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The Kushano- Sassanids
Sassanids
(also called Kushanshas
Kushanshas
or Indo-Sassanians) were a branch of the Sassanid
Sassanid
Persians who established their rule in Bactria
Bactria
and in northwestern Pakistan
Pakistan
during the 3rd and 4th centuries at the expense of the declining Kushans. They captured the provinces of Sogdiana, Bactria
Bactria
and Gandhara
Gandhara
from the Kushans, following the fall of the Kushan
Kushan
dynasty in 225 CE.[2] The Sasanians established governors for the Sasanian Empire, who minted their own coinage and took the title of Kushanshas, i.e. "Kings of the Kushans".[2] They are sometimes considered as forming a "sub-kingdom" inside the Sasanian Empire.[3] This administration continued until 360-370 CE,[2] when the Kushano-Sasanians lost their territories to the invading Kidarites Huns.[3] Thereafter the limit of Sasanian territory was near Merv.[3] Later, the Kidarites
Kidarites
were in turn displaced by the Hephthalites.[4] The Sasanians were able to re-establish some authority after they destroyed the Hephthalites
Hephthalites
with the help of the Turks in 565, but their rule collapsed under Arab attacks in the mid 7th century. The Kushanshas
Kushanshas
are mainly known through their coins. Their coins were minted at Kabul, Balkh, Herat, and Merv, attesting the extent of their realm.[1] A rebellion of Hormizd I Kushanshah
Hormizd I Kushanshah
(277-286 CE), who issued coins with the title Kushanshahanshah ("King of kings of the Kushans"), seems to have occurred against contemporary emperor Bahram II
Bahram II
(276-293 CE) of the Sasanian Empire, but failed.[2]

Contents

1 History

1.1 First Kushano- Sassanid
Sassanid
period 1.2 Second Indo- Sassanid
Sassanid
period

2 Religious influences 3 Artistic influences 4 Main Indo- Sassanid
Sassanid
rulers 5 Coinage 6 See also 7 References 8 Sources 9 External links

History[edit] First Kushano- Sassanid
Sassanid
period[edit] The Sassanids, shortly after victory over the Parthians, extended their dominion into Bactria
Bactria
during the reign of Ardashir I
Ardashir I
around 230 CE, then further to the eastern parts of their empire in western Pakistan
Pakistan
during the reign of his son Shapur I
Shapur I
(240–270). Thus the Kushans
Kushans
lost their western territory (including Bactria
Bactria
and Gandhara) to the rule of Sassanid
Sassanid
nobles named Kushanshahs
Kushanshahs
or "Kings of the Kushans".

Hormizd I Kushanshah
Hormizd I Kushanshah
on the Naqsh-e Rustam
Naqsh-e Rustam
Bahram II
Bahram II
panel.

The Kushano-Sasanians under Hormizd I Kushanshah
Hormizd I Kushanshah
seem to have led a rebellion against contemporary emperor Bahram II
Bahram II
(276-293 CE) of the Sasanian Empire, but failed.[2] According to the Panegyrici Latini (3rd-4th century CE), there was a rebellion of a certain Ormis (Ormisdas) against his brother Bahram II, and Ormis was supported the people of Saccis (Sakastan).[1] Hormizd I Kushanshah
Hormizd I Kushanshah
issued coins with the title Kushanshahanshah ("King of kings of the Kushans"),[5] probably in defiance of imperial Sasanian rule.[2] Around 325, Shapur II
Shapur II
was directly in charge of the southern part of the territory, while in the north the Kushanshahs
Kushanshahs
maintained their rule until the rise of the Kidarites. The decline of the Kushans
Kushans
and their defeat by the Kushano-Sassanids led to the rise of the Kidarites
Kidarites
and then the Hephthalites
Hephthalites
who conquered Bactria
Bactria
and Gandhara, thus replacing the Kushano-Sassanids, until the arrival of Islam
Islam
to Pakistan. Second Indo- Sassanid
Sassanid
period[edit] The Hephthalites
Hephthalites
dominated the area until they were defeated in 565 AD by an alliance between the Gokturks
Gokturks
and Sassanids, and some Indo- Sassanid
Sassanid
authority was re-established. The Kushano-Hephthalites were able to set up rival states in Kapisa, Bamiyan, and Kabul. The 2nd Indo- Sassanid
Sassanid
period ended with the collapse of Sassanids
Sassanids
to the Rashidun Caliphate
Rashidun Caliphate
in the mid 7th century. Sind remained independent until the Arab invasions of India in the early 8th century. The Kushano- Hephthalites
Hephthalites
or Turkshahis were replaced by the Shahi in the mid 8th century. Religious influences[edit]

Coin of the last Kushano-Sasanian ruler Bahram Kushanshah
Bahram Kushanshah
(circa 350-365 CE) in Kushan
Kushan
style. Obv: King Varhran I with characteristic head-dress. Rev: Shiva
Shiva
with bull Nandi, in Kushan
Kushan
style.

