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:: Volume 1, Issue 1 (6-2017) ::
2017, 1(1): 21-32 Back to browse issues page
An Analysis of the Pictures of Faridun’s Victory over Zahhak on the 12th and 13th Centuries Persian Pottery
Abolfazl Arabbeigi
collage proffessor
Abstract:   (206 Views)
One of the main features of decoration in different works of art in the late 12th and early13th
centuries Iran (coincident with Seljuk and Ilkhanid periods) and the connected cultures is the
variety of subjects applied in different representations, including power iconography, royal
pleasures, special mythical creatures and cosmic symbols. Enjoying distinctive iconographical
characteristics, a small group of pictures and images here represent mythical and legendary
stories displaying Persian heroic exploits like those of Bahram and Azadeh, Faridun
and Zahhak, and Bijan and Manijeh. The scene of taking Zahhak to Mount Damavand by
Faridun is a theme represented and reproduced in many images (e.g. wall paintings, pottery
and metalwork objects) in the 12th and 13th centuries. In addition to Shahnamah (The Book of
the Kings), this subject has been proposed in most of the historical and literal works. Aiming
to find the referential source of images with the presence of Persian historical and legendary
characters, this research tries to answer the question that whether such images have come out
of Shahnamah and other historical works or just been under the influenced of oral references?
In order to achieve this goal, the research has firstly been dedicated to the examination
of Faridun and Zahhak's manners in Avesta, Middle Persian (Pahlavi) and Islamic texts as
well as the study of the narratives of Faridun's victory over Zahhak in such texts. Having
emphasized on the prominent symbols and features of each character, the pottery works containing
the scenes of taking Zahhak to Mount Damavand by Faridun are introduced. Finally,
the narrative source of images has been analyzed by searching historical and literal works as
well as the probable influence of oral narratives. The required information in this research
has been gathered through library sources and documents and the method is based on historical-
analytical approach. None of the written narratives in this study conform with the
mentioned paintings, however some similarities are observed in some details. Meanwhile,
Shahnamah as an authentic historical reference book has increased the importance of this
matter for illustration. Other texts have also had a big part in this influence. In some of them
we witness details that are not even in the Shahnamah, but they conform with some of the
elements in images (for example, referring to Fereydun's riding a cow in Athar al-Baqiya,
Farsnamah, Gardizi History and Tabarestan History). Furthermore, the probable influence of
oral narratives is also felt as much as that of the written ones. A proof for this matter is the
Shahnamah of narrators where common points with these images are seen. This subject confirms
the theory that the artists in that period had used their mind and memory in illustrating
this narrative. We eventually come to the conclusion that these paintings do not show only a
definite or limited part of the victory of Faridun over Zahhak, but they are the summary of the
whole story being an implication of the concept of victory, a result that could be generalized
to other related pictures and images.
Keywords: |Faridun|Zahhak|Narrative|Theme|Picture. ,
Full-Text [PDF 853 kb]   (69 Downloads)    
Type of Study: Research |
Received: 2019/03/17 | Accepted: 2019/03/17 | Published: 2019/03/17
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arabbeigi A. An Analysis of the Pictures of Faridun’s Victory over Zahhak on the 12th and 13th Centuries Persian Pottery. Journal of Iranian Handicrafts. 2017; 1 (1) :21-32
URL: http://hsi.kashanu.ac.ir/article-1-96-en.html


Volume 1, Issue 1 (6-2017) Back to browse issues page
نشریه هنرهای صناعی ایران Journal of Iranian Handicrafts
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