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The kan?rang (Persian: ‎) was a unique title in the Sasanian military, given to the commander of the Sasanian Empire's northeasternmost frontier province, Abarshahr (encompassing the cities of Tus, Nishapur and Abiward). In Byzantine sources, it is rendered as chanaranges (Greek: ?) and often used, for instance by Procopius, in lieu of the holder's actual name.[1]

The title was used instead of the more conventional marzb?n, which was held by the rest of the Persian frontier wardens. Like the other marzb?n, the position was hereditary. The family holding it (the Kan?rang?y?n) is first attested in the reign of Yazdegerd I (r. 399-421), but was descended from some pre-Sasanian, most likely Parthian, dynasty. They enjoyed a high prestige and great authority in the Sasanian Empire's northeastern borderlands, as reflected in their glorified description in the Shahnameh of the great Persian poet Ferdowsi.[1][2]

The family was active until the very end of the Sasanian realm. A man called Kan?ra in Arab sources commanded the Persian light cavalry at the decisive Battle of al-Q?disiyyah, and his son, Shahr?y?r bin Kan?ra, is reported to have fought valiantly before being killed.[3] The family is later recorded as assisting the Muslim conquest of Khorasan by Abd-Allah ibn Amir, and being rewarded with the right to keep the province of Tus and half of the province of Nishapur under their control.[4]

Known holders of the post



  1. ^ a b Houtsma (1983), p. 975
  2. ^ Pourshariati (2008), pp. 266-267
  3. ^ Pourshariati (2008), pp. 232-233, 269
  4. ^ Pourshariati (2008), pp. 272, 275-276
  5. ^ Pourshariati (2008), pp. 267-268
  6. ^ Pourshariati (2008), pp. 268-269
  7. ^ Pourshariati (2008), p. 269

Works cited

  • Houtsma, Martijn Theodoor, ed. (1993). E.J. Brill's first encyclopaedia of Islam 1913-1936, Volume VIII. BRILL. ISBN 90-04-09794-5.
  • Pourshariati, Parvaneh (2008). Decline and Fall of the Sasanian Empire: The Sasanian-Parthian Confederacy and the Arab Conquest of Iran. I.B. Tauris. ISBN 978-1-84511-645-3.

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



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