Amir Arsalan-e Namdar (Persian: امیر ارسلان نامدار) is a popular Persian epic, which was told to Nasser al-Din Shah Qajar, the Qajar Shah of Persia in the 19th century (though the Persian legend itself is much older), by a storyteller named Mohammad Ali Naqib al-Mamalek (Persian: میرزا محمدعلی نقیبالممالک). Mohammad never transcribed the poem himself, but the daughter of the Shah—who also loved the story—eventually transcribed it and preserved it for history.
The epic narrates the adventures of its protagonist, Arsalan. The story begins with the Banu (lady) of Roum (also known as Constantinople). Roum was conquered by European invaders, and its pregnant Banu (lady) forced to flee for her life. She becomes wedded to an Egyptian merchant and gives birth to her child, Arsalan. The merchant claims the child as his own. Eventually, of course, Arsalan learns of his royal origins and takes it in his mind to reclaim his throne.
This story was adapted as a screen play by Shapor Yasami in 1954, with actor Iloosh Khooshabeh portraying Arsalan. The story was also adapted into a musical film in 1965 with a script written by Dr. Esmaeel Koushan and Mohammad Ali Fardin playing the role of Arsalan, to much success.
The Heroic Legend of Arslan (アルスラーン戦記, Arusurān Senki) is a Japanese fantasy novel series written by Yoshiki Tanaka loosely based on this epic. It started to be published in 1986; as of 2016 there are 15 novels and one side story in the official guidebook Arslan Senki Tokuhon.
- Encyclopedia Iranica, Amir Arsalan
- (in Persian) Online PDF text of Amir Arsalan
- About the original storybook
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