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Chapter 12: History of Iranian Military Uniforms
Sassanian Uniforms 2


Pictorial History of Iranian Military Uniforms
Book in 23 Chapters
Chapter 12. Sassanian 2
Ahreeman X

February 23, 2012

Sassanian Persian Faravahar Top Derafsh Kaviani Standard Banner

Sassanid Dynasty (224 AD - 651 AD)

Sassanian Persian Homa Standard Bearer Armored Cavalryman

Sassanian Persian Lion Standard Bearer Armored Cavalryman

Sassanian Persian Double Dragon Standard Bearer Cavalryman

Sassanian Persian Four Tongues Standard Bearer Cavalryman

Sassanian Persian Moon Top Sun Standard Bearer Cavalryman

Roman-Persian Wars – Surrender of the Roman Commander during the Hormozd II (302 - 309) Era
L – R: Sassanian Persian Prince, Persian Spearman Soldier, Captured Roman Commander (kneeling) and Shahanshah Hormozd II holding a sword, standing next to his horse, looking at the Roman Commander and having mercy on him 4 AD
This is the scene of yet another failed Roman Invasion turning to a humiliating Roman defeat!

Roman-Persian Wars – Hormozd II (302 - 309) sparing the Roman Commander’s Life
L – R: Persian Spearman, Captured Roman Commander (kneeling) and Shahanshah Hormozd II standing next to his horse, looking at the Roman Commander and having mercy on him 4 AD

Death of the Roman Emperor Julian in Battle with Sassanian Persians 363 AD
L – R: Roman Commander (on foot fighting with sword while the Persian Poshtiqban’s spear is piercing his torso), Julian (Roman emperor) on his white horse, Poshtiqban (Persian Royal Guard with dyed horse tail helmet top and 2 wings on each sides), Persian War Elephant Units (at the background), Gyan Avspar Peshmerga (Persian Warrior), 2 Roman Legionnaires (on foot) and Yazata Mobad (Persian Zoroastrian Priest Standard Bearer)

Gyan Avspar Peshmerga = Early Sassanian Persian Warriors
Gyan Avspar Peshmerga literally means “Warriors who sacrifice their lives” or “Those who face death”.
Peshmerga = Warrior who Sacrifices his life, Martyr, Dead Man Walking, Already Dead
Peshmerga (Sassanian Pahlavi) = Pishmarga (Today’s Kurdish)
Pishmarga = Today’s Kurdish Guerrillas lying down their lives

Sassanian Kurdish Pishmarga Savar fighting the Roman Legionnaires 363 AD

Death of Julian (363 AD)
Julian the Roman ambitious emperor had conducted a grand campaign to, secure the Roman border territories, push deep in to the Persian territories and capture Ctesiphone (Battle of Ctesiphone) the Persian Capital. Not that Julian could not capture the Ctesiphone but the arriving fresh cavalry of Shapour II (310 - 379) had also saved the defensive campaign. After backing up from Ctesiphone and retreat towards the border, Romans and Persians clashed at Samarra (Battle of Samarra). Samarra (Samereh) stands on the east bank of Tigris (Dajleh) River in back then Mesopotamia State of the Persian Empire (today’s central Iraq). In this battle Julian got lethally wounded by a spear through his liver which eventually caused him his life.

After the death of Julian, Shapour II had made a famous statement:

Shapour II: “This event (Death) will be the destiny of all Roman Emperors who will be tempted to travel to the Persian Empire for sightseeing and vacationing at the Ctesiphone!

Sassanian Persian Forces
L – R: Sassanian Poshtiqban, Kurdish Pishmarga Savar, Mobad and War Elephants (at the Background) 363 AD

Death of Julian marked yet another humiliating defeat of Rome by the Persian Empire. This time Rome had sign a humiliating treaty, had lost all her Mesopotamian territories and lost one of her greatest emperors. The results of Julian’s grand campaign was a taste of famous “Persian Hospitality” which lasted in Julian’s mouth for eternity and registered in the Rome’s history forever.

