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    Ariyana

    آریانا


    Persia_Map_Ariana.jpg
    Province in ancient Persia, Today's Afghanistan.Ariana, means child of the light in Persian. It was a general geographical term used by some Greek and Roman authors of ancient period for the eastern provinces of the great Persian kingdom, now Afghanistan.It included modern-day Afghanistan (Bactria, Aria, Drangiana, Arachosia, and the Paropamisadae), east and southeast Iran (Carmania and Gedrosia), most of Tajikistan (Sogdiana), south Turkmenistan (Margiana), south Uzbekistan (parts of Sogdiana) and extending to the Indus River in Pakistan.At various times, the region was governed by the Persians, Macedonians, but later partly also the Indians. The land was inhabited by different tribes such as Pactyans, Bactrians and others. The exact limits of Ariana are laid down with little accuracy in classical sources, and sometimes Ariana has been often confused with the small province of Aria.As a geographical term, Ariana was introduced by Eratosthenes, and as such its borders were defined by the Indus River in the east, the sea in the south, a line from Carmania to the Caspian Gates in the west, and the so-called Taurus Mountains in the north. This large region included almost all of the countries east of Media and ancient Persia, including south of the great mountain ranges up to the deserts of Gedrosia and Carmania, i.e. the provinces of Carmania, Gedrosia, Drangiana, Arachosia, Aria, the Paropamisadae; also Bactria was reckoned to Ariana and was called "the ornament of Ariana as a whole" by Apollodorus of Artemita. (Wikipedia) - Ariana This article is about a historical term. For other uses, see Ariana (disambiguation). Part of a series on theHistory of Iran
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    Ariana, the Latinized form of the Ancient Greek Ἀρειανή Arianē (inhabitants: Ariani; Αρειανοί Arianoi), was a general geographical term used by some Greek and Roman authors of the ancient period for a district of wide extent between Central Asia and the Indus River, comprehending the eastern provinces of the Achaemenid Empire that covered entire modern-day Iran, Afghanistan,most of Pakistan , most of Turkmenistan and southern of Tajikistan and Uzbekistan.

    At various times, the region was governed by the Persians (Achaemenids, 550–330 BC; Sasanians, 275–650 AD; Kushano-Sasanians, 345–450 AD), Macedonians (Seleucids, 330–250 BC; Greco-Bactrians, 250–110 BC; Indo-Greeks, 155–90 BC), Iranian peoples from Persia and Central Asia (Parthians, 160 BC–225 AD; Indo-Scythians, 90 BC–20 AD; Indo-Parthians, 20–225 AD; Kushans, 110 BC–225 AD), white Huns (Kidarites, 360–465 AD; Hephthalites, 450–565 AD), Indian empires (Mauryans, 275–185 BC; Hindu-Shahis)

    Contents

    Etymology

    The Greek term Arianē (Latin: Ariana) is based upon an Iranian word found in Avestan Airiiana- (especially in Airiianəm Vaēǰō, the name of the Iranian peoples'' mother country). The modern name Iran represents a different form of the ancient name Ariana which derived from Airiianəm Vaēǰō and implies that Iran is "the" Ariana itself – a word of Old Iranian origin.- a view supported by the traditions of the country preserved in the Muslim writers of the ninth and tenth centuries.

    The names Ariana and Aria, and many other ancient titles of which Aria is a component element, are connected with the Sanskrit term Arya-, the Avestan term Airya-, and the Old Persian term Ariya-, a self designation of the peoples of Ancient India and Ancient Iran, meaning "noble", "excellent" and "honourable".

    Extent of Ariana

    The exact limits of Ariana are laid down with little accuracy in classical sources. It seems to have been often confused (as in Pliny, Naturalis Historia, book vi, chapter 23) with the small province of Aria.

    The name Ariana can be seen in this 19th-century reconstruction of world map by Eratosthenes, c.194 BC.

    As a geographical term, Ariana was introduced by the Greek geographer, Eratosthenes (c. 276 BC – c. 195 BC), and was fully described by the Greek geographer Strabo (64/63 BC – ca. AD 24).

    Per Eratostene''s definition, the borders of Ariana were defined by the Indus River in the east, the sea in the south, a line from Carmania to the Caspian Gates in the west, and the so-called Taurus Mountains in the north. This large region included almost all of the countries east of Media and ancient Persia, including south of the great mountain ranges up to the deserts of Gedrosia and Carmania, i.e. the provinces of Carmania, Gedrosia, Drangiana, Arachosia, Aria, the Paropamisadae; also Bactria was reckoned to Ariana and was called "the ornament of Ariana as a whole" by Apollodorus of Artemita.

    After having described the boundaries of Ariana, Strabo writes that the name Αρειανή could also be extended to part of the Persians and the Medes and also to the northwards Bactrians and the Sogdians. A detailed description of that region is to be found in Strabo''s Geographica, Book XV – "Persia, Ariana, the Indian subcontinent", chapter 2, sections 1–9.

    By Herodotus Ariana is not mentioned, nor is it included in the geographical description of Stephanus of Byzantium and Ptolemy, or in the narrative of Arrian.

    Having considered these various sources, Ariana includes modern-day Afghanistan (Bactria, Arachosia, Aria, Drangiana and the Paropamisadae), east and southeast Iran (east Media, Persia, Carmania and Gedrosia), most of Tajikistan (Sogdiana), most of Turkmenistan (Margiana), south Uzbekistan (parts of Sogdiana) and extending to the Indus River in Pakistan.

    Inhabitants of Ariana

    The tribes by whom Ariana was inhabited, as enumerated by Strabo were:

    Pliny (vi. 25) specifies the following tribes:

    Pliny (vi. 23) says that some add to India four satrapies to the west of the river, – the Gedrosii, Arachosii, Arii, and Paropamisadae, as far as the river Cophes (the river Kabul). Pliny therefore agrees on the whole with Strabo. Dionysius Periegetes (1097) agrees with Strabo in extending the northern boundary of the Ariani to the Paropamisus, and (714) speaks of them as inhabiting the shores of the Erythraean Sea. It is probable, from Strabo (xv. p.724), that the term was extended to include the east Persians, Bactrians, and Sogdians, with the people of Ariana below the mountains, because they were for the most part of one speech.

    Rüdiger Schmitt, the German scholar of Iranian Studies, also believes that Ariana should have included other Iranian people. He writes in the Encyclopædia Iranica:

    Eratosthenes’ use of this term (followed by Diodorus 2.37.6) is obviously due to a mistake, since, firstly, not all inhabitants of these lands belonged to the same tribe and, secondly, the term "Aryan" originally was an ethnical one and only later a political one as the name of the Iranian empire (for all North Indians and Iranians designated themselves as "Aryan"; See Aryan), thus comprising still other Iranian tribes outside of Ariana proper, like Medes, Persians or Sogdians (so possibly in Diodorus 1.94.2, where Zarathushtra is said to have preached Ahura Mazdā''s laws "among the Arianoi").

    —R. Schmitt, 1986

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