Iran (word)

IranĒrānEranshahrIraniansIranshahrĒrānšahrEtymology of IranIranianThe name of Iranēr
The modern Persian name of Iran derives immediately from the 3rd-century Sasanian Middle Persian (Pahlavi spelling: ʼyrʼn), where it initially meant "of the Iranians", but soon also acquired a geographical connotation in the sense of "(lands inhabited by) Iranians".wikipedia
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Ardashir I

ArdashirArdeshir IArdashir I of Persia
The word ērān is first attested in the inscriptions that accompany the investiture relief of Ardashir I (r. 224–242) at Naqsh-e Rustam.
Afterwards, Ardashir called himself "shahanshah" and began conquering the land that he called Iran.

Iranian peoples

IranianIraniansIranian people
The modern Persian name of Iran derives immediately from the 3rd-century Sasanian Middle Persian (Pahlavi spelling: ʼyrʼn), where it initially meant "of the Iranians", but soon also acquired a geographical connotation in the sense of "(lands inhabited by) Iranians". In this bilingual inscription, the king calls himself "Ardashir, king of kings of the Iranians" (Middle Persian: ardašīr šāhān šāh ī ērān; Parthian: ardašīr šāhān šāh ī aryān).
The term Iran derives directly from Middle Persian Ērān and Parthian Aryān.

Aneran

AniranUn-Iraniannon-Iranians
In both geographic and demonymic senses, ērān is distinguished from its antonymic anērān, meaning "non-Iran(ian)". Ardashir's son and immediate successor, Shapur I (r. 240/42–270/72) extended the title to "King of Kings of Iranians and non-Iranians" ( šāhān šāh ī ērān ud anērān; basileús basiléōn Arianṓn), thus extending his intent to rule non-Iranians as well, or because large areas of the empire was inhabited by non-Iranians.
The term 'Aniran' derives from Middle Persian anērān, Pahlavi ʼnyrʼn, an antonym of ērān that in turn denoted either the people or the Sasanian Empire.

Naqsh-e Rostam

Naqsh-e RustamNaqsh-i-RustamNaghsh-e Rostam
The word ērān is first attested in the inscriptions that accompany the investiture relief of Ardashir I (r. 224–242) at Naqsh-e Rustam.
In the inscription, which also bears the oldest attested use of the term Iran, Ardashir admits to betraying his pledge to Artabanus V (the Persians having been a vassal state of the Arsacid Parthians), but legitimizes his action on the grounds that Ohrmazd had wanted him to do so.

Spahbed

ispahbadhSpahbodIspahbad
It also appears in the titles of government officers, such as in Ērān-āmārgar "Accountant-General of Ērān", Ērān-dibirbed "Chief Scribe of Ērān", and Ērān-spāhbed "Spahbed of Ērān".
Until the early 6th century, there was a single holder of the title, the Ērān-spāhbed, who according to the list of precedence provided by the 9th-century Muslim historian Ya'qubi occupied the fifth position in the court hierarchy.

Sasanian Empire

SassanidSasanianSassanid Empire
The modern Persian name of Iran derives immediately from the 3rd-century Sasanian Middle Persian (Pahlavi spelling: ʼyrʼn), where it initially meant "of the Iranians", but soon also acquired a geographical connotation in the sense of "(lands inhabited by) Iranians".
The Sasanian Empire, officially known as the Empire of Iranians (Middle Persian: 𐭠𐭩𐭥𐭠𐭭𐭱𐭲𐭥𐭩 Ērānshahr), also called the Neo-Persian Empire by historians, was the last kingdom of the Persian Empire before the rise of Islam.

Bundahishn

Greater BundahishnBundahišnGbd
That "Ērān was also generally understood geographically is shown by the formation of the adjective ērānag "Iranian," which is first attested in the Bundahišn and contemporary works."

Kar-Namag i Ardashir i Pabagan

Kar-namag i ArdashirKarnamagKarnamak-i Artaxshir-i Papakan
The Kar-namag i Ardashir, a 9th-century hagiographic collection of legends related to Ardashir I uses ērān exclusively in connection with titles, i.e. šāh-ī-ērān and ērān-spāhbed (12.16, 15.9), but otherwise calls the country Ērānšahr (3.11, 19; 15.22, etc.).
Thus the son of Shapur, Ohrmazd, is born and he unites the entire Eranshahr under his command and receives tribute and homage from the other kings of the time.

Name of Iran

PersiaIranPersian
Since 1935, the name "Iran" has replaced other names of Iran in the western world.
*Iran (word)

Persian language

PersianNew PersianFarsi
The modern Persian name of Iran derives immediately from the 3rd-century Sasanian Middle Persian (Pahlavi spelling: ʼyrʼn), where it initially meant "of the Iranians", but soon also acquired a geographical connotation in the sense of "(lands inhabited by) Iranians".

Middle Persian

PahlaviPersianMiddle-Persian
The modern Persian name of Iran derives immediately from the 3rd-century Sasanian Middle Persian (Pahlavi spelling: ʼyrʼn), where it initially meant "of the Iranians", but soon also acquired a geographical connotation in the sense of "(lands inhabited by) Iranians". In this bilingual inscription, the king calls himself "Ardashir, king of kings of the Iranians" (Middle Persian: ardašīr šāhān šāh ī ērān; Parthian: ardašīr šāhān šāh ī aryān).