Throughout the history, Persian Empire had defeated Rome in 3 separate occasions. Obviously Rome have never learned from her mistakes and kept on sending Emperors, Generals, Legionnaires and Mercenaries back to Iran and indeed Iranians have kept on providing the Romans with more and more Persian Hospitalities (Persian Style)!

Sassanian Persian Poshtiqban (Royal Guard Soldier) 363 AD

Sassanian Bahram V the Gur is hunting Hephthalite White Huns!
Bahram V [Bahram Gur or Bahram the Zebra] (420 - 438)
Bahram the Zebra Hunter was hunting Zebras all his life but ironically a Zebra was the one who finally took his life! Bahram dropped off the horse and died while hunting a Zebra. Bahram Gur fought enemies of Iran for all his life and no one could kill him. How ironic that a simple prey (Zebra) had finally killed him. In this scene Bahram is hunting Hephthalite Turks! Bahram was a Turkish Nightmare!

Sassanian Persian Sepahbod Smbat Bagratuni, Shahbanu Shirin, Shahanshah Khosrow Parviz and Nobleman 7 AD
L – R: Smbat Bagratuni, Shahbanu Shirin, Shahanshah Khosrow Parviz and Nobleman

Smbat Bagratuni 6 AD and 7 AD
Smbat was an Armenian Commander, Nobleman and Prince. He was known to be a Persiano-feel (Persian Sympathizer). Due to the long lasting Roman-Persian Wars and later Byzantine-Persian Wars, Armenia has always been caught in the middle. Half of the time Armenia was under the Persian influence, a Persian Protectorate or part of the Persian Empire. The other half of the time, Armenia was plotting with Romans against the Persian Empire and betraying the Persian Empire. Historically speaking, for most, Armenia was under the Persian influence.

Smbat Bagratuni was an Armenian who was always sympathizing with the Persians; furthermore, Smbat considered Armenia as a Persian State and himself as a Persian citizen. In early years he was a subject of the Byzantine Empire but due to plots and rebellions in Balkans, Romans arrested and wanted to execute him but eventually they disgraced him and exiled him to Africa.

Later on Smbat joined the Persian Court, become Khosrow Parviz (591 – 628) the Persian Emperor’s confidant and friend. Throughout his career Smbat has held positions such as:
* Marzban (Border Guards Commander) of Hircania (Today’s Gorgan)
* Sassanian Minister of Treasury
* Farmandar (State Military Battlefield Commander) of Armenia
* Spahbod (Field Marshal) in charge of the Persian North East Campaigns

Smbat has fought in various border campaigns with Rome (Byzantine) but his greatest victories were against the Hephthalite Kingdom were he defeated and humiliated the Hephthalites and killed the Hephthalite King.

Smbat retired and passed away in the Sassanian Persian Courthouse. Throughout his life he had again the highest honors of the Sassanid Court. He was referred to as the Prince of Armenia and one of Persian Empire’s greatest Spahbods.

Sassanian Persian Shahbanu Shirin and Shahanshah Khosrow Parviz 7 AD
Khosrow II [First Reign] (590)
Bahram VI [Bahram Chubin the Usurper] (590 - 591)
Khosrow II [Khosrow Parviz or Khosrow the Victorious] {Restored his kingdom} (591 - 628)
Love stories of Khosrow and Shirin are world famous.

Sassanian Shahanshah Bahram Chubin is granted the Ring of Power by Anahita Priestess
Bahram VI [Bahram Chubin the Usurper] (590 - 591)
Bahram as a Sassanian commander, who seized power and held to the Persian Crown by force, had to become legitimate. Traditionally all Persian Shahanshahs had to be granted the “Ring of Power” by Ahuramazda through an Anahita Priestess. No Persian Shahanshah was technically considered legit unless he would receive the “Ring of Power”. This is the reason why this ceremony was held.
L – R: Bahram Chubin, Mobad Shapsheraz (rising the Persian Sword), Anahita Priestess (High Priestess of the Temple of Anahita) and Savar Padan (Cavalry Officer) of Ray  kneeling.
In this scene Anahita Priestess (on behalf of Ahuramazda and Anahita) is granting the “Ring of Power” to Bahram Chubin to legitimize his reign.

