Bīstūn and Zaristūn Yesterday … Today

Document Type : Research Paper


Assistant Professor of Ancient Iranian Culture and Languages, University Tehran


“Zaristūn” the princess whose name is mentioned beside the name of her sister “Bēstūn” in the Pahlavi book of Ayādgār ī Zarērān is a daughter of Arjāsp, King of Hyons and of Iranian lineage. The choice of this name for a lady of the royal family calls for an understanding of its signification and position among Iranians and Iranian ancestries. A probe into the meaning of “Zaristūn”, “the (upholding) place of gold/golden (light) (one who shines with golden rays)” suggests a deity whose specifications accord well with the Indo-European Goddess of Dawn: a symbol of prehistoric radiance, heat and fire, pleasantness and sweetness and also the historic supervisor on marriage, fertility, birth and matrimonial and motherhood duties. In Iran she continued to survive as the Avestan Ušah. Similar to many other ancient concepts and later personifications, “Zaristūn” with its multiple manifestations can be expected to survive in different aspects of Iranian culture and this is what this article seeks to recognize.


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Volume 7, Issue 2
January 2017
Pages 117-130
  • Receive Date: 03 October 2015
  • Revise Date: 22 July 2016
  • Accept Date: 22 September 2016
  • First Publish Date: 21 November 2016