Ehsan Yarshater was a towering figure in the field of Iranian studies. His life was single-mindedly devoted to promoting a wider knowledge and a profound understanding of Iranian civilization. The scope of Professor Yarshater’s career was expansive, spanning teaching, research, publication, public engagement, philanthropy, and much more.
Born in Hamadan (Iran) on April 3, 1920, Professor Yarshater moved to Tehran at an early age and completed his secondary education there at the Tarbiyat School, graduating at the top of his class. This earned him scholarships to study at the Teacher’s College and the Faculty of Literature of the University of Tehran. After graduating in 1941 with the degree of Licence-ès-Lettres, he was employed by the Ministry of Education in 1942 as a teacher at Elmieh High School in Tehran. Two years later, he was appointed Deputy Director of the Preparatory Educational College (Danesh-sara-ye Moqaddamati) in Tehran. During these years, he also studied at the Faculty of Law and received a B.A. at the Legal Branch from that Faculty. At the same time, he pursued his study of Persian literature at the University of Tehran and received a doctorate in this field in 1947. His dissertation focused on15th-century Persian poetry.
A year later, he received a scholarship from the British Council to continue his studies in England, where he chose to study Old and Middle Iranian Languages with the noted German philologist W. B. Henning at the School of Oriental and African Studies of the University of London. He received an M.A. there in 1953 and returned to Iran the same year. He began to work on his British doctoral dissertation and received his second Ph.D. from SOAS University of London in 1960 by defending his dissertation on Southern Tati Dialects during the meeting of the Congress of Orientalists held in Moscow that year.
In 1953, he founded The [Royal] Institute for Translation and Publication (Bongah-e Tarjomeh va Nashr-e Ketab - BTNK), which went on to publish some 500 volumes before the Islamic Revolution of 1979. The titles ranged widely and covered many disciplines: they included the Persian text series; the Iranology series, comprising translations of major works of Iranologists into Persian; translations of world classics written for young people and children; and a series of books offering general knowledge in various fields. The BTNK was the most productive and culturally significant publishing venture in Iran and remained so as long as it operated.
Upon his return to Tehran in 1953, Dr. Yarshater was appointed first as an Assistant Professor of Persian Literature and, in the following year, of Old Persian at the University of Tehran. In 1958, he was invited by Columbia University to be a Visiting Associate Professor of Indo-Iranian for two consecutive years. In 1960, he succeeded Professor Ebrahim Pourdavoud as Professor of Ancient Iranian Culture at the University of Tehran. In 1961, Columbia University offered him a permanent position, the newly founded Chair of Iranian Studies endowed by Hagop Kevorkian, a well-known Armenian art collector. Having accepted the offer, he moved back to New York with his wife, Latifeh Alvieh (1926-1999), whom he had met in 1956 and married in 1960.
A graduate of the American School for Girls in Tehran, Latifeh Alvieh Yarshater held a B.A. and M.A. in Middle Eastern Studies from Columbia University. From 1951 through 1961 she served as Cultural Advisor to the United States Information Agency in Tehran in its leader grant program. Once settled in New York, she continued to offer her expertise to several councils and committees, including the National Council of Women of the United States. From 1986 to 1990, she worked at the Middle East Institute of Columbia University as Coordinator of its Outreach Program, designed to provide a more informed understanding of Middle Eastern affairs to students and teachers, as well as to the general public.
From 1964 to 1966, Professor Yarshater was granted extended leave from Columbia University. During this period, which he spent in Iran, beside other occupations, he conducted intensive fieldwork and recorded many hitherto understudied village dialects of Iran. His scholarly meticulousness and analytical skill, and the attention to detail in both phonology and morphology, made his work stand out as an exceptional contribution in Iranian dialectology.