Pahlavi scripts

PahlaviPahlavi scriptBook Pahlavi
The modern Persian name of Iran derives immediately from the 3rd-century Sasanian Middle Persian (Pahlavi spelling: ʼyrʼn), where it initially meant "of the Iranians", but soon also acquired a geographical connotation in the sense of "(lands inhabited by) Iranians".

King of Kings

RajadhirajaQueen of KingsShahanshah
In this bilingual inscription, the king calls himself "Ardashir, king of kings of the Iranians" (Middle Persian: ardašīr šāhān šāh ī ērān; Parthian: ardašīr šāhān šāh ī aryān).

Parthian language

ParthianPahlaviIranic
In this bilingual inscription, the king calls himself "Ardashir, king of kings of the Iranians" (Middle Persian: ardašīr šāhān šāh ī ērān; Parthian: ardašīr šāhān šāh ī aryān).

Demonym

gentilicdemonymsinhabitants are called
The Middle Iranian ērān/aryān are oblique plural forms of gentilic ēr- (Middle Persian) and ary- (Parthian), which in turn both derive from Old Iranian *arya-, meaning "'Aryan,' i.e., 'of the Iranians.'" This Old Iranian *arya- is attested as an ethnic designator in Achaemenid inscriptions as Old Persian ariya-, and in Zoroastrianism's Avesta tradition as Avestan airiia-/airya, etc.

Iranian languages

IranianOld IranianIranian language
The Middle Iranian ērān/aryān are oblique plural forms of gentilic ēr- (Middle Persian) and ary- (Parthian), which in turn both derive from Old Iranian *arya-, meaning "'Aryan,' i.e., 'of the Iranians.'" This Old Iranian *arya- is attested as an ethnic designator in Achaemenid inscriptions as Old Persian ariya-, and in Zoroastrianism's Avesta tradition as Avestan airiia-/airya, etc.

Achaemenid Empire

AchaemenidPersianPersian Empire
The Middle Iranian ērān/aryān are oblique plural forms of gentilic ēr- (Middle Persian) and ary- (Parthian), which in turn both derive from Old Iranian *arya-, meaning "'Aryan,' i.e., 'of the Iranians.'" This Old Iranian *arya- is attested as an ethnic designator in Achaemenid inscriptions as Old Persian ariya-, and in Zoroastrianism's Avesta tradition as Avestan airiia-/airya, etc.

Old Persian

PersianOld Persian languageancient Persian
The Middle Iranian ērān/aryān are oblique plural forms of gentilic ēr- (Middle Persian) and ary- (Parthian), which in turn both derive from Old Iranian *arya-, meaning "'Aryan,' i.e., 'of the Iranians.'" This Old Iranian *arya- is attested as an ethnic designator in Achaemenid inscriptions as Old Persian ariya-, and in Zoroastrianism's Avesta tradition as Avestan airiia-/airya, etc.

Zoroastrianism

ZoroastrianZoroastriansZoroastrian religion
The Middle Iranian ērān/aryān are oblique plural forms of gentilic ēr- (Middle Persian) and ary- (Parthian), which in turn both derive from Old Iranian *arya-, meaning "'Aryan,' i.e., 'of the Iranians.'" This Old Iranian *arya- is attested as an ethnic designator in Achaemenid inscriptions as Old Persian ariya-, and in Zoroastrianism's Avesta tradition as Avestan airiia-/airya, etc.

Avesta

Zend AvestaYounger AvestaAvestas
The Middle Iranian ērān/aryān are oblique plural forms of gentilic ēr- (Middle Persian) and ary- (Parthian), which in turn both derive from Old Iranian *arya-, meaning "'Aryan,' i.e., 'of the Iranians.'" This Old Iranian *arya- is attested as an ethnic designator in Achaemenid inscriptions as Old Persian ariya-, and in Zoroastrianism's Avesta tradition as Avestan airiia-/airya, etc.

Avestan

Avestan languageOld AvestanAv.
The Middle Iranian ērān/aryān are oblique plural forms of gentilic ēr- (Middle Persian) and ary- (Parthian), which in turn both derive from Old Iranian *arya-, meaning "'Aryan,' i.e., 'of the Iranians.'" This Old Iranian *arya- is attested as an ethnic designator in Achaemenid inscriptions as Old Persian ariya-, and in Zoroastrianism's Avesta tradition as Avestan airiia-/airya, etc.

Shapur I

ShapurShapour Iking
Ardashir's son and immediate successor, Shapur I (r. 240/42–270/72) extended the title to "King of Kings of Iranians and non-Iranians" ( šāhān šāh ī ērān ud anērān; basileús basiléōn Arianṓn), thus extending his intent to rule non-Iranians as well, or because large areas of the empire was inhabited by non-Iranians.

Ka'ba-ye Zartosht

Ka'ba-i ZartoshtKa'ba of ZoroasterKa'be-ye Zartosht
In his trilingual inscription at the Ka'ba-ye Zartosht, Shapur I also introduces the term *ērānšahr.

Linguistic reconstruction

reconstructedreflexreflexes
In his trilingual inscription at the Ka'ba-ye Zartosht, Shapur I also introduces the term *ērānšahr.

Caucasus

CaucasianCaucasiathe Caucasus
Shapur's inscription includes a list of provinces in his empire, and these include regions in the Caucasus that were not inhabited predominantly by Iranians.