Talk:Cyrus Cylinder/Archive 1

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Archive 1 Archive 2

New - and More Correct - Translation of the Cylinder

The previous translation of the cylinder was seriously inaccurate. Specifically, it made Cyrus the Great seem much more progressive than he really was. I have taken this better translation from "The Ancient Near East, Volume 1: An Anthology of Texts and Pictures", edited by James B. Pritchard, from Princton University Press. I have also tried to summarize the gist of the text after the translation. Specifically, I have removed the idea that Cyrus "abolished" slavery. It seems that what was really happening was that Nabonidus, the king of Babylon, had imposed "corvee-work" (forced labor) on the free men of the city, thereby essentually reducing them to slavery; Cyrus freed these former free men, but we should NOT assume that this emancipation would have also included those who had been slaves even before Nabonidus' ruler. The key phrase to understand is: "I abolished] the corvee (lit.: yoke) which was against their (social) standing" (the parathesis are not mine, but from the translation given in the book). This phrase suggests that those who had not been slaves before Nabonidus' rule were now returned to their former position in society; however, those whose social position had always included "corvee-work" - in the other words, the slaves - were not affected by Cyrus' new decree. I have been doing some research on the Internet, and it seems that this idea that the Persian Empire did not have slavery because Cyrus the Great abolished it is becoming very popular - BUT IT IS SERIOUSLY IN ERROR!!! All ancient empires had slavery - it was necessary to maintain their pre-industrialized, pre-technological, pre-modern economies. It is a sad, deplorable fact that all of our ancestors instituted and tolerated some form of human bondage, but it is, alas, true nonetheless. We must strive to diligently maintain accuracy on Wikipedia, and not allow false rumors to spread simply because one group feels that one version of a story makes it look better. Now, don;t get me wrong, I am not blind - I think I understand what this is all about... ever since Hollywood made the movie "300", Iranians around the world have, understandbly, been zealous in the defence of their heritage, history, and culture. (Now I am not going to debate that film, but let me just say that it was NOT history but utter fantasy, and I will leave it at that.) Many Iranians are trying to set the record straight about their history, but this defence CANNOT simply create "mew history" as an attack against lies or misperceptions told by Hollywood. If the Iranian historical community wants to take the high moral ground on history, then they should be honest and realistic, and no one should invent alternate histories in revenge for someone else's biased account of their own history.

We can all, Iranian or not, appreciate the achievements and ideas of this progressive, tolerant, and genius leader, Cyrus the Great, without having to view history through the ofren distorting and clouded lens of nationalism and jingoism.

(Having said all of this, I just want to add that one could argue that slavery in the Persian Empire was less harsh than in any other empire in history, save maybe for the British Empire after it abolished its slave trade in 1807. It goes without saying, I think, that the Persians were far more progressive and humance about slavery than the Greeks were. However, this does not change the fact that all ancient empires were forced to rely on some sort of human bondage for economic survivial.

On a slightly realted note, let us not forget that all empires are by nature oppressive and tyraniccal - they have to be in order to maintain stability within and to defend from invasion from without; this is not necessarily a condemnation of the Persian Empire or any other empire, just a law of human history. Cyrus, like Alexander or Genghis Khan or Napoleon, was forced to use brutal and deadly force at times, even if his own personal ideals may have suggested he act with peace and tolerance. One does not conquer an empire without blood and iron. Perhaps we should look at Cyrus as more of a tragic figure, doomed to fail in his dreams of conquering the world and of uniting humanity in one large superempire of peace, tolerance, and prosperity. The Greek historian Herodotus portrays Cyrus as such - a man too brilliant for his time, but ultimately brought down by his own genius and pride. But, anyway, this is straying into philosophy and not history, and this article on the Cyrus cylinder is historical in nature. So please just keep in mind the more correct translation that I have put up.) —Preceding unsigned comment added by IonNerd (talkcontribs) 23:08, 30 March 2008 (UTC)

Disclaimer: I am not very talented at working with Wikipedia, so maybe others who can manipulate it better can make it look nicer and cleaner. —Preceding unsigned comment added by IonNerd (talkcontribs) 23:10, 30 March 2008 (UTC)

IonNerd:
I'm going to remove a part of your edit, but let me explain why. First, thank you for the more complete translation of the Cyrus Cylinder. Are you able to provide any additional citations that declare yours to be the definitive translation? This would be of immense aid to all involved, since it seems to be fairly difficult to find an agreed-upon translation in English.
However, the second half of your edit qualifies as original research. This is not allowed under Wikipedia. While you may indeed be correct in asserting that slavery existed in the Achaemenid Empire (and indeed the official page of the Achaemenid Empire admits as much), any such claim needs to be supported by citation. If you are able to provide scholarly sources, then we can include it, but considering that scholars hold differing opinions on whether or not the Achaemenids practiced slavery (and Zoroastrianism expressly forbids it), my guess is that establishing a consensus that can then be reflected in this article is unlikely. If you have any questions or concerns, please respond back. Thanks. Spectheintro (talk) 17:42, 1 April 2008 (UTC)spectheintro

[Question: where does Zoroastrianism explicitly forbid slavery? I was not aware of this... is it in the Avesta? Maybe you are trying to say that Zoroastrianism forbids slavery of other Zoroastrians (Islam has a similar law - it is forbidden for a Muslim to hold another Muslim as a slave; if the slave of a Muslim were to convert to Islam, then the owner is obligated to free him/her).... If you could find a quote that would be helpful...] —Preceding unsigned comment added by 76.203.234.48 (talk) 20:33, 13 April 2008 (UTC)

IonNerd, I also have to say that your edit was extremely unprofessional. In addition to numerous typos you also engaged in frequent ALL CAPS for emphasis. That's OK on messageboards (and perhaps the talk page) but it's simply unacceptable for wikipedia content. TheStorminMormon (talk) 17:49, 1 April 2008 (UTC)theStorminMormon

Response from IonNerd: Well, excuse me, sir... but at least I tried to find a better translation of the Cyrus Cylinder. I can assure you that "The Ancient Near East, Volume 1: An Anthology of Texts and Pictures" is a scholarly source, and not something I found on the Internet. If you are so convinced of what constitutes "professionalism" than maybe you should have taken the time to look up a translation and type the entire thing into Wikipedia. I already wrote that I am new to Wikipedia, and I am still learning my way around. Look, I don't want to start a flame war or anything, so please just appreciate that I put up a more correct translation of the text. And just so you know, I do agree with your deletion; I see what you are saying about not putting up my own original research, and I acknowledge that elements from my summary were my own interpretation of the text. But please, for next time, try being a little more tactful and polite in your criticism. I accepted it, but others might just get angry and ignore you altogether. This article is in bad shape as it is, seeing as how it has essentially become a forum for people's ideological and nationalistic sentiments. The last thing we need is for the rhetoric to escalate.

Just a point: the previous quote was from J. Wisehöfer, Ancient Persia from 550 BC to 650 AD, that I'm pretty sure quoted Pritchard's Ancient Near Eastern Texts.... But in fact it differs from the one that is now shown in the article. Perhaps Wisehöfer quoted it from another edition of ANET. Apart from this, Wisehöfer is a reputed researcher. Amizzoni (talk) 05:47, 3 April 2008 (UTC)

Response from IonNerd: I do not know anything about J. Wisehofer's translation. "The Ancient Near East, Volume 1: An Anthology of Texts and Pictures" is a text that I used in college. I cannot comment, however, on how it compares to other scholarly translations, but I can guarantee that it is indeed scholarly and not taken from an Internet source or anything like that. I think that the previous translation was taken from the Internet, so it's validity is harder to assess. Anyway, please let me know more about J. Wisehofer's translation, since I do not know anything about it.

The previous translation wasn't taken from the Internet, see [1]. Its footnote read: "Wisehöfer, J., Ancient Persia from 550 BC to 650 AD, 2006 1996 , p. 45." That is, an academic publication (a respectable one, I can assure). Wiesehöfer didn't make the translation by himself, but took it from A.L. Oppenheim (I've just checked the book). As far as I know/remember, Oppenheim translated the Cyrus Cylinder in at least most of the collections of texts Pritchard used to publish. So I'd say that probably the previous translation and the new one were made by the same epigrapher... in fact, they are very similar. Amizzoni (talk) 04:18, 14 April 2008 (UTC)

Politically Motivated

Some people do not like IRAN. They put their hands to demonize this great country. Wikipedia schould not allow these people to change the history, just because of their political attitudes. Next, the enemies of IRAN will say the Poems of SAADI which decorate the entrance to the Hall of Nations of the UN building in New York are False too!!!!!

بنی آدم اعضای یک پیکرند، که در آفرينش ز یک گوهرند چو عضوى به درد آورد روزگار، دگر عضوها را نماند قرار تو کز محنت دیگران بی غمی، نشاید که نامت نهند آدمی

"Of one Essence is the human race, Thusly has Creation put the Base;

One Limb impacted is sufficient, For all Others to feel the Mace."[4]

This is an Iranian tradition, for more than 2500 years. People loved Cyrus and Darius like christisns love Jesus, because they were just!!! Iran is GREAT, you can not fool people.

http://www.iranchamber.com/history/cyrus/cyrus_charter.php http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UpHKincVcew 62.178.51.59 (talk) 16:58, 8 February 2008 (UTC)

Copyright Violation

After googling for more info I found that a good portion of this article is plagiarized from here and/or here. How do I report this? I'm too lazy (and busy with other articles) to rewrite this right now. Stuff like 'continents' needs to be changed as well. Khirad 09:33, 11 September 2005 (UTC)

Dear Wiki administrators;

The above information is false. I added the article from (dash) soas.com/CAIS/History/hakhamaneshian/Cyrus-the-great/cyrus_cylinder.htm The Circle of Ancient Iranian Studies. The article was written by founder of the organization himself. According to (dash) soas.com/CAIS/copyright.htm their copyright policy:

Unlimited distribution is permitted without permission (unless otherwise noted) subject to:

The files will be used for Non-Commercial (no fee is charged to the users), your personal and educational use only.

The entire contents (Textual & Graphic) including the header, the author name, are not permitted to be altered.

The source (including web link address: http://www.cais (dash) soas.com) should be acknowledged.

The copyright notice (Copyright © 1998~ CAIS) should remain intact.

I even sent the author an email and aknowledged him about adding his article to Wikipedia.

Though the article was not taken from http://www.iranchamber.com ,but I contacted them (I thought maybe someone from that society is doing the deletions); and here is their reply:

Dear Mehrdad,

We never add, remove or edit anything to, from or on Wikipedia.

We were also noticed by some editors of Wikipedia that some people are adding materials from our site, and asked our permission to keep them on Wikipedia. In all of the occasions we did not express any objection. But later we did notice that some pictures and articles are removed again. We believe these removals and unnecessary editing's more or less caused by an unmanaged group of editors who are crossing each others works.

We support the cause of Wikipedia as a free source of information, and our copyright notice is only subjected to the commercial use of our materials which we do not grant any permission for such purposes at all. Above all we support what ever can more introduce our beloved Iran to the world.

Best regards,

Shahrzad Rouzrokh Editor of Iran Chamber Society http://www.iranchamber.com

Regards, --Mehrdad 06:42, 27 September 2005 (UTC)

  • Unfortunately, the policy: "The entire contents (Textual & Graphic) including the header, the author name, are not permitted to be altered." conflicts with Wikipedia policy. All Wikipedia articles must be able to be edited. Wikipedia can't be used simply as a mirror for other people's essays. If you wanted to write your own article, and then provide a link to this person's essay, then that would be fine.--JW1805 16:31, 27 September 2005 (UTC)

Serious problem

1) There is no evidence cited by any serious historian that the cylinder has anything whatsoever to do with Cyrus.

2) The text is known to be highly fragemented. 99% of the text has nothing whatseover to do with human rights but rather quite opposed concepts such as the divine right of kings and the right of conquest.

The extrapolation seems to be based on a single phrase, the "freeing" of a city from the "yoke" of another ruling class, and the failure to kill the inhabitents as they surrendered instead of fighting. This terminology and practice of not killing the inhabitents of a city that surrenders is notable no sense and indeed ubiquitous throughout history.72.75.18.6 19:59, 14 September 2006 (UTC)

"Charter of Human Rights"

Please provide a source for this statement: "In 1971 the United Nations translated and published the Cyrus Cylinder as the first declaration of human rights into all official U.N.languages." The UN translates a lot of things. Did they really declare this decree to be the "first declaration of human rights"? Do legitimate historians agree with this interpretation? The text can be found here. In no way is this a "charter of human rights". --JW1805 03:36, 5 October 2005 (UTC)

There seem to be different versions of this declaration on the internet. Compare the two at this site and (dash) soas.com/CAIS/History/hakhamaneshian/Cyrus-the-great/cyrus_cylinder.htm this site. The second site has a version with a lengthy extra part at the end, containing highly dubious material like: "I will impose my monarchy on no nation. Each is free to accept it , and if any one of them rejects it , I never resolve on war to reign." Some of the hyperbole on the various sites mentioning this declaration make me doubt their accuracy and objectivness. Is there a translation of this text from a reputable source (like the British Museum)? --JW1805 02:52, 22 October 2005 (UTC)

  • Another version here, with an additional opening section not found in the other two versions. --JW1805 03:16, 22 October 2005 (UTC)

That is the real problem, I did a lot of searching but I was unable to find the real UN translation. Many sites translate it themselves and so the result is different. I will continue my search. --Aytakin 04:00, 13 November 2005 (UTC)

______________________________________________________________________________________________

The best place for a translation of the Cyrus Cylinder is, unfortunatly, in university libraries. There are many people adding their own parts to this so-called 'declaration of human rights'. It is no such thing. I have studied the cylinder as part of my dissertation (and I can read Akkadian) and I can assure you that many of the web sites are simply telling lies regarding the content of the cylinder. Basically, Cyrus was presenting himself as a ligitimate ruler of Babylon whilst trying to 'demonise' the previous ruler, Nabonidus. The 'human rights' stems from the Jewish tradition and has its roots in the fact that the Persians apparently gave them money to re-build their temple. It is no accident that Cyrus is praised in the bible yet is strangly absent from Persian epics. Cyrus was also used as an example of a good King by Xenophon of Athens in the Cyropedia, but this is purely a piece of rhetoric and most shcolars agree that it bears no resemblance to the 'real' Cyrus. In all, Cyrus was a very canny politician. He knew what he had to do to legitimise his rule and he made extensive use of propagander to do it. He could be described as 'tolerant' to other cultures as this was another tool to keep the empire (and they were not really intersted in non-Persians worshipping Ahura-Mazda anyway). However, to talk about Cyrus in modern terms of 'Human Rights' is ridiculous. It must be noted that Babylon was one of Persia'a 'hotspots' (along with Egypt) and there were several rebellions here. That is until Xerxes, the fourth King, decided to exterminate much of the population to keep them quite, as well as impose ridiculous levels of taxation. The preceding unsigned comment was added by 138.253.63.15 (talk • contribs) 11:08, December 13, 2005.

______________________________________________________________________________________________

This is very true, the only current relieble source of the translation is only university libraries. I have a translation to Farsi of the cylinder, which was published in باستان شناسی و هنر ایران (Archeology and Art of Iran) which was a very respected journal written during the rule of Mohammad Reza Shah by scholars. But the problem is its in farsi and I tried getting it translated, but then the problem was the translators don't know the historical terms, which messed it up. There are many good versions in Farsi and French, but none in English. --(Aytakin) | Talk 21:36, 13 December 2005 (UTC)

______________________________________________________________________________________________

One of the reasons Wikipedia is fast becoming a joke is the comments above. People with no real expertise in a field tearing apart and reconstructing history to reflect their own personal beliefs. Cyrus the great may indeed have not been perfect, but the facts speak loudly that he was more than just a "canny politician". It may be fashionable to find middle eastern historical figures and ascribe them with hidden motives and evil characteristics, but genuine scholars do no such thing. The foremost expert on Achaemenid Persia, Professor R.N.Frye (who I have indeed met, and who is incredibly astute), says this in "The Heritage of Persia" (pp. 123-134):

"In the victories of the Persians... what was different was the new policy of reconciliation and together with this was the prime aim of Cyrus to establish a pax Achaemenica..... If one were to assess the achievements of the Achaemenid Persians, surely the concept of One World, .... the fusion of peoples and cultures in one 'Oecumen' was one of their important legacies"

While the translations indeed may be overambitious in what they purport to translate, and have tacked on various meanings, including some wishful thinking, let's not turn this discussion, and Cyrus' Cylinder, into something else to suit political agendas. The Cylinder is unique, and so was Cyrus, so much so that his enemies respected him and his honor. The tradition of announcing reforms at the beginning of rulership is not unique, and thus this may not be the first declaration of human rights, but it is a very significant one. The preceding unsigned comment was added by 59.167.62.119 (talk • contribs) 09:17, December 17, 2005.


TO ADD ON, the part I mentioned that I agree with the comments made by the unsigned user, I only meant the fact that its hard to find a relieble source for the translation, with the rest of it I do not agree with. I just want to clear that up!! --(Aytakin) | Talk 22:38, 17 December 2005 (UTC)

Made-up?

A good part of this translation is made-up. The Babylonian text is in fragments and never as perfect as this. I will put on a scientific translation (from a "university library") up soon. --Khodadad 08:52, 23 February 2006 (UTC)

Full translation of Cyrus Cylinder

I have confirmed the translation on http://www.livius.org/ct-cz/cyrus_I/babylon05.html to be a full translation of the Cyrus Cylinder and is in agreement with the translation found in "The Inscriptions Relating to the Rise of Cyrus And His Conquest of Babylonia". This book and many others have been scanned and made available in pdf format from www.brainfly.net —Preceding unsigned comment added by 85.102.76.122 (talkcontribs) 15:18, March 22, 2006

Sorry, i cannot trust the above mentioned livius.org as a seriously run source of knowledge. For example, search for the Word Arians to see how Jona Lendering reduces this term as to be only a Tribe in western Afghanistan!!!!! So, that joke is enought for me. Under Aryans, you will see only few words that would never cover the whole historic meaning. For him, it seems only be of importance that the term was misused by Nazis. This is not a professional work. 62.178.51.59 (talk) 17:37, 10 February 2008 (UTC)



UN Translation: Where is the UN translation of 1971? I cannot find it on the UN websites! They spend lots of time and money to do something then hide it!

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cyrus_the_Great In 1971, the UN translated it into all of its official languages.


82.70.40.190


Have a look at this: http://www.iranchamber.com/history/cyrus/cyrus_charter.php

62.178.51.59 (talk) 16:26, 10 February 2008 (UTC)


One would suggest that the people above naming such academics as Frye read more up-to-date studies on Cyrus, such as the Acheamenid History Workshop series of publications that have changed the way Persia itself is studied. I did not, I think, present a picture of a demonised Cyrus, just a more realistic one. I have spent many a year studying this most famous (in the west - his impact on the eastern tradition of ancient folklore is limited) monarch and have deep respect for his achievements and the dynasty he created. It is now unfortunate that the myth preceeds the man...

Further to the disscussion, the best place to find an accurate and accepted (though by no means totally uncontested) translation is in Maria Brosius' book on Persian inscriptions as part of the LACTOR series:

Brosius,M (2000) 'The Persian Empire from Cyrus II to Artaxerxes I' in London Association of Classical Teachers 16: London.

This is the text usually presented to university students to study, at least in the UK anyway. Oppenheims text (cited above) is, unfortunatly, now considered 'out of date' (if I may use so bold an expression) though it does contain much colour in the prose.

Why is it kept in England

Shouldn't the Cyrus Cylinder be kept in Iran as it is their property, or is it that the Shah let them keep it as he was nothing but a puppet of the England.