The most outstanding feature of Professor Yarshater’s many lifelong achievements was his dedication to the founding of cultural institutions and the unwavering determination with which he attended to their progress. In 1968, he founded the Center for Iranian Studies at Columbia University, the foremost academic research center in Iranian Studies in the United States. Dedicated to the study of Persian history and culture, the Center’s extensive program of scholarly publications, seminars, and varied and ambitiously long-term projects put on full display Professor Yarshater’s organizational skills, perseverance, and ability to reach out to scholars worldwide, leaving a remarkable imprint.
Professor Yarshater was the Founding Editor of the Encyclopædia Iranica, arguably the world’s most extensive scholarly, groundbreaking, and comprehensive reference work on Iranian civilization in its widest sense, authored by numerous scholars. It is dedicated to the broad and inclusive study of all aspects of Iranian civilization in the Middle East, the Caucasus, Central Asia, and the Indian subcontinent, offering a comprehensive and detailed overview of topics from different perspectives.
In 1979, the Encyclopædia Iranica project at Columbia University won an initial grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) for $17,500. Over the next four decades, the Encyclopædia Iranica received $6.25 million in NEH support. The first fascicle of the Encyclopædia’s printed edition appeared in 1982 and the first volume in 1985, while the first version of the web-based digital edition was established in 1996. Today, the project numbers fifteen printed volumes and more than seven thousand online articles with contributions from more than 1,600 scholars who are experts in their fields. “Projects like the Encyclopædia Iranica bring together the best scholars in their field to create new knowledge and help us better understand our world,” said NEH Chairman Jon Parrish Peede. “Without the vision of scholars like Dr. Yarshater, our knowledge of the Middle East would be poorer.”
Professor Yarshater was also the Founding Editor of A History of Persian Literature. This 20-volume, authoritative survey is designed to reflect the status and significance of Persian literature as the single most important accomplishment of the Iranian people through its long history. It includes extensive and carefully selected specimens of poetry and prose with translations and commentary by prominent scholars.
Professor Yarshater was also the author or editor of a number of other highly acclaimed scholarly works. He served as the Founding General Editor of the Persian Text Series, the Persian Heritage Series, the Persian Studies Series, the Modern Persian Literature Series, and the Persian Art Series, among others. He was also the General Editor of The History of Beyhaqi (3 vols.). The annotated translation of Tabari’s History in 40 volumes was completed under his General Editorship.
Among his books are Persian Poetry in the Second Half of the 15th Century (in Persian, 1953), and Southern Tati Dialects (1970). He edited the third volume of The Cambridge History of Iran, in two parts, covering the Seleucid, Parthian and Sasanian periods (1983, 1986), to which he contributed his magisterial “Iranian National History” and Persian Literature (1988). His frequently cited and erudite chapter, “The Persian Presence in the Islamic World” is included in a volume with the same title as part of the Thirteenth Giorgio Levi Della Vida Biennial Conference in his honor (1998).
He was an honorary member of Societas Iranologica Europaea and of the Association for Iranian Studies, for which he served as President as well. He was also a life member of the American Institute of Iranian Studies
Lecture series in his name have been instituted at the University of London (in Persian Art and Culture, 1993; in Persian Literature, 2016), the University of California at Los Angeles (1992), the University of Paris (2000), the University of Maryland (2005), and existed, up to 2005, at Harvard University, and at Yale University (2014).
Significantly, Professor Yarshater’s career also included foundation work and philanthropy. In 1983, he established the Persian Heritage Foundation, originally called the Yarshater Fund, and, in 1990, he founded the Encyclopaedia Iranica Foundation. He was able to obtain uninterrupted funding for the Center for Iranian Studies and its projects through these Foundations, by successfully lobbying individual donors, by obtaining grants from the NEH and other agencies, and by contributing art and rare books for sale from his personal collection. In 2009, with the economy down and funding becoming scarce, he donated the proceeds from a prized Rodin sculpture to the Persian Heritage Foundation support the cause. “The 34-inch-high sculpture has a lovely patina and is what Christie’s described as an ‘extremely rare bronze cast, known as the Milwaukee version, one of only five created during the artist’s lifetime from the plaster model of the classic sculpture.’ The auction house catalogue estimated it would bring $1.5–$2 million. Yarshater was working on the encyclopaedia in his office when a Christie’s representative called with news of the final hammer price: $6,354,500.” “Within a matter of weeks, the money was fed into our account, and our editors and other staff could be paid. Rodin came to our rescue,” Yarshater said in an interview published in Columbia College Today, Fall 2012.
