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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The Rivayats (also spelled as Revayats) are a series of exchanges between the Zoroastrian community in India and their co-religionists in early modern Iran.[1] They have been ascribed the same importance of the Talmud to Judaism by Jivanji Jamshedji Modi.[2]

The word Rivayat has disputed etymology. Some claim the word to have origins from Arabic but this is contentious.[2]


The content of each Rivayat varies but they are usually queries on matters of worship, customs, rituals and observance.[3] The issues range form the mundane, such as queries about the preparation of ink for the writing of religious documents, to important issues including conversion.[4]

Over three centuries, twenty-two Rivayats were sent from India to Persia. The first Revayat was brought in 1478 AD by Nariman Hoshang of Broach.[1][5] Hoshang was a layman, supported by Chang Asa a notable leader of the Navsari Parsi community.[6] Hoshang spent a year in Yazd, learning Persian and supported himself by 'petty trade'.[7] Eventually his Persian improved to the extent that he was able to question the dasturs of Iran.

After this initial Rivayat, Indian priests would gather up questions and send representatives to Iran with the questions. These Rivayats are known by the emissary who brought them back. Some Rivayats are anonymous as the person who brought them is unknown, these Rivatays are more or less incomplete.[2]

In the 17th century the Rivayats were classified according to the subject they pertained to by Hormazdyar Framarz, Darab Hormazdyar, and Barzo Kamdin.

The Rivayats are notable as the only Modern Persian text composed in the Avestan script.

During the 18th Century the Kadmi sects in both Iran and India exchanged additional Rivayats, which culminated in the Rivayat-e Haftad va Hast (translated as the Rivayat of 78 Questions) (also known as the Ithoter Rivayat).[1]


  1. ^ a b c Stausberg, Michael; Vevaina, Yuhan Sohrab-Dinshaw; Tessmann, Anna (2015-06-22). The Wiley Blackwell Companion to Zoroastrianism. John Wiley & Sons. ISBN 9781444331356.
  2. ^ a b c Unvala, Ervad Manockij Rustamji (1922). Dārāb Hormazyār's Rivāyat: By Ervad Manockij Rustamji Unvala. With an introduction by Jivanji Jamshedji Modi. British India Press.
  3. ^ Randeria, Jer Dara (1993). The Parsi Mind: A Zoroastrian Asset to Culture. Munshiram Manoharlal Publishers. ISBN 9788121505604.
  4. ^ "What are the Persian Revayats/Rivayats? (TMY – Jame Jamshed of 26-3 & 2-4-17)". Ramiyar Karanjia. 2017-04-07. Retrieved 2018-07-03.
  5. ^ Rose, Jenny (2011-02-15). Zoroastrianism: An Introduction. I.B.Tauris. ISBN 9781848850880.
  6. ^ Paymaster, Rustom Burjorji (1954). Early History of the Parsees in India from Their Landing in Sanjan to 1700 A.D. Zartoshti Dharam Sambandhi Kelavni Apnari Ane Dnyan Felavnari Mandli.
  7. ^ Boyce, Mary (2001). Zoroastrians: Their Religious Beliefs and Practices. Psychology Press. ISBN 9780415239028.
This page was last edited on 27 April 2024, at 15:14
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