Talk:Byzantine–Sasanian War of 602–628

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This is mostly directed at User:Cplakidas. Seeing as we mostly know about the Western Turkic Khaganate involvement in this war through Byzantine sources, shouldn't we use the name that shows up in Byzantine sources for them? It seems that it is only a (albeit very prevalent) modern interpretation to connect the Khazars of the Byzantine sources with the Western Turkic Khaganate. So my question is: Why should we call them the Western Turkic Khaganate when in the sources for this war, they are called Khazars? I hope you or someone else can respond to this question. DemonicInfluence (talk) 13:14, 13 January 2010 (UTC)

Well, the simple answer is that we should avoid relying too much on primary sources, as well as not draw our own conclusions from them, per WP:OR, WP:RS and all that. If modern scholarship is almost universal in equating these "Khazars" with the Western Turks, then we should do the same. Having a link to the W. Turkic Khaganate appearing as "Khazars" is bad practice, since these two entities are entirely distinct. In general, the Byzantines were never very good with naming foreign peoples (chiefly due to their penchant for classicizing everything, thus you can find the Ottomans called "Persians" or the Rus' and the Magyars "Scythians") so we should do the work for them. For clarity's sake however, we should explain in the text that the Byzantine sources call them "Khazars" etc. and that the currently prevalent interpretation is that these were the W. Turks... Cheers, Constantine 13:29, 13 January 2010 (UTC)
Thanks for the quick and clear explanation. I do have a little section explaining the modern scholarship on that. I had earlier changed the commander from Tong Yabghu to Ziebel. Should this similarly be changed to reflect the modern scholarship? I'd like to know before making a stupid edit or something. Thanks. DemonicInfluence (talk) 13:43, 13 January 2010 (UTC)
Hmmm, I would favour reverting to Tong Yabghu, but since in this case there is no ambiguity, Ziebel could stay, provided that this name is consistently used throughout the text (again with an explanation, preferably on the first occurrence, that he is identified with Tong Yabghu). It's up to you. Constantine 13:50, 13 January 2010 (UTC)
Okay. I'll keep the Ziebel. Thanks for explaining. DemonicInfluence (talk) 20:53, 13 January 2010 (UTC)
"If modern scholarship is almost universal in equating these "Khazars" with the Western Turks, then we should do the same. Having a link to the W. Turkic Khaganate appearing as "Khazars" is bad practice, since these two entities are entirely distinct." You seem to be contradicting yourself here ! Are the "Khazars" and the "Western Turkic Khagabate" the same, or entirely distinct ? Eregli bob (talk) 11:24, 19 January 2010 (UTC)
I think I've made the distinction clear now. Correct me if I'm wrong DemonicInfluence (talk) 18:31, 19 January 2010 (UTC)

Nonsensical statement[edit]

It currently states that "The war was originally begun by the great Sassanian king Khosrau II to avenge the death of Emperor Maurice"

This statement makes no sense. Side A starts a war to "avenge the death" of someone who was from side A, not to avenge the death of someone from side B ( the opponents).Eregli bob (talk) 11:20, 19 January 2010 (UTC)

I suppose I should make that clearer, but the idea is explained later in that Maurice had helped Khosrau gain his throne. —Preceding unsigned comment added by DemonicInfluence (talkcontribs) 13:18, 19 January 2010 (UTC)
I changed the wording of this in the lead, since the vengeance for Maurice was evidently just a pretext for land-grabbing. Constantine 16:20, 19 January 2010 (UTC)
Thanks for thatDemonicInfluence (talk) 18:05, 19 January 2010 (UTC)


User:Cplakidas, can you tell me a source where the creation of Themes by Heraclius has been disproved? I want to know just for accuracy. DemonicInfluence (talk) 16:12, 19 January 2010 (UTC)

Check the section "Origins" in the Theme (Byzantine district) article. Haldon in Byzantium in the Seventh Century: the Transformation of a Culture also mentions the hypotheses etc. Constantine 16:22, 19 January 2010 (UTC)
I checked out this. Since it seems like a reasonable hypothesis, I think it could warrant inclusion into this article as a hypothesis. Do you agree with this? DemonicInfluence (talk) 18:05, 19 January 2010 (UTC)
Hmmm, you could certainly include this, but it must be made clear that this hypothesis has been almost overwhelmingly rejected by recent scholarship. Constantine 19:24, 19 January 2010 (UTC)

Talk:Byzantine–Sasanian War of 602–628/GA1

comments for WPMH ACR[edit]

this article is very good. I have some prose issues that I'd like to bring up which may help clarify the text (and presumably help prepare for FAC).