In 2006, he established the Persian Heritage Foundation Fellowship Fund at Harvard University. In 2012, he established the Ehsan Yarshater Fellowship Fund at the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences at Columbia University and in 2014 the Ehsan Yarshater Persian Heritage Fund at Yale University.
Professor Yarshater was celebrated and was the recipient of several awards including the Giorgio Levi Della Vida Medal of The Gustave E. von Grunebaum Center for Near Eastern Studies at the University of California at Los Angeles (1991); Spirit of Iranian Noted Achievers (SINA, 2013); Ellis Island Medal of Honor (2015); Bita Prize for Persian Art (2015), and many more. But he never seemed to care much about the accolades; to Professor Yarshater, they were almost a distraction from work. The only reward he really seemed to prize was the success of the acclaimed Encyclopædia Iranica.
Professor Yarshater was an editor with a special kind of genius, combining contrary qualities in one mind: assertive and self-effacing, commanding and sensitive, infinitely curious and sharply focused, patient and fearfully demanding. One of his much-remarked gifts was his innate ability to spot the kind of unexplored topic that had hitherto escaped the notice of scholars and reference works. He combined the intellectual excitement of a brilliant graduate student, with the authority and ease of someone who had been at the center of the academic world for more than half a century.
On August 15, 2018, Columbia University received a $10 million gift from the Persian Heritage Foundation to endow and rename the Center for Iranian Studies in his honor. The official announcement of the establishment of the Ehsan Yarshater Center for Iranian Studies came just weeks before his passing on September 2, 2018. On receiving this news, Professor Yarshater remarked “Having devoted my entire life to the preservation and advancement of Persianate culture, I am thankful that through the establishment of this Center, my life's work will continue unabated.”
1 M. Boyce and G. Windfuhr, “Foreword,” Iranica Varia: Papers in Honor of Professor Ehsan Yarshater, Textes et Mémoires volume XVI, Acta Iranica 30, Leiden: E.J. Brill, 1990, p. xv.
Publications by Dr. Yarshater
- Theorems and Remarks* (al-Ishārāt wa’l-tanbīhāt) by Avicenna, tr. into Persian in the 13th century; annotated edition, Tehran: National Monuments Society, 1953.
- Five Treaties in Arabic and Persian (Panj Resāla) by Ebn Sinā, annotated edition, Tehran: National Monuments Society, 1953.
- Persian Poetry under Shahrokh: The Second Half of the 15th Century (Sheʿr-e fārsi dar ʿahd-e Shāhrokh), Tehran: The Tehran University Press, 1955.
- Legends of the Epic of Kings (Dāstānhā-ye Shāhnāma), Tehran: Iran-American Joint Fund Publications, 1957, 1958, 1964; 2nd ed. 1974, 1982 (awarded a UNESCO prize in 1959).
- Old Iranian Myths and Legends (Dāstānhā-ye Irān-e bāstān), Tehran: Iran-American Joint Fund Publications, 1957, 1958, 1964 (Royal Award for the best book of the year, 1959).
- With W.B. Henning (eds.), A Locust's Leg: Studies in Honour of S.H. Taqizadeh, London: Percy Lund, Humphries & Co., 1962.
- Modern Painting (Naqqāshi-e novin). 2 vols., Tehran: Amir Kabir, 1965-66; 2nd printing, 1975.