Ahuramazda = Ancient Persian God of Good
Anahita = A Powerful Persian Goddess

For more information on Ahuramazda, Anahita and Persian Mythology read:

Persian Mythology, Gods, Goddesses and ……

For more information on Ring of Power read:

Pictorial History of Iranian Military Uniforms - Chapter 5: Achaemenian Uniforms 4

Shahanshah Bahram Chubin is granted the Ring of Power
L – R: Bahram Chubin (The Usurper), Mobad and Anahita Priestess

Sassanian Persian Heavy Cavalry Padan (Officer)

Perso-Turkic Wars – Sassanian Persian charge and Hephthalites on the ground
This is a scene from the Perso-Turkic Wars which was an ongoing border conflict between the Hephthalites (White Hun Turks) and the Persian Empire. Turks were often invading the borders of the Persian Empire and cause border disturbances. Persians were often chasing them back in to their territory, slaughter a bunch of them and giving the Turks a good lesson to remember until their next border invasion!
In this scene you can witness the Persian local state and provincial commanders are running over the Turkic troops and demolishing them. Turks were heavily armored but no match for the Imperial Persian Cavalry’s powerful force.
L - R: Kanarang of Abarshahr (Border Guard Commander of the Central Asian Province of Abarshahr), Armored Savar Farmandar (State Military Battlefield Commander), Paygospan Banu (Lady Provincial Army Commander) and Turkic Hephthalite Troops are wounded and dying on the ground.

Abarshahr = A North Eastern Border State of the Persian Empire (Central Asia)
Kanarang = Title for the Marzban of Abarshahr
Marzban = Border Guards Commander
Farmandar = State Military Battlefield Commander
Paygospan = Provincial Army Commander
* Hierarchy of the Sassanian Domestic Governing Geographical Bodies:
Satrap = State
Farmandari = Province
Istan = District

Perso-Turkic Wars – Sassanian Farmandar Commander with 5 Arrow Auto Bow
In this scene you can witness the heavily armored Farmandar armed with a 5 Arrow Automatic Bow, Traditional Bow, Shield and Persian Sword riding a heavy armored horse taking charge against the Hephthalites.
L - R: Kanarang of Abarshahr (Border Guard Commander of the Central Asian Province of Abarshahr), Armored Savar Farmandar (State Military Battlefield Commander)

Hephthalites = A branch of Huns (White Hun Turks) who lived and established a kingdom on the north eastern borders of the Persian Empire. Eventually they have expanded their kingdom to the north, east and the west, yet once they started to expand their territory in the South (in to the Persian territory), the famous Perso-Turkic Wars had started. These lengthy ongoing wars were a series of continuous campaigns which dragged on throughout the Sassanian period. Turks kept on invading the Persian territories, running wild, pillage, loot, rape, murder, riot, rebel and charge deep into the Persian lands; however, the local border, district, provincial and state forces would organize, counter attack, kick them out of Iran and push them back deep in to their territories. The results would have often turned out as Turks giving heavy casualties, chased out of Iran and even losing Central Asian territories to Iran. After each invasion and campaign, Turks would end up paying yearly penalties (in silver and gold cash and precious stones) to the Imperial Sassanid Government for all the war crimes and damages which they have caused and in addition sign up treaties and surrender parts of their Turkish lands to the Persians, but would they ever learn a lesson? The answer is no! Turks were ambitious and persistent people.

