Saturday, November 30, 2013

Kayanian Dynasty: Kai Kāvus .....(Younger Avestan....559–330 BC)


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"The First Aryan Empire During the Reign of Feridoon......During the Jamshidi era, Airyana Vaeja had grown considerably in size and included the passes to Hapta Hindu - the area that contained the seven northern Indus tributaries - and perhaps even some of the upper reaches....Feridoon's first Aryan empire the empire of Airan (Also see Aria / Ariana in our page on the location of Airyana Vaeja). The creation of this empire was also accompanied by a shift of the central Aryan kingdom towards Bakhdhi / Balkh."....

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"Kay Kāvus (Persian: كيكاوس‎; Avestan: Kauui Usan); sometimes Kai-Káús or Kai-Kaus, is a mythological shah of Iran and a character in the Shāhnāmeh. He is the son of Kay Qobād and the father of prince Seyāvash. Kāvus rules Iran for one hundred and fifty years during which he is frequently though increasingly grudgingly aided by the famous hero Rostam. He is succeeded by his grandson Kai Khosrow…..The Flying Throne of Kay Kāvus was a legendary eagle-propelled craft built by Kay Kāvus, used for flying the king all the way to China."…

"According to the Shāhnāmeh, Kāvus had a flying craft made consisting of a throne to the corners of which were attached four long poles pointing upward. It was made of wood and gold and he attached specially trained eagles. Pieces of meat were attached at the top of each pole and the ravenous eagles were chained to the feet. As the eagles tried to reach the meat they caused the throne to fly. The craft flew the king all the way to China, where the eagles grew tired and the craft came down. Rostam eventually had to rescue the king who, miraculously, survived the crash.

"The founder of the Kayanian dynasty was Kavi Kavata (later, Kaikobad), a reclusive holy man, who had to be persuaded to sit on the vacant Aryan throne. ….Kai Kobad (also known as Kay Qobád) is a mythological figure of Iranian folklore and oral tradition. The 'Kai' stock epithet identifies Kobad as a Kayanian, a (semi-)mythological dynasty that in tradition Kai Kobad was also the founder of…The Kayanian, also Kays or Kayanids or Kaianids or kiani, are a dynasty of Greater Iranian tradition and folklore. Considered collectively, the Kayanian kings are the heroes of the Avesta, the sacred texts of Zoroastrianism, and of the Shahnameh, Iran's national epic….As an epithet of kings and the reason why the dynasty is so called, Middle- and New Persian "Kay(an)" is a continuation of Avestan kavi (or kauui) "king" and also "poet-sacrificer" or "poet-priest." The word is also etymologically related to the Avestan notion of kavaēm kharēno, the "divine royal glory" that the Kayanian kings were said to hold. The Kiani Crown is a physical manifestation of that belief."….

"In the tradition preserved in the Shahnameh, Kai Kobad was a descendant of Manuchehr, and lived in the Alborz mountains, and was brought to the Estaxr (the capital) by Rustam. Under Nowzar, who loses the xvarənah for oppressing the Iranians, the Pishdādi dynasty grows weak, and Iran falls to the Aniranian General Afrasiab, who kills Nowzar in battle. Then however, Kobad defeats Afrasiyab in personal combat, and for this feat and because he possesses the xvarənah he is elected king by the Iranians, and the descendents of Nowzar—Zou, Garshasp and Gastham—pay him allegiance.ád

"The Kai Kavoos saga has many upheavals. He is a selfish and ambitious king. He endangers Iran and the Iranian people on several occasions due to his ambitions. His dreams on deployment of forces to Mazandaran and to fly in the sky indicate his thirst for power. In the view of researchers of Shahnameh, Kai Kavoos is one of the figures in the Shahnameh who is close to reality. The majority of his characteristics are similar to those of historical kings. This fact turns him into a symbol of real kings…..

