Bahram I (Middle Persian: 𐭥𐭫𐭧𐭫𐭠𐭭, Wahrām; New Persian: بهرام یکم, Bahrām) was the fourth king (shah) of the Sasanian Empire from 271 to 274. He was the eldest son of Shapur I (r. 240–270) and succeeded his brother Hormizd I (r. 270–271), who had reigned for only a year.
A staunch Zoroastrian, Bahram I's reign marked the end of the Sasanian tolerance towards Manichaeism, and with the support of the influental Zoroastrian priest Kartir, he had Mani imprisoned and executed in 274. Otherwise Bahram I's short reign was largely uneventful. He was succeeded by his son Bahram II.
|King of kings of Iran and Aniran|
Coin of Bahram I
|Shahanshah of the Sasanian Empire|
|Reign||June 271 – September 274|
Hormizd I Kushanshah
|House||House of Sasan|
His theophoric name "Bahram" is the New Persian form of the Middle Persian Warahrān (also spelled Wahrām), which is derived from the Old Iranian Vṛθragna. The Avestan equivalent was Vərəθraγna, the name of the god of victory, whilst the Parthian version was *Warθagn.
Bahram I was the oldest son of Shapur I. He had three younger brothers, who were named Hormizd I, Narseh, and Shapur Meshanshah. However, although the oldest of Shapur's sons, Bahram I was ranked below his other brothers, probably due to his mother's lowly origin, who was either a minor queen or perhaps even a concubine. During Shapur's reign, Bahram I served as the governor of the newly conquered region of Gilan, which was situated on the southwestern part of the Caspian Sea. He held the title of Gelan Shah (king of Gilan), and is mentioned in a inscription on the wall of the Ka'ba-ye Zartosht at Naqsh-e Rostam near Persepolis in southern Iran, which Shapur I had created in order to praise his sons by citing their names and titles.
Shapur I died in 270, and was succeeded by Hormizd I, whose only reigned for a year before he died. Bahram I, who was never considered a candidate for succession of the throne by his father, ascended the throne with the aid of the powerful Zoroastrian priest Kartir. He then made a settlement with Narseh to give up his entitlement to the throne in return for the governorship of the important frontier province of Armenia, which was constantly the source of war between the Roman and Sasanian Empires. Nevertheless, Narseh still most likely viewed Bahram I as a usurper.
The previous Sasanian shahs, including Shapur I, had pursued a policy of religious tolerance towards the non-Zoroastrian minorities in the empire. Although admiring the teachings of his own religion and encouraging the Zoroastrian clergy, Shapur I let the Jews, Christians, Buddhists, and Hindus to freely practice their religion. He was also friendly towards the founder of Manichaeism, Mani, whom he allowed to preach freely and even to be an escort in his military expeditions. However, with Bahram I's accession to the throne, and the rise of the authority of the Zoroastrian priesthood and the increasing influence of Kartir, this changed; when Mani reached the city of Gundishapur, much uproar occurred, in the same fashion as Jesus' entry into Jerusalem. Kartir, along with other Zoroastrian priests protested and made Bahram I have Mani imprisoned and sentenced to death in 274.
Mani's death was followed by the persecution of his followers by Kartir and the Zoroastrian clergy, who used the persecution of religious minorities as a method to increase and spread their vast influence. Mani was seen by the Zoroastrian clergy as heterogeneous philosopher and a threatening pagan who was presenting an obscure perception of Zoroastrianism, which had been tainted by non-Zoroastrian (i.e., Jewish, Buddhist, and Christian) ideas. With the backing of Bahram I, Kartir laid foundations to a Zoroastrian state church. As a result, Bahram I became applauded in Sasanian-based sources as a "benevolent and worthy king." Bahram I was nevertheless, like his predecessors, a "lukewarm Zoroastrian." He died on September 274, and was succeeded by his son and namesake Bahram II. Another son of Bahram I, Hormizd I Kushanshah, ruled over the Kushano-Sasanian Kingdom in the east, and would later lead a rebellion against Bahram II, which failed. The line of Bahram I continued to rule the Sasanian Empire until 293, when Narseh overthew the latters grandson Bahram III and proclaimed himself as the new shah. The line was thus shifted to Narseh, whose descendants continued to rule the empire until its fall in 651.
The coins minted under Bahram I imitates him wearing the distinctive crown of the angelic divinity Mithra; a headgear decorated with ray-shaped spikes. The reverse shows the traditional fire altar flanked by two attendants. The lost Book of the Portraits of Sasanian Kings imitated Bahram I as "standing, holding a lance in the right hand and leaning upon a sword held in the left, and wearing red gown and trousers and a gold crown topped with a sky-blue globe." Bahram I was keen on combat, hunting, and feasting, which he regarded as righteousness.