The Byzantine-Sassanid War of 602–628 was the final and most devastating of the series of wars fought between the Byzantine Empire and the Sassanid Empire. The previous war had ended after Emperor Maurice had helped the Sassanian king Khosrau II regain his throne. When Maurice was murdered by the usurper Phocas, Khosrau declared war, ostensibly to avenge his benefactor's death. The decades-long conflict was fought in Egypt, the Levant, Mesopotamia, Anatolia, and even before the walls of Constantinople itself. While the Persians proved largely successful during the first stages of the war, conquering much of the Levant, Egypt, and even parts of Anatolia, the ascendancy of Heraclius eventually led to the Persians' demise. Heraclius' campaigns altered the balance, forcing the Persians on the defensive and allowing for the Byzantines to regain momentum. Allied with the Avars, the Persians attempted to take Constantinople, but were defeated there. Heraclius then invaded the Persian heartland, forcing the Persians to sue for peace.

The previous war ended in ---- after the Byzantine Emperor Maurice helped the Sassanian king, Khosrau II, regain his throne. In 602, Phocas, a political rival of Maurice, murdered the Emperor (usurper is such a npov word) and claimed the throne. Khosrau declared war on the Byzantine empire, ostensibly to avenge his benefactor's death.The combatants fought the decades-long conflict, the longest single war of the series, throughout much of the Middle East and parts of Eastern Europe: in Egypt, the Levant, Mesopotamia, Anatolia, and even before the walls of Constantinople itself.

The war had four phases. During the first (602-?), the Persians successfully conquered much of the Levant, Egypt, and even parts of Anatolia. In the second phase, Heraclius, the new Byzantine emperor, forced the Persians out of *****. In the third, the Persians had allied with the Avars, and together they attempted to take Constantinople; Heraclius defeated them there, and, in the fourth phase, invaded the Persian heartland, forcing them to sue for peace.

Or something. In a war this long, it is important to divide it into chunks that the reader can grasp. chunk one, Persian dominance, chunk 2, Heraclius, a new emperor (kills the previous one), has some successes doing X (not the demise of the Persians, please: he didn't kill them all!) Chunk 3, the battle at Constantinople; chunk 4, nail in the heart of Persia.

make sense? Auntieruth55 (talk) 01:59, 4 March 2010 (UTC)

I think I get your idea. I divided up the lead similarly to what you suggested. DemonicInfluence (talk) 04:42, 4 March 2010 (UTC)

Further copyedit proposals[edit]


  • I am commenting to meet FAC criterion 1a and therefore being quite tough on the text. Don't be disheartened, it's already a good article.
  • Perhaps it should be noted that the majority of the sources are Byzantine in origin (is assume they are from the detectable POV), and that they are relatively abundant / scarce (I assume scarce) relative to other historical periods / regions.
    • I'll add a section on sources when I regain access to my sources in about 3 days.
    • Added
  • There is no mention of force composition or strength, beyond a single mention that the Persians were stronger in missile troops (as was their historical practice). There is also mention of elite Gallic cavalry fighting for the Byzantines (although they are given another name) and trebuchets (very advanced tech for this time). Is there any chance of more clarity on this - even a vague idea pf relative strengths it makes a huge difference to the appreciation of the battles. Were the Kataphractoi in use at this time? I gather so, since the relevant article has a picture with this caption "A royal inscription etched in rock at the Taq-e Bostan relief located in Kermanshah, Iran. Depicted is Sassanid king Khosrau II (590 to 628 AD) dressed in full cataphract regalia mounted atop his favourite horse, Shabdiz." Perhaps a good choice for this article?
    • I hope also to add more about this when I get my sources.
  • The specific edits below are intended to give you an idea of the fixes needed throughout. I have not gone past Byzantine Resurgence, since I believe the more pressing need is for good maps. Please attempt to carry through the type of disambiguation that Ruth and I are talking about into the rest of the article, although if I remember correctly the latter half does get more structured and clearer - possibly due to the availability of sources.