Coins depicting Shiva
Shiva
and the Nandi bull
Nandi bull
have been discovered, indicating a strong influence of Shaivite Hinduism.[6] The prophet Mani (210–276 CE), founder of Manichaeism, followed the Sassanids' expansion to the east, which exposed him to the thriving Buddhist
Buddhist
culture of Gandhara. He is said to have visited Bamiyan, where several religious painting are attributed to him, and is believed to have lived and taught for some time. He is also related to have sailed to the Indus valley
Indus valley
area now in modern-day Pakistan
Pakistan
in 240 or 241 CE, and to have converted a Buddhist
Buddhist
King, the Turan
Turan
Shah of India.[7] On that occasion, various Buddhist
Buddhist
influences seem to have permeated Manichaeism: " Buddhist
Buddhist
influences were significant in the formation of Mani's religious thought. The transmigration of souls became a Manichaean belief, and the quadripartite structure of the Manichaean community, divided between male and female monks (the 'elect') and lay follower (the 'hearers') who supported them, appears to be based on that of the Buddhist
Buddhist
sangha"[7] Artistic influences[edit] The Indo- Sassanids
Sassanids
traded goods such as silverware and textiles depicting the Sassanid
Sassanid
emperors engaged in hunting or administering justice. The example of Sassanid
Sassanid
art was influential on Kushan
Kushan
art, and this influence remained active for several centuries in the northwest South Asia. Main Indo- Sassanid
Sassanid
rulers[edit]

Kushano-Sasanian ruler Ardashir I
Ardashir I
Kushanshah, circa 230-250 CE. Merv mint.

Based on coinage, a list of the Kushanshah
Kushanshah
rulers can be established:[8][9]

Ardashir I
Ardashir I
Kushanshah
Kushanshah
(230-?) Ardashir II Kushanshah
Kushanshah
(?-245) Peroz I Kushanshah
Kushanshah
(245-270) Hormizd I Kushanshah
Hormizd I Kushanshah
(270-295), rebelled against Bahram II
Bahram II
of Iran.[2] Hormizd II Kushanshah
Kushanshah
(295-300) Peroz II Kushanshah
Kushanshah
(300-325) Bahram Kushanshah
Bahram Kushanshah
(325-350), also named Varahran

Coinage[edit]

Wikimedia Commons has media related to Kushano-Sasanian Kingdom.

The Indo- Sassanids
Sassanids
created an extensive coinage with legend in Brahmi, Pahlavi or Bactrian, sometimes inspired from Kushan
Kushan
coinage, and sometimes more clearly Sassanid. The obverse of the coin usually depicts the ruler with elaborate headdress and on the reverse either a Zoroastrian
Zoroastrian
fire altar, or Shiva with the bull Nandi.

Ardashir I
Ardashir I
Kushanshah
Kushanshah
in the name of Kushan
Kushan
ruler Vasudeva I, circa 230-245 CE.[10]

Indo- Sassanid
Sassanid
coin.

A gold Indo- Sassanid
Sassanid
coin.

Hormizd I Kushanshah
Hormizd I Kushanshah
with mention of Mazda and Anahita. Merv
Merv
mint.[5]

See also[edit]

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Indo-Parthian

References[edit]

^ a b c Encyclopedia Iranica ^ a b c d e f g The Cambridge History of Iran, Volume 3, E. Yarshater p.209 ff ^ a b c The Cambridge Companion to the Age of Attila, Michael Maas, Cambridge University Press, 2014 p.284 ff ^ Sasanian Seals and Sealings, Rika Gyselen, Peeters Publishers, 2007, p.1 ^ a b CNG Coins ^ The ancient & classical world, 600 B.C.-A.D. 650 by Michael Mitchiner ^ a b Richard Foltz, Religions of the Silk Road, New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2010 ^ History of Civilizations of Central Asia, Ahmad Hasan Dani, B. A. Litvinsky, Unesco p.105 ^ Numismatic Evidence for Kushano-Sasanian Chronology Joe Cribb 1990 p.171 ^ CNG Coins

Sources[edit]

Vaissière, Étienne de La (2016). " Kushanshahs
Kushanshahs
i. History". Encyclopaedia Iranica.  Kia, Mehrdad (2016). The Persian Empire: A Historical Encyclopedia [2 volumes]: A Historical Encyclopedia. ABC-CLIO. ISBN 978-1610693912. 