Following the same fashion as Ardashir I and Shapur I, Bahram I had an image of his accession carved in a rock relief displaying him on horseback, whilst accepting the diadem of kingship from the Zoroastrian supreme god Ahura Mazda, who is also sitting on a horse. A Middle Persian inscription is also written on the relief. According to Erich Schmidt, the relief is "artistically the most appealing example of Sasanian rock sculpture." When Narseh ascended the throne in 293, he had the rock relief altered and replaced Bahram I's name with his own.
| King of kings of Iran and Aniran
Year 273 (CCLXXIII) was a common year starting on Wednesday (link will display the full calendar) of the Julian calendar. At the time, it was known as the Year of the Consulship of Tacitus and Placidianus (or, less frequently, year 1026 Ab urbe condita). The denomination 273 for this year has been used since the early medieval period, when the Anno Domini calendar era became the prevalent method in Europe for naming years.276
Year 276 (CCLXXVI) was a leap year starting on Saturday (link will display the full calendar) of the Julian calendar. At the time, it was known as the Year of the Consulship of Tacitus and Aemilianus (or, less frequently, year 1029 Ab urbe condita). The denomination 276 for this year has been used since the early medieval period, when the Anno Domini calendar era became the prevalent method in Europe for naming years.Bahram-i Mah Adhar
Bahrām-i Māh Ādhar was a 6th-century Iranian aristocrat who held high military and civil offices under Khosrow I (r. 531–579) and Hormizd IV (r. 579–590).Bahram II
Bahram II (Middle Persian: 𐭥𐭫𐭧𐭫𐭠𐭭, Wahrām; New Persian: بهرام یکم, Bahrām) was the fifth king (shah) of the Sasanian Empire from 274 to 293. He was the son of Bahram I (r. 271–274). He was the first Sasanian ruler to have coins minted of his family. He also ordered the carving of several rock reliefs that unambiguously emphasizes distinguished representations of his family and members of the high nobility. In the east, Bahram II had to deal with revolts by his cousin Hormizd of Sakastan and brother Hormizd I Kushanshah. At the same time his empire was invaded in the west by the Roman emperor Carus, who may have briefly occupied the Sasanian capital of Ctesiphon. In Khuzestan, a Zoroastrian factional revolt had occurred. After making peace with the newly ascended Roman emperor Diocletian, Bahram II was capable of bringing peace to his domains.
Bahram II died in 293, and was succeeded by his son Bahram III, who after only four months of reigning, was overthrown by Narseh, a son of the second Sasanian shah Shapur I (r. 240–270).Battle of Ayn al-Tamr
The Battle of Ayn al-Tamr (Arabic: معركة عين التمر) took place in modern-day Iraq (Mesopotamia) between the early Muslim Arab forces and the Sassanians along with their Arab Christian auxiliary forces. Ayn al-Tamr is located west of Anbar and was a frontier post which had been established to aid the Sassanids.The Muslims under Khalid ibn al-Walid's command soundly defeated the Sassanian auxiliary force, which included large numbers of non-Muslim Arabs who broke earlier covenants with the Muslims. According to non-Muslim sources, Khalid ibn al-Walid captured the Arab Christian commander, Aqqa ibn Qays ibn Bashir, with his own hands.Hormizd I
Hormizd-Ardashir, better known by his dynastic name of Hormizd I (Middle Persian: 𐭠𐭥𐭧𐭥𐭬𐭦𐭣; New Persian: هرمز دوم), was the third Sasanian king (shah) of Iran, ruling from May 270 to June 271. He was the youngest son of Shapur I (r. 240–270), under whom he was governor of Armenia, and also took part in his wars against the Roman Empire. Hormizd I's reign was largely uneventful; he built the city of Ōhrmazd-Ardašēr (present-day Ahvaz), which still remains a major city today in Iran.Kartir
Kartir (also spelled Karder, Karter and Kerdir; Middle Persian: 𐭪𐭫𐭲𐭩𐭫 Kardīr) was a powerful and influental Zoroastrian priest during the reigns of four Sasanian kings in the 3rd-century. His name is cited in the inscriptions of Shapur I (as well as in the Res Gestae Divi Saporis) and the Paikuli inscription of Narseh. Kartir also had inscriptions of his own made in the present-day Fars Province (then known as Pars). His inscriptions narrates his rise to power throughout the reigns of Shapur I (r. 240–270), Hormizd I (r. 270–271), Bahram I (r. 271–274), and Bahram II (r. 274–293). During the brief reign of Bahram II's son and successor Bahram III, Kartir was amongst the nobles who supported the rebellion of Narseh, who overthrew Bahram III and ascended the throne. During Narseh's reign, Kartir fades into obscurity, due not doing anything noteworthy as high priest.Kartir's inscription at Naghsh-e Rajab
Kartir, the great and influential Sasanian priest, has left an inscription in Naghsh-e Rajab in the Chamgan mountain. The inscription is located about one kilometer away from the south of ancient Istakhr city, and about three kilometers away from the north of Takht-e Jamshid. In Naghsh-e Rajab, there is also some figures of Ardashir I and Shapur I. Kartir's inscription etched next to another inscription that shows Ahura Mazda appointing Ardashir I as the Shahanshah of Ērānshahr. It should be noted that Kartir is the only non-king person who was granted the right to have an inscription.
