Studies in Ancient Persia and the Achaemenid Period

By John Curtis (editor)

A collection of essays in memory of the curator and scholar Terence Mitchell, exploring the history and archaeology of Ancient Persia.

ISBN: 9780227177051


An important collection of eight essays on Ancient Persia (Iran) in the periods of the Achaemenid Empire (539-330 BC), when the Persians established control over the whole of the Ancient Near East, and later the Sasanian Empire. It will be of interest to historians, archaeologists and biblical scholars. Paul Collins writes about stone relief carvings from Persepolis; John Curtis and Christopher Walker illuminate the Achaemenid period in Babylon; Terence Mitchell, Alan Millard and Shahrokh Razmjou draw attention to neglected aspects of biblical archaeology and the books of Daniel and Isaiah; and Mahnaz Moazami and Prudence Harper explore the Sasanian period in Iran (AD 250-650) when Zoroastrianism became the state religion.

Additional information

Dimensions 234 × 156 mm
Pages 232
Illustrations b&w and colour

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Trade Information JPOD

About the Author

John Curtis was Keeper of the Middle East Department at the British Museum 1989-2011. He is now Chief Executive Officer of the Iran Heritage Foundation, President of the British Institute for the Study of Iraq, and a Trustee of the Honor Frost Foundation. He specialises in the archaeology and history of Iraq and Iran c.1000-330 BC, on which he has written or edited twenty-three books and more than 100 articles. He directed excavations at eight different sites in Iraq on behalf of the British Museum between 1982 and 1989, including the important Assyrian sites of Khirbet Qasrij, Khirbet Khatuniyeh, Nimrud and Balawat.


Editor’s Note
     John Curtis
Terence Mitchell’s Published Works

1. Five Unpublished Persepolis Relief Fragments in the Ashmolean Museum
     Paul Collins, Ashmolean Museum, Oxford
2. Where Did the Persian Kings Live in Babylon?
     John Curtis, Curator Emeritus, British Museum; Director, Iran Heritage Foundation
3. The Use of Seals in Babylonia under the Achaemenids
     Christopher Walker, Curator Emeritus, British Museum
4. An Iranian in the Court of King Nebuchadnezzar
     Alan Millard, Professor Emeritus, University of Liverpool
5. Biblical Archaeology in the Persian Period
     Terence Mitchell, lately Curator Emeritus, British Museum
6. The Textual Connections between the Cyrus Cylinder and the Bible, with Particular Reference to Isaiah
     Shahrokh Razmjou, Department of Archaeology, University of Tehran
7. Interpreting Sasanian Beards: Significant Images in an Interconnected World
     Prudence Harper, Curator Emerita, Metropolitan Museum of Art
8. Sasanian-Zoroastrian Intellectual Life in the Fifth and Sixth Centuries AD
     Mahnaz Moazami, Associate Editor, Encyclopaedia Iranica, University of Columbia

Index of selected place-names and personal names


Articles and Media

Endorsements and Reviews

The eight essays published in this volume make a valuable contribution to the study of ancient Iran. Covering a diverse range of subjects and written by leading experts in the field, they illuminate aspects of the arts, architecture, and culture of Persia from the Achaemenid to the Sassanian period (c. 550 BC to 600 AD).
Michael Roaf, Professor of Near Eastern Archaeology, University of Munich