External links[edit]

Coins of the Kushano-Sassanids

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Middle kingdoms of India

Timeline and cultural period

Northwestern India (Punjab-Sapta Sindhu)

Indo-Gangetic Plain Central India Southern India

Upper Gangetic Plain (Kuru-Panchala)

Middle Gangetic Plain Lower Gangetic Plain

IRON AGE

Culture Late Vedic Period Late Vedic Period (Brahmin ideology)[a] Painted Grey Ware culture

Late Vedic Period (Kshatriya/Shramanic culture)[b] Northern Black Polished Ware

Pre-history

 6th century BC Gandhara Kuru-Panchala Magadha

Adivasi
Adivasi
(tribes)

Culture Persian-Greek influences "Second Urbanisation" Rise of Shramana
Shramana
movements Jainism
Jainism
- Buddhism
Buddhism
- Ājīvika
Ājīvika
- Yoga

Pre-history

 5th century BC (Persian rule)

Shishunaga dynasty

Adivasi
Adivasi
(tribes)

 4th century BC (Greek conquests) Nanda empire

HISTORICAL AGE

Culture Spread of Buddhism Pre-history Sangam period (300 BC – 200 AD)

 3rd century BC Maurya Empire Early Cholas Early Pandyan Kingdom Satavahana dynasty Cheras 46 other small kingdoms in Ancient Thamizhagam

Culture Preclassical Hinduism[c] - "Hindu Synthesis"[d] (ca. 200 BC - 300 AD)[e][f] Epics - Puranas
Puranas
- Ramayana
Ramayana
- Mahabharata
Mahabharata
- Bhagavad Gita
Bhagavad Gita
- Brahma Sutras - Smarta Tradition Mahayana Buddhism Sangam period (continued) (300 BC – 200 AD)

 2nd century BC Indo-Greek Kingdom Shunga Empire Maha-Meghavahana Dynasty

Early Cholas Early Pandyan Kingdom Satavahana dynasty Cheras 46 other small kingdoms in Ancient Thamizhagam

 1st century BC

 1st century AD

Indo-Scythians Indo-Parthians

Kuninda Kingdom

 2nd century Kushan
Kushan
Empire

 3rd century Kushano-Sasanian Kingdom Kushan
Kushan
Empire Western Satraps Kamarupa
Kamarupa
kingdom Kalabhra dynasty Pandyan Kingdom(Under Kalabhras)

Culture "Golden Age of Hinduism"(ca. AD 320-650)[g] Puranas Co-existence of Hinduism
Hinduism
and Buddhism

 4th century Kidarites Gupta Empire Varman dynasty

Kalabhra dynasty Pandyan Kingdom(Under Kalabhras) Kadamba Dynasty Western Ganga Dynasty

 5th century Hephthalite Empire Alchon Huns Kalabhra dynasty Pandyan Kingdom(Under Kalabhras) Vishnukundina

 6th century Nezak Huns Kabul
Kabul
Shahi

Maitraka

Adivasi
Adivasi
(tribes) Badami Chalukyas Kalabhra dynasty Pandyan Kingdom(Under Kalabhras)

Culture Late-Classical Hinduism
Hinduism
(ca. AD 650-1100)[h] Advaita Vedanta
Advaita Vedanta
- Tantra Decline of Buddhism
Buddhism
in India

 7th century Indo-Sassanids

Vakataka dynasty Empire of Harsha Mlechchha dynasty Adivasi
Adivasi
(tribes) Pandyan Kingdom(Under Kalabhras) Pandyan Kingdom(Revival) Pallava

 8th century Kabul
Kabul
Shahi

Pala Empire Pandyan Kingdom Kalachuri

 9th century

Gurjara-Pratihara

Rashtrakuta dynasty Pandyan Kingdom Medieval Cholas Pandyan Kingdom(Under Cholas) Chera Perumals of Makkotai

10th century Ghaznavids

Pala dynasty Kamboja-Pala dynasty

Kalyani Chalukyas Medieval Cholas Pandyan Kingdom(Under Cholas) Chera Perumals of Makkotai Rashtrakuta

References and sources for table

References

^ Samuel ^ Samuel ^ Michaels (2004) p.39 ^ Hiltebeitel (2002) ^ Michaels (2004) p.39 ^ Hiltebeitel (2002) ^ Micheals (2004) p.40 ^ Michaels (2004) p.41

Sources

Flood, Gavin D. (1996), An Introduction to Hinduism, Cambridge University Press  Hiltebeitel, Alf (2002), Hinduism. In: Joseph Kitagawa, "The Religious Traditions of Asia: Religion, History, and Culture", Routledge  Michaels, Axel (2004), Hinduism. Past and present, Princeton, New Jersey: Princeton University Press  Samuel, Geoffrey (2010), The Origins of Yoga
Yoga
and Tantra. Indic Religions to the Thirteenth Century, Cambridge University Press 

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Provinces of the Sasanian Empire

Abarshahr Adurbadagan Albania Arbayistan Armenia Asoristan Balasagan Dihistan Egypt* Eran-Khwarrah-Yazdegerd* Garamig Garamig ud Nodardashiragan Gurgan Harev Iberia India Khuzestan Kirman Kushanshahr Khwarazm Lazica Machelonia Makuran Marw Mazun Media Meshan Nodardashiragan Paradan Padishkhwargar Pars Sakastan Sogdia Spahan Turgistan

* indicates shor

.