- A Grammar of Southern Tati Dialects, Median Dialect Studies I, The Hague and Paris: Mouton and Co., 1969.
- Iran Faces the Seventies (ed.), New York: Praeger Publishers, 1971.
- With D. Bishop (eds.), Biruni Symposium, New York: Center for Iranian Studies, Columbia University, 1976.
- Selected Stories from the Shahnāma (Bargozida-ye dāstānhā-ye Shahnāma), Vol. I. Tehran: BTNK, 1974; reprint, Washington, D.C.: Iranian Cultural Foundation, 1982.
- With David Bivar (eds.), Inscriptions of Eastern Māzandarān, Corpus Inscriptionem Iranicarum, London: Lund and Humphries, 1978.
- With Richard Ettinghausen (eds.), Highlights of Persian Art, New York: Bibliotheca Persica, 1982.
- Sadeq Hedayat: An Anthology (ed.), New York: Bibliotheca Persica, 1979.
- Cambridge History of Iran, Vol. III: Seleucid, Parthian and Sassanian Periods (ed.), Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1982.|
- Persian Literature (ed.), New York: State University of New York Press, 1988.
- Persian Lyric Poetry in the Classical Era, 800-1500: Ghazals, Panegyrics and Quatrains (ed.), A History of Persian Literature, vol. II, London and New York: I.B. Tauris & Co Ltd., 2019.
- BFLT = Bulletin of the Faculty of Letters of Tehran
- BTNK = Bongāh-e Tarjoma va Nashr-e Ketāb (The [Royal] Institute for Translation and Publication, Tehran)
- JAOS = Journal of the American Oriental Society
- BSOAS= Bulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London
- “Manichaean Myths of Creation” (Afsāna-ye khelqat dar āthār-e mānavi), Yaghmā IV/5, 1951, pp. 193-99, and IV/6, 1951, pp. 252-56.
- “Indra in Indo-Iranian Mythology” (Asātir-e hend-o-irāni: Indrā), Yaghmā IV/ 10, 1952, pp. 433-47, and V/1, 1952, pp. 2-13. (Also published separately by Yaghmā, 1952.)
- “Rostam in Sogdian” (Rostam dar zabān-e soghdi), Mehr, VIII/7, 1952, pp. 406-11.
- Entries on Persian literature, Cassell’s Encyclopedia of World Literature, 2 vols., London: 1953.
- “A Vedic Hymn to Indra” (Sorūd-e Indrā), translated from Sanskrit, Sokhan IV/2, 1953, pp. 105-13.
- “Newly Discovered Choresmian Works” (Āthār-e bāzyāfta-ye zabān-e khwārazmi), Mehr VIII/10, 1953, pp. 584-88.
- “To Be Fair-minded” (Shiva-ye ensāf), Sokhan IV/3, 1953, pp. 165-68. Reprinted in An Anthology of Contemporary Eloquent Persian Prose (Nemunahā-i az nathr-e fasih-e fārsi-e moʿser), Vol. 2, ed., J. Matini, Tehran: 1979, pp. 270-73.
- “The New Way” (Rāh-e now), Sokhan IV/4, 1953, pp. 245-49. Reprinted in J. Matini, ed., op. cit., pp. 277-80.
- “Some Linguistic Notes (Chand bahth-e zabānshenāsi): 1. Language and Civilization,” Sokhan IV/5, 1953, pp. 393-97; “2. The Hittite Language,” ibid., 6, pp. 451-54; “3. Relationships among Non-cognate Languages,” ibid., 7, pp. 541-43.
- “The Individual or the Society (Fard yā ejtemāʿ)--Answer to an Inquiry,” Sokhan IV/10, 1953, pp. 839-40.
- “Some Remarks on the Chorasmian Language” (Chand nokta dar bāra-ye zabān-e khwārazmi), BFLT, I, 2, Tehran: 1954, pp. 41-49.
