; Sd. IX, 5; Dk. VIII, xxxv, 13; IX, x, 3.
The last millenniums mentioned in Dk. IX, xxxix, 18; xli, 6-8.
Events in the last two millenniums, in Byt. II, 22-III, 62.
The resurrection described in Bd. XXX.

30. Beyond the frequent occurrence of the names of the chief actors in the traditions, there are not many references to the Zoroastrian legends in the extant Avesta. This is owing to the fact that three-fourths of the Avesta texts, including the Nasks specially devoted to these legends, have been lost. The chief references to them that still survive in the Avesta are as follows: —

The passing on of the kingly glory from ruler to ruler, from Haoshyang,ha to Kava-Haosrava, from Zarathustra to Kava-Vîstâspa and the Saoshyant, in Yt. XIX, 25-90.
The terror of the demons on hearing of the birth of Z., in Vd. XIX, 43-47.
Z. mentioned as son of Pourushaspa in Yt. V, 18.
Verethraghna gives Z. strength, health, vigour, and keenness of sight (Yt. IX-IV, 33).
References to Z.‘s conference with Ahura Mazda, and his rejection of the demons, in Yas. XII, 5, 6.
The demons attempt to destroy Z., and to tempt him, but are repelled by recitations, in Vd. XIX, 1-10.
Commentary on the Ahunavair, in Yas. XIX.
Z. converses with Haoma, in Yas. IX, 1-16.
Fate of the soul after death revealed to Z., in Vd. XIX, 26-34.
Z. is taught various spells, in Yt. XIV, 34-38.
He prays that he may convert the queen Hutaosa, in Yt. IX, 26; XVII, 46.
References to the battle with Aregad-aspa, in Yt. V, 109, 113, 116, 117; IX, 30; XVII. 50, 51.
Z.‘s reply to Frashaostra regarding the ritual, in Yas. LXXI, 1-11.
There are also other references to Kava-Vîstâspa, Frashaostra, Gâmâspa, Pourukistâ, Maidhyômau, the Haêkadaspas, Spitamas, and Saoshyants. And the Fravashis of all the righteous persons receive homage in Yt. XIII. of the unbelievers, the Karapans and Kavis are mentioned several times in the Gâthas and Yasts, including the Hôm Yast; and the Usikhsh once in the Gâthas.

31. So far as these references in the Avesta extend, they agree with the Pahlavi versions of the legends, and occasionally state some further particulars. We may, therefore, safely conclude that these Pahlavi versions present a fairly complete view of the Zoroastrian legends current in Sâsânian times. But we have another means of testing this conclusion more fully in the Persian Zartust-nâmah, translated by Eastwick in the Appendix to The Parsi Religion, as contained in the Zand-Avasta, by John Wilson, D. D. (Bombay: 1843).

32. This Zartust-nâmah contains 1570 Persian couplets, composed by Zartust Bahrâm Pazdû, apparently at the ancient city of Raî, and finished on August 12, 1278. But Eastwick‘s English translation was made from a good MS. of this poem, written by Dastûr Barzû Qiyâmu-d-dîn (= Kâmdîn) in 1636, belonging to the Wilson Collection and now in the library of Lord Crawford at Wigan. Zartust Bahrâm relates how a priest of Raî, named Kaî-Kâûs son of Kaî-Khusrô, showed him an old Pahlavi MS. narrating the history of Zartust, and offered to interpret it, if he would undertake to paraphrase it, in Persian verse, for the information of others.

33. After mentioning Z.‘s grandfather and father, descended from king Frêdûn, a frightful dream of his mother is related, in which she sees herself attacked by wild beasts eager for the destruction of her son, who drives them away. She relates her dream to an astrologer, who prognosticates a wonderful career for the unborn child; but this dream is an addition to the Pahlavi texts.

34. The child is born, and laughs at birth, exciting admiration among the women and dismay among the magicians. Dûrânsarûn, their chief, comes to see the child. and tries to kill him with a dagger; but his hand ‘is withered, and the magicians carry off the child, who is exposed to death from fire, oxen, horses, and wolves, but all in vain, as his mother brings him home safe on each occasion. Another magician, named Bartarûsh, then foretells that Z. cannot be destroyed, and will establish a new religion; and he repeats this to the child‘s father, naming Gustâsp as his future protector. This narrative corresponds with Dk. VII, iii, 2-31; but then follows the addition that he was confided to the care of an old man, named Barzînkarûs, till he completed his seventh year.

