The Pahlavi Literature of the 9th Century and Greek Philosophy

in Iran and the Caucasus
AutorIn: Götz König1
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  • 1 Free University, Berlin

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Since the Hellenistic times (if not earlier) Iran participates in the philosophical development of classical Greece. In the times of the Sasanians some knowledge of Aristotelian and Neo-Platonic thinking is detectable, and treatises were written for Xosrō I by philosophers who were well acquainted with the writings of Aristotle. It was always maintained that also Sasanian Zoroastrianism was affected through these Greek-Iranian contacts. But it is remarkable that among the Zoroastrian writings of the 9th-10th centuries only two books–Dēnkard 3 and Škand Gumānīg Wīzār–seem to be substantially influenced by Aristotelian/Neo-Platonic terms and concepts. The paper deals with the question whether the Greek elements within these texts should not better be understood as the fruit of a Zoroastrian participation in the general interest of the Islamic world in Greek thinking in Abbasid Baghdad.

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