- “Can One Enjoy Modern Painting?” (Āyā mitavān az naqqāshi-e jadid lazzat bord?), Sokhan V, 1954, pp. 820-27, 896-904; VI, 1954, pp. 120-27, 225-31, 379-90, 477-86; 1955, pp. 1054-67. Reprinted in J. Matini, ed., op. cit., pp.
- “A Newly Found Work of Avicenna” (Āthār-e tāzai az Ebn Sinā), Jashn-nāma-ye ebn Sinā, II, Tehran, 1955, pp. 506-08.
- “A Crooked Foundation” (Bonyād-e kaj), Sokhan VI/3, 1955, pp.188-91.
- “Poverty with Luxury” (Darvishi o tajammol), Sokhan VI/5, 1955, pp. 275-79.
- “The Plague of Being Considerate” (Āfat-e reʿāyat), Sokhan VI/8, 1955, pp. 664-68.
- “The Care of the Language” (Gham-e zabān), Sokhan VIII/2, 1957, pp. 99-104.
- “The Respected Scholar” (Dāneshmand-e mohtaram), Yaghmā XIV, pp. 49-52. Reprinted in J. Matini, ed., op. cit., pp. 274-76; and in Gozida-i az adab-e fārsi (An Anthology of Persian Literature), ed., A.A. Khobrazāda, Vol. 2, Tehran: 1973.
- “Preliminary Information on Shāhrudi, the Iranian Dialect of Khalkhāl,” Akten des XXIV internationalen Kongresses, Munich: 1957, pp. 458-60.
- “Iranian Languages and Dialects” (Zabānhā va lahjahā-ye irāni), Loghatnāma-ye Dehkhoda, Introductory Volume, ed. M. Moʿin, pp. 9-25, reprinted in BFLT V, 1-2, Tehran: 1958, pp. 11-48. (Also published separately by the B.F.L., 1958.)
- Introduction to The Catalog of the First Tehran Biennale, Tehran: 1958.
- “The Dialect of Shāhrud (Khalkhāl)”, BSOAS XXII, 1, 1959, pp. 52-68.
- “Now Ruz--The New Year Celebration in Persia,” Iran Review IV/3, March 1959, pp. 12-15.
- “Persian Letters in the Last Fifty Years,” Middle Eastern Affairs XI, 10, 1960, pp. 297-306; reprinted in Critical Perspectives on Modern Persian Literature, ed., Th. Ricks, Washington, D.C.: Three Continents Press, 1984, pp. 448-57.
- “The Dialect of Kajal,”BSOAS XXIII/2, 1960, pp. 275-86.
- “Theme of Wine-drinking and the Concept of the Beloved in Early Persian Poetry,” Studia Islamica XIII, 1960, pp. 43-53.
- “The Tāti Dialects of Rāmand,” A Locust’s Leg: Studies in Honour of S. H. Taqizadeh, ed. W. B. Henning and E. Yarshater, London: 1962, pp. 240-45.
- “Some Common Characteristics of Persian Poetry and Art,” Studia Islamica XVI, 1962, pp. 61-71.
- “Pasargadae,” Encyclopaedia Americana, 1962, s.v.
- “Avesta,” ibid., s.v.
- “Iranian Religions,” Area Handbook for Iran, Washington, D.C.: American University, 1963, pp. 227-51.
- “Iranian Intellectual and Artistic Expressions,” ibid., pp. 189-227.
- “The Dialects of Alvir and Vidar,” Mélanges présentés à Georg Morgenstierne, Wiesbaden: 1964, pp. 177-87.
- Introduction to the critical edition of the Qābus-nāma by Gh. Youssefi, Tehran: BTNK, 1966.
- “An Untimely Foray of Death: [Obituary of W. B. Henning and Review of His Works]” (Dastbord-e nābehengām-e ajal), BFLT XIV, 5-6, Tehran: 1967, pp. 1-40.