35. Then Dûrânsarûn and Bartarûsh went together to see him, and tried their magic arts upon him in vain (ibid. 32, 33). Afterwards, when Z. was sick, Bartarûsh supplied him with filthy drugs, but he threw them on the ground, which seems to be another version of Zs. XVIII, 5, 6. Then follows a paraphrase of Dk. VII, iii, 34-48, and Zs. XX, 4, 5; XXI, 1-20, 23-27, with some additional remarks about worship and the Avesta being taught to Z. The conferences with the six archangels are more detailed than in Zs. XXII, and more ritualistic in their tendency.

36. When Z. returns to the earth, he is met by the demons and magicians, who oppose him, but are killed or dispersed by the utterance of an Avesta text; in which account we have an extreme condensation of Dk. VII, iv, 36-46, 57-62. He then goes to the court of king Gustâsp, where he is hospitably received by the king, surrounded by his princes and wise men. With the latter Z. enters into argument, and overcomes them all successively. This is repeated, till all the learned of the realm are vanquished in argument, in the course of three successive days.

37. Then Z. produces the Avesta and Zand, and reads a chapter; but the king hesitates to accept it, until he learns more about it; and Z. retires to his lodgings. In the meantime, the wise men form a conspiracy to ruin Z., by secreting in his lodgings,, with the connivance of his doorkeeper, many of the impure things used by sorcerers. The next day, while the king and Z. are examining the Avesta, the wise men denounce Z. as a sorcerer; his lodgings are searched, and the impurities are brought to the king, who becomes angry and commits Z. to prison.

38. Now the king had a magnificent black horse, and when Z. had been a week in prison, this horse fell sick, and was found with its four feet drawn up to its belly. When the king was informed, he summoned his wise men, but they could suggest no remedy; so the king and all his people remained fasting all day and lamenting, and the jailer forgot to take any food to Z. till the evening, when he told Z. about the state of the black horse.

39. Z. requested the jailer to inform the king that he could cure the horse; and the king, on hearing this the next day, releases Z., who undertakes to restore the horse‘s limbs to their natural state, on receiving four solemn promises, one for the cure of each leg. Three of these promises are that the king, his son Isfendyâr (= Spend-dâd), and the queen, should each undertake to accept his religion and never forsake it; and the fourth promise is that the false accusation of sorcery, made by the wise men, should be investigated.

40. After each promise Z. prays vehemently, and each limb is restored to use. While, on the confession of Z.‘s doorkeeper, the wise men are convicted of fraudulent deceit, and are sent to execution. The Persian version is here a highly embellished paraphrase of Dk. VII, iv, 64-70, especially in the horse episode.

41. King Gustâsp next asks Z. to pray for information as to the king‘s future position in the other world, also that he may become invulnerable, omniscient as to worldly affairs, and immortal; but Z. tells him that he must be satisfied with the first wish for himself, and the remaining three for other persons. The next day, while the king is sitting in court with Z. present, horsemen arrive, who are the archangels Bahman and Ardabahist, with the spirits of the Khûrdâd and Gusâsp fires. They are sent to testify the truth of Z.‘s mission, and to urge the king to accept the religion; this he does, and they then depart; when Z. informs the king that his four wishes will be granted, as he will soon see. For some of these details see Dk. VII, iv, 74-82.

42. Zartust then performs the Darun ceremony, having provided wine, perfume, milk, and a pomegranate. After reciting prayers from the Avesta, he gives the wine to the king to drink, who then falls into a trance and sees his own future position in heaven, and those of others. His son Peshôtan receives the milk which makes him immortal. The perfume, or incense, is given to Gâmâsp who obtains knowledge of all events till the resurrection. And Isfendyâr, the warlike son of Gustâsp, eats one grain of the pomegranate and becomes invulnerable. The Pahlavi versions are silent about the king‘s four wishes and their fulfilment, except such hints as may be conveyed in Dk. VII, iv, 84-86. Afterwards, Z. reads the Avesta to the king and comments upon it; concluding with praises of the creator.

