New Course: Persia’s Silent Legacy in Christianity & European Culture


The University of British Columbia’s Continuing Studies Division is offerring a new course entitled:

Persia’s Silent Legacy in Christianity & European Culture

The course (code: UT322S11A) begins on June 6, 2011 . See below description of the course outline:


The Iranian Kandys cape and its legacy in Europe (click to enlarge). (A) Medo-Persian nobleman from Persepolis wearing the Iranian Kandys cape of the nobility 2500 years past (B) figure of Paul dressed in North Iranian/Germanic dress from a 5th century ivory plaque depicting the life of Saint-Paul (C) reconstruction by Daniel Peterson (The Roman Legions, published by Windrow & Greene in 1992, pp.84) of a 4th-5th century Germanic warrior wearing Iranian style dress and the Kandys. The Iranian Persepolis styles of arts and architecture continued to exert a profound influence far beyond its borders for centuries after its destruction by Alexander.

For further information on registration and offerings, kindly contact Ms. Joanne Savory at the University of British Columbia at:


Introducing Master composer Loris Tjeknavorian


Loris Tjeknavorian was born in 1937, in Iran, to an immigrant Armenian family. He lived most of his life in Austria, the USA, the UK, and Armenia. Tjeknavorian studied violin at the Tehran Conservatory of Music, before moving to Vienna to study at the Vienna Music Academy where, in 1961, he graduated with honors. Shortly upon graduation, a number of Tjeknavorian’s works were published by Doblinger Publishing in Vienna

Maaestro Loris Tjeknavorian is one of the world’s leading composers. For more information on the Maestro’s works consult his website here.

In 1963 Carl Orff granted him a scholarship, which allowed him to reside in Salzburg and to continue working on his opera “Rostam and Sohrab“, one of the major epics of Firdowsi’s Shahname, known as the “Iliad of Persia“.


Maestro Loris Tjeknavorian’s masterpiece Opera “Rostam and Sohrab” from the Shahname epic. Note that the Shahname epics have parallels in the Legend of King Arthur.

In 1965 Tjeknavorian began to study conducting at the University of Michigan. From 1966 to 1967 he was appointed composer in residence at the Concordia College in Moorhead, Minnesota, and from 1966 to 1970 head of the instrumental and opera departments at the Moorhead University in Minnesota. In 1975 Tjeknavorian signed an exclusive conducting contract with the RCA recording company and made many successful recordings with leading orchestras, such as the London Symphony Orchestra, the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, the London Philharmonic Orchestra, etc.


Maestro Loris Tjeknavorian conducts his “Rostam and Sohrab” Opera in Tehran. The Opera video above (which features English subtitles) is towards the end of the performance which outlines the final tragedy of Sohrab’s funeral.

In 1989, Tjeknavorian was appointed Principal Conductor and Artistic Director of the Armenian Philharmonic Orchestra. During his eleven years of collaboration with the orchestra, his recordings for ORF (the Austrian radio and television station) and ASV (an English recording company) achieved world-wide recognition. In 2010 Tjeknavorian was appointed Principal Conductor and Artistic Director of the Glendale Symphony Orchestra in California.

Iranian opera singer Darya Dadvar sings the tragedy of Rostam and Sohrab in Tehran. She currently resides in France.

In the course of his career, Tjeknavorian has made numerous recordings (with RCA, Philips, EMI, ASV, etc.) and written more than 70 compositions (symphonies, operas, a requiem, chamber music, concerto for piano, violin, guitar, cello and pipa (Chinese lute), ballet music, choral works and an oratorio, and over 40 film scores. His works have been performed by some of the world’s major orchestras (including the Vienna Symphony, the London Philharmonic, the American Symphony, etc.) and have received high critical acclaim. Among his many honors, Tjeknavorian was recently presented with the Austrian Presidential Gold Medal for Artistic Merit.

Dr. Manouchehr M. Khorasani: Iranian Martial Arts and Swordsmanship

Iranian military history expert and martial artist, Dr. Manouchehr M. Khorasani has been very active in promoting the project of Persian swordsmanship.

