Old Persian

Old Persian – Language & Texts

The Old Persian language is one of the two oldest Iranian languages, along with Avesta. Both are collectively referred to as Old Avesta. Specimens of old Persian language is in present day Iran and also in places which previously were a part of the Iranian empire, like Romania, Armenia, Iraq, Turkey and Egypt.

This language was primarily used for inscriptions on stone, clay tablets and seals especially during the Achaemenian period, mainly between the 7th century BC to 2nd century BC. It was used as a written language with the cuneiform script for royal edicts and proclamations and also for maintaining records for practical purposes.

Main texts:

(a) Behistun inscriptions

(b) Tablets of records found at Persepolis