A comparative study of the black and white symbolic horses in the Shahnameh of Ferdowsi

Article Type:
Research/Original Article (دارای رتبه معتبر)
The horse especially those in black or white assume a much enigmatic stance in the Iranian culture and as we know, color plays the role of the decoder to a great number of concepts in legends. The black color represents often mourning and darkness. In Europe, the black color is viwed negatively. A person wearing black, or a black snake both are deemed as icons which represent dark and hopelessness. The dead are celebrated in black atmosphere within the church. Black, as opposed to white, was normally regarded as Ahriman and the forces related to him such as falsification, wickedness and evil throughout the ancient Iranian legends. From the very beginning of the "Legend of Creation", Ahura Mazda is in the bright Upper-World whereas Ahriman resides in the dark Lower-World. Nonetheless, in the same culture, black enjoys aspects of positive connotation such as in the black horses of the Kings in the Shahnameh which would signify their power. The color of the horse is often proportionate to the character of its rider in so far as the horses of heroes such as Kay Khosrow and Siyavosh are black ones too. Conversely, white in most cultures particularly in the Iranian one, is included within the colors which enjoy positive connotation notwithstanding a few exceptions. Among them, white horses and black ones have variant and significant stances and roles in the Persian Literature and Culture. The present article aims at a comparative study of the "black' and "white" horses in the Shahnameh of Ferdowsi.
Iranian Journal of Educational Sociology, Volume:1 Issue: 1, Sep 2016
154 to 164
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