They are divided into a number of classes (kings, hypostases, forms, &c.); the proper names by which they are invoked are many, and for the most part obscure, borrowed doubtless, to some extent, from the Parsee angelology.
There are Parsee, Banyan, Goanese and Arab traders, and about 300 Europeans, besides half-caste Portuguese.
From a literary point of view, indeed, it cannot compare with the dignified Hebrew narrative, but considering the misfortunes which have befallen the collection of Zoroastrian traditions now represented by the Bundahish (the Parsee Genesis) we cannot reasonably be surprised.
He is said to have induced his brother to employ a Parsee to purchase artillery and small arms from the Bombay government, and to enrol some thirty sailors of different European nations as gunners, and is thus credited with having been "the first Indian who formed a corps of sepoys armed with firelocks and bayonets, and who had a train of artillery served by Europeans."
East of the town, is the now disused temple of the Parsee fire-worshippers, who were attracted thither by the natural fountains of inflammable gas.
Mahommedan (62,458,077), Buddhist (9,476,759), Sikh R (2,195,339), Jain (1,334,148), Christian (2,923,241), Parsee (94,190), and Animist (8,584,148).
A Parsee must be born upon the ground floor of the house, as the teachings of their religion require life to be commenced in humility, and by "good thoughts, words and actions" alone can an elevated position be attained either in this world or the next.
The wedding day having been fixed by an astrologer, who consults the stars for a happy season, a Parsee priest goes.
On each successive anniversary of the death of a Parsee funeral ceremonies are performed in his memory.
The Parsee scriptures require the last ten days of the year to be spent in doing deeds of charity, and in prayers of thanksgiving to Ahura-Mazda.
A Parsee had married a French lady, who took the necessary steps to adopt the religion of her husband.
In recent years many have taken to the professions of law and medicine, and a Parsee barrister was appointed a judge of the High Court at Bombay in 1906.
This is the Avesta, the Bible of the modern Parsee, which comprises the revelation of Zoroaster.
As to the home and time of Zoroaster, the Parsee tradition yields us no sort of information which could possibly be of historical service.
V.) to turn to historical account the statements of tb Bundahish and other Parsee books, which date Zoroaster al 258 years before Alexander, are, in the present writers opinion a complete failure.
The later Parsee tradition contends that Alexander burned the sacred books of Zoroaster, the Avesta, and that only a few fragments were saved and afterwards reconstructed by the Arsacids and Sassanids.
We possess no other document written in it, and on this account modern Parsee scholars, as well as the older Pahlavi books, speak of the language and writing indifferently as Avesta.
Parsee tradition adds a number of interesting statements as to their history.
The Parsee priest, Neryosangh, subsequently translated a portion of the Pahlavi version into Sanskrit.
The merit of achieving this belongs to the enthusiastic orientalist Anquetil Duperron, the fruit of whose prolonged stay in India (1755-1761) and his acquaintance with the Parsee priests was a translation (certainly very defective) of the Zend-Avesta.
There are three printing-presses, of which one is in the gaol and the other two belong to a European and a Parsee firm of merchants.
In the Liber Sad-der, indeed (Porta xxv.), we read, " Cavendum est tibi a jejunio; nam a mane ad vesperam nihil comedere non est bonum in religione nostra "; but according to the Pere de Chinon (Lyons, 1671) the Parsee religion enjoins, upon the priesthood at least, no fewer than five yearly fasts.
Under them the Konkan and the coast farther south were governed by chiefs of the Silahara family, whose rule is mainly notable for the revival of trade with the Persian Gulf and, doubtless as a result of this, the arrival in 775 on the west coast of a number of Parsee refugees, who found, in a country where three religions were already equally honoured, the toleration denied to them in Mussulman Persia.
Towards the northern end of Malabar hill lie the Parsee Towers of Silence, where the Parsecs expose their dead till the flesh is devoured by vultures, and then cast the bones into a well where they crumble into dust.
Out of the large sections of its population, Hindu, Mahommedan, Parsee, Jain and Christian, the Parsees are one of the smallest and yet the most influential.
They number only some 46,000 all told, but most of the great business houses are owned by Parsee millionaires and most of the large charities are founded by them.