Discussion in 'Ancient Coins' started by Bob L., May 7, 2021.
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What religion were the Parthians mainly? I know they were very good about allowing multiple religions in their domains, unlike the Byzantines and somewhat the Sassanids, but did the noble families have a predominant religion?
I believe they were Zoroastrian .
The Parthians worshiped the cult of Mithra, the same Mithraism that was embraced by much of the ancient world. The spread of Mithraism over the entire Roman Empire, the absorption into Christianity of Mithraic beliefs, rites and practices, ceremonies and festivals are a reflection of the influence of the Parthians on the ancient world.
It is also believed that Parthians widely practiced Zoroastrianism, and the holy documents of this religion were first compiled by the Parthians and used by the Sasanians. The ostraca found at Nisa confirm the connection with numerous place names that are Zoroastrian in character, but there as yet is no evidence of a flourishing Zoroastrian cult in Nisa. Also, the ostraca are dated in the Parthian with Zoroastrian month names. [Frye (1963), p. 175]
Thanks. I knew both of those were allowed in the area, but for some reason was not connecting them strongly with the Parthians and their practice. I read a lot of Mithraism, and its particular attraction to the Roman Legions. It is another of what was called the "Eastern Mystic Religions" by the Romans, alongside Judaism and Christianity. Of course, anyone who touches a Sassanid coin has to know about Zoroastrianism.
I thought I read somewhere long ago that early on the Parthians were followers of Central Asian animalist beliefs, back in Arsakes time. I had that thought rattling around my head when I asked the question too.
Byzantine!" Maybe they need to go back to selling used cars.
True, Syracuse and Carthage mints can be very crude, but I would never confuse the two.
Separate names with a comma.