  • Khosrau proceeded to declare war, ostensibly to avenge his benefactor's death. to avenge Maurice's death.
  • and even before the walls of Constantinople itself. and and even parts of Anatolia slightly clumsy overuse of "even".
  • campaigns into Persia lands from 622–626 altered the balance Persian lands? Persia?
  • Allied with the Avars, the Persians attempted to take Constantinople in 626 made a final attempt to...
  • Interchangeable use of Persia and Sassanid Empire without clarification.
  • Benefiting from their weakened condition, Redundant
  • and the rest of North Africa I see the technical distinction, but would scan better as ...and North Africa. Not too much of a stretch given that references to North Africa frequently centre around Carthage, as opposed to Egypt.
  • Over the following centuries, most of the Byzantine Empire came under Muslim rule. and Sassanid Empire?
  • Interchangeable use of Khosrau II and Khosrau without explanation, esp in lead Khosrau proceeded to declare war
    • I feel like this is because I after mention his number, it is extraneous to continue to cite his number. This is because he was the only Khosrau that is involved in the events.
  • Unfortunately, Maurice's strict fiscal measures to offset this debt made him unpopular with the army, as he cut their pay. Unfortunately? POV? Propose merge with preceding sentence to improve flow.
  • the two factions of the Hippodrome Unclear, even in the context of the link. Two factions of what (charioteers I assume)? A great opportunity for adding some 'flavour' to the text because of the ludicrous nature of the move.
  • Maurice attempted to defend Constantinople by arming the Blues and the Greens, the two factions of the Hippodrome, but they proved ineffective, forcing Maurice to flee. Soon afterwards however, Maurice was intercepted and killed by the soldiers of Phocas. improve 'flow' throughout, for example "...the two factions of the Hippodrome, but they proved ineffective. Maurice fled, but was intercepted and killed."
  • Upon the murder of Maurice, the Byzantine governor of Mesopotamia, Narses rebelled against Phocas and seized Edessa. ...clarify Mesopotamia is a Byzantine province at this stage (only implied) and Edessa is a city. It should not be necessary to follow all links to understand the text as it stands.
  • Very good linking, btw.
  • Phocas told the general Germanus to besiege Edessa instructed Germanus?
  • Phocas told the general Germanus to besiege Edessa, prompting Narses to request help from Khosrau II, who happily obliged to help avenge Maurice, his "friend and father."[10][11] Using Maurice's death as a casus belli, Khosrau attacked the Eastern Roman Empire and tried to reconquer Armenia and Mesopotamia. All sorts of redundancy here, rephrase.
  • Please explain this in a logical way: Narses rebels, Phocas sends Germanus, Narses asks for help from Persians, Khosrau invades, Germanus dies, Phocas sends Leontius to Edessa, Narses escapes. New concept: Phocas sends second army to Mesopotamia which is defeated at Dara, Phocas loses prestige. Completely new concept: Phocas forcibly converts Jews. This seems totally out of context - religion clearly plays a huge role in this conflict (and subsequent conflicts), but is not explained anywhere.
    • The first part I feel makes sense. I will try to add a transition there, but can't at the moment because I don't have my sources with me. Also, the main reason I don't mention religion explicitly to explain stuff is because I guess my sources don't quite explain it all.
  • Still, transfer of the forces commanded by Comentiolus had been delayed, allowing the Persians to advance further. Persians advancing into Armenia? Macedonia? And where is central Anatolia?
  • In the meantime, the Sassanids took advantage of this civil war to conquer Syria and launch raids into Asia Minor itself Map needed here.
  • which was thought impregnable. Only by the Byzantines, I assume :)
  • Heraclius attempted to stop the invasion at Antioch... How did this allow them to move swiftly in all directions? I assume south down the coast and west.
    • I'll add more here when I get to my sources
  • even meeting with Saint Theodore of Sykeon to ask for a blessing for the battle "...and met with..."
  • The local resistance to the Persians in Syria and Palestine was not strong Reason? Jewish persecution? Distance from capital? Recent acquisition?
    • I believe it was the Monophysite thing, Jewish help, and the loss of the army. I'll check this to make sure
  • another 35,000 were taken prisoner to Persia, including the Patriarch Zacharias I assume "35000 were enslaved".
  • The loss of these relics was thought to be a clear mark of divine displeasure;[20] many blamed the Jews for this misfortune. By the Byzantines, I assume. Why the Jews?
    • Will also clarify this when I get my sources
  • After lasting one year, resistance in Alexandria supposedly collapsed after a traitor told the Persians of an unused canal, allowing the Persians to storm the city. Nicetas fled to Cyprus along with Patriarch John, his close associate. Resistance supposedly collapsed? John was his lover? This is sort of implied. Otherwise, what is his significance?
    • I said supposedly because it was a story of the collapse, but isn't too verified. I think I removed this confusion. Patriarch John wasn't his lover, but he was part of the reason Nicetas had an easy time in Egypt. I think I had this in Nicetas' article. I added a little note here.
  • General note: Please be explicit where the historical record is unclear.
    • I have added this to a few places.
  • Things began to look even grimmer for the Byzantines when Chalcedon fell in 617 to Shahin, making the Persians visible even from Constantinople. "even more grim"?
  • the Persians visible even from Constantinople. No need for "even".
  • Still, the Persians were soon forced to withdraw. Any reason given? I assume supply problems.
  • Ancyra, an important military base, fell in either 620 or 622... Confusing in context. Perhaps "The Persians were still ascendant, however, taking... in ... and... in..."


