The pursuit had brought Alexander into that region of mountains to the south of the Caspian which connects western Iran with the provinces to the east of the great central desert.
But Eastern tradition, so tenacious of the old myths of primitive man, has a short memory for actual history, and five centuries later Alexander was only remembered in Iran as the accursed destroyer of the sacred books, whose wisdom he had at the same time pilfered by causing translations to be made into "Roman."
About 127 B.C., perished in a battle against the Tochari, a Mongolian tribe, which had invaded the east of Iran (Justin xli.
Fars, q.v.), the south-western part of Iran (Persia), named from the inhabitants, the Iranian people of the Parsa (Fars); their name was pronounced by the Ionians Persair with change from a to e, and this form has become dominant in Greek and in the modern European languages.
Other names occur on their coins, the oldest of which are imitations of Seleucid coins, and were perhaps struck by local dynasts under their supremacy; most of the others show the king's head with the Persian tiara, and on the reverse a fire-altar with the adoring king before it, a standard (perhaps the famous banner of the smith Kavi, which became the standard of Iran under the Sassanids), and occasionally the figure of Ahuramazda; they were first explained by A.
As Zoroaster probably preached his religion in eastern Iran, Vishtaspa must have been a dynast in Bactria or Sogdiana.
Fars is the same word as the Greek Persis, and, originally the name of only a part of the Persian empire (Iran), has become the name which Europeans have applied to the whole (see PERS1s).
Afghanistan, Baluchistan, Iran or Persia, Armenia and the provinces of Asia Minor occupy this high region, with which they are nearly conterminous.
It is probable that Cyrus had fought more than one war against the peoples of eastern Iran; according to Ctesias he had, before the war with Croesus, defeated the Bactrians and the Sacae (in Ferghana; their king Amorges is the eponym of the Amyrgian Sacae, Herod.
Philopator (reigned 187-176), consisted of Syria (now including Cilicia and Palestine), Mesopotamia, Babylonia and Nearer Iran (Media and Persis).
The Taurus and Iran, (8) Cilicia, (9) Syria, (io) Mesopotamia, (11) Babylonia, (12) Susiana; in Africa, (13) Egypt; in Iran, (4) Persis, (15) Media, (16) Parthia and Hyrcania, (17) Bactria and Sogdiana, (18) Areia and Drangiana, (19) Carmania, (20) Arachosia and Gedrosia; lastly the Indian provinces, (21) the Paropanisidae (the Kabul valley), and (22) the province assigned to Pithon, the son of Agenor, upon the Indus (J.
In 316 Antigonus had defeated and killed Eumenes and made himself supreme from the Aegean to Iran, and Cassander had 1 For details see separate articles on the chief generals.
The eastern provinces of Iran went in 240 or thereabouts, when the Greek Diodotus made himself an independent king in Bactria(q.v.) and Sogdiana, and Tiridates, brother of Arsaces, a " Scythian " chieftain, conquered Parthia (so Arrian, but see Parthia).
The Balkan hill-peoples of Illyrian or Thracian stock, the hill-peoples of Asia Minor and Iran, the chivalry of Media and Bactria, the mounted bowmen of the Caspian steppes, the camel-riders of the Arabian desert, could all be turned to account.
In the east of Iran the novel creed first acquired a solid footing, and subsequently reacted with success upon the West.
In the more recent hymns of the Rig-Veda and in later India, on the other hand, only evil spirits are understood by asuras, while in Iran the corresponding word ahura was, and ever has continued to be, the designation of God the Lord.
Zoroastrianism was the national religion of Iran, but it was not permanently restricted to the Iranians, being professed by Turanians as well.
The Great, king of Parthia (c. 120-88 B.C.), saved the kingdom from the Mongolian Sacae (Tochari), who had occupied Bactria and eastern Iran, and is said to have extended the limits of the empire (Justin 42, 2, where he is afterwards confused with Mithradates III.).
Similar movements from the same regions appear also to have penetrated Iran itself; hence the resemblance between the dress and daggers of certain classes of warriors on the sculptures of Persepolis and those shown on the Kul Oba vase.
About the same time similar peoples harassed the northern frontier of Iran, where they were called Saka (Sacae), and in later times Saka and Scyths, whether they were originally the same or not, were regarded as synonymous.
Similar wars were going on against the mountain tribes of Armenia and Iran, especially against the Cadusians on the Caspian Sea.
But the account of Chosroes' mode of action makes it plain that the Hellenism once planted in Iran had withered away; representatives of Greek learning and skill have all to be imported from across the frontier.
For Hellenism in Babylonia and Iran, see the useful article of M.
But in the middle of the 1st century B.C. the whole of eastern Iran and western India belonged to the great "Indo-Scythian" empire.
Thus the Kushanas were reduced to eastern Iran, where they had to fight against the Sassanids.
In 1979, a revolution in Iran overthrew the monarchy and replaced it with an Islamic republic.
In 1980, Iran closed the universities.