It should, as well as many other historical objects held by the British Museum that belong to Iran, but unfortunatly because many of the these objects were stolen from Iran and later were "found"/bought by the british museum, Iran can't get it back, partly because of the law and partly because they really don't care! --(Aytakin) | Talk 20:59, 4 December 2006 (UTC)
The Tehran museum owns a beautiful Greek inscription from Nehavand; I think the Iranian government would not give it to the Greeks if they demanded it, because it never was in Greece. Equally, the Cyrus Cylinder, written in Akkadian, dedicated to a Babylonian god, found in Babylon, belongs in Iraq. If it were excavated today, the Iraqi government would be the rightful owner.
It is now in London, because it was excavated in Babylon by a team of British-sponsored archaeologists, and the Turkish sultan had agreed to give it to the British Museum. In those days, the usual deal was that the archaeologists could keep whatever they found, except for gold and silver, which were to remain in the countries where it was found. (Therefore, many finds from ancient Iran, like the Code of Hammurabi from Susa, are now in the Louvre.) By nineteenth-century standards, deals like these were perfectly legal, and I think most Arabs and Iranians would have been glad that those foreigners were laboring to excavate gold and silver for them, and did not really care about the other objects.Jona Lendering 00:52, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

"Ancient Egypt"

Uh, this has nothing to do with ancient Egypt.... 24.148.19.254 15:04, 15 December 2006 (UTC)

RE: Pahlavi

Regarding the edit "Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi has claimed that" [2]

1- Where is your source? Besides the article on your own website which seems to claim this without providing any sources.

2- "has claimed" suggests that he continues to do so. However I think we both know that he is no longer with us :) --Rayis 18:53, 10 January 2007 (UTC)

Hey, I do not know who you are replying to but to answer you, Mohammad Reza Pahlavi said that in his speech in his 2,500 year celebration of Iran's monarchy speech. If you want to see it get the film "Flame of Persia" which shows the celebration. In that speech he also read parts of the cylinder. --(Aytakin) | Talk 21:57, 10 January 2007 (UTC)
As to #1, I will soon be able to publish part of the correspondence with the U.N., and I think that the TV imagery mentioned above will be sufficient. As to #2, feel free to improve my English.Jona Lendering 23:54, 10 January 2007 (UTC)

Problems and possible edit

There are clearly some problems with this page, not least that it actually contradicts the material on Cyrus the Great. Text copied verbatim from a site which is, to say the least, opinionated doesn't help matters. I made some changes which I think rectify these and help with NPOV. However, I thought I'd check I haven't done anything glaringly wrong before I actually saved the edit, so I put the edited page here. All being well, I'll make the actual change in a day or two when everyone has have had a chance to object to my mutilation of their work.Dan TV 20:37, 17 January 2007 (UTC)

looks great! Jona Lendering 23:10, 17 January 2007 (UTC)
Good work! A minor point: In note N 14, you could give a link to http://www.livius.org/ct-cz/cyrus_I/cyrus_cylinder2.html#TEXT instead of to a 1912 translation.--Amizzoni 00:27, 18 January 2007 (UTC)
Thanks, I've changed the note and I'll edit the page shortly. Dan TV 09:33, 18 January 2007 (UTC)


I am gonna go through it all. Thanks for your additions, although most of it is original research with unverifiable material. The claim that Mohammad Reza Pahlavi was the first to refer to it is not a fact, it just seems like a theory claimed by someone on internet. Also Ebadi did not "quote" anyone, and stop making it look like she did, "he would not reign over the people if they did not wish it" is not a direct quote, and should not be treated as such. Also the other parts I am going to move here for discussion:

"However, it can also be argued that similar gestures to those recorded on the Cylinder were more or less usual for a conquering monarch in contemporary Babylon and the surrounding area[1]. By this argument, Cyrus may have been unusually generous, but the Cylinder cannot be regarded as a charter guaranteeing rights. At least one translation of the Cylinder’s text found online has been ‘elaborated’ with promises founding Cyrus’ right to reign on the acceptance of the people[2]. This is in contradiction with the early part of the text, which recounts the god Marduk’s offer of a tyrannical monarch’s kingdom to Cyrus, founding his conquest on divine right[3]."

This is problematic because there are a lot of things that can be argued, but wikipedia is not a place for it. Carry out your original research elsewhere and get it published first, on a reliable peer-reviewed and neutral academic journal. --Rayis 20:23, 18 January 2007 (UTC)

First of all, excuse me for my last change, it wasn't bad intentioned -I didn't even get the right place! For more references to the paragraph you moved here, see the following:

"[A]lready prior to the identification of the relevant fragment [i.e., the Yale fragment mentioning Assurbanipal] [J. Hamatta] had remarked on the similarity of style between the Cyrus Cylinder and the inscriptions of Assurbanipal. In this connection, CBF Walker correctly remarked that the Cyrus Cylinder is a normal building inscription within the Assyrian-Babylonian tradition, and can certainly not be regarded as some declaration of human rights (Walker 1972:159; see also Kuhrt 1983; Van der Spek 1982)."

(from M. Dandamaev A Political History of the Achaemenid Empire, pp. 52-53, the publications refered to are: A. Kuhrt "The Cyrus Cylinder and Achaemenid imperial policy" in Journal of Studies of the Old Testament 25 pp. 83-97., B. van der Spek, "Did Cyrus the Great introduce a new policy towards subdued nations? Cyrus in Assyrian perspective" in Persica 10 pp. 273-285, and C.B.F. Walker, "A recently identified fragment of the Cyrus Cylinder", in Iran 10, pp. 158-159; if you search "cyrus cylinder" + "human rights" you can get the relevant passage in http://books.google.com/)

Furthermore, Jona Lendering is not just "someone on internet", notice that he's an scholar, and that Livius.org is indexed in Abzu (also known as the Holy Canon of Ancient Near East Online Resources), of the Chicago University Oriental Institute. It doesn't means that all that he writes is true, but we can take him as a serious source.

I agree that there is a problem with the last sentence, it can't reference to the Cylinder itself -it would be original research-, and I also believe that words like tyrannical sounds quite sensationalistic, so we should refrase it, or just remove it.--Amizzoni 01:22, 20 January 2007 (UTC)

Amizzoni please feel free to add what you will with the proper sources. I have no doubt that Lendering is a respectable scholar but that article on his website was not what I would call academically written and therefore should not really be used as a source on Wikipedia. After all this is an Encyclopedia and only notable research should be used as evidence. Thanks! --Rayis 14:46, 20 January 2007 (UTC)
"However, it can also be argued that similar gestures to those recorded on the Cylinder were more or less usual for a conquering monarch in contemporary Babylon and the surrounding area. (etc.)
This is problematic because there are a lot of things that can be argued, but wikipedia is not a place for it.
I think a reference will fix this problem, and suggest two articles already mentioned above: Amelie Kuhrt "The Cyrus Cylinder and Achaemenid imperial policy" in Journal of Studies of the Old Testament 83-97., Bert van der Spek, "Did Cyrus the Great introduce a new policy towards subdued nations? Cyrus in Assyrian perspective" in Persica 273-285
Maybe this helps. I am currently suffering from a server crisis, but will soon put up a PDF of a part of the U.N. correspondence, kindly sent to me by a scholar from Chicago.Jona Lendering 15:00, 20 January 2007 (UTC)
Good job on the article so far. Although can you please again, explain this:

"By this argument, Cyrus may have been unusually generous, but the Cylinder cannot be regarded as a charter guaranteeing rights"

- Arguably, no charter of human rights will ever "guarantee" anything so I am not sure what this sentence is trying to imply here. --Rayis 13:30, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

Yes of course, call this a "Dutchism". What I meant is that it is to be seen as propaganda, not as a charter.Jona Lendering 18:38, 21 January 2007 (UTC)
Oh I understand now. That is actually a very valid point - and I will try to build on that when I get time. It is known that Cyrus wanted to be a popular ruler that is loved by the people rather than a strict ruler who scares the people in order to control them --Rayis 18:58, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

Wording

For criticism section, there needs to be a more clarified paragraph explaining Cyrus's policy that he wanted to make people like him (rather than the word propoganda), and also stop putting "it cannot be regarded as charter guaranteeing rights" or anything like that which doesn't make sense. --Rayis 21:21, 25 January 2007 (UTC)

Actually, it all seems almost fine on this article. Lets keep it short on the Cyrus' article. --Rayis 21:41, 25 January 2007 (UTC)

Rolling back rollbacks

Rayis had asked additional references to back up the statement that there are many parallels for the CC, which I inserted; I also polished the notes and reworked the propaganda bit, offering more context. I thought it was fine, but it was all removed and an incorrect summary was inserted. I have now rolled back that rollback. I propose that people who want to roll back large sections, as was done, will announce it first.Jona Lendering 14:42, 28 January 2007 (UTC)

Jona's edits

*Besides, Mary Boyce has made it clear in many publications that the Iranian religions of that age were not monotheistic,[4] which makes it impossible to state that Cyrus, although himself a monotheist, allowed his subjects to keep their own beliefs.

Because the Cyrus Cylinder can not be used to support the late Shah's opinion about Cyrus, at least one falsification has been made, probably before Fragment B was discovered. It can be found online and has been ‘elaborated’ with promises founding Cyrus’ right to reign on the acceptance of the people.[5]

-> Jona, this is all your original research and findings! what you conclude from evidence you choose to accept, is YOUR conclusion. There is no evidence that Mohammad Reza Shah was the first to call this a charter of human rights, and there is absolutely no reason for you to go all the way on to research to prove him wrong!. --Rayis 17:14, 28 January 2007 (UTC)

There's no need to use expressions like "nonsense". See your p.m. for reply.Jona Lendering 17:59, 28 January 2007 (UTC)

Monotheism?

Alright. Well, you can't use a book on Beliefs and practices of Zoroastrianism to make up a conclusion regarding whether Cyrus would or wouldn't be tolerant of other religions. Mary Boyce in her book does not conclude anywhere that "it is impossible to state that Cyrus, although himself a monotheist, allowed his subjects to keep their own beliefs." I think that is very much your personal conclusion. --Rayis 18:09, 28 January 2007 (UTC)
I am afraid there are two misunderstandings here. (a) I did not say that Cyrus was intolerant; I only said that one cannot deduce his tolerance from the CC. (b) Far more important -and I should have been more explicit about this- is that Mary Boyce uses an extremely rare definition of monotheism. Here it is, from Textual Sources for the Study of Zoroastrianism (1984, page 167): "belief in one eternal God, Creator of all lesser beneficient divinities", which she opposes to the later, pure monotheïst doctrine that we can todat encounter in Iran. In other words, Boyce's "monotheïsm of Cyrus" is in fact some sort of polytheism. (The technical term, which we must perhaps introduce, is henotheism.)
Note that Cyrus' younger contemporary Darius was a henotheist-polytheist: he calls Ahuramazda "greatest of the gods", plural (e.g., DH). Herodotus -for what he is worth- is quite explicit that the Persians were polytheists, sacrificing to "Zeus, the sun, the moon, fire, water, and the winds" (Hist. 1.131). I conclude that Cyrus was not a monotheist.Jona Lendering 21:53, 28 January 2007 (UTC)
Mary Boyce, in her "Zoroastrians: Their religious beliefs and practices" argues:
"Cyrus' actions were, moreover, those of a loyal Mazda-worshipper, in that he sought to govern his vast new empire justly and well, in accordance to Asha" pp55
(Mazda = Ahura Mazda, Asha refers to idea of cosmic balance in Zoroastrianism)
I have no idea where you are going with this, but I don't think this has anything to do with this article. --Rayis 22:36, 28 January 2007 (UTC)
The claim was made in the article that Cyrus tolerance for other religions is so special, because he is a monotheist. But he wasn't; he was a polytheist (or a henotheist), which would have made it easier for him to accept other religions.
"a loyal Mazda-worshipper" does not necessarily mean monotheist. Artaxerxes II was a loyal Mazda worshipper too, but he also dedicated inscriptions to Anahita and Mithra.
You bring up the subject of Zoroastrianism. I think this is, for the present article, unnecessary. If Cyrus, Darius, and Xerxes were Mazda-worshippers (which is a fact), they were not necessarily Zoroastrians. Cf. Catholics and Protestants, venerating the same Trinity, reading the same Scripture, focusing on the same Apostles etc, but they are still two religions. I am afraid that we do not enough about Iranian religion in the pre-Sasanian age to be more specific than the following things: (a) the rulers of the Achaemenid house venerated Ahuramazda; (b) they may have been Zoroastrians, but we can not be certain; (c) they were henotheists.
As far as I am concerned, we leave Zoroastrianism out, and opt for Cyrus as a henotheist, not a monotheist, which makes his tolerance less strange than is sometimes assumed.Jona Lendering 23:18, 28 January 2007 (UTC)
If I'm reading this right, both of you have the same issue, but you are each looking at it from a different angle. First, if I'm not mistaken, the offending sentence is: "He allowed his subjects to continue worshipping their gods, despite his own monotheist beliefs."
1. Now, if I'm reading Jona's comments right, his problem with the "monotheistic" clause are the semantics. To explain, I'm going to take out the adjective from the sentence so that it now reads: "He allowed his subjects to continue worshipping their gods, despite his own beliefs". Now, do you see the problem? What the sentence is now saying is that his own beliefs forbid his subjects from worshipping other gods. Of course, that is precisely the opposite of what Boyce is saying, which is that Cyrus' actions are in accord with Mazdaen belief. (whether Mazdaen belief is monotheistic or not is hardly an issue for an article on the CC).
2. Rayis' problem is also with "despite" but from another angle, and in the implication that just being of one persuation is an indication that one might be intolerant of another. But I think both Jona and Rayis are actually in agreement on this, both objecting (rightly so) to the idea that the CC exemplifies Cyrus' tolerance.
May I suggest that you nuke that problem sentence altogether? It doesn't add to the substance of the article, and IMO Cyrus' personal values and attitudes are not relevant to the CC. For all we know Cyrus could have been a mean, wife-beating SOB, but projected himself as a nice guy because it suited his policies. I'm not saying that he was that, I'm only saying that only his policies - not his personal values - may be inferred from the CC. That the article at this point cites a source that does not corroborate the statement makes it much, much worse.
-- Fullstop 15:51, 29 January 2007 (UTC)
ps: there is a high incidence of <refs> to CAIS, cfiwest.org and iranchamber.com in the "Charter of Human Rights" section, effectively tainting an otherwise good article.
I think you are right and that your proposal is a good one. I have sort of agreed with Rayis that he would revise the article, and I will leave it at this. As to your PS: the three sites you name are indeed based on pre-Schaudig stuff. In the past years, I have mentioned it to them, but they never replied. (CAIS has three times put photo's online, claiming copyright, which were in fact mine.)Jona Lendering 18:17, 29 January 2007 (UTC)

CAIS

There are loads of entries from IranChamber and Livius too. CAIS was part of SOAS (University of London), and it is considered as a scholarly based website. Most of the articles there are written by renowned archaeologists and historians. However, other two websites, IranChamber and Livius are both private-websites with no academic affiliations, and should be treated cautiously. Surena 08:20, 30 January 2007 (UTC)

(a) The CAIS has in the past claimed association to the SOAS. CAIS also used my, copyrighted, stuff. When I demanded that the CAIS mentioned my name, and received no answer, I wrote to the SOAS, which was very upset, because to the best of their knowledge, there was no affiliation whatsoever. The CAIS has later changed the reference on its website.
(b) A private website is not necessarily a bad website. Universities can not give away their articles for free (see the lack of access to JSTOR), which Livius can. I can assure you that I have my its academic credentials, and if I do not call myself "doctorandus" or "professor", that's because I think that arguments must be true regardless of one's title. The only kind of paperwork in which academicians should sign with titles, is a letter for Amnesty International.
(c) The issue is, essentially, not about ownership, but about quality, and that means: do you quote the latest insights? Or to make it even simpler, is the work by Pierre Briant used?Jona Lendering 15:17, 30 January 2007 (UTC
I really don't known about your history with CAIS or SOAS. However, only thing that I known for fact, when I was student as SOAS, for over two years I was attending (as a student) CAIS (dash) soas.com/CAIS/Seminars.htm weekly workshops, which was held at the department of Archaeology. However, I'm not accusing you of anything, but it is quite surprising that SOAS denied of their knoledge or affiliation with CAIS! Surena 16:30, 30 January 2007 (UTC)
PS - PS. I just done a [(dash) soas.com%3BL%3Ahttp%3A%2F%2Fwww.cais (dash) soas.com%2FCAIS%2Fimages%2Fcais1.gif%3BLH%3A10%3BLW%3A10%3BLC%3A%230000ff%3BVLC%3A%23800080%3BALC%3A%23ff0000%3BGALT%3A%23a52a2a%3BGFNT%3A%230000ff%3BGIMP%3A%23ff0000%3B&domains=www.cais (dash) soas.com&q=Jona+Lendering+&btnG=Search&sitesearch=www.cais (dash) soas.com search] on CAIS website, and contrary to your claim, they have acknowledged your website as well as your name as the source of number of images in their website. [(dash) soas.com/CAIS/virtual_museum/sasanian/Sites/bishapur.htm 1], [(dash) soas.com/CAIS/Languages/aryan/aryan_alphabet_p3.htm 2], [(dash) soas.com/CAIS/Archaeology/Hakhamaneshian/Pasargadae.htm 3], [(dash) soas.com/CAIS/Archaeology/Hakhamaneshian/dascylium.htm 4], [(dash) soas.com/CAIS/Architecture/sasanian_palaces_islam.htm 5]. Surena 17:45, 30 January 2007 (UTC)
That's after I forced them to admit that they had no longer an affiliation to the SOAS. And as to stealing photos, look at (dash) soas.com/CAIS/Languages/aryan/inscription_of_darius_grt.htm this one and the statement of the bottom of the page. And now look at this photo, which we made about a year and a half ago. This is some sort of "implicit" plagiaranism: the (c) of course only relates to the text, but SOAS-members have also put photos I made online saying "(c) [Name]".Jona Lendering 00:31, 31 January 2007 (UTC)
Comment:' Jona, isn’t strange that CAIS acknowledges you as the source of number of images in their website, and deny you “only one” picture?! As you known these days, images and data are floating around Internet, to the point that no one knowns the original source; have you ever considered it may be the case? It maybe obtained from other sources than yours. I saw Karl von Ribbentrop of CAIS few days ago at Sasanian Conference at SOAS, and if I knew about this, I would have asked him. Anyhow, I have already sent him an email mentioned your claim, and I think you should do the same. Surena 04:04, 31 January 2007 (UTC)
Surena: it is not "only picture", it is a series. CAIS has claimed affiliation to SOAS which it did not have, and much to the embarrasment of the SOAS. They put their references to my photos online only after they had been warned. I remember seeing one of my photos of the Susa statue of Darius in the Wikipedia, and someone related to the SOAS stating that he was the photographer and released his work to the public domain. Finally, if photos are floating around the internet, isn't it remarkable that they were quite capable of identifying me as the maker of several photos I have never complained about? They systematically infringe upon my copyright. I'm really easygoing about it - the other day, I uploaded several photos to the wiki, no problem. The only thing I ask is that people mention Livius. That's all. If someone else claims the photo is his, he is a thief, because no one can be as absentminded as to forget which photos he took himself.Jona Lendering 11:11, 31 January 2007 (UTC)
Jona I agree, and I do sympathise with you. You have every right to demand acknowledgement, but I was saying CAIS may have obtained the photos from somewhere else, rather than your site, and that is why they have not acknowledged you (that is my guess). Still I believe you should contact them and demand attribution. Surena 11:44, 31 January 2007 (UTC)

Conflict of Interest?