  • Byzantine Empire 600AD.png Planned as the first in a series. Suggestions welcome. Dhatfield (talk) 05:52, 5 March 2010 (UTC)
Nice work. A couple of first-glance suggestions: add a few more province boundaries and names, at least for the East, and definitively more cities (Antioch, Caesarea, Jerusalem at least) and region names (Palestine, Iberia, Atropatene, Albania, etc). Also, a few corrections on boundaries should be in order: for Spain, this map shows better boundaries, for the Balkans, in 600 they had not been overrun by the Slavs yet. In fact, Maurice's generals had just completed a series of wars that had re-established Byzantine authority throughout. I realize this is comes straight from Kaegi's book and is meant to be a composite map for the entire work, but if we want to be accurate, well... Also, another concern: since this map is lifted almost straight from Kaegi's book, there should be an enquiry about possible copyright infringement with some user knowledgeable on these matters. Regards, Constantine 09:54, 5 March 2010 (UTC)
Thanks for the suggestions, but as you note this may be quite irrelevant: I have been burned and I'm very serious about copyright. As noted on the diagram page under Source and Author, my work is derived from this map which has "Transferred from en.wikipedia; transferred to Commons by User:michele casarella. (Original text : I (الله أكبرMohammad Adil) created this work entirely by myself." given as the source and he applied the CCSA 3.0 license.
To be clear, I have never read nor seen anything by Kaegi: I had not heard of him before today. As you can imagine, if Mohammad is in violation of copyright, I am going to be seriously unamused. I'd like to know how you know that his work was lifted from a given work, since it appears to be pertinent to establishing or refuting Mohammed's claim. For that matter, how can we establish that this map is not derived from a copyrighted work. Dhatfield (talk)
I should add some light to this question. I had thought that this article was bit low on graphics and I asked Mohammad Adil to help me make some maps since he seemed pretty knowledgeable and had made many maps earlier. Since I was rather clueless about the correct policies of getting maps, I asked him specifically to recreate some maps from Kaegi's book, assuming that if this was against wiki policy that he would speak up. He agreed to do the task and created the maps, including the map mentioned above. They are very similar to Kaegi's book. I hope I haven't created a massive mess. :( DemonicInfluence (talk) 19:27, 5 March 2010 (UTC)

Ouch. When we dig, it appears that practically every map regarding this topic should be subject to a RfD.

