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Persian, Greeks, and Romans: Friendly Enemies



The Department of Near and Middle Eastern Civilizations (History)
St. George

The course studies the relations between the classical (Greek and Roman) world and the pre-Islamic Iranian civilizations. It focuses on the passages of Greek and Latin authors that talk about the culture, history and religion of the ancient Iranians, and on the textual references to the Romans in Iranian sources. It also overviews the iconographic representations of the Iranians coming from the Greek and Hellenistic worlds, and from the Roman Empire, as well as the representations of the Romans in the Sasanian art. Through the analysis of these textual and iconographic sources, the course highlights how the relations between the Graeco-Roman world and the Iranian world were characterized at the same time by a hostile attitude, and at the same time by a deep admiration.