House of Mihran

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The House of Mihrān or House of Mehrān was a leading Iranian noble family (šahrdārān), one of the Seven Great Houses of the Sassanid Persian Empire which claimed descent from the earlier Arsacid dynasty.[1] A branch of the family formed the Mihranid line of the kings of Caucasian Albania and the Chosroid Dynasty of Kartli.[2]

History[edit]

First mentioned in a mid-3rd-century CE trilingual inscription at the Ka'ba-i Zartosht, concerning the political, military, and religious activities of Shapur I, the second Sassanid king of Iran, the family remained the hereditary "margraves" of Ray throughout the Sassanid period. Several members of the family served as generals in the Roman–Persian Wars, where they are mentioned simply as Mihran or Μιρράνης, mirranēs, in Greek sources. Indeed, Procopius, in his History of the Wars, holds that the family name Mihran is a title equivalent to General.[3][4]

Notable generals from the Mihran clan included: Perozes, the Persian commander-in-chief during the Anastasian War[5] and the Battle of Dara,[6] Golon Mihran, who fought against the Byzantines in Armenia in 572–573,[7] and Bahram Chobin,[8] who led a coup against Khosrau II and briefly usurped the crown from 590 to 591.[9]

In the course of the 4th century, the purported branches of this family acquired the crowns of three Caucasian polities: Iberia (Chosroids), Gogarene and Caucasian Albania/Gardman (Mihranids).[10]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Yarshater (1968), p. xlii
  2. ^ Yarshater (1968), p. lviii
  3. ^ Procopius, History of the Wars: The Persian War, I.13.16
  4. ^ Dodgeon, Greatrex, Lieu (1991), p. xx
  5. ^ Procopius, The Buildings, II.2.19
  6. ^ Procopius, History of the Wars: The Persian War, I.1314
  7. ^ Dodgeon, Greatrex, Lieu (1991), pp. 149–150
  8. ^ Yarshater (1968), p. 163
  9. ^ A. Sh. Shahbazi. Bahrām. Encyclopædia Iranica Online Edition. Accessed October 15, 2007.
  10. ^ Toumanoff, Cyril. Introduction to Christian Caucasian History, II: States and Dynasties of the Formative Period. Traditio 17 (1961), p. 38.

Sources[edit]