  • This map states "Data based on maps in atlases and the internet and on contemporary sources". In my opinion this is insufficient to establish the author's right to put this work in the public domain.
  • This map states "Topographical map of Constantinople during the Byzantine period. Main map source: R. Janin, Constantinople Byzantine. Developpement urbain et repertoire topographique. Road network and some other details based on Dumbarton Oaks Papers 54; data on many churches, especially unidentified ones, taken from the University of New York's The Byzantine Churches of Istanbul project. Other published maps and accounts of the city have been used for corroboration." New York's The Byzantine Churches of Istanbul states "© 2001, Institute of Fine Arts, New York University", therefore this featured picture is in violation of copyright.
  • This map states "Province & client state outlines based on: Atlas of Classical History, Routledge 1985, pp. 160-162; History Map of Europe, Year 1 from Euratlas". Both of these are, as far as I know, copyrighted sources and therefore this derivative cannot be released into the public domain. Further, this map is a grandfather of the map Roman_East_50-en.svg, and it's origins are suspect - implicitly given as "Own work", without proper copyright, therefore all derivatives can be assumed to be in violation of copyright.
  • This map gives as description "The Byzantine Empire and its provinces (themes) at the death of Basil II in 1025 AD. Sources: Haldon, John: Warfare, State And Society In The Byzantine World 565-1204 (Routledge 1999) ISBN 1-85728-494-1, Maps IV (pp. 76-77) and VIII (pp. 82-83); Kazhdan, Alexander (Ed.): Oxford Dictionary of Byzantium (OUP 1991) ISBN 978-0-19-504652-6, pp. 354, 2034-2035; Holmes, Catherine: Basil II and the Governance of Empire (976-1025) (OUP 2005) ISBN 978-0-19-927968-5, Maps in pp. 305, 397, 431; Shepherd, William R.: Europe and the Byzantine Empire, AD 1000" Clearly, this map draws on copyrighted sources and is therefore cannot be given a CCSA 3.0 license by it's author.
  • All credit to Constantine for listing his sources, but sadly this does not circumvent the copyright restrictions.
  • Every map by this author is listed as "Own work" and highly suspect in terms of sources.
  • Similarly, this editor does not properly list his sources.
  • Either the positions of historical borders and cities is knowledge taken to be 'in the poblic domain' or we are in serious trouble. Dhatfield (talk) 02:15, 6 March 2010 (UTC)
Erm, for my maps, I admit that copyright guidelines escape my understanding, but I do not think that using a number of maps as a basis of reference is copyright violation, no more than using published books to write an article is a violation. Not one of these maps is a direct copy of the original maps, and in all cases considerable work has gone into finding and verifying as many sources so that the result is far more complete than the original maps (the Constantinople map being the prime example). Obviously one must have a reliable source to work on (and stating these sources is required by FA criteria, for example), otherwise it would be off the top of my head, like countless such ridiculously fantastic, vague or otherwise unreliable "maps" in Commons. I also do not think that city/church positions or borders can really be considered "copyrighted". If using sources in this way is a problem, then we are indeed in trouble, for a) we must delete any serious map based on any actual sources whether pictorial or written, and b) it means that it is better to cheat than be honest about the sources. I am greatly troubled here, someone who knows about copyright should enlighten us. Constantine 13:21, 6 March 2010 (UTC)


Happily, it appears that I had been taught an over-restrictive interpretation of image copyright. When I was working at the Graphics Lab, User: Lokal Profil was the resident copyright 'moderator' and his interpretation of copyright policy was that a derivative of an image with a given copyright is under the same copyright. This would imply that single-source maps (like some floating around here) are copyvios. However, a swing past the copyright queries page unearthed the following, that explains the acceptability of the license terms of your FP (that has obviously been subjected to serious scrutiny).

"...if you traced or copied, or closely copied an existing photograph, then your drawing may still be a "derivative work", and thus you wouldn't own the copyright. But if this is a drawing from life, or something where you used a number of different photographic references (or you took the photo yourself), then ignore that first part. Creative works that are entirely your own can be licensed however you choose..."