Pan Turanianism (Turkish Imperialism)
Since the ancient times until today, Turks including but not limited to (East to West) Mongol, Kyrgyz, Uzbek, Turkmen and Turkish people were and are on the constant invasion and having territorial claims over the Persian lands. Turkish Imperialism and Pan Turkic ambitions were and are nothing new in the region.

Important Note
Not everyone who Speaks Turkish is a Turk!

Please note that Mongols, Kyrgyz, Uzbeks, Turkmens, Azeris and Turks of Turkey are all speaking various dialects of Turkish (Due to centuries of Turkish Imperialism and domination of these regions); however, not all of the people living in these regions are of the Turkic Race. Their language has been forced to become Turkish but more or less they have kept their race and cultures alive.

For instance, many Azeris, Turkmens and Uzbeks living in Azerbaijan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan speak Turkish because for decades and centuries they were living under the boots of Turks; however, for most parts they have kept their local and original race and cultures alive. In this manner:

Racial Distribution of the Turkish Speaking Region
* Azeris are by majority racially Persian (Iranian) but they speak Turkish (due to Turkish Imperialism).
* Azeris are by minority racially Mix of Persian (Iranian) + Turk
* Uzbeks are in part racially Persian (Iranian) but they speak Turkish (due to Turkish Imperialism).
* Uzbeks are in part racially Mix of Persian (Iranian) + Turk
* Turkmens are by minority racially Mix Persian (Iranian) + Turk
* Turkmens are by majority racially Turk (Oriental)

2 Points on Turks:

Some Residents of Turkey are not Turks!
- Certain Turks of Turkey (East and South East) are not racially Turks but they are Persian (Iranian). For instance Kurds of Turkey, Armenians of Turkey and Turks living in Eastern and South Eastern parts of Turkey are racially Persian (Iranian) and they only speak Turkish. So in fact a number of Turks living in Turkey are not truly Turkic, yet they are people of Persian race who were forced to speak Turkish due to centuries of Turkish Imperialism and Pan Turanianism.

Racial Origin of the Turks
- Turks are of Altaic Race. Turks were originally oriental races from the East Central Asia and Mongolia. Throughout the centuries of migration from Mongolia and East Central Asia, they have forced their way to the west and south western Asia by a series of invasions and rampage. They intermingled and mixed with the White Aryans of the Central and Western Asia through a series of mixed breeding and procreation (forcefully or through consent). After centuries and millenniums the Oriental Yellow Skinned Turks (such as Mongols and Huns) have become Mixed Turks (today’s Uzbeks) or White Turks (such as Hephthalite White Huns or today’s Turks of Turkey). This is how Oriental Turks have become White Turks and this is basically the evolution of the Altaic Race.

Sassanian Persian Woman Paygospan Commander at Perso-Turkic Wars
Paygospan Banu (Provincial Army Lady Commander) in the battle with Hephthalite Turks

Sassanian Persian Cataphract Cavalryman Ram Unit Special Forces

Sassanian Persian Savaran Immortal Archer

Sassanian Persian Savaran Immortal Archer with Spear

Sassanian Persian Savaran Immortal Archer shooting arrow

Sassanian Persian Savaran Immortal Archer riding and shooting arrow

Sassanian Persian Cataphracts on the march

Sassanian Persian Heavy Armored Cavalry

Sassanian Persian Heavy Armored Cavalry Satabam

Sassanian Persian Heavy Armored Cavalry Satabam
L – R: Satapatis (Captain with mace) riding in front of the Satabam and following him are the Standard Bearer in between 2 Mace-men Dathapatises (Sergeants)

Sassanian Persian Portable Catapult Fireball Attack and Siege of a Roman Castle 4 AD
Persian Portable Wheeled Siege Tower (right) is showering fireballs, rocks and rockets (with catapults) and arrows on a Roman castle tower. Romans are fighting back with a catapult.

Sassanian Forces
L – R: Sassanian Noble (on foot), Soqdian Warrior, Persian Prince and Light Cavalryman

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