Lexicon of Arms and Armor from Iran: A Study of Symbols and Terminology

Author: Dr. Manouchehr Moshtagh Khorasani

Publisher: Legat Publishers (Tübingen, Germany) (2010)

ISBN: 978 0 96276 645 9

To Order click on the Legat Publishers link or order directly from LEGAT Publishers: Alexander Frank ( +49 (0) 70 73 / 30 24 49; Mobile +49 (0)179 / 453 61 21

Iranian historical fighting techniques arts gathered in the martial art of “Razmafzar” which, based on Persian manuscripts, include the training of the following historical weapons:

  • Kamān (bow)
  • Shamšir (sword)
  • Gorz (mace)
  • Tabar (axe)
  • Neyze (spear)
  • Kārd (knife)
  • Xanjar (dagger)
  • Pišqabz (dagger with a S-shaped blade)
  • Qaddāre (one edged short sword)
  • Qame (double edged short sword).

In addition to weapons training, Persian wrestling techniques as described by different mansucripts are trained extensively. These include a number of moves for throwing and even groundfighting.

Iran has been a multi-ethnic country since the Achaemenian empire and many influences and fighting arts of different Iranian tribes have been considered in the setting up of this project. The techniques are trained on foot as well as on horseback as described by Persian manuscripts. A number of experienced martial artists and historical fencers have already started to train in this ancient art

The following articles by Dr. Khorasani, on Persian swordsmanship and traditional martial arts from Iran have been published in peer-reviewed academic, military history and cultural journals thus far:

Moshtagh Khorasani, Manouchehr (2010f). Persisches Bogenschießen Teil II. Traditionell Bogenschiessen, 3. Quartal 2010, 56, pp. 64-67.

Moshtagh Khorasani, Manouchehr (2010e). Persischer Schwertkampf. Pallasch: Zeitschrift für Militärgeschichte. Heft 35, 14. Jahrgang 2010, pp. 23-29.

Moshtagh Khorasani, Manouchehr (2010d). El Arma Sagrada: El Combate con Arco y flecha en Irán. Revista de Artes Marciales Asiáticas, Volumen 5, Número 1, pp. 53–76.

Moshtagh Khorasani, Manouchehr (2010c). Persisches Bogenschießen. Traditionell Bogenschiessen, 2. Quartal 2010, 56, pp. 62-67.

Moshtagh Khorasani, Manouchehr (2010b). Belief Systems: Iran, The Principles of Javanmardi and Ayyaran, Shah-Nama, Recitations (Naqqali), Passion Plays (Ta’ziyeh). In: Svinth, Joseph R. and Thomas A. Green (eds.), Martial Arts of the World An Encyclopedia of History and Innovation, Volume 2: Themes. Santa Barbara: ABC-CLIO, pp. 363-369.

Moshtagh Khorasani, Manouchehr (2010a). Iranian Martial Arts: Archery, Swordsmanship, Iranian Wrestling. In: Svinth, Joseph R. and Thomas A. Green (eds.), Martial Arts of the World An Encyclopedia of History and Innovation, Volume 1: Regions and Individual Arts. Santa Barbara: ABC-CLIO, pp. 66-77.

Moshtagh Khorasani, Manouchehr (2009e). Las Técnicas de la Esgrima Persa. Revista de Artes Marciales Asiáticas. Volumen 4, Número 1, pp. 20–49.

Moshtagh Khorasani, Manouchehr (2009d). El Combate con Armas Blancas Cortas en la Esgrima Persa. Revista de Artes Marciales Asiáticas. Volumen 4, Número 2, pp. 38–53.

Moshtagh Khorasani, Manouchehr (2009c). La Maza y el Hacha en la Tradición Marcial Iraní. Revista de Artes Marciales Asiáticas. Volumen 4, Número 3, pp. 28–43.

Moshtagh Khorasani, Manouchehr (2009b). La Lanza: El Arma Principal en la Tradición Marcial Iraní. Revista de Artes Marciales Asiáticas. Volumen 4, Número 4, pp. 70–85.

Moshtagh Khorasani, Manouchehr (2009a). L’Escrime Persane. Traduit par Francisco José Luis. La Revue de Téhéran. Mensuel Culturel Iranien en Langue Francaise. N. 49, Décembre 2009, 5e Annee, pp. 10-19.

