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Persian Martyr Acts under King Khusrō I

Translation and Introduction by Florence Jullien; In Collaboration With Adam H. Becker
In the mid-6th century, Grigor, the general of the Sasanian king’s armies and a converted from Zoroastrianism to Christianity, was put to death. This event brings about the conversion of several Zoroastrian notables such as Yazd-panāh, a judge who also died as a martyr three years later, and the courtier ʿAwira. The reign of King Khusrō I (531–579) was a key-chapter in the history of the Persian Empire, but also for the Church of the East, some members of which were involved in the Sasanian administration. These East-Syrian historical texts, which are among the few passions of this period in Syriac, have received little scholarly attention. This volume offers a critical text and commentary, as well as the first translation into English of these two martyr texts. Written by contemporaries, they provide valuable information regarding socio-religious life and the political context. They demonstrate how Persian Christians, despite sporadic persecution, were able to maintain a distinct identity while simultaneously acculturating to the norms of Iranian society.
Publisher: Gorgias Press LLC
SKU (ISBN): 978-1-4632-4487-3
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Publication Status: Forthcoming
Interior Color: Black
Trim Size: 6 x 9
Page Count: 200
Languages: English, Syriac
ISBN: 978-1-4632-4487-3
$75.00

In the mid-6th century, Grigor, the general of the Sasanian king’s armies and a converted from Zoroastrianism to Christianity, was put to death. This event brings about the conversion of several Zoroastrian notables such as Yazd-panāh, a judge who also died as a martyr three years later, and the courtier ʿAwira. The reign of King Khusrō I (531–579) was a key-chapter in the history of the Persian Empire, but also for the Church of the East, some members of which were involved in the Sasanian administration. These East-Syrian historical texts, which are among the few passions of this period in Syriac, have received little scholarly attention. This volume offers a critical text and commentary, as well as the first translation into English of these two martyr texts. Written by contemporaries, they provide valuable information regarding socio-religious life and the political context. They demonstrate how Persian Christians, despite sporadic persecution, were able to maintain a distinct identity while simultaneously acculturating to the norms of Iranian society.

In the mid-6th century, Grigor, the general of the Sasanian king’s armies and a converted from Zoroastrianism to Christianity, was put to death. This event brings about the conversion of several Zoroastrian notables such as Yazd-panāh, a judge who also died as a martyr three years later, and the courtier ʿAwira. The reign of King Khusrō I (531–579) was a key-chapter in the history of the Persian Empire, but also for the Church of the East, some members of which were involved in the Sasanian administration. These East-Syrian historical texts, which are among the few passions of this period in Syriac, have received little scholarly attention. This volume offers a critical text and commentary, as well as the first translation into English of these two martyr texts. Written by contemporaries, they provide valuable information regarding socio-religious life and the political context. They demonstrate how Persian Christians, despite sporadic persecution, were able to maintain a distinct identity while simultaneously acculturating to the norms of Iranian society.

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ContributorBiography

Florence Jullien

Florence Jullien is an historian who currently hold the position of Researcher at the French National Centre for Scientific Research (Centre of Research on the Iranien world, CeRMI, Paris). She has taught at the École pratique des hautes études in Paris as assistant in the chair of “Eastern Christianity”. Her interests mainly focus on Syriac christianity in the Sasanian era and Eastern monasticism in Late Antiquity and Middle Ages. She has published extensively in these fields, especially on the traditions of Christian communities and cultural encounters (Apôtres des confins, 2002; Eastern Christianity: a Crossroads of Cultures, 2012), hagiographical texts (the Acts of Mār MāriLife of Mār Abba, 2015), monasticism in the Syriac world (Le monachisme en Perse, CSCO, 2008), and religious controversies.

Adam Becker