Y. Mansouri, Pahlavi Dictionary (Pahlavi-Persian-English), 5 vols., Tehran, Shahid Beheshti University Press (2015-2021).

Document Type : Original Article


Assistant Professor, Ancient Iranian Culture & Languages, University of Tehran, Iran.


The main achievement of this extensive and comprehensive dictionary of Pahlavi texts, published over a span of six years and considered the most detailed Pahlavi dictionary available, is that it claims to include all the vocabulary of Pahlavi texts. The introduction of the book contains the author's method of work and a history of Pahlavi lexicography, although not always accurate. The author states that while he has included all the words from Pahlavi texts, he has omitted unreadable and ambiguous words (vol. 1, p. 13). Furthermore, he mentions that his dictionary is not a frequency dictionary, but he refers to several texts when it comes to frequently used words to some extent indicating their frequency. He also acknowledges variations in readings if a word has been read differently by previous Pahlavi scholars and philologists (vol. 1, p. 14). Although it may not have been necessary to include etymologies of words or mention their non-Iranian cognates, the author has included etymologies of words, albeit sometimes inaccurately, using primarily the etymological dictionaries written by Western researchers for Iranian languages, but with occasional incorrect entries beneath the headwords. Another advantage of this dictionary is that it sometimes includes synonyms and antonyms of words.