- “Persian Poetry and Painting: Common Features,” A Survey of Persian Art, ed. A.U. Pope, Vol. XIV, Tokyo: Oxford University Press and Meiji Shoho, 1967. (A shorter version of no. 28, above.)
- “The Marāghi Community and Their Language”(Marāghiyān-e alamut va rudbār va zabān-e ānhā), Majalla-ye Irānshenāsi I, 1967.
- “Textual Aspects of the Andarznāma,” A Survey of Persian Art, ed. A.U. Pope, Vol. XIII: Addendum A, Tokyo: Oxford University Press and Meiji Shoho, 1968.
- “A Bibliography of W. B. Henning” (Henning va āthār-e u), Rahnemā-ye Ketāb XI, 5, 1968, pp. 212-23.
- “Discussions” (Goftogu), Rahnemā-ye Ketāb, XI, 12, 1968, pp. 37.
- “Ibn Isfandiyar,” Encyclopedia of Islam, new edition, Vol. III, ed. Lewis, Menage, Pellat and Schacht, Leiden: Brill, and London: Luzac, 1969, s.v.
- “The Use of Postpositions in Southern Tati,” V. Minorsky Memorial Volume (Yād-nāme-ye irāni-ye Minorsky), Tehran: Tehran University Press, 1969, pp. 221-55.
- “Distinction of Feminine Gender in Southern Tati,” Studia Classica et Orientalia Antonio Pagliaro Oblata, Vol. III, Rome: 1969, pp. 281-301.
- “Persian Drama,” The Reader’s Encyclopedia of World Drama, Vol. III, eds., Bassner and Quinn, New York: Thomas Crowell & Co., 1969, pp. 647-52.
- “Persian Literature in the Islamic Period,” The Cambridge History of Islam, Vol. 2: The Further Islamic Lands, Islamic Society and Civilization, ed. Holt, Lambton, and Lewis, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1970, pp. 671-82.
- “The Tati Dialects of Tārom,” W. B. Henning Memorial Volume, London: Asia Major Library, 1970, pp. 451-67.
- “The Passing Away of a Distinguished Scholar [Obituary of S. H. Taqizadeh]” (Dargozasht-e dāneshmand o dāneshparvari gerānqadr), Yādnāma-ye Taqizādeh, ed., H. Yaghmāʾi, Tehran: 1970.
- “Persian Modern Literary Idiom,” Iran Faces the Seventies, ed., E. Yarshater, New York: Praeger Publishers, 1971, pp. 284-320; reprinted in Critical Perspectives on Modern Persian Literature, ed. Th. Ricks, Washington, D.C.: Three Continents Press, 1984, pp. 448-57.
- “Current Trends in Linguistics: Iran and Afghanistan,” Current Trends in Linguistics, ed. Th. Sebeok, Vol. VI: Linguistics in South West Asia and North Africa, The Hague: Mouton & Co., 1971, pp. 669-89.
- “Zoroaster,” International Biographical Encyclopedia, New York: McGraw-Hill, 1971, s.v.
- “Shapur II,” ibid., s.v.
- “Chosroes I,” ibid., s.v.
- “Were the Sasanians Heirs to the Achaemenids?” La Persia nel Mediovo, Rome: Accademia Nazionale dei Lincei, 1971, pp. 517-31.
- “Persian Language and Literature,” Funk & Wagnalls Standard Reference Encyclopedia, New York: 1971, s.v.
- Entries on Persian literature in Cassell’s Encycopedia of World Literature, 2nd ed., London: 1973 (a revised and enlarged version of no. 4).
- “Common Characteristics of Persian Poetry and Music,” Studies in Honor of Richard Ettinghausen, ed., P. Chelkowski, New York University and the University of Utah, 1974, pp. 59-78.
- “Jewish Communities of Iran and their Dialects,” Jean de Menasce Memorial Volume, ed., by Ph. Gignoux and A. Tafazzoli, Paris, 1974, pp. 453-66.