I understand your point, but there are three objections.
(a) If I see an article that is obviously plagiarized from my website (e.g. Ariobarzan), I think it is better to offer a link back to the original source than to remove the article altogether.
(b) Often, my articles are the latest on a subject. Take for instance Gaugamela, in which I have I have used the 2003 publication by R.J. van der Spek, and have shown that an "eastern perspective" is both necessary and possible. Or take the Persian Gates: my web site is the only one at the moment that takes Speck's publication into account. In my view, that is not self promoting, but promoting the latest insights. But whatever you call it, it is not self promotion in the sense as as the Wiki defines it, because it is not an advertisement, not a reference to a personal page, and serves no commercial interests (Livius Onderwijs is non-profit). I am just giving up-to-date knowledge away for free.
(c) Or take the discussion about the CC; the "human rights charter interpretation" is based on outdated books and, essentially, propaganda. Because I think that propaganda and outdated books are bad things in an encyclopedia, I wrote to Schaudig to ask permission to put his, recent, edition online; and because Rayis made the reasonable request for more evidence for the (among scholars perfectly common) view that the CC is not something revolutionary and that the Shah promoted this text as a Human rights charter, I put additional evidence online too, although the references to the articles by Kuhrt and Van der Spek were sufficient evidence. I can not help it that I have to refer to my own webpage, although I know that in April the British Museum will also put online "my" Schaudig.
If you know a better solution, just let me know.Jona Lendering 15:18, 30 January 2007 (UTC)
Well main problem here is that all of your Wiki-contributions are your own personal views/opinions, which are supported by your own website and articles! In fact, I was reading your article about Cyrus Cylinder, and that is not the way a neutral-historian writes. It seems you have something against Iranians, which all your angers and hatreds have been projected into that article. Surena 16:46, 30 January 2007 (UTC)
Exactly, I agree. This is why only academically and scholarly written articles should be used as reference in an article on a encyclopedia, especially in a dispute. Not an article written in such manner with such POV. It's bad enough as it is, and now that the scholars are coming on Wikipedia to push their POV on to the article and use their website as reference for it! In any case I have reported it on the Wikipedia:Administrators' noticeboard/Incidents feel free to comment there. --Rayis 17:03, 30 January 2007 (UTC)
(Personal attack removed) --194.145.161.226 17:33, 30 January 2007 (UTC)

Moved to Talk:Cyrus_cylinder/Uncivil_remarks_by_194.145.161.226 --Rayis 20:15, 11 February 2007 (UTC)

How come you sign your IP address, instead of your Username? Surena 18:15, 30 January 2007 (UTC)
It's an old habit. I almost never used to sign with my user name, even at the time when I contributed every day (God forbid that I relapse into that condition again). --194.145.161.226 19:03, 30 January 2007 (UTC)
For a tiny moment I though you might be Jona, impersonating himself and using himself as reference! Anyhow, with regard to Jona’s preconceived-notion, as you put it "emotional”, Wikipedia has different name for it; -- It is called WP:AWW. Surena 19:31, 30 January 2007 (UTC)

Since the problem is with Livius, I don't see any reason to remove this:

"However, it can also be argued that similar gestures to those recorded on the Cylinder were made by some conquering monarchs in contemporary Babylon and the surrounding area. According to this argument, "the Cyrus Cylinder is a normal building inscription within the Assyrian-Babylonian tradition, and can certainly not be regarded as some declaration of human rights"[6]."

Note 6: "A. Kuhrt "The Cyrus Cylinder and Achaemenid imperial policy" in Journal of Studies of the Old Testament 25 pp. 83-97, B. van der Spek, "Did Cyrus the Great introduce a new policy towards subdued nations? Cyrus in Assyrian perspective" in Persica 10 pp. 273-285, M. Dandamaev A Political History of the Achaemenid Empire, pp. 52-53. The quotation is from Dandamaev."

Well, I put it here to prevent war editions. I believe it is not POV because it is balanced with the previous part (Frye, the UN, etc). So if you agree, just add it to the article.--Amizzoni 00:07, 31 January 2007 (UTC)

Comment: Amélie Kuhrt of UCL (University College London) and her works are quite well known among the scholars and historians. She is anything but neutral; She has already lost her credibility and considered a biass person. Last year, she claimed that Cyrus was an not an Iranian at all! However, Muhammad Dandamev, is a different matter; - His views and works have always been considered as neutral sources. Nevertheless, we have to approach that issue from consensus view rather than pick one or two, to suit and serve our views (biasness). Surena 03:16, 31 January 2007 (UTC)
NPOV doesn't mean that we must use sources we consider neutral, it means that we must write about all the opposing opinions with neutrality, even if we think they are biased or foolish. And we must cite our sources. In the case of Kuhrt: we can cite an article that states Kuhrt's "The Cyrus Cylinder and Achaemenid imperial policy" is biased, but Kuhrt's assessments must stay -the reader will judge. So if you find an article or a book criticizing Kuhrt's view, so please add it. Concerning Dandamaev: Yes, a quotation can be used "to suit and serve our views". For example: suppose that Dandamaev wrote "[CB Walker, Kuhrt and van der Spek says that] the Cyrus Cylinder is a normal building inscription within the Assyrian-Babylonian tradition, and can certainly not be regarded as some declaration of human rights[, but I do not agree with them]", then I pick up "the Cyrus Cylinder is a normal building inscription within the Assyrian-Babylonian tradition, and can certainly not be regarded as some declaration of human rights", and voila! But it is not the case. The whole sentence says "CBF Walker correctly remarked that the Cyrus Cylinder is a normal building inscription within the Assyrian-Babylonian tradition, and can certainly not be regarded as some declaration of human rights (Walker 1972:159; see also Kuhrt 1983; Van der Spek 1982)." It is very explicit that Dandamaev does not think the Cyrus Cylinder is a declaration of human rights.--Amizzoni 06:08, 31 January 2007 (UTC)
Comment: Sure. I have no objection with what you are implying here. My point is that we cannot reject the idea, on the bases of Kuhrt’s or Kuhrts-alike views. We have to hear both side of the stories, and then decide which school of though we wish to subscribe to. I personally believe Kuhrts-alike views with citations should be mentioned in the article, but in a scholarly manner. i.e. NO WP:AWW. PS. I personally, do not consider Kuhrt as a scholar, just because she lectures at UCL. With regard to your strong statement as: It is very explicit that Dandamaev does not think the Cyrus Cylinder is a declaration of human rights”, you must have a source that I’m not aware of! Both Dandamaev’s articles reading Cyrus are rejecting your statement [(dash) soas.com/CAIS/History/hakhamaneshian/Cyrus-the-great/Cyrus/cyrus_II.htm 1], [(dash) soas.com/CAIS/History/hakhamaneshian/Cyrus-the-great/Cyrus/cyrus_cylinder1.htm 2]. Surena 07:11, 31 January 2007 (UTC)
This articles are originally from the Encyclopedia Iranica as far as I know [3]. In fact, they don't contradict A Political History...--Amizzoni 20:47, 31 January 2007 (UTC)
That's fine with me. It would be even better if those who claim that the CC is a human rights charter start quoting scholarly articles published in, say, the twenty-first century.Jona Lendering 00:39, 31 January 2007 (UTC)
Comment:' No body has claimed that the cylinder is a definite "Charter of Human Rights"; It is Considered to be one! However, you claim to be a historian, and as historian you should know better that you have to examine the evidence in a cultural and historical contexts, with cross-examinations form other sources. Cyrus Cylinder is being considered as charter of human rights in its' primitive form, not because he (Cyrus) himself said so (or as you mentioed Shah propagated in 70s), but because of the historical evidences to support his claim; evidently through number of sources; Jewish and Greek accounts, as well as cultural contexts, geopolitical formation of the ancient World. Nobody has claimed that the Achaemenid were god-sent angels (contrary to other nations' claim to be the chosen people!). Of course to manage a vast empire, you have to be brutal, but in general Achaemenids’ tolerance in ancient world was well known, to the point that even their Greek enemies, had testified and praised them. Imagine “Hitler” write an eulogy about himself, and not only twenty-five, but two hundred and fifty century later, still he cannot portray himself as “the Anointed of the God”, since his actions contradict his claim. However, Cyrus could back his claim,-- as mentioned through textual sources, as well as the Achaemenid Arts; evidently from Persepolis reliefs, which is showing harmony and peace.Surena 03:46, 31 January 2007 (UTC)
The Persepolis reliefs were made by Darius, not Cyrus. But I agree that Cyrus was a nice exception in the history of the Near East. However, the issue is whether the CC can be used as evidence for this claim, and that is not the case. The text is stereotypical. We must look for other evidence. I propose to start anew, see next topic.Jona Lendering 11:02, 31 January 2007 (UTC)
Waoo, I didn't know the Persepolis was built by Darius the Great – until now I though it was built by Russians :). Anyhow, I used Persepolis reliefs as example to portray the empire’s tolerance towards its subject-nations, which was based on Cyrus’ doctrine. Also, I have received communication form CAIS, and the picture of Darius statue at Susa that you claim is yours, in fact was taken by Iran’s Archaeological Research Centre in 1972. Also, they are saying that you never contacted them regarding any images, and whatever images that they have copied from your website, the attributions were made, according to your copyright policy. However, Karl Ribbentrop asked me that you should check their website and if you see any images were taken from your website, and the appropriate attributions were not made, they either can delete them or acknowledge you as the source. Surena 22:09, 31 January 2007 (UTC)

<>Does it really need its own article, its made the whole thing look a bit messy now, cant you just talk about the conflict of opinion in the main article.

Finding common ground

Okay, attempt to create something meaningful, in line with decent scholarship, and on which we can all agree.

(a) The latest textbook, which must be our main source of reference, and about which we can all agree, is Pierre Briant's brick, isn't it? (I mean, of course, Histoire de l' Empire Perse, 1995; English translation 2002). I know Briant is not perfect, but his book is simply the best summary there is.

(b) The latest meaningful publications are Kuhrt and R.J. van der Spek, we can all agree about that. So far, I have seen nobody claim anything that is more recent.

(c) The only valid text edition is Schaudig 2002.

I think this can be our common ground, and no one will challenge this. I propose to write an article that only refers to these articles, and not to older stuff (Dandamaev, Frye, etc.). If anyone disagrees, let him/her post articles, written after Briant's well-accepted synthesis, and explain why this particular article is important as an addition to Briant.Jona Lendering 10:59, 31 January 2007 (UTC)

Of course not. I for one disagree -- Forget about Kuhrt; Kuhrt is far from scholar, and van der Spek although is a good scholar, but his a classist; However, Pierre Briant is a great scholar, expert in Achaemenid civilisation, and I personally have deepest respect for him; but relying on one or two scholars is not enough. Even Briant is relying on his predecessors’ research. Surena 11:35, 31 January 2007 (UTC)
But at least Briant and Van der Spek (a historian and expert in cuneiform, not a classicist) are a start. Perhaps you are a bit too severe on Kuhrt, because I think her idea belongs to the "wild thinking" that is necessary to break through our Greek sources (cf. Sancisi's "Let's assume that the Median Empire never existed"). But leaving Kuhrt aside, and accepting only references to Briant and Van der Spek, we have a pretty strong basis that is arguably mainstream. Does anyone know post-1995 articles that need to be included too?Jona Lendering 12:03, 31 January 2007 (UTC)
Van der Spek works are mainly focused on Hellenism and Babylonian studies, and was educated as a Classist. However, they’re many great scholars, such as D. Stronach, J. Wisehöfer, J. Boardman, H. M. Koch, as well as Encyclopeida Iranica entires, that we can use for this article. Surena 13:44, 31 January 2007 (UTC)
PS. Another great scholar is “Albert de Jong”, and though he is linguist and specialised in Zoroastrian studies, but he is considered to be an authority in this field. I think he is the greatest Iranist that Holland has ever produced. Surena 16:01, 31 January 2007 (UTC)
Don't let Van der Spek read this ;-) He's so proud that he's not a classicist (although he of course learned Greek and Latin, which is inevitable). And believe me I know this, because he used to be my boss when I worked at the Amsterdam Free University...
Meanwhile, how to proceed? I propose one of us must write a simple draft, put it online at the discussion page, and ask for comments. I had the impression that Rayis would write something. Another volunteer?Jona Lendering 14:20, 31 January 2007 (UTC)
Jona. We don’t need to start another article. We can bring the current article to a respectable and neutral status, with no POV pushing. However, I know that you subscribe to the notion, that the purpose of “Cyrus Cylinder” was propaganda – and although I don’t share your view, but I do respect it. However, we can have an entry and call it “Conflicting Views” or "Disputing Views" (or whatever that is not bias), and use the published works of the real scholars, who have no personal or political interests in this matter, to convey the notion that you and others like you subscribe to. In this way, we do not offend Iranians, as they consider Cyrus Cylinder as the Holy Grail; everybody would be happy and the article won’t be vandalised again– Also most importantly the readers can draw their own conclusions -- Of course subject to everyone’s consensus. Surena 15:41, 31 January 2007 (UTC)
Surena: We're absolutely in agreement about this; I had more or less the same idea of inserting a 'conflicting views' section.Jona Lendering 01:50, 1 February 2007 (UTC)

"In any event, the clemency Herodotus ascribed to Cyrus the Great, the aptitudes Xenophon saw in him, his mission according to the Old Testament and his piety as described in the Babylon inscription - all combine in the eyes of many observers to form a harmonious character study of the first Persian king, the historian Joseph Wisehöfer wrote about Cyrus in 1996". Surena, I'm afraid you have to cite passages that explicitly refer to the Cyrus Cylinder. It belongs to Cyrus the Great article, not to here. Where Wisehöfer talks about the Cyrus Cylinder (pp. 44, 49, 87), he calls it "an Achaemenid propaganda document intended to legitimize Cyrus's rule over Babylonia" (p. 87).--Amizzoni 02:25, 1 February 2007 (UTC)

So before adding something to the article, I suggest to put it here for discussion. --Amizzoni 02:26, 1 February 2007 (UTC)

POV

Are there still controversial remarks on the article or can we start removing the tags? --Rayis 20:17, 11 February 2007 (UTC)

Oh, yes, of course there are. I have written a new draft for the section "The Cylinder as a Charter of Human Rights", tell me what do you think:

"The Cyrus Cylinder has been described as the world’s first charter of human rights,[7] and it was translated into all official U.N. languages in 1971.[8][9] A replica of the cylinder is kept at the United Nations Headquarters in New York City in the second floor hallway, between the Security Council and the Economic and Social Council chambers.[10]

Passages in the text have been interpreted as expressing Cyrus’ respect for humanity. It promotes a form of religious tolerance and freedom.[11] He allowed his subjects to continue worshipping their gods, despite his own monotheist beliefs.[12] Cyrus' generous policies, support for local religions and stated opposition to repression and tyranny did win him support from his subjects.[13]

However, it can also be argued that the cylinder is a stereotypical bulding inscription within the Assyrian-Babylonian tradition. By this argument, it can not be considered a declaration of human rights, but a piece of propaganda[14]. Of course, it does not mean that the Persians imposed a tyrannical rule oven their new subjects; in fact, they are widely regarded as more tolerant than their predesessors Baylonians and Assyrians.

As Joseph Wisehöfer wrote about Cyrus in 1996[15]:

In any event, the clemency Herodotus ascribed to Cyrus the Great, the aptitudes Xenophon saw in him, his mission according to the Old Testament and his piety as described in the Babylon inscription - all combine in the eyes of many observers to form a harmonious character study of the first Persian king.

"

And R.N. Frye in 1963[16]:

In the victories of the Persians… what was different was the new policy of reconciliation and together with this was the prime aim of Cyrus to establish a pax Achaemenica… If one were to assess the achievements of the Achaemenid Persians, surely the concept of One World,… the fusion of peoples and cultures in one ‘Oecumen’ was one of their important legacies.

At least one translation of the Cyrus Cylinder has been elaborated with more promises and can still be found in many websites.[17]. It can be recognized for the mention of Ahura Mazda and for frases such as: "I will impose my monarchy on no nation. Each is free to accept it, and if any one of them rejects it, I shall never resolve on war to reign."

For the content of the notes, see the source (click on edit). Feel free to post any comment.--Amizzoni 22:46, 11 February 2007 (UTC)

PS: In "in fact, they are widely regarded as more tolerant than their predesessors Baylonians and Assyrians" we can add a reference to the article from the British Museum webpage.--Amizzoni 02:22, 13 February 2007 (UTC)


Edits by Amizzoni

Please discuss any major edits here prior to adding to the article. Kurt and Livius are not considered as neutral sources. Kurt is well known for her hatred towards Iranians, and Livius is a product of one or two individuals (sorry Jona), which contains their personal opinions (more like a Weblog) than a neutral and scholarly based website, to be used as a reliable source here. Also as discussed before, we can add a new section to the article such as “conflicting views”, in a respectable manner, which is free from any WP:AWW words, (i.e. “political motives” rather than “propaganda”) or POV pushing to accommodate the notion that you, Jona and alike are subscribing to, without insulting a nation's identity!← ← Parthian Shot (Talk) 06:02, 23 February 2007 (UTC)

PS. I've reinstalled "{{totaldispute}" tag, to prevent any edit war - However, other tag "{{OR}" is no longer required here, since all the data are supported by generally reliable and checkable citations. ← ← Parthian Shot (Talk) 06:39, 23 February 2007 (UTC)

The same old problem

I made major edits because the discussion seemed to be death, and because removing sourced material is vandalism. I agree with you concerning the tags, but I'm affraidd I disagree about almost all. We have to say "Kuht say ...., but .... considers her not neutral". Do you have any source that considers Kuht not neutral? Please add it, but Kuht must stay. This is what NPOV means, to show all the conflicting views. And until you find any source that considers Kuht not neutral, Kuhrt must stay. Note that Dandamaev (in A Political History and his Iranica articles) and Weisehofer cite her article on the Cylinder, and both express nothing but agreement. About the word "propaganda", it is used by Weisehofer, so it must stay. But if you have a source that states "I consider that the use of words such as 'propaganda' to describe the Cyrus Cylinder is a way to insult the national identity of Iran", please, add it, but that Weisehofer uses the word "propaganda" must stay. As you say, conflicting views, but why in a new section, since all the conflicting views are about the subject of human rights? About Livius: it is not in the level of a blog, not at all. Livius is indexed in Abzu, the list Ancient Near East online resources of the University of Chicago. Moreover, it is the only source that says that there are elaborated "translations" of the cylinder -something that we all who have read any scholarly edition of the cylinder know, let agree in this point.

To sum up:

  1. I believe that Kuhrt is an scholarly source, so there is no doubt that her statements must stay. You disagree.
  2. I believe that the words -like "propaganda"- that our -scholarly- sources use must stay. You disagree.
  3. I believe that Livius is neither a scholarly journal nor a blog-level site, but we can consider it as a serious source, as is done all over Wikipedia. You disagree.

