Sunset of Empire(2003)
Stories from the Shahnameh of Ferdowsi V. 3
A collection of stories by Abolqasem Ferdowsi
With our third and final volume of stories from the "Shahnameh" we move from mythology and legend to romanticized history. Here the mighty events that shook ancient Persia from the time of Alexander of Macedon's conquest to the Arab invasion of the 7th century CE are reflected in the stirring and poignant narratives of Ferdowsi, the master poet who took on himself the task of preserving his country's great pre-Islamic heritage. We see vast empires rise and fall, the rule of noble kings and cruel tyrants, the fortunes of a people buffeted by contending tides of history. Larger than life individuals are vividly depicted - the impulsive, pleasure-loving king Bahram Gur, the wise vizier Bozarjmehr, the brave rebel Bahram Chubineh, his loyal defiant sister Gordyeh, and many others - but we also see many vignettes of everyday life in the villages and towns of ancient Persia, and in this part of the "Shahnameh" Ferdowsi indulges his talent for sly humor much more than in the earlier tales. The poem rises to its magnificent climax in its last pages, when the tragic end of an era is recorded and Ferdowsi and his characters look with foreboding towards an unstable and fearful future. Breathtaking miniatures from the finest Persian "Shahnameh" manuscripts of the 16th and 17th centuries, many of them published here for the first time, heighten the emotional impact of the text.
Used availability for Abolqasem Ferdowsi's Sunset of Empire
December 2003 : USA Hardback