- “Persian Literature of the Safavid Period: Progress or Decline?” Isfahan under the Reign of Shah Abbas the Great: A Symposium, Vol. I, ed., O. Grabar, Harvard University Press, 1974, pp. 217-70.
- “Pourdavud: In Memoriam” (Be yād-e Purdāvud), Pourdavud Memorial Volume, ed. I. Afshar (Vol. 21 of Farhang-e Irān Zamin), 1976, pp. 7-15.
- The List of Achaemenid Kings in al-Biruni and Bar Hebraeus,” Biruni Symposium, eds. E. Yarshater and D. Bishop, New York: Center for Iranian Studies, Columbia University, 1976, pp. 49-65.
- “Cultural Developments in Iran,” Iran: Past, Present and Future, ed., J.W. Jacqz, New York: Aspen Institute for Humanistic Studies, 1976, pp. 407-20.
- “Āzari, the Ancient Language of Azerbaijan,” Dānesh-nāma-ye Iran-o Eslām (Encyclopedia of Iran and Islam) I, 1, Tehran: 1976, pp. 61-69.
- Introduction, ibid., pp. 9-33.
- Introduction to Tārikh-e Sistan, tr. M. Gold, Rome: IsMEO, 1977.
- “The Hybrid Language of the Iranian Jews,” JAOS XCVII, 1, 1977, pp. 1-8.
- “Modern Persian Poetry,” preface to An Anthology of Modern Persian Poetry, tr. A. Karimi Hakkak, New York: Bibliotheca Persica, 1978, pp. xiii-xiv.
- Introduction to The History of Shah ʿAbbās by Eskandar Beg Monshi, tr. R. Savory, 3 vols., New York: Bibliotheca Persica, 1979-86, pp. xii-xiv.
- “Taʿzieh and Pre-Islamic Mourning Rites in Iran,” Taʿzieh: Ritual Drama in Islam, ed. P. Chelkowski, New York University and Soroush Presses, 1979, pp. 88-95.
- Introduction to Sadeq Hedayat: An Anthology, ed. E. Yarshater, New York: Bibliotheca Persica, 1979.
- Introduction to Wisdom of the Sassanian Sages (Dēnkart, Book VI), tr. S. Shaked, New York: Bibliotheca Persica, 1980, pp. 363-77.
- Introduction to Memoirs, by Qasem Ghani, Vol. VI, London: 1981.
- 74. Preface to Highlights of Persian Art, eds. R. Ettinghausen and E. Yarshater, New York: Bibliotheca Persica, 1982.
- “Modern Persian Painting,” in R. Ettinghausen and E. Yarshater, eds., op. cit., pp. 363-77.
- “Abarsām,” Encyclopaedia Iranica, ed. E. Yarshater, Vol. I, Fasc. 1, London: Routledge and Kegan Paul, 1982, pp. 67-68.
- Introduction to Plagued by the West, by J. Al-e Ahmad, tr. Paul Sprachman, Caravan Books, 1982.
- “Survey of Parthian and Sassanian History,” Cambridge History of Iran, Vol. III, ed. E. Yarshater, Cambridge University Press, 1982, pp. xvii-lxxv.
- “Iranian World View,” ibid., pp. 343-58.
- “Iranian National History,” ibid., pp. 359-476.
- “Mazdakism,” ibid., pp. 991-1024.
- “Abūzaydābād,” Encyclopaedia Iranica, ed. E. Yarshater, Vol. I, London and Boston: Routledge and Kegan Paul, 1983, p. 401.
- “Abūzaydābādi,” ibid., pp. 401-02.
- “Abyāna,” ibid., pp. 402-04.
- “Abyāna’i,” ibid., pp. 404-05.
- “Afrāsiāb,” ibid., Fasc. 5, 1984, pp. 570-76.