Too much disagreement, so I suggest calling a mediator. --Amizzoni 19:03, 23 February 2007 (UTC)

Amizzoni - the discussion may not be active, but it is very much alive. As suggested above you can open an entry and calling it Dispute/Conflicting view or whatever name you want, as long as is NPOV and no WP:AWW to convey the notion that you are subscribed to - same as the section of "Holocaust denial" in the Holocaust article, since the Cylinder's significance for Iranians is as the Holocaust issue for the Jews. With regard to the translation of the Cylinder that is not of Jona, and Livius is not the only blog that has used the translation - you can find it all over the Internet; also Livius it is all over Wikipedia, since Jona has placed it everywhere to promote his own persoanl website (check his contributions!) – Finally you want to call a mediator, by all mean, please do so, I welcome the suggestion. In the meanwhile I open an entry under the “Conflicting Views”, and you may use your Kuhrt and Kuhrt-alike argues, there as long as is no WP:AWW, and accordance with Wikepedia WP:MOS policy. ← ← Parthian Shot (Talk) 02:03, 24 February 2007 (UTC)
PS. I have created an entry (Conflicting views), and transferred the relevant data to that section, of course with the tag to end this edit war. ← ← Parthian Shot (Talk) 02:33, 24 February 2007 (UTC)
"Weasel words are words or phrases that seemingly support statements without attributing opinions to verifiable sources, lending them the force of authority without letting the reader decide whether the source of the opinion is reliable." There are no weasel words in the prhase you removed, since it had its comprehensive footnote with all the scholars who support it. With regard to Livius, you misunderstood what I tried to say. Livius is important because is the only source, as far as I know, that states that there are online fake translations of the Cyrus Cylinder. But, well, let stop the discussion here, at least until a mediation started.Amizzoni 02:42, 24 February 2007 (UTC)

I think we are closer to a solution than I believed. There just a couple things I want to point out:

  1. The conflicting views section should be merged into the human rights section, since the conflicting views are about the human rights. I mean something like this: Section: ==The Cylinder and Human Rights==. Subsection 1: ===The Cylinder as a Charter of Human Rights=== (the present "The Cylinder as a Charter of Human Rights" section]. Subsection 2: ===Denial of the relation of the Cylinder with Human Rights=== (all Kuhrt and Kuhrt-like arguments).
  2. You have to allow me to write a conprehensive abstract of all Kuhrt and Kuhrt-like arguments, always stating that they are the author's opinion (I mean, "Kuhrt argues that ...").
  3. I'd be very pleased, believe me, if you wrote a third sub-section on the response to Kuhrt-like's arguments (for instance, that words like "propaganda" are considered offensive by Iranians).

If the sections were reorganized as I show it in point 1, I believe would be able to remove the NPOV tags. It is not the solution of all our problems (for instance, it ramains the usage of Livius as a source, and one or two minor points), but I think we are in the good way and we don't need any mediation.--Amizzoni 03:44, 24 February 2007 (UTC)

Hi. I do strongly object to the merger that you have proposed. Here we want to convey both sides of the argument, without confusing or deceiving the readers. By having two distinctively separate sections for the each school of thought, then the reader(s) can draw his/her own conclusion. We may not live a democratic world, but let's practise it here.
Also, since we have "Cyrus cylinder#Conflicting Views" section, I as "one of the editors" have no objection of using a comprehensive abstract of all Kuhrt and Kuhrt-like arguments. This would allow both parties to contribute/edit their relevant sections, which are supported, by reputable sources.← ← Parthian Shot (Talk) 06:51, 25 February 2007 (UTC)
OK, you're right. Neither do I want to confuse or deceive the reader. I've just moved the conflicting views section above the biblical one, so if you agree feel free to remove the POV tags.--Amizzoni 20:20, 25 February 2007 (UTC)
Great - it seems we getting somewhere. So I take the liberty to remove them. ← ← Parthian Shot (Talk) 04:52, 26 February 2007 (UTC)

___________________________________

I am concerned over the tone of this article and the fact that the 'conflicting views' section only gets 2 sentences while the 'pro-human rights charter' section has a quote from a scholar written 45 years ago (and pre-Acheamenid History Workshop days). I am also concerned with this passage: "Cyrus' generous policies, support for local religions and stated opposition to repression and tyranny did win him support from his subjects." The Darius Behistun inscription clearly identifies 2 revolts in Babylon in which the name of Nabonidus was invoked as a 'call to arms' - not only does this cast doubt on the whole Nabonidus the Tyrant issue that the Cylinder expounds, but it also makes this statement false (at least for Babylon). Again, this is all related to the general tone of this article and I think a much more 'measured' approach is better for a contested topic (and a topic that will probably remain contested for the foreseeable future).

I agree with you, and I see only one solution: we have to expand the "conflicting views" section. In fact I promised to do it, but I haven't had the time. So if you can do it I'd feel be pleased. About the Richard Frye quote, I really have no problem, we only have to balance him with with post-AHW scholars in the "conflicting views" section. I believe we should write more about what scholars as Frye or the Commemoration Cyrus contributors used to say in the 60's and 70's, of course stating that their view is not much followed nowadays. New doesn't mean right, so I think it is important in an encyclopedia article to show some old ideas -even more in Wikipedia, where we don't have any limit in the article's extension. Amizzoni 17:55, 19 April 2007 (UTC)
Dear 82.7.60.108 - As Amizzoni suggested you can expand the section as long as the entries are supported by checkable/reputable references. However, if you are planning a major edit, please discuss them in advance in order to prevent any possible edit war. Thanks. ← ← Parthian Shot (Talk) 08:17, 24 April 2007 (UTC)


IN URGENT NEED OF CORRECTIONS

As the wiki entry stands it does the very thing you profess you aim to avoid. It deceives the reader by presenting the Cylinder as the de facto first Human Rights Charter while only acknowledges some conflicting views in a passage resembling a footnote. Since the characterization of the Cylinder as a ‘Human Rights Charter’ only reflects one view of the debate, the layout of the entry should be such as to eliminate any possible bias that could arise from its presentation. In my view the main section of the entry should be entitled “The debate surrounding the Cylinder” or similar, under which all views should be presented thoroughly. The section presenting the characteristic passages according to you, is loaded with bias as they are taken completely out of context. And the context of those passages is of the outmost importance in judging the exact nature of the inscription. In addition, you create the impression that the only significant passages are those that revolve around the debate and by that the wider historical significance of the Cylinder is undermined. The ‘Biblical Significance’ section along with its title, to someone aware of the debate seems to reinforce that perceived bias. ‘Biblical References’ should be more appropriate. At its present state the entry cannot be considered credible. Under the title ‘The Cylinder as a Charter of Human Rights’ you state that the cylinder has been described as such and for the purpose of verification you provide a link that is itself biased. In it we learn that “The cylinder describes the Great King not as a conqueror, but as a liberator and the legitimate successor to the crown of Mesopotamia” as if the Cylinder is an objective source expressing the view of an objective judge whereas in reality it expresses the view, Cyrus himself –rightly or wrongly- wanted his people to have of him. The unchecked manifestations of admiration towards the Cylinder from your part, that are spread throughout the entry, only serve to discredit the presentation of the inscription. They alienate those who disagree with you, and deceive the rest.


62.30.182.16 01:26, 23 May 2007 (UTC)

The official site of the british museum disagrees with your assertion regarding the cylinder being the first bill of human rights.

http://www.thebritishmuseum.ac.uk/explore/highlights/highlight_objects/me/c/cyrus_cylinder.aspx

"This cylinder has sometimes been described as the 'first charter of human rights', but it in fact reflects a long tradition in Mesopotamia where, from as early as the third millennium BC, kings began their reigns with declarations of reforms"

So why do you keep insisting on this crap? There is a lot of sick persian nationalism in this article.

Whether the cylinder is the first bill of rights or not makes no difference to Persian nationalism as the country was still the worlds first democracy as we know it.
:I've made some edits to hopefully make the article more nuetral. I would like to edit religious significance and expand the history section later when i get time. I also want to reword where it says Cyrus was a monotheist as that claim is rediculous. The cylinder itself says that Cyrus asks all the restored Gods to pray for his long life and he calls Marduk the Lord of the Gods which is definately plural. I tried another edit (whole page) but got an error telling me there is a blacklisted link. I never added another link so it must be an existing so that needs tracking down (I don't have the time atm). I'm no good at boxes so can someone add the entire translation? I think it is needed and this layout and translation looks ok. Wayne 15:57, 24 May 2007 (UTC)

Please discuss prior to any major edits

Please discuss prior to any major edits as agreed before (see above), to prevent any possible edit wars. There is a section that is named "Conflicting Views" to accommodate the sceptics – of course must be accompanied by references, rather than “here say” which is POV! Also please do not remove the entries that are supported by citations. Xodd 16:55, 25 May 2007 (UTC)

Please read what the "major" edits were before reverting.
  • I did not remove an entry supported by citations.....I moved it to another section and added a second new citation.
  • The Fry quote I deleted due to his statement being opinion in it's entirety. He may have believed it but the archaelogical evidence is the opposite so, if included it should be in the Conflicting Views section however I don't feel it has a place at all.
  • I added nothing new apart from references. I moved a paragraph, deleted an inappropriate quote and I reworded a little to improve the grammar and flow.
  • "Conflicting views" should be for sceptics or controversial opinions and there were no such entries in it which was why I moved the single view that was there to the body and deleted the now empty section . What was originally there is established scientific fact that made the article more POV by being left there.
If you have a problem with what was basically a cosmetic edit we can discuss it. If no objections I will rv back in a day or so. Wayne 01:03, 26 May 2007 (UTC)
Obviously you disagree with the concept of the cylinder as the charter of human rights - that is fine – I do respect your opinion and others alike. However, to create a balance in the article the "Conflicting Views" has been created. So why don't you add your inputs in that section which are backed it with citations - rather than deleting Frye’s quote? In this manner we let the readers to draw their own conclusions. Thanks. Xodd 09:53, 26 May 2007 (UTC)
I have no "opinion". I make use of facts. The Cylinder is still a charter of human rights that has great historical significance and I edited nothing to change that view. Until recent years it was popularly believed to be the first but now it is known to be just the most complete and most comprehensive from that early. That doesn't deminish it's importance or invalidate what it has been used for. Do we leave the view supported by the evidence in the conflicting views section as it is now or do we put the unsupported popular view there? Either can be seen as POV. Conflicting views is not really required. There is the popular view and the archaelogical view and both can be accomodated in the same section without conflict. In fact the popular view comprises most of artical even with the supported view expanded and this should satify everyone.
Let's look at Fry's quote. "what was different was the new policy of reconciliation and together with this was the prime aim of Cyrus to establish a pax Achaemenica… If one were to assess the achievements of the Achaemenid Persians, surely the concept of One World,… the fusion of peoples and cultures in one ‘Oecumen’ was one of their important legacies". It was not new. The Egyptians had been doing the exact same thing a thousand years earlier and it appears the practice was continued without break all the way to Cyrus's time so he had precedent for his actions. The fusion of peoples was a standard practice to create buffer states and would have been a legacy if it had been continued after the fall of the Empire but it was completely ignored until modern times as we were teaching in schools the legacy of the Greek form of democracy not the Persian which was in fact closer to our modern democracy than the Greek. In fact even today Cyrus's empire is still refered to as the bad guy in Mediteranean history. Just look at how this empire, still following Cyrus's reforms, was portrayed in the movie "300". Fry's quote is rhetoric not supported by the evidence and therefore should not be needed. Wayne 13:48, 26 May 2007 (UTC)

Wayne, what you say is that if you disagree with Frye then you can feel free to erase it. Instead, it's better to add a new reference that contradicted Frye's one. In any case, now I don't see what's the point of Frye's quote: it doesn't even mention the Cyrus Cylinder. I'd say the same for the last two paragraphs. I prefer to have all views in the same section, too, since all of them are about "The Cylinder as a Charter of Human Rights". So I've made a new daft, tell me what you think:

"The Cyrus Cylinder has been described as the world’s first charter of human rights,[18][19] and it was translated into all official U.N. languages in 1971.[20] A replica of the cylinder is kept at the United Nations Headquarters in New York City in the second floor hallway, between the Security Council and the Economic and Social Council chambers.[21]

Passages in the text have been interpreted as expressing Cyrus’ respect for humanity, and as promoting a form of religious tolerance and freedom.[22] By this argument, Cyrus' generous policies, support for local religions and stated opposition to repression and tyranny did win him support from his subjects.[23]

However, there are many scholars who disagree with the concept of Cylinder as a Charter of Human Rights, and have argued that such a concept is alien to the historical context -they prefer to describe it as a building inscription or a propaganda document instead-, and that similar gestures to those recorded on the Cylinder were made by some conquering monarchs in ancient Babylon and the surrounding area.[24]"

It is more or less my idea of how the section should be, at least until it were expanded.Amizzoni 16:56, 26 May 2007 (UTC)

All credit to your version but i feel my reverted section is a better compromise. Mine was short (a single sentence), had two reliable references and was unambiguous. The cylinder may have been, and probably was largely, a propaganda document but that is irrelevant. You only need to look at practices in any country you care to name today where a good law is often passed before an election and then advertised as propaganda to get votes.
I agree that there is no point in including Fry's quote. What is says is already mentioned in the very first sentence only better in light of what we know now.
Now what do we do about the incorrect claim Cyrus was a monotheist? I still think some mention is needed of his religious tolerance. Sort that out and I think the section would look reasonable. Wayne 02:23, 27 May 2007 (UTC)
Of interest is that I looked for foundation texts earlier than Cyrus's and found the translation of Nabonidus's own cylinder. It is basically the same as Cyrus's except that he said he rebuilt the temples of the other Gods in Babylon and placed their statues there (because it was what they wanted). This indicates not only that religious freedom already existed but that the temples were in good repair when Cyrus took over so if Cyrus wanted to look better (in religious matters) than Nabonidus he had no choice but to relocate the Gods and their temples away from Babylon. OR on my part so i'm not asking for inclusion but interesting to know. Wayne 02:51, 27 May 2007 (UTC)

I believe that the important thing is to state clearly that most scholars nowadays reject the view of the Cyrus Cylinder as related in any way to humans rights (something that is absent in your version). But you're right, it was quite ambiguous and perhaps the concept of propaganda should be discussed in another place. So here is another version of the last paragraph:

However, there are many scholars who disagree with the concept of Cylinder as a Charter of Human Rights, and have argued that such a concept is alien to the historical context. They also point out that Mesopotamia has a long tradition dating back to the third millennium BC of Kings making similar declarations when beginning their reigns and thus Cyrus' own declaration was neither unique nor the first.[25][26]"

As for the religious tolerance, I think the Schaff-Herzog Encyclopedia reference is OK for now, but of course much remains to be written. I don't remember any reputable source calling Cyrus' a monotheist, and the British Museum reference that the article gives now is empty (at least in my PC): "He allowed his subjects to continue worshipping their gods, despite his own monotheist beliefs.[27]". About the Nabonidus Cylinder, it's an interesting piece and relevant to the article. I remember that there were drawn parallels with Assyrian royal inscriptions too. So I repeat, much remains to be written. Amizzoni 03:56, 27 May 2007 (UTC)

That looks ok. We could even add a reference for the Nabonidus translation after the words "similar declarations" for comparison.
I think we also need to work out what translation to use. The one in the content section is a now rejected translation and although similar to the one the UN used, it is different so shouldn't be in that section as confirmation for the UN. We should also have a box at the end of the article with both the original text and translation. A problem I've found is that universities have no consensus on which translation to use and some even use the discredited Ahura one. The Livius translation looks to be the most widespread and I would choose this site over others with the same translation as it also has the benifit of having a page on how to read Babylonian texts. Wayne 05:37, 27 May 2007 (UTC)
When you say the "Ahura one", do you refer to the "translation" that mentions Ahura Mazda [4]? In fact it is not a translation, the last parts were entirely made up -and none university use it [5]. The quote from Wiesehöfer's book is originally from Oppenheim's translation, published in James B. Pritchard Ancient Near Eastern Texts Relating to the Old Testament in the '50s. It's quite old, but updates are quite new, and some universities still use it. So we may replace Wiesehöfer's quote with something from Schaudig's translation (I mean, the adaptation of it at Livius.org [6]). There are two problems with posting the whole translation and translitaration: 1- It belong to Wikisource, and 2- except Rogers 1912 (too old!), they are copyrighted. Amizzoni 18:38, 27 May 2007 (UTC)

I did find one university that referenced the Ahura Mazda version. The Rogers is old and I tried to find recent translations but they all were much like Rogers/Schaudig with differences that were insignificant and mostly only available in books and not online. My OR is that perhaps the Weisehofer is probably biased to the Human Rights concept for (possibly political) or POV purposes. I don't think it's fraudulant as it's just the choice of POV words used so I'm not claiming that.
I think that section is ok for now as a base to work from for possible future edits.

What are thoughts on moving "The characteristic passages of this (earlier popular translation of the) Cyrus inscription are: xxxxxx" to the end of the UN part of the Human Rights section? Of course we can edit it down to the relevant sentences used by the UN to shorten it considerably. Then possibly adding the same more current? translation passages for comparison at the end of the alternate view? That puts both versions in for readers to check themselves.

Now comes the tough one. "Biblical Significance". It's not too bad but there is repetition that needs fixing and I think a bit on the view that possibly the prophesies were written by several people over a long period of time is needed, including mention of the relevant verses being possibly written after the events they "predicted". The WP articles on them admits this so it should be no problem to add it here in some form without diminishing the religious view. Wayne 05:33, 28 May 2007 (UTC)

Oppenheim's translation is not "biased to the Human Rights concept for (possibly political) or POV purposes" -not at all. Note that Weisehofer quotes it, and he's far away from the human rights conception. So I suggest simply replacing the quotation with something from the more updated Schaudig's. About what you tell me that an university uses the Ahura Mazda fake, what can I say? I makes me feel very sorry. An as for the biblical matter, I think you're right. I'll be absent from here for a few weeks, so I leave it on your hands. Amizzoni 04:09, 31 May 2007 (UTC)


"Whether the cylinder is the first bill of rights or not makes no difference to Persian nationalism as the country was still the worlds first democracy as we know it."

Τhe worlds first democracy as we know it? Wayne you must be joking. what was the percentage of the population of persian empire that took part in the elections. was it above 0,00000000000001 %? There was only one vote in the ballot.

Actually Cyrus was the first imperialist and he was the first to proclaim himself king of the world 'by the grace of god'. In this respect everyone copied him. From Alexander the GREAT and the Romans till the British and the French. So the Persians nationalists should be proud of him. At least there was a persian first in the world's history. So stop insisting on the foolishness of the world’s first charter of human rights and find a reliable source for the translation of the text.

'The Cyrus Cylinder has been described as the world’s first charter of human rights' Described as the world first charter of human rights by whom? Historians, elmer fudd, or maybe the late persian shah.

And why did you remove the link from livius.org? (http://www.livius.org/ct-cz/cyrus_I/cyrus_cylinder.html). Maybe because Jona Lendering disagrees with the fairy tale that was created by the persian chauvinists.

http://www.iranchamber.com/history/historic_periods.php. So why do you use him when at the same time you question his credibility?

most vs some

"undo weight, 2-3 scholars does not = most" (user CreazySuit's edit summary)

We've cited Amélie Kuhrt, R. J. van der Spek, Muhammad Dandamaev, Josef Wiesehofer, Pierre Briant, that is, 5 scholars. Dandamaev also cites CB Walker, so we should count him too: 6 scholars. I could also add P.-A. Beaulieu (see for example "An Episode in the Fall of Babylon to the Persians", JNES vol. 52 n. 4 Oct. 1993. p. 243.) and Jona Lendering (see [7]): 8 scholars.

The only author the article cites supporting the "human rights" view is Abbas Milani.

8 vs 1. So I'd say "some scholars" is misleading, as it's clear that, right or wrong, most of them agree with this viewpoint. Amizzoni (talk) 07:16, 27 July 2008 (UTC)

"Most disagree" is simply a POV term, we can't measure the view of academics, which is why "some" is a neutral term even if there are 8 who disagree. Be patient, give me a few days to do some research at the library, and I will find you the names of more than 8 scholars who agree with the human rights theory. --CreazySuit (talk) 12:18, 28 July 2008 (UTC)
I think you wont find any published work of a specialist in Achaemenid Persia or Babylonia post-1980 who agree with the "human rights" view. Amizzoni (talk) 04:12, 29 July 2008 (UTC)

No declaration and no mention of human rights

The translated text does not fit Webster's Online Dictionary's definition of a declaration (see here: [8]). If anything, it is simply one person's description of a series of historical events, including a somewhat glorified description of a ruler's character and actions.
As far as human rights are concerned, they are totally not mentioned and to quote the text, "As to the inhabitants of Babylon, [who] against the will of the gods [had/were…., I abolished] the corvee (lit.: yoke] which was against their (social) standing." The "corvee" was simply against the social standing of the inhabitants of Babylon, not other people elsewhere (slaves?). Therefore, there is no declaration of human rights whatsoever, but instead an indication of a social standing (lower class), where corvee may have been seen as part of the social order of the day.
WriterHound (talk) 21:15, 27 July 2008 (UTC)

Josef Wiesehöfer refers to it not as a "charter", but as a "propaganda script" (Die Kyroszylinder-Inschrift wiederum ist (...) nicht als (...) Urkunde anzusehen, sondern als (...) eine Propaganda(schrift) im Dienste des Kyros - Das antike Persien von 550 v. Chr. bis 650 n. Chr., Artemis & Winkler Verlag, Düsseldorf und Zürich 1993, p. 81). Labelling it a "Charter of Human Rights" was, as Der Spiegel explains,[9] a hoax made up by Reza Pahlevi. But the UN fell for it, and many Iranians fell for it, too, and take great pride in it now. Although "it's nonsense, absolute nonsense" ( Tom Holland according to the Telegraph),[10] the hoax may therefore very well live on (last but not least here). Konstock (talk) 22:49, 27 July 2008 (UTC)

Spiegel is a right-wing newspaper with a political agenda, not an academic journal. Here are two academic rebuttals to Spiegel's nonsense by two academics and experts on the region. [11] [12] --CreazySuit (talk) 12:09, 28 July 2008 (UTC)

Neither source is academic. Kaveh Farrokh holds no degree in history, Bandu de Silva is a retired diplomat. Der Spiegel is a widely circulated news magazine, certainly not right-wing[13] and certainly a reliable source. Konstock (talk) 10:21, 29 July 2008 (UTC)

Charter of human rights section / "undo weight"

I removed a source about an award presented to Kofi Anan by the Persian Center of northern California because I do not consider it that important.[14] I removed a source that is spreading the fake translation.[15] I removed a commercial source that is raising funds (see WP:LINKSTOAVOID). I removed the Schaff-Herzog Encyclopedia of Religious Knowledge because it looks a bit outdated to me.[16] I added Der Spiegel, The Guardian, Le Monde and The Telegraph. They are reliable per definiton. I restored Pierre Briant, From Cyrus to Alexander, which has been removed without explanation twice by CreazySuit and twice by Larno Man. CreazySuit has argued (in his edit summaries) that undo weight is given to theories of 2-3 people, when all the other acadamics disgree. Count them again, then: Jona Lendering, A. Kuhrt, R.J. van der Spek, M. Dandamaev, P.-A. Beaulieu, J. Wiesehöfer, P. Briant, Neil MacGregor,[17] Hanspeter Schaudig,[18] Klaus Gallas[19] and Francis Joannès[20]. I count eleven. Konstock (talk) 23:42, 29 July 2008 (UTC)

Please, self revert the article. Assume good faith! Bring your draft to the talkpage and post it after compromise. You changed the article substantially without getting consensus. You wrote the article in a way that nobody else other than Shah's beleives that it is the fisrt charter of human right. I can provide you with tens of scholarly references. The newspaper articles that you provided are not reliable. You started current edits after der Spiegel article. Even you want to use these type of references. At the same time, National Geographic published an article on Iran's history and admired the Cyrus legacy and called the Cylinder the first charter of human right. I am wondering why this article didn't attract you and Der Spiegel did? Which one is more reliable on history? National Geographic or ...?--Larno Man (talk) 03:47, 30 July 2008 (UTC)

"You wrote the article in a way that nobody else other than Shah's beleives that it is the fisrt charter of human right." Well, the Sha, Abbas Milani and Shirin Ebadi. If you know more people supporting the human rights view, just provide the references. I'll be waiting for them.

"The newspaper articles that you provided are not reliable." I don't particularly like these articles, specially the Der Spiegel one -it's just a piece of sensationalism. But the important thing is where they are used:

  • Der Spiegel
  1. a- "The Cyrus Cylinder was asserted to be the world’s first charter of human rights by Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi to mark the occasion of the 2,500 year celebration of Iran's monarchy in 1971." It is a fact, you can't remove it. Furthermore, it is supported by a reliable source as Livius (although it is not mentioned in the note, you can read it in its Cyrus Cylinder article). If you know any source saying that the "human rights" position was held prior to the Sha, feel free to add it. If you find academic publications accepting the "human rights" position, feel free to add it too.
  2. b- "A replica of the cylinder was handed over by the Shah's twin sister Ashraf Pahlavi to then UN Secretary General Sithu U Thant on October 14, 1971 and has since then been kept at the United Nations Headquarters in New York City in the second floor hallway, between the Security Council and the Economic and Social Council chambers." A fact, supported by a UN press release.
  3. c- "and a fake translation - affirming, among other things, the right to self-determination - has spread and even been quoted by Shirin Ebadi when she accepted the Nobel Peace Prize in 2003." Again, a fact, not an opinion. And this is supported by a reliable source as Livius. Let's agree on this: there is a fake translation circulating on the net (just compare it with any academic publication of the text) and we must state it clearly.
  • The Daily Telegraph and Le Monde
  1. "The text was translated into all official U.N. languages in 1971" It used to have a "citation needed" tag. I believe a newspaper citation is better than nothing.
  • The Guardian
  1. a- the same as Der Spiegel a-
  2. b- "They point at the fact that Mesopotamia has a long tradition, dating back to the third millennium BC, of kings making similar declarations when beginning their reigns." It is supported by 6 academic publications in note 11. We really don't need a newspaper note for this.

You base your proposal of reverting the whole edition in the argument that newspapers are not reliable. But all the newspaper notes (except the "1971 translation" reference) are supported by academic publications, UN press releases and Livius. Amizzoni (talk) 07:02, 30 July 2008 (UTC)

You didn't answer my question. At the same time, National Geographic published an article [21] on history of Iran and admired the Cyrus legacy and called the Cylinder the first charter of human right. I am wondering why this article didn't attract you and Der Spiegel did? Which one is more reliable on history? National Geographic or ...?--Larno Man (talk) 14:12, 30 July 2008 (UTC)

The article you link doesn´t mention "human rights" (only "all rights reserved" :P). That someone admire Cyrus´ legacy doesn´t imply that he considers the Cyrus Cylinder as declaration of human rights! --Amizzoni (talk) 22:29, 30 July 2008 (UTC)
I`m sorry, the NG article actually says that the Cyrus Cylinder has been described as a charter of human rights. I fact we should add it somewhere. But the issue it not Der Spiegel vs NatGeo. The issue is the great majority of scholars specializing in Achaemenid and Babylonian history vs the UN, NatGeo and a few scholars. Academically speaking, there is a great majority against the human rights interpretation. We`ve cited around 10, against only 2! Furthermore, you have (again) removed the references from Briant and Beaulieu and the mention of the fake translation without explanation. --Amizzoni (talk) 23:06, 30 July 2008 (UTC)

That's the thing. Why I brought that quote? Because, the manner and life story of Cyrus testify that this document is not a propaganda as you think. He was tolerant and magnanimousand. Several independent Hebrew, Greek, Mesopotamian and Persian sources reported his tolerant, respect to other cultures and religions, and human freedom. He practiced what is written in the Cylinder and it was not only a propaganda.--Larno Man (talk) 00:26, 31 July 2008 (UTC)

I think it's neither a propaganda document nor a declaration of human rights. I believe it's an ideological representation of the priests who wrote it, and that although it might reflect in some way a royal policy of tolerance (it relies on how we define it), it doesn't allow us to call it a "declaration of human rights", as it is not a declaration, as what it says doesn't apply to all humans, and as it doesn't concern rights of any kind. But it isn't important what I think. The important thing is that the great majority of scholars rejects the "human rights" conception, and consider it as a propaganda document. And as for the Frye quote, it would be original research: it doesn't mention the Cyrus Cylinder. Note that very similar quotes can be taken from Briant's book, but he calls the cylinder a piece of propaganda. Amizzoni (talk) 04:11, 31 July 2008 (UTC)

  • Actually the Spiegel newspapers is not only a minority view, but it is also using a flawed translation to support its thesis. Second , when one says " Great majority of scholars" then one needs an acadamic source in Wikipedia that explicitly mentions "Great majority of scholars". First thing I would like to point out is that the scholars (Wieshofer, Kuhrt).. are a few among the hundreds of scholars that have written on the Achammenids in the last two centuries or so. A major text these scholars try to use is distorted version of what happened in Opis. Mr. Schultz has chosen to quote (i.e. Wieshofer, Schaudig) who are basing their analyzes on a single piece of flawed translation, namely that of the Nabonidus Chronicle, which also narrates the victory of Cyrus the Great at Opis. Schultz has also cited the fall of Opis on the second page of his article. Professor Wilferd Lambert in a new translation in 2007 has pointed this major mistake which was misread by Grayson. It is the word "army" was misread as people and the whole sentence is very different. Note that Kuhrt had criticized another scholar (I believe oppenheimer) for his reading where-as Grayson's reading is now discredited by Professor. Lamber. This makes the study of Wieshofer unreliable with regards to image of Cyrus since now the event at Opis is seen at totally different light which formed a major thesis of Wieshofer/Kuhrts revision of the traditional image of Cyrus. The new translation by Professor. Lambert's new translation can be found here: [22].

Allow me to quote parts of the article mentioned:

"Schulz has also cited the fall of Opis on the second page of his article. It was in 1966 that A. K. Grayson published his translation of the Nabonidus Chronicle:

In the month of Tishri when Cyrus(II) did battle at Opis on the [bank of] the Tigris against the army of Akkad, the people of Akkad retreated. He carried off the plunder (and) slaughtered the people."

Note the following two words: "slaughtered" and "the people".

A number of scholars knew that the translation was flawed, however the issue was not academically addressed until 2007, when Shahrokh Razmjou consulted Professor Wilfred G. Lambert of the University of Birmingham, England, who is the world's foremost expert in the cuneiform. It is worth noting that A. K. Grayson had been a student of Professor Lambert in the past.

Razmjou asked Professor Lambert to review Grayson's translation. Lambert immediately noted that the translation that had been made by his former student was false. Here is the correct translation:

In Tishri, when Cyrus did battle with the army of Akkad at Opis, on the [bank] of the Tigris, the soldiers of Akkad withdrew. He (Cyrus) took plunder and defeated the soldiers (of Akkad).

Notice the following corrections made by Professor Lambert:

  • a] "slaughter" in Grayson's translation is incorrect – the correct translation is "defeated".
  • b] "the people" in Grayson's translation is incorrect – the correct translation is "the soldiers".

Mr. Schulz in his article in Speigel has, amongst his numerous errors (as noted in my humble retort cited earlier) has relied on:

  • a] The flawed translation of A. K. Grayson
  • b] "Historians" who reject all of the primary sources in Biblical as well as Greek sources in favour of [a].

Lambert's translation was published in the 2007 publication of the French journal N.A.B.U

Suffice it to say that Cyrus had defeated a military opponent at Opis - there is no record of any harm being done to the civilians in the Nabonidus Chronicle. To that end, two further observations may be inferred: </[>

  • 1] The city of Opis and its Babylonian inhabitants remained intact well into Seleucid times, after the fall of Darius III to Alexander's forces. If the inhabitants had been "massacred" as averred to in the flawed translation, then how and why did it survive centuries after Cyrus had passed away?
  • 2] Opis had stayed in place after the fall of the Achaemenids to the armies Alexander the Great. The successors to Alexander, the Seleucids, built the city of Seleucia-city just across Opis. When the Parthians ejected the Seleucids from Iran, they allowed both Seleucia-city and Opis to thrive. Both would become merged into the larger settlement of Ctesiphon which became the Partho-Sassanian capital. It was only after the fall of Ctesiphon to the Arabo-Muslim armies in 637 AD (following the Battle of Qadissiya) that the city (which included ancient Opis) finally disappeared as an inhabited city, close to 12 centuries after Cyrus had entered Opis."

So please note how a misreading which supported the thesis of Wieshofer is now totally debunked. I would like also point out to many positive news paper articles on Cyrus[23][24][25][26][27][28]. The fact that Shultz did not know about Lambert's translation makes his article unworthy and same thing about theories of Wieshofer/Kuhrts. Their major thesis lies on the Opis event and their reading is based on Grayson. On the other hand, much material based on classical Greek, Hebrew and etc. paint a positive light on Cyrus and one can not dismiss these classical materials because few scholars keep inventing new history ideas which are now debunked due to Professor. Lambert's new reading. --CreazySuit (talk) 20:07, 31 July 2008 (UTC)

The passage from the Nabonidus Chronicle that refers to Opis is mentioned neither by Kuhrt, nor by Dandamaev, nor by Briant, nor by Weisehofer (at this moment I have no access to the article by Van Der Spek). So the new translation of the Nabonidus Chronicle has no implications on this matter.

Furthermore, the newspaper articles say that Cyrus was a good king, but only two of them mention human rights. The article by Paul Cartledge [29] (an academic specialized in Greek history) is clearly against the human rights position: "the text of the Cylinder has been hailed a touch enthusiastically - not to mention anachronistically - as an early declaration of human rights. Actually, it concerns the repatriation of religious statues and human deportees, recalling that it was the same Cyrus who earned the title "Lord's Anointed" from Deutero-Isaiah for restoring the exiled Jews from Babylon to Judaea." The other one is quite ambiguous: [30]. But as someone said in an edit summary, academic publications overweight newspaper articles. Let use only academic publications. Well, anyway: I'm writing a new draft and I'll paste it here as soon as I finishedv it. Amizzoni (talk) 05:51, 1 August 2008 (UTC)



New draft

The Cyrus Cylinder has been described as the world's first declaration of human rights.[28] [29] [30] [31] [32][33]"predating the Magna Carta by more than one millennium".[34] It has been argued that there are three main premises in the decrees of the Cyrus Cylinder: the political formulization of racial, linguistic, and religious equality, slaves and all deported peoples were to be allowed to return to home; and all destroyed temples were to be restored. [29]

It was translated into all six official U.N. languages in 1971,[31] and a replica of the cylinder was handed over by Shah Muhammad Reza Pahlavi's twin sister Ashraf Pahlavi to then UN Secretary General Sithu U Thant on October 14, 1971 and has since then been kept at the United Nations Headquarters in New York City in the second floor hallway, between the Security Council and the Economic and Social Council chambers.[35] The Cyrus Cylinder played an important part in the 2,500 year celebration of Iran's monarchy organizad by Shah Muhammad Reza Pahlavi during the same year. The Shah's régime supported the notion of the cylinder as a charter of human rights, and it has been claimed that such notion originated in the régime itsef.[36]

However, many[37] scholars now disagree with the concept of the cylinder as a charter of human rights, and have argued that such a concept is alien to the historical context. They point at the fact that Mesopotamia has a long tradition, dating back to the third millennium BC, of kings making similar declarations when beginning their reigns. The Cyrus Cylinder is thus interpreted as reflecting royal propaganda.[38][39] [40]

A fake translation of the cylinder - affirming, among other things, the right to self-determination - has spread and even been quoted by Shirin Ebadi when she accepted the Nobel Peace Prize in 2003. The fake can be recognized by the mention of Ahura Mazda, absent in the original.[40]

I think some parts are poorly written, but generally speaking this how I think it should look like. Amizzoni (talk) 06:16, 5 August 2008 (UTC)



What do you and others think about this? based on your own:
The Cyrus Cylinder has been described as the world's first declaration of human rights.[41] [29] [42] [31] [32][43]"predating the Magna Carta by more than one millennium".[44] It has been argued that there are three main premises in the decrees of the Cyrus Cylinder: the political formulization of racial, linguistic, and religious equality, slaves and all deported peoples were to be allowed to return to home; and all destroyed temples were to be restored. [29]

It was translated into all six official U.N. languages in 1971,[31] and a replica of the cylinder was handed over by Pahlavis to the UN Secretary General on October 14, 1971 and has since then been kept at the United Nations Headquarters in New York City in the second floor hallway[45]. It has been claimed that the notion of the cylinder as a charter of human rights originated in Pahlavis themself.[46]

However, some scholars disagree with the concept of the cylinder as a charter of human rights, and have argued that such a concept is alien to the historical context. They point at the fact that Mesopotamia has a long tradition, dating back to the third millennium BC, of kings making similar declarations when beginning their reigns. The Cyrus Cylinder is thus interpreted as reflecting royal propaganda.[47][48] [40]

A fake translation of the cylinder - affirming, among other things, the right to self-determination - has spread. The fake can be recognized by the mention of Ahura Mazda, absent in the original.[40]. The fake translation has misled some to overemphasize on Cyrus's tolerance, however in spite of the argumentation of making similar declarations by other kings, some other scholars believe that Cyrus's approach toward subdued people differed from that of previous rulers in some aspects.[49] and that he was a tolerant and magnanimous sovereign,[50] which is also supported by his treatment of Jews in Babylon and the reflection of his generosity in the Old Testament[51], the policy which was continued by two of his successors: Darius I and Artaxerxes I.--Raayen (talk) 16:23, 7 August 2008 (UTC)

-"many scholars" was changed to "some", because it is not evident if Lendering exactly refers to "illuminated policy" or "first human rights charter".-"Now" removed from "scholars now disagree", because it seems we cannot draw a sharp time limit.-Unnecessary details removed.--Raayen (talk) 16:29, 7 August 2008 (UTC)


Yes, please, Amizzoni. Your version is much more neutral than the current one.

@Raayen: Quotes about Cyrus' "tolerance" are best inserted in Cyrus the Great and not the particular section discussing the specific interpretation of the Cylinder as a "charter of human rights" since they're quite off-topic. 3rdAlcove (talk) 18:24, 9 August 2008 (UTC)

Then this expression seems off-topic too: "The Cyrus Cylinder is thus interpreted as reflecting royal propaganda". Referring to the fake translation might also be not related.--Raayen (talk) 23:01, 9 August 2008 (UTC)
No, because those are opinions against the specific document's identification as a "charter of human rights". As such, they are quite relevant. 3rdAlcove (talk) 23:11, 9 August 2008 (UTC)

When you call this cylinder Cyrus' propaganda. It is necessary to provide information for readers to show in which context Cyrus declared these decrees. Cyrus character and his legacy help readers to judge whether it was propaganda or not. Therefore, quotes about Cyrus' "tolerance" is not off-topic. --Larno Man (talk) 00:09, 10 August 2008 (UTC)

No, the cited expert opinions help people "judge whether...", not a random pile of quotes about Cyrus' "tolerance". Those belong in Cyrus the Great and in a right context. 3rdAlcove (talk) 08:29, 10 August 2008 (UTC)
If what you say is off-topic, then "royal propaganda" is so too, because Cyrus cylinder not being a human rights' charter is different from it being a "royal propaganda". Then the fake translation might also be irrelevant, unless we prove that it helped the misconception of the cylinder's text as the charter. BTW, I think another wrong translation should also be added, which led to the recent propaganda: From [31]

--Raayen (talk) 14:09, 10 August 2008 (UTC)

If there's a matter of "problematic translation" with the Nabonidus Chronicle, what has that got to do with the Cyrus Cylinder and the specific fake translation of this particular document? Remember, it's only mentioned in support of the "misreading". 3rdAlcove (talk) 17:01, 10 August 2008 (UTC)
This "problematic translation" was one the main roots of this confusion and misled some scholars. This information help readers to know in which context some scholars wrote against Cyrus' legacy and called the Cylinder propaganda.--Larno Man (talk) 17:39, 10 August 2008 (UTC)
Misled some scholars about what? This is about the Cyrus Cylinder, not the Chronicle. Readers care to read about "the interpretation of the Cyrus Cylinder as a charter of human rights" under a section titled "The Cylinder as a charter of human rights", not about "the legacy of Cyrus". 3rdAlcove (talk) 17:43, 10 August 2008 (UTC)
Misled on interpretation of the Cyrus' Cylinder. It shows the reason why some people interpret the Cylinder as royal propaganda--Larno Man (talk) 17:48, 10 August 2008 (UTC)
What the hell? That website (dubious at best, btw) talks about the Nabonidus Chronicle, not the Cyrus Cylinder. 3rdAlcove (talk) 17:50, 10 August 2008 (UTC)
The third paragraph of the new draft simply reads: because "the concept of the cylinder as a charter of human rights" is wrong, thus it is "interpreted as reflecting royal propaganda". It seems we should include the other view which considers Cyrus's approach toward subdued people, different from that of previous rulers in some aspects (so not just propagandas); and also the wrong translation of Nabonidus_Chronicle that led to the propaganda conception at the recent times. BTW, I didn't mean to include the passage of that website. It just talks about sources and we may include the sources.--Raayen (talk) 22:53, 10 August 2008 (UTC)
This has been answered a million times. No, Cyrus' character is quite off-topic here; we aren't going to psychoanalyze people. No, what scholars think of the Cyrus cylinder has nothing to do with the Nabonidus Chronicle (reflecting "royal propaganda" ties in with the similar declarations etc.). Present some serious arguments or I'll request that all 3 users opposed to the new, much more neutral version (that Amizzoni was kind enough to provide) stop it. This is simply stalling for time and wishing to stick to this absolutely POV version that even includes a completely off-topic Britannica quote. Is this a wiki article or a paean? 3rdAlcove (talk) 10:39, 11 August 2008 (UTC)



Sorry for delay. I needed sometimes to do some research. This is my proposal which is inspired by the previous two drafts--Larno Man (talk) 06:14, 13 August 2008 (UTC):


The Cyrus Cylinder has been described as the world's first declaration of human rights.[52] [29] [53] [31] [32][54]"predating the Magna Carta by more than one millennium".[55] It has been argued that there are three main premises in the decrees of the Cyrus Cylinder: the political formulization of racial, linguistic, and religious equality, slaves and all deported peoples were to be allowed to return to home; and all destroyed temples were to be restored. [29] It was translated into all six official U.N. languages in 1971,[31] and a replica of the cylinder was handed over by Pahlavis to the UN Secretary General on October 14, 1971 and has since then been kept at the United Nations Headquarters in New York City in the second floor hallway[56].