"The Epic of the Poet Ferdowsi Tusi……The Shahnameh, Book of Kings, is an epic composed by the Iranian poet Hakim Abul-Qasim Mansur (later known as Ferdowsi Tusi)...…. a long epic poem written by the Persian poet Ferdowsi between c. 977 and 1010 CE and is the national epic of Iran (Persia) and the Persian speaking world. Consisting of some 50,000 verses, the Shahnameh tells mainly the mythical and to some extent the historical past of the Persian empire from the creation of the world until the Islamic conquest of Persia in the 7th century. Today Iran, Persian speakers of the neighboring nations such as Afghanistan and Tajikistan, and the greater region influenced by the Persian culture celebrate this national epic. The work is of central importance in Persian culture, regarded as a literary masterpiece, and definitive of ethno-national cultural identity of Iran. It is also important to the contemporary adherents of Zoroastrianism, in that it traces the historical links between the beginnings of the religion with the death of the last Sassanid ruler of Persia during the Muslim conquest and an end to the Zoroastrian influence in Iran….

The third and the most germane role of the farr in the Shahname is guidance of the king in worldly affairs by providing him with a pre-ordained and sacred example of divine rulership. In this role, the farr puts the king in contact with the "perfect mind," especially when the king embarks upon epoch-making decisions (i.e., decisions that would affect the lives of many Iranians throughout centuries). Fereydun and Kaykhusrau, as it will be shown, are prime examples of epoch-making monarchs of the Perso-Tajik peoples. King Fereydun, by taking refuge in the power of kin (vengeance) distanced his descendants from Ahriman's harm. He also guided his successors, Iraj, Kayka'us, Siyavosh, and others, to recapture the spiritual unity that Iran had lost after the fall from grace of King Jamshid. Kaykhusrau, after a great deal of deliberation and study of the events of the past, rejected the concept of kin as an effective weapon against evil and sided with din (religion shorn of superstition and dogma) for the future of a unified Iran and Turan. Because din, kin, and farr are inseparable aspects of the life of the ancient Iranians, in what follows, we shall examine Firdowsi's great epic from these vantage points.

"The earliest known foreshadowing of the major legends of the Kayanian kings appears in the Yashts of the Avesta, where the dynasts offer sacrifices to the gods in order to earn their support and to gain strength in the perpetual struggle against their enemies, the Anaryas (sometimes identified as the Turanians)…..In Yasht 5, 9.25, 17.45-46, Haosravah, a Kayanian king later known as Kay Khosrow, together with Zoroaster and Jamasp (a premier of Zoroaster's patron Vishtaspa, another Kayanian king) worship in Airyanem Vaejah. The account tells that King Haosravah united the various Aryan tribes into one nation (Yasht 5.49, 9.21, 15.32, 17.41)."….

"The various Yashts are in Younger Avestan and thought to date to the Achaemenid era (559–330 BC)......The Missing Years….Gap in Aryan History Until the Start of Median / Persian History….The end of the Kayanian dynasty appears to coincide with the closing of the Avestan canon. Some disruption appears to have put an end to ancient Aryan history, especially Zoroastrian history in Central Asia. After a significant gap in time the missing years of Zoroastrian history - the next we hear of the Zoroastrian Aryans is not through legend or scripture, but with the emergence of the Medes and Persians a thousand kilometres to the west."….

Greek names of Kayanian Kings?…
Kay-Khusrav (Khosrow) -> Cyaxares
Kay-Kavata (Qobad/Kavadh) -> Cambyses
Kay-Avarasp (Lohrasb) -> Cyrus
So X�ayār�ā is easier to pronounce than Xerxes or Darayavahush easier than Darius?
Herodotus….Graecised forms of the names:
Deiokes = *Dahyauka
Phraortes = *Kshathrita, Fravartish
Cyaxares = *Huvakhshatra.
Astyages = *Arshtivaiga.


John Hopkins.....Northern New Mexico….November 2013


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