- “Observations on Nāsir al-Din Shah,” Qajar Iran: Political, Social and Cultural Change 1800-1925, ed. C. E. Bosworth and C. Hillenbrand, Edinburgh University Press, 1983, pp. 3-13.
- “Why the Median and Achaemenian Kings Are Not Mentioned in Persian National History” (Cherā dar Shāhnāma az pādeshāhān-e mād o hakhāmaneshi zekri nist), Iran Nameh III, 2 (1984), pp. 191-213.
- “Distinction of Feminine Gender in the Dialects of Kashan Province and the Adjoining Areas,” Papers in Honour of Professor Mary Boyce, Acta Iranica, Vol. XI, Hommages et Opera Minora, Leiden: E. J. Brill, 1985, pp. 727-45.
- “Persian Poetry in the Timurid and Safavid Period, 14th-18th Centuries,” Cambridge History of Iran, Vol. VI, ed. Peter Jackson, Cambridge University Press, 1985, pp. 965-94.
- “Nowruz,” Encyclopaedia of Religion, ed., Mircea Eliade, Vol. X, New York: McMillan Company, 1986, pp. 341-42.
- “Aštīānī,” Encyclopaedia Iranica, op. cit., Vol. II, Fasc. 8, 1987, pp. 848-49.
- “Azari, the Old Iranian Language of Azerbaijan,” Encyclopaedia Iranica, op. cit., Vol. III/2, 1987.
- “Approaches to Translation of Classical Persian Poetry,” Festschrift for J. P. Asmussen, Copenhagen: 1987.
- Introduction to J. Khaleghi-Motlagh’s critical edition of the Shāhnāmeh, New York: Bibliotheca Persica, 1988.
- “The Dialects of Arān and Bidgol,” Mélange Gilbert Lazard, 1988.
- “Bidgoli,” Encyclopaedia Iranica, op. cit., Vol. IV/3, 1989, pp. 247-49.
- “The Dialect of Borujerd Jews,” in Archaeologia Iranica et Orientalis. Miscellanea in Honorem Louis Vanden Berghe, Gent, 1989.
- “Communication,” Iranian Studies 22/1, 1989.
- “The Feared Child in Iranian Mythology,” International Congress Proceedings, K.R. Cama Oriental Institute, Bombay: K.R. Cama Oriental Institute, 1991.
- “Persian Identity in Historical Perspective,” Iranian Studies 26/1-2, 1993.
- “The Taleshi of Asālem,” Studia Iranica 25/1, 1996.
- Siyāwush,” Encyclopaedia of Islam, New Edition, Vol. IX, 1997, pp. 696-97.
- “The Persian Presence in the Islamic World,” in Hovannisian and Sabbagh, eds., The Persian Presence in the Islamic World, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 1998.
- “Love-related Conventions in Saʿdi’s ghazals,” Studies in Honour of Clifford Edmund Bosworth, Brill, Leiden, 2000, pp. 420-38.
- “Zahâk (Zuhāk),” The Encyclopaedia of Islam, New Edition, Vol. XI, fascicle 187-88, 2001.
- “A Peasant Marriage, a poem in Chāli by Mohammad-Bāqer ‘Āmeli,” in Studia Iranica, Vol. 30/2, 2001.
- “A Star Ceases to Shine,” Persica XVII, 2001.
- “The Qajar Era in the Mirror of Time,” Iranian Studies 34/1-4, 2001.
- “Hafez. I, An Overview,” Encyclopaedia Iranica XI/5, 2002.
- “The Jewish dialects of Kāshān,” Jerusalem Studies in Arabic and Islam, 27, 2002.
- “The Xoʾini Dialect,” Persica XIX, 2003.
- “The Tāti dialect of Kalāsur,” in Languages of Iran: Past and Present. Iranian Studies in memoriam David Neil MacKenzie Memorial Volume, Wiesbaden, 2005.
- “Mazdakism,” in Encyclopedia of Religion, Second Edition, 2005.
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