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Sasanian Empire

Last pre-Islamic Iranian empire (224–651 AD) / From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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The Sasanian[lower-alpha 2] Empire or Sassanid Empire, also known as the Second Persian Empire[9][10] or Neo-Persian Empire,[11][lower-alpha 3] was the last Iranian empire before the early Muslim conquests of the 7th to 8th centuries. Named after the House of Sasan, it endured for over four centuries, from 224 to 651, making it the second longest-lived Persian imperial dynasty after the Arsacids of the Parthian Empire.[2][12]

Quick facts: Empire of IraniansĒrānšahr[lower-alpha 1][2],...
Empire of Iranians
224–651
Flag of Persia
Derafsh Kaviani
(state flag)
Simurgh(imperial emblem) of Persia
Simurgh
(imperial emblem)
The Sasanian Empire at its greatest extent c. 620, under Khosrow II
The Sasanian Empire at its greatest extent c.620, under Khosrow II
Capital
Common languagesMiddle Persian (official)[4]
Other languages
Religion
GovernmentFeudal monarchy[5]
Shahanshah 
 224–241
Ardashir I (first)
 632–651
Yazdegerd III (last)
Historical eraLate Antiquity
28 April 224
 The Iberian War
526–532
602–628
628–632
633–651
651
Area
550[7][8]3,500,000 km2 (1,400,000 sq mi)
Preceded by
Succeeded by
Blank.png Parthian Empire
Blank.png Kingdom of Iberia
Blank.png Kushan Empire
Blank.png Kingdom of Armenia
Blank.png Kings of Persis
Rashidun Caliphate Blank.png
Dabuyid dynasty Blank.png
Bavand dynasty Blank.png
Zarmihrids Blank.png
Masmughans of Damavand Blank.png
Qarinvand dynasty Blank.png
Tokhara Yabghus Blank.png
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The Sasanian Empire succeeded the Parthian Empire and re-established the Persians as a major power in late antiquity alongside its arch-rival, the Roman Empire (after 395 the Byzantine Empire).[13][14][15] The empire ended with the Muslim conquest of Persia. It was founded by Ardashir I, a ruler who rose to power as Parthia weakened as a result of internal strife and wars with the Romans. After defeating the last Parthian King of Kings, Artabanus IV, at the Battle of Hormozdgan in 224, he established the Sasanian Empire and set out to restore the legacy of the Achaemenid Empire by expanding Persia's dominions.

At its greatest territorial extent, the Sasanian Empire encompassed all of present-day Iran and Iraq, and stretched from the Levant to the Indian subcontinent and from South Arabia to the Caucasus and Central Asia.

The period of Sasanian rule was a high point in Iranian civilization,[16] characterized by a complex and centralized government bureaucracy, and revitalized Zoroastrianism as a legitimizing and unifying force of their rule.[17] They also built grand monuments, public works, and patronized cultural and educational institutions. The empire's cultural influence extended far beyond its territorial borders, including Western Europe,[18] Africa,[19] China, and India[20]—and helped shape European and Asian medieval art.[21]

Following the early Muslim conquests, the influence of Sasanian art, architecture, music, literature and philosophy on Islamic culture ensured the spread of Iranian culture, knowledge and ideas throughout the Muslim world.[22]

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