Original Articles

The Financial Affairs of the Sasanian Empire Under Khusrow II Parvez

Zeev Rubin, Tel Aviv University

Al-Ṭabarī’s detailed account of a survey conducted in the royal treasury of the Sasanian kingdom under Khusrau II Parwēz (590-628), during the eighteenth year of his reign (607/8), consists of a list of data and figures which produces an aura of credibility. Confidence in its reliability is strengthened by the fact that the same data crop up in a report about the income from the royal taxation of the Sawād under Kavādh I (484-531), made by the 9th century geographer Abū l-Kāsim ‘Ubaydallah b. ‘Abdallah Ibn Khuradadhbeh and repeated by other geographers. In a slightly distorted form, they are repeated also in a fleeting statement at the end of the sixth part of a tractate about taxation by 10th century scholar, Qudāma Ibn Ja‘far.