The important part is "if ... you used a number of different photographic references [then you own the copyright]". I was under the impression that an image inherited the most restrictive of the license terms of the images used in its construction. However, a composite from many sources appears to be acceptable as 'own work' in the sense that you are 'quoting' from multiple sources, not plagiarising any one of them. That is both intuitively reasonable (I previously though image copyright was bizarrely draconian) and a huge relief. I apologise for creating confusion and I gather that drawing on multiple sources to make a composite map is not only a good idea, but a copyright imperative. I will hunt around, but can anyone recommend sources for the locations of other contemporary cities and the extent of the Persian Empire? Dhatfield (talk) 21:29, 6 March 2010 (UTC)

  • This is good news. InThe Roman Eastern Frontier and the Persian Wars (Part II, 363-630 AD) by Dodgeon, Greatrex, and Lieu, there is a nice and detailed map with cities in the frontier. It even a detailed map of the frontier in 591 in Mesopotamia and Armenia. I don't know if it's allowed, but if it is, I could scan those maps and hopefully you can incorporate them into your created maps. Hope that helps. DemonicInfluence (talk) 20:44, 7 March 2010 (UTC)
That's a relief :)! BTW, I also have a large number of maps in digital form, scanned from books or taken from e-books, if either of you want any particular area or period, send me a note. Constantine 22:49, 7 March 2010 (UTC)
I'm amazed this was even a debate. Maps are maps. You can't "copyright" the information of a map. A direct photocopy (from a book, for example) is different. That's copying the exact aesthetics of a copyrighted image, which would be an infringement. Thanks for the laugh, guys.--Tataryn77 (talk) 02:42, 6 November 2014 (UTC)

Good job[edit]

I didn't say it during the peer review, but this seems easily FAC-worthy to me. - Dank (push to talk) 20:57, 1 August 2011 (UTC)


This article does not make clear when and how the Byzantines regained cities in Syria and Anatolia such as Antioch, Caeserea. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 09:32, 10 March 2012 (UTC)

This probably isn't talked about in any of the books because precise knowledge of the happenings is something is that very difficult to obtain. However, it is said that at the end of the war "Under the terms of the peace treaty, the Byzantines regained all their lost territories, their captured soldiers, a war indemnity, and most importantly for them, the True Cross and other relics that were lost in Jerusalem in 614." I'm pretty sure this is when most of the conquered cities in Syria and Antolia were returned. Hope that answers your concerns.DemonicInfluence (talk) 19:31, 11 March 2012 (UTC)

outdated sources[edit]

Oman (1893) is an rather outdated source that ideally should be removed completely. For now I just removed it from the 622 campaign where it clearly contains false information.--Kmhkmh (talk) 14:27, 9 May 2012 (UTC)

Khusro's letter[edit]

The sources for this are insufficient. Davies cites Oman, and Oman cites nothing. Additionally, Oman is over a century old. The letter itself can be found in Pseudo-Sebeos, pp. 79-80, (trans. Thomson, Liverpool University Press, 2000.) The translation is also slightly but not significantly different, so perhaps an updated quote is needed. The article here also states that Khusro sent the letter to Heraclius. That's possible, but Sebeos' letter is filled with Biblical allusions (as the notes in the Thomson translation point out) and Herakleios' use of the letter speaks more of a propaganda stunt than a real letter. Notably, see Howard-Johnston's commentary in the second volume of the Sebeos set, p. 214: "While there is no reason to reject either item, one may legitimately ask whether the diplomatic note was an authentic Persian document, since it was so eagerly publicized by Heraclius and its phrasing was well calculated to heighten anti-Persian sentiment. It is more plausible to view it as a successful piece of Roman disinformation, designed to bring about the effect it achieved: insults thrown at Heraclius (senseless, insignificant, leader of brigands) were gratuitous and likely to be counter-productive; anti-Christian invective came ill from a ruler who now governed most of the east Christian world; and Old Testament citations, from Isaiah and the Psalms, would seem to betray a Christian hand at work in the drafting."

