Kai Kobad (also known as Kay Qobád) is a mythological figure of Iranian folklore and oral tradition. The 'Kai' stock epithet identifies Kobad as a Kayanian, a (semi-)mythological dynasty that in tradition Kai Kobad was also the founder of.
In the tradition preserved in the Shahnameh, Kai Kobad was a descendant of Manuchehr, and lived in the Alborz mountains, and was brought to the Estaxr (the capital) by Rustam. Under Nowzar, who loses the xvarənah for oppressing the Iranians, the Pishdādi dynasty grows weak, and Iran falls to the Aniranian General Afrasiab, who kills Nowzar in battle. Then however, Kobad defeats Afrasiyab in personal combat, and for this feat and because he possesses the xvarənah he is elected king by the Iranians, and the descendents of Nowzar—Zou, Garshasp and Gastham—pay him allegiance.
Sources and references 
- Abolqasem Ferdowsi, Dick Davis trans. (2006), Shahnameh: The Persian Book of Kings ISBN 0-670-03485-1, modern English translation (abridged), current standard
- Warner, Arthur and Edmond Warner, (translators) The Shahnama of Firdausi, 9 vols. (London: Keegan Paul, 1905-1925) (complete English verse translation)
- Shirzad Aghaee, Nam-e kasan va ja'i-ha dar Shahnama-ye Ferdousi(Personalities and Places in the Shahnama of Ferdousi, Nyköping, Sweden, 1993. (ISBN 91-630-1959-0)
- Jalal Khāleghi Motlagh, Editor, The Shahnameh, to be published in 8 volumes (ca. 500 pages each), consisting of six volumes of text and two volumes of explanatory notes. See: Center for Iranian Studies, Columbia University.
|Legendary Kings of the Shāhnāma
2441-2541 (after Keyumars)
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