Books by Professor Hamid Ahmadi

Professor Hamid Ahmadi (Associate Professor of Political Science, Faculty of Law and political Science, University of Tehran)(حمید احمدی – استاد و عضو هیات علمی دانشکده حقوق و علوم سیاسی دانشگاه تهران) is perhaps one of the foremost experts today on ethno-nationalism in Iran, Turkey, the Persian Gulf region and Central Asia.

-حمید احمدی – استاد و عضو هیات علمی دانشکده حقوق و علوم سیاسی دانشگاه تهران- Professor Hamid Ahmadi is one of the foremost experts on the relationships between domestic and international factors and their interplay with ethnic politics in Iran, Central Asia, the Caucasus and the Persian Gulf regions.

Professor Ahmadi has published numerous papers including: 

-حویذ احوذی–Hamid Ahmadi: Turkey, pan-Turkism and Central Asia, Central Eurasia Studies, Volume 2 (issue 2), 2010-مطالعات اوراسیای مرکزی، مرکز مطالعات عالی بین المللی، دانشکده حقوق و علوم سیاسی (ویژه همایش -مطالعات منطقه ای)، سال دوم، شماره 5، زمستان 1388، صفحات 1-22- (pdf).

Below is an abstract of the above article in Persian and English: 


هدف اين پژوهش، بررسي تأثيرات ايدئولوژي پان تركيسم در آسياي مركزي است. فروپاشي اتحاد جماهير شوروي و استقلال كشورهاي آسياي مركزي و قفقاز، بار ديگر اميد نظريه پردازان و استراتژيست‌هاي پان‏تركيسم را كه پس از جنگ دوم در رابطه با پيشبرد پروژه برپايي يك امپراطوري ترك زبان در مناطق جنوبي شوروي دچار سرخوردگي و نا اميدي شده بودند، زنده كرد.
اين پژوهش با توجه به آرمان‌هاي پان‏تركي در سياست خارجي تركيه و تلاش‌هاي پانزده ساله اخير سياستمداران و نخبگان فكري اين كشور براي پيشبرد پروژه پان تركيسم و اتحاد جمهوري‌هاي آسياي مركزي، پيامد اين تلاش‌ها و تأثيرات آن در آسياي مركزي در نهايت واكنش كشورهاي منطقه را به آرمان‌هاي پان‏تركي تجزيه و تحليل مي‌كند. فرضيه اساسي پژوهش آن است كه برخلاف ايده‌هاي اوليه، پان‏تركيسم در ابعاد سياسي خود پيشرفت چنداني نكرده و اين مسأله تركيه و سياستمداران آن را دچار ترديد كرده است 


This research seeks to study the impact of Pan-Turkist ideology on Central Asia. The collapse of the Soviet Union and independence of the Central Asian and Caucasian states once again revitalized hopes among the Pan-Turkist theoreticians and strategists who were hopeless about the implementation of their project of establishing a Turkic empire in the southern parts of the Soviet Union. Considering the Pan-Turkist ideals in Turkey’s foreign policy and the 15-year long efforts by the country’s politicians and intellectuals in promoting the Pan-Turkist project of alliance among Central Asian republics, this article addresses these efforts and their effects on Central Asia and finally regional countries’ reaction to the Pan-Turkist ideals. The main hypothesis of the research includes that unlike original ideas, Pan-Turkism has not progressed so much in its political aspects, which made Turkish politicians hesitant about it. 

Dr. Ahmadi has also published two highly informative textbooks in Persian on Iranian ethnic identity. The first of these is: 

Ethnic Identity and Ethnic inclinations in Iran: Myths and Realities . Published in Tehran by Nashr e Ney publishers in 2010.


At this juncture this book is available in Iran only, however it can be tracked down through the following ISBN number: 964-312-424-X

This book is laden with numerous references and informative maps which guide the reader through Iran’s ethnic dynamics, especially in relation to domestic (Iranian) socio-political processes and the international arena. Dr. Ahmadi’s textbook is primarily based on his Doctoral Dissertation entitled: 

The Foundations of Iranian National Identity. Published in Tehran by Iscs publishers in 2009.


This book is also only available in Iran for purchase, however the publishers can be reached at: