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Shahmaran (Persian: شاهماران, Kurdish: Şahmaran, Şamaran; Turkish: Şahmaran, Tatar: Şahmara / Шаһмара / شاهمار, literally, shah (king) of the snakes.) is a mythical creature from the folklore of the Kurdish people in eastern Turkey, today's southern, central and eastern Anatolia, Iran and Iraq. The name of Shahmaran comes from words "Shah" and "Maran". "Shah" is the Iranian title for a king, primarily the leader of the Iranians and their land and "Mar" means snake in Kurdish. In plural "Mar-an" means "snakes".

Queen of the serpents[edit]

A Shahmaran is often depicted as a wise and benign woman with the features of a woman above the waist and those of a serpent below the waist. She is held to be queen of the snakes. When a Shahmaran dies, her spirit passes to her daughter. The legend is that she was in love with a man named Tasmasp, and he was in love with her and he would listen to her stories, but when she had no more stories to tell he went back to his country, and Shahmaran accepted his choice. When Tasmasp came back to his land, the king there became very ill and one of the king's helpers told him that the only way to get better was to eat Shahmaran. They took people, one by one, into the hamam to see if snake scales would come up, and when Tasmsp went, he was forced to tell where Shahmaran was hiding. When they found her, she said, "whomever takes a bite from my snake scales will gain the secrets of the world, but whomever takes a bite of my head will die instantly." Tasmasp took a bite of the head and the evil helper took a bite of the scales, but the helper died, and Tasmsp was not affected at all. Shahmaran helped her lover and killed her enemy.[1][2]

In Turkey, Shahmaran is believed to live in the Mediterranean town of Tarsus. A similar legend is told in the Mardin region. In this region she is depicted with famous Shahmaran pictures.

Shahmaran and Camshab[edit]

Thousands years ago there are snakes live in underground. Their names are meran and all they are wisdom and caring. They live in peace. Queen of merans is Sahmeran. She is young and beautiful lady. According to legend, Cemşab is first human being who saw them. He sells wood for living. One day he and his friend explore a cave with full of honey; but his friends are badly persons so they leave him in cave so they can take more honey. After cemşab see a hole in cave there is light. He enlarged it he encounter a garden that is magnificent. He enters the garden. There are flowers and snakes. One of them is most beautiful that's coloured is milk-white. He gain her trust, he live for long years there. After years he insisted to go for seeing his family. So sahmeran let him go providing that he wont tell anyone where she is. He keep his word for long time. But one day sultan of land get sick, vizier says that only cure is eating meat of sahmeran and cemşab shows the way. She says to şehmab "make me boil in earthenware dish.let the sultan eat my meat and make vizier drink my boiled water". When it happens vizier died, sultan keep living. Cemşab become vizier. According to legend snakes don't know sahmeran is dead. One day snakes will occupy Tarsus when they learn it.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Shahmaran, Queen of Serpents
  2. ^ Shahmaran Serie