Welcome to SASANIKA

One of the most remarkable empires of the first millennium CE was that of the Sasanian Empire. Emanating from southern Iran's Persis region in the third century CE, the Sasanian domain eventually encompassed not only modern day Iran and Iraq, but also the greater part of Central Asia, the Caucasus, including at times the regions corresponding to present-day Syria, Turkey, and Egypt. This geographically diverse empire brought together a striking array of ethnicities and religious practices. Arameans, Arabs, Armenians, Persians, Romans, and Goths, as well as a host of other peoples, all lived and labored under Sasanian rule. The Sasanians established a relatively tolerant imperial system, creating a vibrant communal life among their Zoroastrian, Jewish, and Christian citizens.

Featured Articles

Yasna 71 -72 and the End of the Ritual

Antonio Panaino, University of Bologna

The conclusion of the standard ritual session of the  Yasna has been the object of a study by Céline Redard and Jean Kellens entitled La liquidation du sacrifice (Y 62 à 72).  It must be noted that the closing sequence of  Y. 72, 6. corresponds to the opening one, usually numbered as Y. 0 in … READ MORE

Trade and Exchange: The Sasanian World to Islam

Michael G. Morony, University of California, Los Angeles


Commercial history needs to be seen both in terms of dynamic changes and the place of commerce in the economy. The latter is also related to whether the economy is expanding, contracting or stable. In the case of   Western Asia, there is a common perception that the Late Antique economy was stable or retracting and … READ MORE


From Sasanian Mandaeans to Ṣābians of the Marshes

Kevin van Bladel

van Bladel, Kevin. 2017. From Sasanian Mandaeans to Ṣābians of the Marshes. Leiden: Brill. This historical study argues that the Mandaean religion originated under Sasanid rule in the fifth century, not earlier as has been widely accepted. It analyzes primary sources in Syriac, Mandaic, and Arabic to clarify the early history of Mandaeism. This religion, … READ MORE