  • I don't have any ability to acquire sources at the moment. If you want want to update the letter from a reliable source, then feel free to do so. DemonicInfluence (talk) 14:35, 12 July 2013 (UTC)

"Sassanid" move[edit]

Why is this page being moved to "Sassanid" when the Sassanid Empire page was recently moved to "Sasanian" Empire, after much discussion? If there is a logic to the move, please explain here, where the issue of consistency among articles has already been raised and further comment is sought. Laszlo Panaflex (talk) 18:04, 9 September 2013 (UTC)

I apologize, i have just seen the move proposal and i don't mind. The reason for restoring "Sassanid" was because HistoryofIran is a banned user, so i tried to undo some of his controversial edits (apparently not so much controversial).Greyshark09 (talk) 18:17, 9 September 2013 (UTC)

Demeaning Muslim victories[edit]

I think that one goals of this articles is to justify the future Byzantine and Persian defeats by Muslim forces, and demean the Muslim victories, the article mentioned the regret of some historian who said that that "unnecessarily prolonged Byzantine–Persian conflict opened the way for Islam"!!! It's to be mentioned that:

  1. Muslim wished the Byzantine to win because that are People of the Book like them, and they were against polytheist Persian (See Surat Ar-Rum).
  2. By any measures, it's very difficult and daring for newly unified tribes to fight two great empires at the same time.
  3. Even after Byzantine–Sasanian War, Muslims were outnumbered in many battles, like in the Battle of Yarmuk, were the Byzantine forces are about 240,000 and Muslims were only 45,000!!!--Maher27777 (talk) 11:27, 14 July 2014 (UTC)
Not everything in history revolves around a pro- or anti-Islamic stance. It is a simple fact and evident to anyone with common sense that fighting 25 years of war leaves a state exhausted. Heraclius had to scrape the bottom of the barrel and rely on the support of Turkic allies to turn the tide of the war, and the Persians likewise suffered heavy casualties and were debilitated by civil war for years after. Neither of this made the Muslim conquests inevitable, and no one doubts neither the zeal and courage of the Muslim armies nor the ability of men like Khalid ibn al-Walid, who certainly ranks among the greatest commanders in history, but it is clear that if the Muslims had attacked, say, in the 520s, the resistance they would have faced would have been much, much greater. As for the disparity of forces, you should not always believe what the primary sources say. Armies of 100,000 or more were very rare outside of China for the medieval period. The numbers reported for the Byzantines at Yarmouk are ridiculous, 240,000 would have been half the army of the entire Roman Empire at its height, not of a suffering eastern half that had just emerged from the most destructive war it had ever fought. More reliable and cautious scholars put both armies at about equal level, ca. 20,000 men tops. Constantine 12:03, 14 July 2014 (UTC)
Then, a question should be asked that why the two empires didn't consolidate there efforts against the emerging Muslim threat? There two answers I think:
  1. The differences between two empires as very big, and this war and previous wars are evidence.
  2. Both empires underestimated the strength of Muslims, and thought that every one can alone deal with Muslims!Maher27777 (talk) 15:15, 16 July 2014 (UTC)
The second is closer to the truth, I think. Islam was not yet seen as a new phenomenon, still less as a distinct religion, but rather a Christian sect, by the Byzantines at least, and there was nothing to suggest that the Muslim conquests would be any more permanent than the Persian ones had been twenty years before. However, the deciding factor in the response of the two empires is clearly exhaustion. After Yarmouk for Byzantium and Qadisiya for Persia, both states quite literally had no military reserves left, which was a direct result of their mutual struggle which had exhausted both their manpower and their treasuries. Byzantium was able to use the Taurus mountains as an effective barrier to Muslim expansion (and had an impregnable capital in Constantinople), for a variety of reasons Persia failed to do the same with the Zagros mountains. Constantine 16:51, 16 July 2014 (UTC)
Not to confuse the conversation, but the Sasanian Empire also suffered from internal political/dynastic issues as well as lack of manpower(per Pourshariati). --Kansas Bear (talk) 21:02, 16 July 2014 (UTC)
To clarify, the Romans probably thought Islam was a Jewish sect, not a Christian one. --Tataryn77 (talk) 02:25, 6 November 2014 (UTC)