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See also: pahlavi


Alternative forms[edit]


From Persian پهلوی (pahlavi, earlier, older), from Middle Iranian pahlawīg, initially (and literally) meaning "of, or pertaining to, Parthians," and by Islamic times (8th-century onwards) "earlier, older".[1] Ultimately from Old Iranian parθav- (Parthian).

Proper noun[edit]


  1. A writing system derived from Aramaic script, used to write several Iranian languages.
  2. A late (9th/10th-century) variant of Middle Persian language/literature when rendered in "Book Pahlavi" (a particular Aramaic-derived script). Contradistinguished from several less well attested variants of Middle Persian and/or the scripts used for them: Pazand (Middle Persian written in Avestan script), 'Parsik' (Middle Persian written in Arabic abjad), Manichaean Middle Persian (in Manichaean script), Inscriptional Middle Persian, and Psalter Pahlavi.
    • 2009, Carlo Cereti, "Middle Persian Literature I: Pahlavi," Encyclopedia Iranica (online edition)
      Pahlavi literature traditionally defines the writings of the Zoroastrians in the Middle Persian language and Book Pahlavi script which were compiled in the 9th and the 10th centuries CE.
  3. The name adopted by a 20th-century Iranian dynasty, used in the sense of "ancient".



  1. ^ cf. Boyce, Mary (1968). "Middle Persian Literature," in Handbuch der Orientalistik, ed. B. Spuhler. Brill, p. 32.