43. To this narrative Zartust Bahrâm adds a further episode of Z. asking for immortality, at the time when he went with Bahman to confer with the creator. His request is refused, but the creator gives him a drop of liquid to drink, like honey, and he sees everything in both worlds, as in a vision. When he wakes up, he relates what he saw in heaven and hell; and also describes a tree with seven branches of gold, silver, copper, brass, lead, steel, and mixed iron, respectively, overshadowing the world. The creator explains that these seven branches represent seven powerful personages who arise in successive ages of the world. The golden branch is Z. himself, the silver is Gustâsp, the copper is an Askânian king, the brass is Ardashîr the Sâsânian, the lead is king Bahrâm (Gôr), the steel is Nôshêrvân who destroys the heretic Mazdak, and the mixed iron is the malicious monarch who upsets the true faith. Then follow many details of the lamentable evils which then occur; and when the Hazârahs appear, the condition of Irân becomes still worse, as described in Byt. II, III, until the arrival of king Bahrâm the Hamâvand from India, and Peshôtan from Kangdiz, who restore the Irânian monarchy and religion.

44. This additional narrative is evidently a paraphrase of the Pahlavi Bahman Yast, translated in S.B.E., vol. v, pp. 191-23,5; and that Pahlavi text appears to be merely an enlarged edition of Fargard VII of the Sûdkar Nask, of which a short summary is given in Dk. IX, viii.

45. From the foregoing epitome of the Persian Zartust-nâmah, it will be evident that its author‘s information was a combination of the statements still surviving in Dk. VII and Zs. XII-XXIII, so far as they suited his fancy and convenience. Many statements are omitted, others either condensed, or greatly elaborated; but very few novelties can be detected. excepting such as are clearly due to the writer‘s own imagination. Whether any small residuum of these novelties can be attributed to other sources than the Persian writer‘s fancy, must remain doubtful until some older authority for such details is discovered,

46. With regard to Z.‘s vision of heaven and hell, which is mentioned in Zartust Bahrâm‘s final episode, his immediate informant was certainly Byt. II, 11-13; but the original authority was the Spend Nask, as summarized in Dk. VIII, xiv, 7, 8, although Dk. VII omits this incident, and Zs. XXI, 21, 22 merely mentions the bodily appearance of the omniscient wisdom, without referring to Z.‘s vision. The details of the conferences with the six archangels, which are summarized in Dk. VIII, xiv, 9, as having existed in the Spend Nask, are also omitted in Dk. VII, though briefly stated in Zs. XXII.

47. It is worthy of notice that Z. was first sent to offer his religion to the Kîgs and Karaps and their sovereign, Aûrvâîtâ-dang the Tûr (see Dk. VII, iv, 2-20), who seem to have received his doctrines favourably, excepting his advocacy of Khvêtûk-das which led to their rejection of his proposal. He was next sent to the Karap Vêdvôîst (ibid. 21-28), whom Aûharmazd had hitherto befriended; but this Karap was rejected for illiberality and arrogance. Z. then went to Parshad-tôrâ in Sagâstân (ibid. 31-35), taking some Hôm-water with him, to cure an infirm bull belonging to this chieftain, as soon as the latter had accepted the religion in public; the chieftain assented to the religion, though only privately, but this was sufficient to obtain the cure of his bull. It was only after these three trials that the conversion of king Vistâsp was attempted.

48. There is some difficulty in understanding the exact difference between the primeval religion and that taught by Zaratûst. When Dk. VII, i, 9-11 speaks of Aûharmazd talking with Masyê and Masyâôî; or Hadish tells them of Aûharmazd, the archangels, and the Ahunavair (ibid. 12, 13); or the sacred beings are said to have taught them the primitive arts (ibid. 14), or we are told of the existence of demons in the times of Hôshâng and Tâkhmôrup (ibid. 18, 19); or of Ashavahistô in the time of king Pâtakhsrôbô (ibid. 34); it may be urged that the mention of these beings in connection with the men of those times is no proof that their existence was known then. Because it only shows that the old writers, being satisfied that these beings existed in their own time and were immortal, only logically assumed that they must have existed in former times. The really weak point in their argument being the assumption of the existence of such beings in their own time.