Kartir's inscription contains 31 lines in Middle Persian and in the left side of it, a portrait of Kartir himself is etched. The text introduces Kartir and briefly describes his ascent (Kardegān). Kartir also has two other inscriptions in Naqsh-e Rostam and Sarmashhad that describe his ascent in more detail. He wants the reader to follow the path of Ahura Mazda like him and briefly lists his deeds, like building fire temples and devoting property to other mobads. He then lists his titles in the Sasanian court: "mobad and herbad" in the time of Shapour I, "Kartir, the mobad of Hormozd" in the time of Hormozd I and Bahram I, and "Mobad Kartir whom Bahram and Hormozd saved his soul" at the time of Bahram II. This part was described in more details in 3 other inscriptions he has left behind. At the end, he mentions a certain "Bōxtag" as his "Dabir".
Unfortunately, the word "Mowbadan Mowbed" was vandalized in the inscription.List of shahanshahs of the Sasanian Empire
The Shahanshahs of the Sasanian Empire (Middle Persian: Šāhān šāh ī Ērān ud Anērān, "King of Kings of Iranians and non-Iranians") ruled over a vast territory. At its height, the empire spanned from Turkey and Rhodes in the west to Pakistan in the east, and also included territory in contemporary Caucasus, Yemen, UAE, Oman, Egypt, Israel, Lebanon, Syria, Jordan and Central Asia.
The Sasanian Empire was recognized as one of the main powers in the world alongside its neighboring arch rival, the Roman-Byzantine Empire, for a period of more than 400 years. The Sasanian dynasty began with Ardashir I in 224, who was a Persian from Istakhr, and ended with Yazdegerd III in 651. The downfall of the Sasanian Empire proved of great significance and effects to Zoroastrianism, the state religion of the Sasanian Empire. The previous Zoroastrian shahanshahs were replaced with Muslim Caliphs who forced the Zoroastrians and their faith to endure harsh conditions, including the destruction of fire temples throughout the previous Sasanian Empire and marginalization of the faith.Mihran Bahram-i Chobin
Mihran Bahram-i Chubin was an Iranian nobleman from the House of Mihran. He was the son of Bahram Chobin, the famous Sasanian spahbed and briefly shahanshah. Mihran, with the aid of Christian Arab tribes, fought against the Muslim Arabs at Ayn al-Tamir. He was however, defeated. What happened to Mihran afterwards is unknown; however, it is known that he had a son named Siyavakhsh, who fell to the Arabs in 651 at Ray.Mihran Razi
Mihran-i Bahram-i Razi, better simply known as Mihran Razi, was an Iranian military officer from the Mihran family. He was killed in 637 at the battle of Jalula.Naqsh-e Rajab
Naqsh-e Rajab (Persian: نقش رجب, Persian pronunciation: [næɣʃeɾæˈdʒæb]) is an archaeological site just west of Istakhr and about 5 km north of Persepolis in Fars Province, Iran.
Together with Naqsh-e Rustam, which lies 2.5 km away, the site is part of the Marvdasht cultural complex. Together, the two sites are a tentative candidate for UNESCO World Heritage status.Naqsh-e Rajab is the site of four limestone rockface inscriptions and rock-cut bas-reliefs that date to the early Sassanid era. One of the carvings is the investiture inscription of Ardeshir I (ruled in 226-241 CE), the founder of the dynasty. The second investiture inscription is Ardeshir's successor, Shapur I (241-272 CE). A third bas-relief, known as 'Shapur's Parade' celebrates the king's military victory in 244 over the Roman emperor Philip the Arab. A fourth bas-relief and inscription is attributed to Kartir, high priest under Shapur I and his sons Hormizd I (272-273 CE) and Bahram I (273–276 CE).Narseh
Narseh (Middle Persian: 𐭭𐭥𐭮𐭧𐭩, New Persian: نرسه, Narsē, whose name is also sometimes written as Narses or Narseus) was seventh king (shah) of the Sasanian Empire from 293 to 302. He was the son of Shapur I (r. 240–270).During the rule of his father Shapur I, Narseh had served as the governor of Sakastan, Sindh and Turan. Prior to becoming shah of Iran, he held the title of "Great King of Armenia". Narseh overthrew the increasingly unpopular Bahram III in 293 with the support of most of the nobility, which thus makes him the first Sasanian shah to not ascend the throne as a crown prince. The circumstances of Narseh's rise to power are detailed in the Paikuli inscription. Narseh was known for his tolerance of other religions.Sasanian Empire
The Sasanian Empire (), also known as the Sassanian, Sasanid, Sassanid or Neo-Persian Empire (known to its inhabitants as Ērānshahr, or Iran, in Middle Persian), was the last kingdom of the Persian Empire before the rise of Islam. Named after the House of Sasan, it ruled from 224 to 651 AD. The Sasanian Empire succeeded the Parthian Empire and was recognised as one of the leading world powers alongside its neighbouring arch-rival the Roman-Byzantine Empire for a period of more than 400 years.The Sasanian Empire was founded by Ardashir I, after the fall of the Parthian Empire and the defeat of the last Arsacid king, Artabanus V. At its greatest extent, the Sasanian Empire encompassed all of today's Iran, Iraq, Eastern Arabia (Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatif, Qatar, UAE), the Levant (Syria, Palestine, Lebanon, Israel, Jordan), the Caucasus (Armenia, Georgia, Azerbaijan, Dagestan), Egypt, large parts of Turkey, much of Central Asia (Afghanistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan), Yemen and Pakistan. According to a legend, the vexilloid of the Sasanian Empire was the Derafsh Kaviani.The Sasanian Empire during Late Antiquity is considered to have been one of Iran's most important, and influential historical periods and constituted the last great Iranian empire before the Muslim conquest and the adoption of Islam. In many ways, the Sasanian period witnessed the peak of ancient Iranian civilisation. The Sasanians' cultural influence extended far beyond the empire's territorial borders, reaching as far as Western Europe, Africa, China and India. It played a prominent role in the formation of both European and Asian medieval art. Much of what later became known as Islamic culture in art, architecture, music and other subject matter was transferred from the Sasanians throughout the Muslim world.Sasanian family tree
This is a family tree of the Sasanian emperors, their ancestors, and Sasanian princes/princesses.Shapur I
Shapur I (Middle Persian: 𐭱𐭧𐭯𐭥𐭧𐭥𐭩; New Persian: شاپور), also known as Shapur the Great, was the second shahanshah (king of kings) of the Sasanian Empire. The dates of his reign are commonly given as 240/42 – 270, but it is likely that he also reigned as co-regent (together with his father) prior to his father's death in 242 (more probably than 240).Shapur I's rule was marked by successful military and political struggles in the Caucasus, against the Kushan Empire in the east, and two wars with the Roman Empire.
Shapur I's support for Zoroastrianism caused a rise in the position of the clergy, and his religious tolerance accelerated the spread of Manichaeanism and Christianity in Persia. He is also noted in the Jewish tradition.Siyavakhsh
Siyavakhsh (also spelled Siyavash) was an Iranian aristocrat from the House of Mihran who was descended from Bahram Chobin, the famous spahbed of the Sasanian Empire and briefly its emperor.Timeline of the Sasanian Empire
The Sassanid Empire or Sassanian Dynasty is the name mused for the Persian dynasty which lasted from 224 to 651 AD.
224 - Ardashir I introduces the name of Šāhanšāh (king of kings); the Sasanid reign is founded.
c. 224-240 – Zoroastrianism belief experiences an era of recovery under Ardashir I kingdom.
230 - Sassanian army assaults the Roman-controlled fraction of Upper Mesopotamia and lay hands on Nisibis, however is not capable to catch it.
237-238 - Ardashir I begins another rushes on the Eastern Roman Provinces and occupies Harran and Nisibis.
241 - Coronation of Shapur I.
c. 242-273 - Mani makes a journey in Persia.
252-256 - Shapur I moves forward to the Eastern Roman Provinces.
c. 259 - Failure and detention of Valerian by Shapur I.
c. 260 - 2nd foray of the Eastern Roman Provinces by Shapur I.
c. 261 - Odaenathus, the ruler of Palmyra, stops the triumphant Persian troops coming back home following the looting of Antioch, scores a notable conquest against Shapur I and drives the Persians back across the Euphrates.
271 - Coronation of Hormizd I.
273 - Coronation of Bahram I.
274 or 277 - The death penalty of Mani by influential Zoroastrian high priest Kartir.
276 - Coronation of Bahram II.
276 - The Kartir is chosen as extreme power of the Zoroastrian place of worship and victimizes the supporters of other believes; his engravings at Ka'ba-ye Zartosht, Naqsh-e Rajab, and Sar Mashad (south of Kazerun) declare to prove his principles.
283 - Roman Emperor Carus seizes Mesopotamia and catches Ctesiphon, but his troops comes back his unexpected passing.
286 - Tiridates takes the Armenian throne and the Persians are discharged from there.
293 - Narseh overwhelms his competitors and triumphs to the Persian throne.
c. 294 - Narseh’s Paikuli inscription in Iraq next to the Persian frontier.
296 - Narseh raids Armenia, expels Tiridates, and quells the Romans.
297- Roman Emperor Galerius undoes Narseh. The Treaty of Nisibis compels Narseh to abandon Armenia and Mesopotamia.
c. 301 - Realm of Armenia is the primitive power to accept Christianity as the kingdom creed.
302 - Resignation of Narseh; Coronation of Hormizd II.
309 - Coronation of Shapur II.
325 - Shapur II falls upon Arab people and makes impregnable the empire’s frontiers.
338 - Shapur II retrieves the five regions gave in by Narseh to Rome.
348 - Shapur II seizes Mesopotamia.
c. 360 - Fondation of the Kidarite kingdom.
363 - War between Julian and Persian troops follows his back off and demise; the surrendered territories and Nisibis are brought back to Persia.
376 - The armistice signed by Rome and Persia.
379 - Death of Shapur II and the accession of Ardashir II.
383 - Coronation of Shapur III.
399 - Coronation of Yazdegerd I, titled “the Sinner” owing to his efforts to control the influence of Zoroastrian clergy and his leniency towards other believes.
409 - Christian are allowed to publicly worship and to construct churches.
420 - Coronation of Bahram V (Bahram Gūr).
421 - Peace between Persia and Rome comes to an end.
422 - Bahram V triumphs in driving off an assault by the Hephtalites.
c. 425 - Bahram V brings in gypsies from India to amuse people according to the Shahnameh.
428 - Dissolution of Arsacid dynasty of Armenia. Establishment of Persian Armenia.
438 - Coronation of Yazdegerd II.
451 - Battle of Avarayr fought against the Christian Armenian rebels led by Vardan Mamikonian.
457 - Coronation of Hormizd III.
459 - Coronation of Peroz I.
484 - Hephthalite Empire conquer Peroz I.
484 - Coronation of Balash. The Nvarsak Treaty grants the Armenians the right to profess Christianity freely.
488 - Coronation of Kavadh I; expedition against Khazars.
c. 490 - Mazdak teaches his ideology, egalitarian idea; he has the benefit of Kavadh I’s help.
c. 490 - Initiation of agrarian and tax reforms.
496 - Kavadh I is dethroned by his brother Djamasp.
499 - Return of Kavadh I with support of Hephtalites.
524 - War between Byzantine Empire and Sassanid Empire.
526 - Romans assault Persia, Armenia, and Mesopotamia, however they are beaten. Start of the Iberian War.
531 - Coronation of Khosrow I.
c. 531 - Slaughter and crackdown of the Mazdak's followers.
c. 531 - Farming, governmental, military, communal reforms.
c. 531 - Conversion of Panchatantra, a Sanskrit-written book-story to Middle Persian.
533 - End of conflict between Persia and Byzantine Empire (the one that started in 524).
541 - Lazic War commences between the Byzantines and the Sassanids for control over Lazica.
c. 554 - Procopius, Byzantine expert and observer to the battles between Khosrow I and Justinian I, which he writes in his De bello Persico (Latin tr., 1833), dies.
c. 570 - Conquest of Yemen.
c. 570 - Birth of the Muḥammad (Prophet of Muslims).
579 - Death of Khosrow I and the Coronation of Hormizd IV.