It has been claimed that the notion of the cylinder as a charter of human rights originated in Pahlavis themselves[57], and some scholars disagree with the concept of the cylinder as a charter of human rights, and have argued that such a concept is alien to the historical context. They state that Mesopotamia has a long tradition, dating back to the third millennium BC, of kings making similar declarations when beginning their reigns. The Cyrus Cylinder is thus interpreted as self ordered decrees by Cyrus, trying to make himself appears righteous.[58][59] [40]

This view is criticized though. The supporters of this view fail to mention why the independent Mesopotamian, Greek, and Biblical sources, as well as archaeological findings are consistent with statements of Cyrus Cylinder. [60] [61] These group of writers used the flawed translation of Nabonidus Chronicle by A.K. Grayson to analyze and interprete the cylinder statements. This translation was later amended in 2007. [62] In spite of the argumentation of long tradition of making similar declarations by other kings. In Cyrus age, invaders considered massacring and enslaving of of conquered people prosperity. At that time the conquering kings proudly recorded brutality in sacking and destruction of the invaded lands in royal inscriptions. On the other hand, Cyrus was a tolerant and magnanimous sovereign [60] [63] [64][65] which totally differed from approach toward subdued people of previous rulers [64][66]. Moreover, these writers are criticized for Western centric approach to human rights and fallacy of the notion that human right is so Western in its philosophical underpinnings that can't has Eastern roots. [67]


This version is even worse than the current one. It violates WP:SYNTH, WP:WEASEL and probably a million other policies. Once again, we aren't going to comment on Cyrus' character or hypothesise about the motives of scholars. I'll offer no comment for expressions such as "anti-Cyrus writers". Please, either make some serious proposals or let's get the article unprotected and use Amizzoni's version. 3rdAlcove (talk) 20:08, 14 August 2008 (UTC)

Find one weasel word in the proposal. Actually the first proposed had some that was amended by User:Rayis. Although, the second theory is directly criticized by sources and not widely acceptable, you insist to keep the second fringe theory. In spite the fact that the eligibility of the second groups of writers as experts on Persian Empire history are questioned by critics too. Tired of POV pushing of 3rdAlcove, I reluctantly accept to keep the second fringe theory. So, let us bring the critics of the second theory too. The draft is only talking about the article. It is only talking on Cyrus Cylinder as the charter of human rights and its context. This version is comprehensive. Talking about the main theory, the opposite theories and its critics. If you have problem with the last paragraph and think it is irrelevant, the second theory should be gone as well. Regarding "anti-Cyrus writers" propose a better expression if you think there are better alternatives.--Larno Man (talk) 20:56, 14 August 2008 (UTC)

Edit war

Larno Man, I don't know why you should feel so strongly about an Iron Age ruler, but be aware that you come across as hysterical. You fail to address valid and coherent concerns, and all you seem to be doing is stalling progress by revert warring with less than helpful summaries such as this one.

  • this is an article about a specific artefact / a specific text, and random eulogies on Cyrus' magnanimity are, indeed, offtopic
  • it is clear to any outside observer that 3rdalc's version is superior and more neutral. "charter of human rights" is obviously an anachronism used facetiously. It is fair enough to make the comparison, but it (quite obviously) is too much to expect the average reader of Wikipedia to be able to recognize academic facetiousness
  • fwiiw, the well-developed and perfectly sober article at de-wiki doesn't mention the "human rights" thing with a single phrase.
  • conversely, our article curiously fails to mention that historians do not credit the text as corresponding to historical reality. It's a "sanitized" propaganda document (alright, I grant you that makes it rather similar to the human rights charta).
  • that said, the "human rights" thing has obviously become a popular meme, and deserves its own section, although hardly placed even before the discussion of the actual content of the text

In short, some people need to get over their patriotism here and stand down a little bit. dab (𒁳) 17:16, 16 August 2008 (UTC)

Ditto. I'd use a much stronger wording, but I suppose it wouldn't be helpful. Without dwelling on the specifics of the present version, I'd sum up that it's extremely unfortunate for the reputation of Wikipedia that the article has been protected in it. The CC is an Ancient Near Eastern document (at least as Babylonian as it is Persian), and no serious scholar of the Ancient Near East could call it a "charter of human rights". Even concerning the scholars of human rights that are cited, I suspect that if one checks their works, one will find out that they are either quoting the fake translation, or using a more reserved formulation than "charter of human rights", because hardly any scholar who cares about his reputation (again, I'm refraining from using a broader formulation here) could possibly describe the real text as such. Unfortunately I don't have time to participate in this discussion, and even less to protect this article from nationalism in the long run - obviously a Sisyphean task, and definitely not for my nerves. --Anonymous44 (talk) 13:52, 17 August 2008 (UTC)

Loaned to Iran

I wonder if, once the page is unprotected, the sentence 'According to a recent report, directors of British Museum and National Museum of Iran in Tehran have reached an agreement whereby the Cyrus Cylinder will be displayed in National Museum of Iran.' could be reworded? Apart from needing a few basic grammar tweaks, and some clarification as to when this 'recent report' was (there have been stories about the cylinder being loaned to Iran circulating since 2004), the 'displayed' bit could do with being clarified. Is the cylinder being returned (seems unlikely given that the museum is legally prohibited from doing so (viz the Elgin Marbles controversy) or merely loaned, and if the latter, is this actually the case, since all of the sources are Iranian based, and there hasn't been any mention of this in any other sources, nor any announcements by the British Museum, etc. Benea (talk) 16:42, 17 August 2008 (UTC)

To follow up, I've had a reply from the British Museum. They have been working on negotiations to loan it for a second time (the first was in 1971) for a special exhibition, but so far nothing has been finalised. The reports in the Iranian news agencies are probably somewhat influenced by patriotic bluster about 'returning' (the British Museum is prohibited by law from actually returning items) the cylinder. This could probably do with being clarified in the article, and a more neutrally worded statement about the two museums working on trying to arrange a loan for a special exhibition, since these reports have been around for the last four or five years. Benea (talk) 19:48, 1 September 2008 (UTC)

Change of title of the sections, according to wp:tone and wp:npov

The title Mesopotamian tradition and Persian propaganda is a violation of wp:npov. It promotes the extreme POV of this article. It either should be changed or change the other section Scholarly view to Eurocentric view and change/copyedit the section accordingly. Any objection? Xashaiar (talk) 09:57, 1 July 2010 (UTC)

What are you objecting to, exactly? The word "propaganda" has been used by the sources quoted. You may want to finish one debate before starting another... (talk) 10:06, 1 July 2010 (UTC)
"Persian propaganda" is a clear Eurocentric expression. Which debate I should finish when ALL THE EDITS on this page are reverted? I have serious problem with the tone, with the POV and the extreme eurocentric view of this article.Xashaiar (talk) 10:10, 1 July 2010 (UTC)
Would you like to suggest an alternative that can be supported by the sources? (talk) 10:18, 1 July 2010 (UTC)
"Regional and royal traditions". The article being extreme Eurocentric does not see the difference between Mesopotamia, Babylonia, and Elamite traditions (let alone Persian part which the article has serious problems with). Also the "Scholarly view" should be changed to "Eurocentric view" (I guess it is OK based on wp:npov). Xashaiar (talk) 10:27, 1 July 2010 (UTC)
As the section is within a section on propaganda, it seems odd to change this to "traditions" which does not seem to express the point of the text which explains how traditions were used for propaganda purposes. Presumably you consider the term "Mesopotamian tradition" used in the text as problematic. Is there a non-Eurocentric term that describes the region for these traditions, modern terms like "Iraq" would be incorrect though "Ancient Mesopotamia" could be a clarification?
If you feel the separate section Cyrus Cylinder/Archive 1#Scholarly views is Eurocentric, then I suggest you identify some academic sources which are less Eurocentric to supplement the text rather than just changing the subtitle to make a critical point. The guidelines that apply are probably WP:BIAS which would cover Eurocentrism and the use of Eurocentric language in particular. (talk) 11:34, 1 July 2010 (UTC)
I guess you are confusing Eurocentrism with "materials published by European people in European countries". These are as much related as are "crime" and "knife factory". Xashaiar (talk) 13:39, 1 July 2010 (UTC)
Sorry I cannot help you then. If you wish to resolve your dispute rather than arguing with everyone here indefinitely, I strongly recommend using a dispute resolution process. Good luck. (talk) 14:36, 1 July 2010 (UTC)
I have no problem with "Mesopotamian tradition" but wanted to make the article look correct. My problem is with "Persian Propaganda" which is an extreme Eurocentric expression and has no base: which propaganda? If CC is a standard building inscription, than CC can not be a PP. Otherwise there should existed before Cyrus the Great and after him a similar PP (as significant as CC). What kind of PP is this that happened only once during entire Persian "Achaenenian, Arcasid, Sasanian" rule in Mesopotamia? All the edits on this page are reverted (all were sourced) and you are again asking to "identify some academic sources which are less Eurocentric to supplement the text"! Xashaiar (talk) 11:44, 1 July 2010 (UTC)

"Propaganda" is not being used negatively. It's used here in the sense in which Hanspeter Schaudig uses it: "shorthand for the complex processes whereby rulers shape their subjects' views of the world and are in turn affected by them" (p. 51, "Xerxes' Homer". Cultural Responses to the Persian Wars: Antiquity to the Third Millennium). The CC isn't the only piece of pro-Cyrus propaganda - the Verse Account of Nabonidus is another example, though it's much less well-known. As Matthias Henze puts it (The madness of King Nebuchadnezzar, p. 61), "Immediately following the demise of the Neo-Babylonian empire in 539 BCE, there arose a significant body of polemic literature leveled against Nabonidus", which historians clearly relate to a Persian or pro-Persian campaign to discredit Nabonidus and promote the new regime. -- ChrisO (talk) 13:06, 1 July 2010 (UTC)

Please read wp:pov and Eurocentrism. It is clear that "Persian Propaganda" is a Eurocentric expression and used as such to promote certain point of view. Why should wikipedia uses a term that "can" have negative meaning, unless it is fine to accept that we do not care about the potential meaning of terms. In this case I believe this article violate wp:synth and wp:npov.We have to get title of sections in this article right, before we discuss the huge number of problems in this article including unfair use of sources (also archived things )and extreme weight given to certain authors. Xashaiar (talk) 13:35, 1 July 2010 (UTC)
What you're doing here is the same old problem - you disagree with the sources and you want to introduce your own interpretation. You've not advanced a single source to back up your assertion that the views of mainstream historians in peer-reviewed academic books and journals are "Eurocentric". As you know, or should know by now, that isn't the way Wikipedia works. We can't act on the basis of substituting your personal opinion in place of professional scholarship. -- ChrisO (talk) 13:54, 1 July 2010 (UTC)
And I wonder why this article DOES "act on the basis of substituting your personal opinion in place of professional scholarship". Anyone who has doubts about this is encouraged to review the history page and archive of this talk page. The result is anyone's guess. Xashaiar (talk) 14:22, 1 July 2010 (UTC)

I would love to see parts of this article reorganized to have just one section that focuses on the use of the Cylinder in propaganda, just one section that focuses on the fake translation, and one section that focuses on the significance (or lack thereof) of the text at the time of Cyrus. But keep "propaganda" out of the scholarly "building inscription or more?" analysis. It should be possible to reduce the length of the article by consolidating some of the redundant or less significant text in the process. Matthias Blume (talk) 18:51, 1 July 2010 (UTC)

Yes and thank you. I agree with your suggestion as a first step. But the problem is more serious than that. For example there is no section on "Traditional view" where all the sources mentioned can be organized in a correct way. For example the summary by J. Wiesehofer is worth mentioning. In his Ancient Persia p.45 he writes about the way MANY SCHOLARS have traditionally interpreted the text of Cylinder: "Many scholars have read into these [...] sentences a confirmation of the Old Testament passages about the steps taken by Cyrus towards the erection of the Jerusalem temple and the repatriation of the Judaeans, some even going so far as to believe that the instructions to this effect were actually provided in these very formulations of the Cyrus Cylinder." He goes on to state "In any event.... his piety as described in the Babylon inscription" combines with other evidence "in the eyes of many observers to form a harmonious character study of the first Persian king". I think a few paragraph on traditional view on CC is necessary as a first step to save this article of having an extreme, one sided POV... Xashaiar (talk) 08:33, 2 July 2010 (UTC)
Well done for finding (at last!) a usable reliable source. I'll consider how to work that into the article. -- ChrisO (talk) 21:00, 2 July 2010 (UTC)
Matthias, it sounds very much like you want to junk most of the article. That's not going to happen, but if you have concrete suggestions, backed by reliable sources, for content changes, then please suggest them.
On the issue of the material that you want to add, I have no objection to mediation - but it's absolutely not acceptable for you to edit war to try to force material into the article without consensus. I suggest you have a look at WP:BRD for some advice. -- ChrisO (talk) 21:00, 2 July 2010 (UTC)

It is sad to lose ChrisO.. although I disagreed with him (and I believe the action of some nationalists in other media might have given a too much negative reaction), he was needed. Hope to see him back. --Khodabandeh14 (talk) 15:48, 8 September 2010 (UTC)

Agreed, it is sad. It is also a shame that continued argument rather than reasonable compromise has stopped this article from becoming a featured article. I am certain that such debates put off many editors from helping with improvements. I personally stopped making contributions here (Cyrus Cylinder) after July for these reasons. (talk) 16:57, 8 September 2010 (UTC)

Wikipedia is a big mess..I am sad to see someone like Moreschi leave and then ChrisO. There really needs to be a separate body of experts (with preferably 50 active admins) who basically crack down on users such as these [32]. I disagreed with ChrisO on Cyrus Cylinder, but always tried to use sources. Anyhow the only good admin that is left now is Dbachmann. --Khodabandeh14 (talk) 17:41, 8 September 2010 (UTC)

Al Jazeera blog

Hello everybody,

I saw that this article has been mentioned in an Al Jazeera blog which claims a conspiracy regarding it. [33] I don't think it has any credence. However, I think there are some things the article gets wrong, so if nobody minds I would like to try fixing them. They won't require major changes. L'ecrivant (talk) 07:32, 12 September 2010 (UTC)

Please do, and good luck. I've checked some of the recent edits by User:85.105.155.38, which seemed dubious to my inexpert eye. I concur with your assessment that the edit to the introduction was poorly sourced and / or redundant. shellac (talk) 10:12, 12 September 2010 (UTC)
Thank you. I see that 85.105.155.38's material in the introduction has appeared again, so I have removed it. L'ecrivant (talk) 19:34, 12 September 2010 (UTC)

Alleged massacre at Opis

You can see translation of Nabonidus chronicle HERE, it states:

In the month of Tashritu, when Cyrus attacked the army of Babylonia in Opis on the Tigris, the inhabitants of Babylonia revolted, but he [Cyrus, Nabonidus?] massacred the inhabitants. On the fifteenth day [12 October], Sippar was seized without battle. Nabonidus fled. On the sixteenth day, [the Persian commander] Gobryas, the governor of Gutium, and the army of Cyrus entered Babylon without battle. Afterwards, Nabonidus was arrested in Babylon when he returned there.

So, we don't know did Nabonidus or Cyrus massacred the inhabitants, but since author aplied that to Cyrus we can talk about strict violating of wp:NPOV. The same goes for section about veracity of the Cylinder's claims - only few out of few thousand scholars are questioning it's veracity because all primary sources (Herodotus, Xenophon, Nabonidus chronicles, Old Testament) are saying about Cyrus' tolerance, while only few historians (along with our dear Wiki-revisionist) claim otherwise. --93.143.46.224 (talk) 22:31, 12 September 2010 (UTC)

This looks like original research. Could you provide some sources for what you say? Or are you saying we don't reflect the current sources accurately? shellac (talk) 22:46, 12 September 2010 (UTC)
No, there are hundreds of reliable academic sources which mention Persian tolerance during Achaemenid period, while only few claim otherwise. As I said, since our Wiki-revisionist is mentioning only last few, we can talk about serious wp:NPOV violation and original research also (based on extremely undue weight sources). For example, we only know that Babylonian army was defeated at Opis, while revisionists clearly replaced that word with "massacred" on few places. Even Jona Lendering who doesn't consider Cyrus Cylinder as "human rights chapter" clearly claims that revolted Babylonians were massacred by their own government (Nabonidus) (source). --93.143.46.224 (talk) 23:00, 12 September 2010 (UTC)

Extremely important corrections

1) Since some Wiki-revisionist is trying to divide opinions about human right nature of Cyrus Cylinder to "Pahlavi propagandists" and "Scholars", I added two more subsections which proves that many academic scholars and current Iranian government also accept it's human right nature.

2) Removing sentence which doubts Cyrus' tolerant policy (cited in M.A. Dandamaev) because it's not about Cylinder but Cyrus the Great, and we already have article about him. Wiki-revisionist clearly tried to deny Cyrus' tolerant policy using one single source, but there are at least few hundreds (!) which claim otherwise, including Richard Nelson Frye - the most highest autority on Iranian studies today (source).

