A concept drawing of the Persian Woman Warrior of the Historically Wrong Sketch Series: Medieval Revisited
, which is a recreation of the original HWS series based on the AD 800 - AD 1400 era of warfare. One thing to note that, although the series is based on the medieval history, the Persian in this particular series is represented in an anachronistic Sassanid Empire that ruled before the Arab Invasion of Persia, to give that Persian flavor instead of Turko-Persian or Arabized Persian that was common in the middle ages.
Inspired by the Music: Morghe Sahar
by Mr. Shajarian (A Very touching and Beautiful Persian Music)
I haven't really touched Persia and it's culture in the original historically wrong sketch series, except with the original portrayal of her in rather anachronistic court dress based on mix parthian/sassanid era
. I realized that If i were to stick with the medieval timeline, Persia would have been already under the influence of Islam, and not the classical romanticized depiction of pre-islamic persia. So my aim in this series, is to anachronistically portray them in their glory days that still rivalled that of the eastern Roman Empire, more commonly known as the Byzantine. If there is any errors, i would like to apologize in advance
In terms of Shahdokht Roshanara's attires, it's mostly derived from the heavily armored Clibanarii
of the Sassanid Army, similar to the cataphract. I took the design in a much more stylization than the actual historical attires, to represent a much more feminine portrayal of the women warrior, while still being armored for protection. The mail armor or scale armor were commons to the high-ranking, rich or the nobiliy in the Sassanian warrior class. This, combined with their own tactic as well as expertise in mounted archery, made them a potent force to be recognized in the battlefield.
To be fairly honest, i haven't done my own research deeply in the subject of Sassanid's arms and armaments, but from what i have seen, their designs would later influence the equipment of the arabs & turks (Mail and Scale armor, veiled mail armor), steppe people like cumans (face mask, mail), and many of the eastern Slavic culture (face mask, mail). I might be wrong, but it's just something i have noticed.
Now, how about we go back and see what Persia was like?
There is no denying that Persia is one of world's greatest and oldest civilization. When Rome was still small settlement warring their petty feuds, Persia was already a world spanning empire. When the Greeks were busy with their fellow neighbors, the Persians were conquering kingdoms and empires. If the Egyptian had built the pyramids, the Persian had constructed one of the longest road network from Asia minor to heartland of Persia, the length of which, would more or less can be compared to that of the length of Nile River. It was vibrant, ambitious, rich, advance and multicultural empire, whose subjects were treated with equal, and king of kings ruled with justice. Of course, some of the points I've mentioned may well be just an exaggeration, but the persian pretty much had some of the values that we hold dearly today, that may seem alien to the rest of the world at that time, like paid labor for example.
When it comes to the Sassanids or Eranshahr, they too still carried the legacy of what their forefathers and ancestors were doing, building a great empire. They succeeded the parthian and began developing the Persian legacy further, reaching the peak of their achievements, before being consumed by internal instability, the costly war against the byzantine, as well as the final blow, that was the Arab Invasion of Persia.
The Sassanids ruled Persia in a rather different fashion than their Parthian predecessor. The Parthian celebrated their success with their heterogeneous achievement of Persian, Hellenistic Greek as well as other religious culture. It's court adopted much of the greek art and poetry, with many indo-persian influence, creating a richly endowed multicultural empire. On the other hand, the Sassanid preferred to established a much more homogeneous society, adopting and enforcing one single religion over it's subjects (Zoroastrian), and focused more on developing much of the Persian art, cultural and scientific legacy. They were also much more militaristic compared to their predecessors, contributed by their long feuds and war with their neighbors.
By this time, its people would have developed a strong sense of national identity, as persian, one of world's unique and rich culture. This sense of pride would still be carried out by many Iranians today, as a statement to the world that "The Persian carried on their legacy, where others had fallen since ancient time". I'd say, in my opinion, they are probably one of the oldest surviving great civilization.
If you prefer the History of Persia after its islamization and during Turkish as well as Mongol occupation, see the Timurids version
Maybe related to:
A Part of the Historically Wrong Sketch Series: Medieval Revisited - You can find more on the various faction on the map here: