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Included in this volume are papers delivered at the fourth seminar in memory of Vladimir Lukonin. This series has examined relations between Mesopotamia and Iran from the earliest historical period onwards, and this latest and last seminar deals with the Parthian and Sasanian periods, between circa 238 BC and AD 642. This epoch witnessed a rejection of the Hellenistic ideals introduced by Alexander and, with the coming to power of two successive Iranian dynasties, the Parthian and the Sasanians, a revival of oriental culture. control over Iran and Mesopotamia brought the Parthians and Sasanians into conflict with Rome and later Byzantium in the west. The book contains essays on Parthian and sasanian history, Parthian culture and costume, rock reliefs of sasanian Iran, Sasanian silver vessels. The text also discusses Mesopotamia in the sasanian period, with particular emphasis on settlement patterns and arts and crafts. The concluding chapter deals with sasanian art beyond the Persian world.
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John Curtis is Keeper of Special Middle East Projects at the British Museum and a Fellow of the British Academy. His personal research interests focus on the archaeology and history of Iraq and Iran, c.1000-330 BC. He is the author of a number of books including An Examination of Late Assyrian Metalwork, Ancient Persia, The Oxus Treasure, Forgotten Empire (with Nigel Tallis) and The Horse: From Arabia to Royal Ascot (with Nigel Tallis).
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