House of Kayus

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Persian emperor Ardashir I is believed to be standing here in this relief at Taq-e Bostan. On the left is the deity, Ahura Mazda, on the right is the sun-god Mithras, and with the vanquished last Kayusid monarch, being trampled underfoot.

The Kayusid[citation needed] or House of Kayus (also Kâvos) or Kâvusakân (226–380) was a Kurdish province of Sassanid Empire in central and southern Kurdistan established in 226 CE. The House of Kayus was established after an agreement between Kurdish principalities and kingdoms and the Persian Empire, following a two-year war between the Empire and the local kingdoms. A local Kurdish prince, Kayus, was reinstated tributary king to rule the Kurds. Kayus was among the last semi-independent Kurdish kingdoms during the Sassanid Dynasty. After the fall of Sassanids and the Arab conquest, new Kurdish kingdoms such as Hasanwayhids were established around 10th century in the same region.

Prior to the establishment of the House of Kayus, a number of unified Kurdish principalities and kingdoms from Barzan and Hakkari to Mukriyan and Shahrazur ruled under the leadership of the kingdom of Kerm (serpent) centered at Kermanshah. In AD 224, Ardashir I, founder of the Persian Sassanian Empire, challenged the kingdom of Kermanshah in a two-year war before finally receiving suzerainty from a number of Kurdish kingdoms across the region. The House of Kayus was established in AD 226 and remained a semi-independent kingdom until AD 380 before Ardashir II removed the dynasty's last ruling member.


  • Izady, Mehrdad R., The Kurds, A Concise Handbook. Washington, D.C.. Taylor & Francis, 1992.
  • Afshar, Iraj, Kermanshahan and Its Ancient Civilization. Tehran, 1992.