3) Correction of issue about "fake citation" - while Jona Lendering talks only about changing Marduk to Ahura Mazda, Wiki-revisionist has added his own fake citation about "faking abolished slavery". He quoted Lendering, but you won't find anything like that on his Livius pages (1, 2). Also, official text from British Museum is clearly mentioning words "I freed them from their bonds" (part 26) which proves that revisionist has faked it. There is only one source which actually mentions it, but it's made by Stéphane Foucart, French journalist but not a historian (and not reliable source, also). The same goes for journalist Matthias Schulz "famous" for his anti-Iranian sentiment by calling Cyrus the Great as "despotic ruler", which may confuse some people because there's also a notable historian of the same name. --93.143.46.224 (talk) 01:23, 13 September 2010 (UTC)

Firstly, please drop the 'wiki-revisionist' and 'faked it' stuff. This language does you no credit, and colours the points you are making. Accept that honest people can have legitimate disagreements.
Secondly, Lendering clearly has something more than that particular change in mind, yes? He's talking about a fake reproduced around the internet. We also have reliable sources (Le Monde, Der Spiegel) discussing a distorted translation circulating. I don't see the problem. As for "I freed them from their bonds", that's open to a broad range of interpretations. shellac (talk) 09:05, 13 September 2010 (UTC)
I didn't state that without any reason: I saw lot of original research based on marginal historical revisionism, using only minimalistic and ignoring maximalistic views, deleting complete sections which mentions Cyrus Cylinder and human rights in Persia, using media sources instead of reliable academic sources, "black and white" presentation, and many other things. It's not any new thing, anti-Iranian sentiment has drastically risen in last few years so this is actually a joke comparing to attempts to steal Iranian heritage. So, I'm sorry but I'm strongly conspicuous that person who wrote article on that way is honest and neutral.
Second, I know it has to do nothing with Wikipedia, but I know Lendering personally and we cooperated. He's very pragmatic and neutral historian, but I'm sure he would be shocked with such a undue weight which I saw here last night. I know what's Lendering talking about - it's about monument built in USA by Iranian immigrants; you can compare words and you see words are changed comparing to original translation, and Ahura Mazda is the same for Persian like Marduk is for Babylonians - Supreme God. If you want sources about it's syncretism, I can put plenty of them. Honestly, I never see "fake translation" on internet as Lendering claimed. Le Monde and Der Spiegel are not reliable source, but journalistic original research with considerable amount of anti-Iranian sentiment (Schulz) which I also can prove with academic websites who criticized him. I agree that sentences like "I freed them from their bonds" or "I brought back to their places, and caused them to dwell in a residence for all time." are open to interpretation but it isn't our job here - great majority of academic sources agree it's about abolishing slavery, which was denied in yesterday's text. --93.142.189.84 (talk) 09:36, 13 September 2010 (UTC)

Replacing 'propaganda' with 'proclamations'

I don't think the new edits improved the article. I'm not going to try to fix the English or anything else right now as I don't think it's (which means 'it is', not 'belongs to') possible to keep this article NPOV, but I will say that changing 'propaganda' to 'proclamations' is silly. Every government indulges in propaganda, Cyrus's certainly did and this was part of it, and to try to hide it in this way is simply wrong. Dougweller (talk) 07:58, 13 September 2010 (UTC)

What should I say? You're the boss. I replaced it with more proper word - declaration (my initial mistake with "proclamations", sorry). --93.142.189.84 (talk) 09:00, 13 September 2010 (UTC)
By the way, considering propagandistic nature I have to remind you that all famous Persian inscriptions often described as "propaganda" were buried in ground as foundation (Cyrus Cylinder), or engraved so high on cliff (Behistun inscriptions) so no one can read it. I hope you'll not consider this as "original research" since it's obvious fact.--93.142.189.84 (talk) 09:09, 13 September 2010 (UTC)
The Behistun & other inscriptions would certainly have been legible when new and coloured. Johnbod (talk) 12:11, 13 September 2010 (UTC)
We're talking about lines 4-5 cm in height (photo) engraved 100 metres up a limestone cliff (view from bottom). --93.142.189.84 (talk) 14:11, 13 September 2010 (UTC)

and it's under ownership of the British Museum=

What does this mean? The ownership is and should be disputed. Unsourced. I change it to "and being kept in the British Museum". Xashaiar (talk) 11:21, 13 September 2010 (UTC)

I don't agree with you on this. First, for next 120 days it's gonna be kept in Iran so it may confuse readers. Second, despite I don't personally agree with it's status, it's legally under ownership of the BM. --93.142.189.84 (talk) 13:38, 13 September 2010 (UTC)
First of all where is the source? Second, what does "legally under ownership" mean? I am sure that lawyers are in fact able to challenge "UK legality of ownership". I do not know if they are going to do that, but it is a matter of dispute whether BM (and other similar institutions) do really own the artefacts; the circumstances in which these objects were discovered and took to Europe were, as we know it, very unfair to the people of the region and hence: the "agreements" BM and other institutions claim to have and based on which they claim ownerships of these objects were made between European governments and illegitimate owners of the objects. .. Xashaiar (talk) 14:26, 13 September 2010 (UTC)
Per British museum policy Iran would have had to recognise the museum's ownership of the object in order to get it on loan (policy is mentioned here). There is no question that the British government and courts recognise the British museum's ownership of objects in it's collection (otherwise various past exchanges and the like would have been a bit of a problem). Turkey as the successor state of the Ottoman empire doesn't appear to have objected.©Geni 01:39, 15 September 2010 (UTC)

Biased non-neutral partisan article against Cyrus

The tone and substance of this article is so unbalanced, that even the media outlets such as Al Jazeera English are discussing it. Now, Al Jazeera is neither an Iranian media outlet, nor considered to be Iran-friendly. There is obviously a problem here. It appears that overzealous editors`s work on this page, has done a lot of damage to Wikiedia`s reputation as an independent open project . The article should be reviewed and rewritten by neutral editors. and by `neutral` , I don`t mean agenda-driven individuals who just don`t happen to be Iranian, but are obviously motivated by political agendas, and are as much at fault for the current sorry state of affairs on this page, as the overzealous Iranian editors. IMediaObserver (talk) 16:07, 13 September 2010 (UTC)

Al Jazeera is interested in generating an audence. It knows that claiming that wikipedia is anti-iranian will result in an audence. This has no bearing on the reality of the situation.©Geni 01:30, 15 September 2010 (UTC)
It's not actually like that. I have been personally warned by couple of notable Iranologists about this issue, the same as Al Jazeera obviously was. --93.143.18.126 (talk) 00:08, 17 September 2010 (UTC)

Note: The IP 93.143.18.126 is a sock of the banned User:Orijentolog (a Croatian IP that espouses pro-Persian views, a unique phenomenon). Athenean (talk) 00:48, 17 September 2010 (UTC)

Knowing and having read about the Cyrus cylinder, I was shocked at the tone of this article. After researching for the last hour I conclude that this article in non-neutral and biased against Cyrus. Please change it. It reeks of a partisan tone. Genjix (talk) 06:36, 25 September 2010 (UTC)

The cyrus cylinder...

"...is a Babylonian document" If this is a document I'm a monkey's whatsit. The phrase is, in any case, unnecessary - just say when it dates from, and where from, and who from. Do that, muy son. and you'll have done well. PiCo (talk) 08:41, 5 October 2010 (UTC)

The article is swayed, biased and UnWikipedian!

I have read the whole article and its talk page; the overall tone of the article is so deliberate and biased that it makes it clear that some of the editors are influenced by the current Anti-Iranian theorizations. The article tries to introduce the Cyrus Cylinder as propaganda, while the over-emphasization of such claims throughout the article, makes the article become a conspicuous propaganda itself. This article is not only non-informative but also distortive of facts; therefore, it is in contrast to the basic Wikipedia rules. Most of the mentioned authors are not really reliable scholastic references, some of them have even clear instances of Anti-Iranian inclinations in their works. Moreover, many of the quotations are just biased theories and subjective interpretations of such authors from the actual historical accounts. One cannot shun the actual historical accounts (Cyrus Cylinder, Verse Account, Nab Chronicle, Dynastic Prophecy, etc.) themselves and try to hypothesize them in a way that is clearly controlled by political propaganda. If we consider ourselves Wikipedians, we have to stop such activities in Wikipedia. For a more information on some of the facts behind this article, please refer to the following links; http://www.savepasargad.com/2010-March/Koorosh-ahmadi-Cyrus%20Cylinder%20in%20Wikipedia.htm

http://www.rozanehmagazine.com/Rozanehweb/cyrusthegreat.html

Regards. NBTPro (talk) 03:50, 13 October 2010 (UTC)

Removal of Lendering as a Source.

It is incorrect to allow historians of questionable authority to be used as sources for an article that is on a historical figure. Lendering does not have a doctorate in the field, nor is he affiliated with any real research on the topic. Yes, he has written some books, but they are of questionable accuracy. DougWeller, please don't claim that I attacked a BPV, my edit on Lendering's page was justified and strongly sourced. It only made sense that I would edit the use of his research on the Cyrus page. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 75.82.13.51 (talk) 09:22, 24 October 2010 (UTC)

As long as it is attributed to him specifically and linked to his article, it should be ok. Your edit to his article is a BLP violation - blogs are not a reliable source for this (or for very much generally). I've raised the issue at WP:BLPN where you can defend your case, but don't add it again. Dougweller (talk) 09:43, 24 October 2010 (UTC)

No, Doug, you are mixing two issues and perhaps revealing the fact that YOU are in violation of editing guidelines. 1) I removed Lendering as source on the "Cyrus Cylinder page" because he is a not notable enough to be mentioned in reference to a historical figure. 2) YOU were the one who utilized my edit of Lendering's page as a reason to undo my revisions on the "Cyrus Cylinder" page, which is mixing issues on your part. Please address your Lendering edits on the Lendering page. I only explained myself on the Cyrus cylinder page as a courtesy to you. I am going to undo your edit on the Cyrus Cylinder page, with the expectation that if you feel compelled to undo my edit that you will explain why Lendering is a reliable source for the Cyrus Cylinder page. Thanks! 75.82.13.51 (talk) 10:18, 24 October 2010 (UTC)

In agreement with 75.82 IP, J. Lendering is not really a historian as much as he is a writer and an entrepreneur. Knstck and Dougweller, I'm wondering if it is possible that you refrain from simply undoing revisions and perhaps we can get consensus or other suggestions. ArdeshirBozorg (talk) 10:34, 24 October 2010 (UTC)

Bozorg, Thank you!!!! 75.82.13.51 (talk) 10:38, 24 October 2010 (UTC)

IP has been blocked for "disruptive editing: BLP violations, edit-warring, sockpuppetry" - a pretty pathetic attempt at sockpuppetry (the other is of course ArdeshirBozorg, not surprising they agree. Dougweller (talk) 14:30, 24 October 2010 (UTC)
Who I note has also been blocked for the same reasons. Dougweller (talk) 15:04, 24 October 2010 (UTC)

Attacks on Cyrus the great and the Cyrus Cylinder

This article is in and of itself a propaganda probably generated by a few fake scholars if you can call them that to attack Persian history. It makes unsubstantiated claims and tries to muddy the name of a great name who should be kept out of the political games of the day. I believe that to call the Cyrus Cylinder which is a true peice of human rights advocation a "Propganda" is dirty. The sources cited are disgustingly biased and I think this artcile has to be ENTIRELY RE WRITTEN. That British chose to call it a propaganda is not a suprise. KEEP POLITICS OUT OF MY HISTORY! Cyrus was a great man, that united nations across continents and as such he deserves respect! Preceding unsigned comment added by Dr. Persi (talk) 17:39, 2 November 2010 (UTC)

This is an encyclopedia, and there are many, many reliable sources discussing propaganda - which is not a dirty word. See [34]. This has nothing to do with nationality, and I think you misunderstand the term 'propaganda'. Every ruler (at almost every level) uses propaganda. Dougweller (talk) 19:53, 2 November 2010 (UTC)

The tone of this article is defamatory. Also what this article does is use excuses like the one you just mentioned to further its own agenda. There are many alternative versions for "propaganda." Propaganda has a negative connotation and also is not appropriate for this work. Also the tone of this piece is so harsh and polar that it is almost impossible to digest. How can something this polar be even in Wikipedia? I dont know, you guys clearly have the upper hand, I tried to change it but you seem to be always here watching this article. So I just want people reading this article know that in my view, this is very biased, and even if the points made here are salient they are presented so poorly that either way makes this a bad presentation. P.S. UNITED NATIONS classifies the Cyrus Cylinder as Human Rights piece. Who is some lackluster British interest to call it a "propaganda?". That is all. Best of luck to you! Preceding comment added by Dr. Persi (talk)23:08, 2 November 2010 (UTC)

Propaganda doesn't have to be negative, as our article says, "Propaganda is a form of communication that is aimed at influencing the attitude of a community toward some cause or position." So a declaration promoting human rights is propaganda. Dougweller (talk) 20:48, 6 November 2010 (UTC)

The issue here is that Propaganda has a negative connotation. Let me cite Wikipedia on Propaganda becasue I think you have some issues with the meaning of the word: "Propaganda is a form of communication that is aimed at influencing the attitude of a community toward some cause or position. As opposed to impartially providing information, propaganda, in its most basic sense, presents information primarily to influence an audience." Also based on your previous statements which are all false you keep selling the idea that "propaganda is in essence a 'good' thing" as if presidents, politicans, and public speakers would like to be remembered as great generators of "propaganda." Having established the negative connontation of the word propaganda, I like to move further with the article and explain why I have such an issue with it. The sources of this article are not impartial, and in fact by a very realistic assessment, this article is in and of itself a propaganda against the Cyrus the Great. Remember that you as a Wikipedian are supposed to be a representation of impartiality and balance. You and I both know that this article and its tone exists today, because of inappropriate comments made by one stupid iranian president to whom I bear the same resentments, but it is really not appropriate, neither is it right to attack a nation's history with some 5,000 years of history citing as your sources only a few statements written by essentially a private company like the British Museum of art and citing a few very contemporary scholars, some of whom are questionable if not completely misguided. What is my suggestion? Maybe we should change the tone a bit to appeal to BOTH sides of the story and additionally an unconditional removal of the term "propaganda" and replacing it with "Proclamation" as advocated earlier by some other users. It is really sad however, because as long as the British museum continues to imply "propaganda" in an attempt to appeal to its daily political needs, we will have this issue with the name. However, Wikipedia should NOT take sides, and if it does (as it HAS CLEARLY taken an anti-persian attitude in this article, at least in my view), then it loses its IMPARTIALITY and validity as a world wide tool for information dissemination and communication! Dr. Persi (talk)


Just noting that you are also the editor who until you opened this account has been using the IP address above. I think you greatly underestimate the scholarly sources discussing Persian propaganda and specifically this cylinder. [35] What we should be doing is broadening the discussion of the cylinder as propaganda, not trying to ignore or remove it. Dougweller (talk) 21:11, 6 November 2010 (UTC)

Yes, I am the same person as above, hence why I replied to you, in this section which is a section that I generated. Regarding broadcasting, I really do not understand how that makese sense with regards to "impartiality" issue. I have nothing against broadcasting views agaisnt the cylinder as propaganda, as long 1) the tone of the article is appropriate reflecting proper weight to the soureces and their credibility and 2) as long as both views are entertained. In other words, if there is a discussion as to validity of a hypothetical point, you can not choose the title of discussion to reflect only one of the contending points. It has to be more broad. Also, I think there is plenty of ANCIENT documents and sources that far outweight the contemporary sources cited here. Again, I still think storngly that this article needs to be re-written by an independent third party, certainly not you and I, who will in an impartial manner deliver the information keeping in mind weight of ancient documents, United Nation declarations, and bringing in (but not dominating!) the points made by the British museum. Thanks you and I appreciate our chat Doughweller. I just hope that this article was not so un-wikipedian. Preceding comment added by Dr. Persi (talkcontribs) 21:16, 6 November 2010 (UTC)

I'm in agreement with Dr. Persi, propaganda, according to the modern understanding of the definition, is indisputably negative in connotation. The Cyrus Cylidner is better stated to be a proclamation or a declaration. If not, by the "propaganda" reasoning, the American Declaration of Independence, the Emancipation Proclamation, the Magna Carta, the Code of Hammurabbi, etc should be considered "propaganda." Those milestones in history aren't considered propaganda, perhaps those speaking about those milestone are spreading propaganda, but the not the events themselves. I also agree with Dr. Persi that this article is very skewed and not very encyclopedic. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 130.182.24.239 (talk) 01:33, 2 December 2010 (UTC)


Since there are multiple reliable sources using the word propaganda in connection with Cyrus, the Cyrus cylinder, etc, there can be no question about the validity of using the word. Dougweller (talk) 07:22, 2 December 2010 (UTC)
Hi DougWeller, I think that you are missing the points that Dr. Persi has made. This Cyrus Cylinder article does not read as an impartial article verifying and describing the existence of an object that is known as the "Cyrus Cylinder."
The word propaganda is highly loaded that with both neutral and negative connotations. And much of the article seems to be emphasizing the cylinder as an object of propaganda, in the negative sense. Moreover, the article stance seems to be propaganda itself in its to intent on emphasizing the Mohammad Reza Shah's participation in promoting and hailing the Cyrus Cylinder as the "first declaration of human rights."
And yes, DougWeller you have provided sources that reference the Cyrus Cylinder to propaganda, there no dispute there. But if one does a search, as mentioned before, of the American Declaration of Independence, Emancipation Proclamation, etc, one can see that there is an equal amount of reference to those objects and propaganda. Yet, in no instance of those documents on Wikipedia are any of those objects described as propaganda. So, I argue that there must continuity in the manner in which wikipedia article describe historical declarations.
I'd like to suggest that we work together fixing the uneven, biased tone of the article towards a more encyclopedia tone. --130.182.26.0 (talk) 22:00, 2 December 2010 (UTC)
My first suggestion is that the introduction of the article be more concise, in particular, the last two articles of the introduction. I will be removing paragraph 3 of the introduction and moving its sentences to more appropriate places in the article. For example, it is not necessary to have in the intro, who discovered the cylinder (Rassam), where, and for whom, when that information is given in greater details and more appropriately in following paragraphs. Moreover, the British Museums comments on the cylinder belong in later parts of the article. --130.182.26.0 (talk) 22:07, 2 December 2010 (UTC)
Made said revisions. --130.182.26.0 (talk) 22:27, 2 December 2010 (UTC)
My second suggestion is to move the sentences in the intro on the Shah of Iran's promotion of the cylinder to another to portions of the article that refer to ascent and resurgence. That type of info doesn't belong in an introduction. --130.182.26.0 (talk) 22:30, 2 December 2010 (UTC)

Veracity of Cylinder's claims and Amelia Kuhrt

I'm not quite sure why the veracity of Cyrus Cylinder is soooo long, but I'd like to address the paragraph below.

"While the Persians do seem to have entered Babylon without serious resistance, the text does not mention the preceding Battle of Opis, in which Cyrus's forces defeated and are said to have massacred the army of Nabonidus.[68][69] Nor does it explain a two-week gap reported by the Nabonidus Chronicle between the Persian entry into Babylon and the surrender of the Esagila temple. Lisbeth S. Fried suggests that there may have been a siege or stand-off between the Persians and the temple's defenders and priests, about whose fate the Cylinder and Chronicle are both silent. She speculates that they were killed or expelled by the Persians and replaced by more pro-Persian members of the Babylonian priestly elite.[70] As Walton and Hill put it, the claim of a wholly peaceful takeover acclaimed by the people is "standard conqueror's rhetoric and may obscure other facts".[71] Describing the claim of one's own armies being welcomed as liberators as "one of the great imperial fantasies", Bruce Lincoln, Professor of Divinity at the University of Chicago, notes that the Babylonian population repeatedly revolted against Persian rule in 522BC, 521BC, 484BC and 482BC (though not against Cyrus or his son Cambeses). The rebels sought to restore national independence and the line of native Babylonian kings – perhaps an indication that they were not as favourably disposed towards the Persians as the Cylinder suggests.[72]"

I feel that that the above paragraph may be more reflective of "original research" instead of on the topic of the veracity of the cylinder's claim.

1) Why WOULD the cylinder make mention of the battle of Opis? The question here is on the veracity of cylinder's claims, not on what the cylinder should include. The exclusion of the battle of Opis does not indicate any sort of falsehood. Next, the battle of Opis was not any more gruesome that any conflict (don't think that it is true that Cyrus massacared all of Nabaodinus' army, but not sure).

2) Fried's comments, as the paragraph states are SPECULATIONS (I'm not yelling by using caps, just emphasizing). Speuclations already indicate original research.

