Zoroastrian Middle Persian at the University of Zurich

Zoroastrian Middle Persian I

A course on language, script, and Pre-Islamic Iran

Milad Abedi

Module number: 272f626, Spring Semester 2022

This course provides a comprehensive introduction to Zoroastrian Middle Persian Grammar and to its writing systems via text reading.

Participants will also be introduced to the history of Iranian languages, historical grammar of Persian, and common issues in Iranian linguistics.  

The selected texts contain an assortment of different genres, from Biblical texts to political and encyclopedic texts; a book written in the Islamic age is even included to provide a complete picture of Zoroastrian Pahlavi literature. Each text will contain linguistic, social, historical, and cultural commentaries.

This course is constituted by a 1-hour weekly tutorial, and it is recommended to those who are interested in pre-Islamic Iranian literature and who are curious about a diachronic understanding of the Persian language.

No prior knowledge is needed; however, any knowledge of any new or ancient Iranian languages can be helpful. Also, any knowledge of Semitic languages can ease the understanding of the writing system.

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