580 - Sassanids abolish the monarchy of the Kingdom of Iberia. Direct control through self-appointed governors commences.
588 - First Perso-Turkic War (with Göktürks) and their defeat at the hands of the Persian General Bahrām Chobin.
590 - Hormizd IV is assassinated; Coronation of Khosrow II.
590 - Uprising of Bahrām Chobin and his seizure of the Persian throne.
591 - Overwhelming of Bahrām Chobin; he escapes to the Turks in Central Asia but is killed after a year. Khosrow II regains the throne.
596 - Muḥammad gets marry Khadija bint Khuwaylid.
602 - Climactic Byzantine–Sasanian War of 602–628 commences.
603 - Khosrow II’s invasion of Byzantium in revenge for the murder of Emperor Maurice and his relatives by the tyrant Phocas.
611-616 - Khosrow II’s conquest of Syria and Egypt.
622 - Muḥammad moves in secrecy from Mecca to Medina, accompanied by Abu Bakr; Muḥammad gets marry Abu Bakr’s young daughter, Aisha.
626 - The Sassanids alongside the allied Avars and Slavs besiege the Byzantine capital, Constantinople
627 - Heraclius defeats the troops of the Sasanian Empire near Nineveh.
628 - Deposition, trial, and execution of Khosrow II by his son and successor Kavadh II (Shīrūya); peace concluded with Byzantine Empire.
628 - Murdering of many Sasanian princes by Kavadh II.
628 - Kavadh II dies.
628-635 - Weakening of the Sasanian dynasty due to a succession of ineffectual kings and queens including the queens Boran and Azarmidokht; chaotic situation prevails.
632 - Pond of Khumm event.
632 - The Prophet Moḥammad dies; there ensues a dispute over his succession.
632-634 - Abu Bakr’s caliphate.
633 - Yazdegerd III succeeds to the Persian throne.
634 - Umar elected caliph; he plans a successful invasion of Byzantine and Persian (Sasanian) lands.
635 - Arabs capture Damascus.
635-641 - Arab troops capture Jerusalem, Antioch, Tripoli, and Egypt.
636 - Persians are beaten by Arab Muslims at Qādisiyyah.
637 - Arab Muslims capture Ctesiphon, the Sasanian capital; Yazdegerd III escapes to Ray.
637 - Arab Muslim conquest of Mesopotamia.
642 - Final defeat of Persians by Arab Muslims at Nehavand.
644 - Umar (Muslims Caliph) is assassinated by Piruz Nahavandi (Hormozan), a Persian captive.
644-656 - Othman’s caliphate.
651 - Murder of Yazdegerd III; end of the Sasanian dynasty; Persia is annexed to the Rashidun Caliphate (Islamic Empire).Verethragna
Verethragna (Avestan: 𐬬𐬆𐬭𐬆𐬚𐬭𐬀𐬖𐬥𐬀 vərəθraγna) is an Avestan language neuter noun literally meaning "smiting of resistance" Representing this concept is the divinity Verethragna, who is the hypostasis of "victory", and "as a giver of victory Verethragna plainly enjoyed the greatest popularity of old"The neuter noun verethragna is related to Avestan verethra, 'obstacle' and verethragnan, 'victorious'. In Zoroastrian Middle Persian, Verethragna became 𐭥𐭫𐭧𐭫𐭠𐭭 Warahrām, from which Vahram, Vehram, Bahram, Behram and other variants derive.
The word is cognate with the Vedic Sanskrit. Vīrá meaning both 'fighter' and 'brave'. The Vedic god (Indra) corresponds to Verethragna of the Zoroastrian Avesta as the noun verethragna- corresponds to Vedic vr̥tragʰná-, which is predominantly an epithet of Indra. The word vr̥tra-/verethra means "obstacles". Vr̥trahan is an abbreviation of vr̥tragʰná-, which was the personification of Indra meaning "foe-killer".
The name and, to some extent, the deity was borrowed into Armenian Վահագն Vahagn and Վռամ Vṙam, and has cognates in Buddhist Sogdian 𐫇𐫢𐫄𐫗 wšɣn w(i)šaɣn, Manichaen Parthian 𐭅𐭓𐭉𐭇𐭓𐭌 wryḥrm Wahrām, Kushan Bactrian ορλαγνο Orlagno. While the figure of Verethragna is highly complex, parallels have also been drawn between, Puranic Vishnu, Manichaean Adamas, Chaldean/Babylonian Nergal, Egyptian Horus, Hellenic Ares and Heracles.
§ usurpers or rival claimants