49. Safer conclusions may be formed by noticing the dogmas that Zaratûst most strongly advocates and reprobates. When he goes to his first conference (Dk. VII, iii, 56-62) he goes in search of righteousness. When he went to Aûrvâîtâ-dang, as mentioned above, he advocated the praise of righteousness, scorn of the demons, and the observance of ceremonies; but it was only his scorn of the demons, which took the form of Khvêtûk-das, that the Karaps really rejected. In Dk. VII, iv, 14, he says, ‘worldly righteousness is the whole worship of the demons, and the end of the Mazda-worship of Z.‘s Though the Hôm plant was sacred before Z.‘s birth (ibid. ii, 22-47), the Hôm-water (ibid. iv, 29-35) seems to have been a distinctive token of Z.‘s religion; also chanting the Ahunavair (ibid. iv, 38, 41, 42, 56, 61) and the Avesta in general (ibid. 63). The perverted religion and demonizing of the Kîgs and Karaps appear to have been the worst faults he had to find with them (ibid. 64, 67). And the archangels tell Vistâsp that the world requires the good religion which proceeds through Z.‘s recitation, so he should chant the Ahunavair and Ashem-vohû, and not worship the demons (ibid. 79, 80). Again, when Dûrâsrôb and Brâdrôk-rêsh partake of food with Pôrûshâspô and Zaratûst (ibid. iii, 34, 38), the latter does not object to the form of worship proposed, but to the person selected to conduct it; and he then proclaims his own reverence for the righteous and the poor.

50. From these statements we may conclude that the old writers, who have handed down these legends from ancient times, were of opinion that Zaratûst was not so much the founder of a totally new religion, as he was a reformer who retained as much of the prior religion as was not seriously objectionable. While strongly insisting upon the necessity of reverencing all good spirits, he strictly prohibited all propitiation of evil spirits. His law was to resist and destroy all that is evil and injurious to man, and to respect and honour all that is good and beneficial to him. According to the legends, he seems to have found little gross idolatry, in the form of image-worship, to reprobate. From the times of the idol-worship encouraged by Dahâk in Bâpêl (Dk. VII, iv, 72), and of the destruction of the celebrated idol-temple on the shore of Lake Kêkast by Kai-Khûsrôî (ibid. i, 39; Mkh. ii, 95), we find nothing in the legends about this form of idolatry, till ‘the oppressiveness of infidelity and idol-worship,‘ shortly after the downfall of the Sâsânians, is lamented (Dk. VII, viii, 6). Demon-worship (ibid. iii, 35; iv, 30; vii, 17, 36, 37; viii, 7, 34), although a term sometimes applied to idolatry, seems to be often used in its literal sense of ‘worship of evil spirits,‘ one form of which is described by Zaratûst (ibid. iv, 47-53).

51. Another interesting study, for which these Zoroastrian legends supply materials, is the traditional chronology which they contain; and how far it will be found, upon examination, to harmonize with the system stated in Bd. XXXIV, or to explain the manifest inaccuracies of that system. The matter is rather complicated, but the Zoroastrian system can be connected with the European system of chronology with some degree of probability.

52. The epoch of Zoroastrian chronology is ‘the coming of the religion,‘ but it has long been doubtful whether this event was the birth of Zaratûst, or his going to conference with the sacred beings, or the acceptance of the religion by Vistâsp. Any doubt, however, as to the meaning of the phrase, has now been removed by the statement in Dk. VII, viii, 51, that the first century of the religion is that from the time when Zaratûst came forth to his conference, which event happened when be was thirty years old (ibid. iii, 51, 60, 62). It is also stated, in Bd. XXXIV, 7, that Vistâsp reigned thirty years before the coming of the religion, that is, before Zaratûst went to his conference. From these data it is evident that the traditional Zoroastrian chronology makes the birth of Zaratûst coincide with the accession of Vistâsp.

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