3) Walton's research that the proclomation is standard conqueror's rhetoric seems to be original research or jsut simply opinion. First off, that is simply not true, many conquerors ruled by intimidation and domination and NEVER used such rhetoric. Next, using that rhetoric doesn't mean that the statements aren't true.

4) I have one more point but most leave.

In conclusion, I think that it'll be useful to revisit this paragraph and revise. And also revise this entire section, because it is quite sloppy for wiki standards.

sorry forgot to sign, GoetheFromm (talk) 21:18, 5 December 2010 (UTC)

The No original research policy applies to Wikipedia contributors, not to scholars. Scholars do the research, Wikipedia summarizes their findings. --Konstock (talk) 18:49, 7 December 2010 (UTC)
Point taken Konstock. The larger point I think is the fact that that the paragraph seems to reflect the speculations (and, even worse, the opinions) of a few scholars, speculations which are not directly related to the veracity of the Cylinder's claims (that might be more appropriate for its own section). Might you address points 1) 2) 3) made above and perhaps assist me in improving the readability, tone, and appropriateness of the article?GoetheFromm (talk) 02:59, 8 December 2010 (UTC)


A lot of historical research is 'speculation'. This is not a problem here as it isn't asserted as fact but as someone's perception of the situtation. Point 1 - you'll need a source for that, nothing to discuss without one. Point 3 is answered by my first comment. It isn't a problem. Dougweller (talk) 05:51, 8 December 2010 (UTC)
DougWeller, your points are taken as well, and let me clarify so that you can understand better…but my and the greater point is that the historical speculations that are presented in the article aren't necessarily the consensus of historians and might be selectively presenting the "speculations" of a FEW. Thereby placing undue weight to speculations of those in question.
And, no, a lot of historical research isn't speculation, at least not in the way you are suggesting. If historians do speculate then those propositions hold less valid ground than verifiable fact and are not relegated mention for their strength as much for their novelty.
As for "point 1," for what are you saying I need a source? I'm not introducing anything. I'm questioning the relevance of the point and the sentence as this is an article on Cyrus Cylinder not
Point 1 Reiterated for your convenience:
"1) Why WOULD the cylinder make mention of the battle of Opis? The question here is on the veracity of cylinder's claims, not on what the cylinder should include. The exclusion of the battle of Opis does not indicate any sort of falsehood. Next, the battle of Opis was not any more gruesome that any conflict (don't think that it is true that Cyrus massacared all of Nabaodinus' army, but not sure)."
Therefore, not quite sure what you mean.
As it stands, the even larger point, is that the article is too long, and really does not read encyclopediacly, especially in comparison to some of the great articles in wikipedia. It reads like a person's thesis project rather than wikipedia. Would like to work on cleaning and creating a terse, succinct, article. As the German saying goes: "In der Kürze liegt die Würze."
I am simply analyzing paragraphs which strike me as being curious, out of place, and out of context, in an attempt to fix the article. You seem to be a good editor, hope you can help...thanks. Perhaps we can find a way to compact the information and have it read evenly? GoetheFromm (talk) 08:23, 8 December 2010 (UTC)

"The Cylinder's text has deeper roots in Babylonian tradition. "

This is a bit odd. In June, with this edit, [36], the paragraph below was added:

"The text of the cylinder also has deeper roots in Babylonian tradition, as the German historian Hanspeter Schaudig has pointed out. It alludes to a much older work, the Enuma Elis or "Epic of Creation", in which Marduk is described as defeating Tiamat, creating the world and building Babylon. The portrayal of the Persian conquest repeats the pattern, presenting Cyrus's takeover as a moment of ultimate restoration not just of political and religious institutions, but of the cosmic order that underpinned the existence of the universe itself.[73]"

Earlier today it read:

The Cylinder's text has deeper roots in Babylonian tradition. The German historian Hanspeter Schaudig has identified a line on the Cylinder ("He [i.e. Marduk] saved his city Babylon from its oppression") with a line from tablet VI of the Babylonian "Epic of Creation", Enûma Eliš, in which Marduk builds Babylon.[74] Johannes Haubold suggests that this allusion represents Cyrus's takeover as a moment of ultimate restoration not just of political and religious institutions, but of the cosmic order underpinning the universe.[75]

The first line was removed this morning by someone who seems to have been tightening up the article, with the edit summary 'removed line'. I thought the sentence was useful and replaced it. Then a 3rd editor comes along and although it's been there since June, removed it saying it is WP:SYNTH and new evidence proves it's wrong (which is probably not the case, 'proves it's wrong' probably means 'disagrees', and if so we can show the disagreement. The editor's next edit was to denigrate the former Director of the British Museum, who has recently been awarded the Order of Merit and is presenting some stuff on the BBC, by adding not the Order of Merit but the BBC presentation work, which is clearly irrelevant to this article.

I think it was Xashiar that made that edit re: the British director. I didn't think that that edit was intended to "denigrate," I actually thought that he might be doing the oppposite. I agree with you that the former director should be portrayed for who he is. But I have to say, that I feel that you aren't being entirely clear with what your problem is. See directly below section of talk page. By the way, I am addressing your points as I see them, which accounts for why I responded to your last point first. Best: GoetheFromm (talk) 20:25, 10 December 2010 (UTC)

I'm replacing it again, but I'll add more references. Dougweller (talk) 13:58, 10 December 2010 (UTC)

This is actually a section that I think needs expanding, not contracting. For instance, I easily also found this: [37] and this.
I'd prefer it if someone else did some expansion, however. Dougweller (talk) 14:26, 10 December 2010 (UTC)
Over the next few weeks, I'll try to incorporate your sources and improve readability. GoetheFromm (talk) 21:32, 10 December 2010 (UTC)
See talk section below., DougWeller...GoetheFromm (talk) 20:19, 10 December 2010 (UTC)


Ok, I read down instead of up, sorry. I can see the point. I shouldn't have been reverted for WP:SYNTH or "the latest research shows contrary." though, right? Dougweller (talk) 20:02, 10 December 2010 (UTC)
Oh, OK, Doug Weller, I see what you are saying. You left me a message on my talk page, that wasn't very clear. By the way I've made some points re: Babylonian tradition Mesopotamia right below on a seperate topic, directly below. Looks like we were writing responses/points at the same time. LOL. GoetheFromm (talk) 20:18, 10 December 2010 (UTC)
    • ^ The Cyrus Cylinder at http://www.livius.org/
    • ^ For example, on faithfreedom.org [38] or iranchamber.com here
    • ^ 1912 Translation of the Cylinder into English, (dash) soas.com/CAIS/History/hakhamaneshian/Cyrus-the-great/cyrus_cylinder_complete.htm online here; more modern translation available here
    • ^ For instance, Zoroastrians: Their Religious Beliefs and Practices (London, 1979; corrected repr. 1984; repr. with new foreword 2001). For a more recent view, Peter Clark, Zoroastrianism. An Introduction to an Ancient Faith (Brighton, 1998, 2001).
    • ^ For example, on faithfreedom.org [39] or iranchamber.com here; for references, see "The Cyrus Cylinder" at Livius.org
    • ^ A. Kuhrt "The Cyrus Cylinder and Achaemenid imperial policy" in Journal of Studies of the Old Testament 25 pp. 83-97, B. van der Spek, "Did Cyrus the Great introduce a new policy towards subdued nations? Cyrus in Assyrian perspective" in Persica 10 pp. 273-285, M. Dandamaev A Political History of the Achaemenid Empire, pp. 52-53. The quotation is from Dandamaev.
    • ^ iranchamber.com, The Cyrus Charter: online
    • ^ (dash) soas.com/CAIS/History/hakhamaneshian/Cyrus-the-great/cyrus_cylinder.htm "Cyrus the Great Cylinder, CAIS-Online; accessed January 11, 2007" Check |url= value (help). Retrieved 2007-01-30. 
    • ^ U.N. chief awarded Cyrus cylinder The Iranian.com; Retrieved Januay 12, 2007
    • ^ United Nations Press Release 14 October 1971 (SG/SM/1553/HQ263)
    • ^ WHAT IS NEW HORIZONS AND WHY, Center For Inquiry West (CFI) Website, Retrieved January 12, 2007.
    • ^ The Forgotten Empire; the World of Ancient Persia, The British Museum Website; Retrived January 12, 2007
    • ^ Schaff, Philip, The New Schaff-Herzog Encyclopedia of Religious Knowledge, Vol. III, Cyrus the Great
    • ^ A. Kuhrt "The Cyrus Cylinder and Achaemenid imperial policy" in Journal of Studies of the Old Testament 25 pp. 83-97, B. van der Spek, "Did Cyrus the Great introduce a new policy towards subdued nations? Cyrus in Assyrian perspective" in Persica 10 pp. 273-285, M. Dandamaev A Political History of the Achaemenid Empire, pp. 52-53; Wiesehofer Ancient Persia p. 87.
    • ^ Wisehöfer, J., Ancient Persia from 550 BC to 650 AD, 2006 1996, p. 45.
    • ^ Prof. R. N. Frye, ‘The Heritage of Persia’, pp. 123-124
    • ^ For example, on faithfreedom.org [40] or iranchamber.com [41]; for references, see "The Cyrus Cylinder" at Livius.org
    • ^ Suren-Pahlav, Sh., Cyrus the Great' Cylinder; The World's First Charter of the Human Rights, (CAIS AT SOAS)
    • ^ U.N. chief awarded Cyrus cylinder The Iranian.com; Retrieved January 12, 2007
    • ^ "Cyrus the Great Cylinder, CAIS at SOAS; accessed January 11, 2007". Retrieved 2007-01-30. 
    • ^ United Nations Press Release 14 October 1971 (SG/SM/1553/HQ263)
    • ^ WHAT IS NEW HORIZONS AND WHY, Center For Inquiry West (CFI) Website, Retrieved January 12, 2007.
    • ^ Schaff, Philip, The New Schaff-Herzog Encyclopedia of Religious Knowledge, Vol. III, Cyrus the Great
    • ^ A. Kuhrt "The Cyrus Cylinder and Achaemenid imperial policy" in Journal of Studies of the Old Testament 25 pp. 83-97; B. van der Spek, "Did Cyrus the Great introduce a new policy towards subdued nations? Cyrus in Assyrian perspective" in Persica 10 pp. 273-285; M. Dandamaev A Political History of the Achaemenid Empire, pp. 52-53; J. Wisehöfer, Ancient Persia from 550 BC to 650 AD, 2006 1996, p. 82.
    • ^ A. Kuhrt "The Cyrus Cylinder and Achaemenid imperial policy" in Journal of Studies of the Old Testament 25 pp. 83-97; B. van der Spek, "Did Cyrus the Great introduce a new policy towards subdued nations? Cyrus in Assyrian perspective" in Persica 10 pp. 273-285; M. Dandamaev A Political History of the Achaemenid Empire, pp. 52-53; J. Wisehöfer, Ancient Persia from 550 BC to 650 AD, 2006 1996, p. 82.
    • ^ British Museum, The Cyrus Cylinder
    • ^ The Forgotten Empire; the World of Ancient Persia, The British Museum Website; Retrieved January 12, 2007
    • ^ human rights in the world: An Introduction to the Study of the International ...by Arthur Henry Robertson, J. G. Merrills - Political Science - 1996 - Page7
    • ^ a b c d e f Shadows in the Desert: Ancient Persia at War - Page 44 by Kaveh Farrokh - History - 2007 - 320 pages
    • ^ The Evolution of International Human Rights: Visions Seen - Page 11 by Paul Gordon Lauren - Political Science - 2003 - 397 pages
    • ^ a b c d e f Xenophon's cyrus the great: The Arts of Leadership and War - Page xiii by Xenophon, Larry Hedrick - History - 2007 - 320 pages
    • ^ a b c Interview with United Nations Under-Secretary Shashi Tharoor
    • ^ U.N. chief awarded Cyrus cylinder The Iranian.com; Retrieved January 12, 2007
    • ^ Abbas Milani. Lost Wisdom. 2004. Mage Publishers. p.12. ISBN 0934211906
    • ^ United Nations Press Release 14 October 1971 (SG/SM/1553/HQ263)
    • ^ A. Kuhrt, "The Cyrus Cylinder and Achaemenid imperial policy" in Journal of Studies of the Old Testament 25, p. 84; Lendering, Jona (2007-01-28). "The Cyrus Cylinder". livius.org. Retrieved 2008-07-30.  Check date values in: |date= (help)
    • ^ "In the past, this text [the Cyrus Cylinder] - which is absolutely topical - has been taken as evidence for Cyrus' illuminated policy, especially by the government of Mohammad Reza Shah, who even called it "the world's first human rights charter". Farrokh repeats this propaganda verbatim on page 44, apparently unaware of the extensive secondary literature on the subject." (Lendering, Jona (2008-07-16). "Review of Kaveh Farroukh, The Shadows of the Desert". livius.org. Retrieved 2008-08-05.  Check date values in: |date= (help)</)
    • ^ A. Kuhrt "The Cyrus Cylinder and Achaemenid imperial policy" in Journal of Studies of the Old Testament 25 pp. 83-97; R.J. van der Spek, "Did Cyrus the Great introduce a new policy towards subdued nations? Cyrus in Assyrian perspective" in Persica 10 pp. 273-285; M. Dandamaev A Political History of the Achaemenid Empire, pp. 52-53 (with previous bibliography); P.-A. Beaulieu, "An Episode in the Fall of Babylon to the Persians", JNES vol. 52 n. 4 Oct. 1993. p. 243.; J. Wiesehöfer, Ancient Persia from 550 BC to 650 AD, 2006 1996 , p. 82; P. Briant, From Cyrus to Alexander, pp. 43-43.
    • ^ British Museum, The Cyrus Cylinder
    • ^ a b c d e Lendering, Jona (2007-01-28). "The Cyrus Cylinder". livius.org. Retrieved 2008-07-30.  Check date values in: |date= (help) Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; name "livius" defined multiple times with different content (see the help page). Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; name "livius" defined multiple times with different content (see the help page). Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; name "livius" defined multiple times with different content (see the help page). Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; name "livius" defined multiple times with different content (see the help page).
    • ^ human rights in the world: An Introduction to the Study of the International ...by Arthur Henry Robertson, J. G. Merrills - Political Science - 1996 - Page7
    • ^ The Evolution of International Human Rights: Visions Seen - Page 11 by Paul Gordon Lauren - Political Science - 2003 - 397 pages
    • ^ U.N. chief awarded Cyrus cylinder The Iranian.com; Retrieved January 12, 2007
    • ^ Abbas Milani. Lost Wisdom. 2004. Mage Publishers. p.12. ISBN 0934211906
    • ^ United Nations Press Release 14 October 1971 (SG/SM/1553/HQ263)
    • ^ A. Kuhrt, "The Cyrus Cylinder and Achaemenid imperial policy" in Journal of Studies of the Old Testament 25, p. 84; Lendering, Jona (2007-01-28). "The Cyrus Cylinder". livius.org. Retrieved 2008-07-30.  Check date values in: |date= (help)
    • ^ A. Kuhrt "The Cyrus Cylinder and Achaemenid imperial policy" in Journal of Studies of the Old Testament 25 pp. 83-97; R.J. van der Spek, "Did Cyrus the Great introduce a new policy towards subdued nations? Cyrus in Assyrian perspective" in Persica 10 pp. 273-285; M. Dandamaev A Political History of the Achaemenid Empire, pp. 52-53 (with previous bibliography); P.-A. Beaulieu, "An Episode in the Fall of Babylon to the Persians", JNES vol. 52 n. 4 Oct. 1993. p. 243.; J. Wiesehöfer, Ancient Persia from 550 BC to 650 AD, 2006 1996 , p. 82; P. Briant, From Cyrus to Alexander, pp. 43-43.
    • ^ British Museum, The Cyrus Cylinder
    • ^ M. Dandamaev A Political History of the Achaemenid Empire, pp. 54
    • ^ Frye R. N., "Cyrus II." Encyclopædia Britannica. 2008. Encyclopædia Britannica Online. 28 July 2008 <http://original.britannica.com/eb/article-1685>.
    • ^ Goldwurm, Hersh (1982). History of the Jewish People: The Second Temple Era. ArtScroll. pp. pp. 26. ISBN 0-8990-6454-X. 
    • ^ human rights in the world: An Introduction to the Study of the International ...by Arthur Henry Robertson, J. G. Merrills - Political Science - 1996 - Page7
    • ^ The Evolution of International Human Rights: Visions Seen - Page 11 by Paul Gordon Lauren - Political Science - 2003 - 397 pages
    • ^ U.N. chief awarded Cyrus cylinder The Iranian.com; Retrieved January 12, 2007
    • ^ Abbas Milani. Lost Wisdom. 2004. Mage Publishers. p.12. ISBN 0934211906
    • ^ United Nations Press Release 14 October 1971 (SG/SM/1553/HQ263)
    • ^ A. Kuhrt, "The Cyrus Cylinder and Achaemenid imperial policy" in Journal of Studies of the Old Testament 25, p. 84; Lendering, Jona (2007-01-28). "The Cyrus Cylinder". livius.org. Retrieved 2008-07-30.  Check date values in: |date= (help)
    • ^ A. Kuhrt "The Cyrus Cylinder and Achaemenid imperial policy" in Journal of Studies of the Old Testament 25 pp. 83-97; R.J. van der Spek, "Did Cyrus the Great introduce a new policy towards subdued nations? Cyrus in Assyrian perspective" in Persica 10 pp. 273-285; M. Dandamaev A Political History of the Achaemenid Empire, pp. 52-53 (with previous bibliography); P.-A. Beaulieu, "An Episode in the Fall of Babylon to the Persians", JNES vol. 52 n. 4 Oct. 1993. p. 243.; J. Wiesehöfer, Ancient Persia from 550 BC to 650 AD, 2006 1996 , p. 82; P. Briant, From Cyrus to Alexander, pp. 43-43.
    • ^ British Museum, The Cyrus Cylinder
    • ^ a b Farokh, Kaveh (May 7, 2008). [www.savepasargad.com/~New-050508/01.General-News/Newss-Pages/Professor%20Kaveh%20Farokh-E.htm "Retort to the Daily Telegraph’s article against Cyrus the Great Attack on the Legacy of Cyrus the Great"] Check |url= value (help). International Committee to Save the Archeological Sites of Pasarga. Retrieved Aug. 11, 2008.  line feed character in |title= at position 65 (help); Check date values in: |access-date= (help)
    • ^ Farokh, Kaveh (July 24, 2008). "Response to Spiegel Magazine's Attack on the Legacy of Cyrus the Great". International Committee to Save the Archeological Sites of Pasargad. Retrieved Aug. 11, 2008.  Check date values in: |access-date= (help)
    • ^ Kar, Cyrus. "The Truth Behind Spiegel's Article". Spenta Production. Retrieved Aug. 10, 2008.  Check date values in: |access-date= (help)
    • ^ Brown, Dale (1996). Persians: Masters of Empire. Time-Life Books. pp. 7–8. ISBN 0-8094-9104-4. 
    • ^ a b Arberry, AJ (1953). "The Legacy of Persia" Oxford: The Clarendon Press, 1953, p.8
    • ^ Frye R. N., "Cyrus II." Encyclopædia Britannica. 2008. Encyclopædia Britannica Online. 28 July 2008 <http://original.britannica.com/eb/article-1685>.
    • ^ M. Dandamaev A Political History of the Achaemenid Empire, pp. 54
    • ^ Hobson, John M. (2004). The Eastern Origins of Western Civilization Author. Cambridge University Press. ISBN 0521547245. 
    • ^ Cite error: The named reference Kuhrt-2007a was invoked but never defined (see the help page).
    • ^ Briant, p. 41
    • ^ Fried, p. 29
    • ^ Walton & Hill, p. 172
    • ^ Lincoln, p. 40
    • ^ Haubold, p. 52
    • ^ Haubold, p. 51
    • ^ Haubold, p. 52