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Alternative forms[edit]


From Zoroastrian +‎ -ism, influenced by Greek, Latin, Arabic and Syriac reports of Zoroaster as the "lawgiver" of the Iranian peoples, as reviewed in Thomas Hyde's Veterum Persarum et Parthorum et Medorum Religionis Historia, 1700.


Proper noun[edit]


  1. (common) Mazdaism, the surviving form of the indigenous (pre-Islamic) Iranian ethnic religion.
  2. (scholarly) The historical (pre-Islamic) indigenous beliefs and practices of the Iranian peoples.

Usage notes[edit]

The term may be considered offensive in living Iranian usage.[1]

Coordinate terms[edit]

Related terms[edit]

  • Zoroastrian
  • Zarathustrianism (coined by Hermann Lommel (and popularized by Ilya Gershevitch) to denote the prophet's own doctrine as distinguished from later accretions; from Zarathustra, Avestan language name of Zoroaster)
  • Zarathustricism (the teachings of Younger Avestan texts, as distinct from Zarathustrianism and also from later accretions)


See also[edit]

  • Mazdaism (the religion in which Ahura Mazda is the supreme divinity)
  • Parseeism (archaic: the religion of the Parsees of the Indian subcontinent, long believed to be the only surviving community of Zoroastrians)


  1. ^ 2010, Van Christian A. Gorder, Christianity in Persia and the Status of Non-Muslims in Modern Iran (ISBN 0739136119), pages 22 and 36:
    Zoroaster (Persian, Zardosht) [] is not to be considered the founder of the religion but only its apt promoter. Followers of his teachings find the term "Zoroastrian" offensive and sometimes call themselves modestly followers of "a good religion" (veh-den) or, more frequently, "worshippers of God" (Yazdan Parast).
    The term “Zoroastrian” is offensive to them in the same way that the term “Mohammedan” is offensive to Muslims. Neither religion worships their founder. The term they use to describe themselves is “Yazdan Parsat.” [] Because the term Zoroastrianism is offensive, some have called them Mazdakites [sic!] given the fact that their god is Ahura Mazda. Detractors also have called them fire worshippers, which is a term that they detest.