Reflection of Pre-Islam Medical History of Transoxiana and Chorasmia in Medical Texts of Islamic-Iranian Civilization

Document Type: Original Article

Authors

1 Ph.D. Student, Department of History, Faculty of Literature and Humanities- Dr. Ali Shariati, Ferdowsi University of Mashhad, Mashhad, Iran

2 Research Office for the History of Persian Medicine, Shiraz University of Medical Sciences, Shiraz, Iran

3 Associate Professor, Department of History, Faculty of Literature and Humanities- Dr. Ali Shariati, Ferdowsi University of Mashhad, Mashhad, Iran

4 Professor, Department of History, Faculty of Literature and Humanities- Dr. Ali Shariati, Ferdowsi University of Mashhad, Mashhad, Iran

5 Professor, Department of History, Faculty of Literature and Humanities, Shiraz University, Shiraz, Iran

Abstract

The civilization background of Transoxiana and Chorasmia in the ancient era is of utmost grandeur to the extent that the region is known as the origin of Aryan-Iranian civilization. In addition, both can also be regarded as the land where Iranian medical science originated based upon mythological traditions. Languages including Avestan, Khwarezmian, and Sogdian emerged in Transoxiana and Chorasmia during a long period of time in the past, leading to a variety of scientific, medical, literary, religious and many other works. Indeed, these languages are various branches of Iranian Middle Eastern languages used to be spoken by Iranians. Given their significance as a tool for transmission of culture, knowledge, literature, trade and medicine to the adjacent people, particularly Turks, Chinese, Indians and Central Asians. After the fall of Achaemenid Empire in the fourth century B.C., Greeks, Yuezhi, Kushan Empire, Sasanian Empire, Hephthalite Empire and Turks ruled over Transoxiana and Chorasmia, which were then ceded to the Arabs. Meanwhile, the Chorasmian language became extinct after Arabs’ dominance whereas Avestan and Sogdian languages survived until the 10th century and were then substituted by Dari Persian. The present study was conducted aiming to examine all remaining medical texts in Avestan, Sogdian, Chorasmian works as well as their effects on medical texts written in Dari Persian and Arabic during the Islamic-Iranian civilization.

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