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Shahdokht Soraya of Bahramiyan Eranshahr (Persian)



*Re-sketch of The Original Drawing*

A concept drawing of the Pre-Islamic Persian Woman Warrior of the Historically Wrong Sketch Series: Medieval Revisited, which is roughly based on the Middle ages covering 800s AD to 1400s AD.

The representation of Persia in the series is divided into three drawings: The first (This drawing), represents the Sassanid Empire just before their collapse under the Arab Invasion of Persia in the mid 7th century. The Second represent the Islamic Persianate/Persian Dynasty after the fall of the Arabic Caliphate, while the third, represents Persia under Turkic (Seljuk) and Turko-Mongol (Il-Khanate and Timurids) rule.

Inspired by the Music: God of War OST


Persia was home to the some of the greatest empire the world had ever seen. Since it's early establishment by the Medes, the founding of the gigantic Achaemenid empire, it's Hellenic Parthian Successors to the establishment of Sassanid empire, they were amongst some of the most well known civilization ever recorded in our History. Even after the of the Roman Empire and the establishment of the Eastern Roman Empire, better known as the Byzantine, the Sassanids of Persia was the only Empire who could match up their wealth, strength, power and size. It was during the Sassanid era that the people emphasized their solid Persian Identity, a legacy that still persist today. But when the world enter its new medieval era, the Sassanid Empire was a mere shell of it's past glory. Constant war against its Byzantines foe had drained the empire resources and spread discontent amongst its people, therefore weakening the unity that chained them together. The ruling class was also weak, with nobles feuding against each other over the throne, further disintegrating the empire into chaos with its "King of Kings" powerless to stop the Empire's Spiral into downfall. With the rise of Islam and the rapid expansion Arabs, the Persian and it's allies fell one by one against the seemingly unstoppable Muslim force. With the bulk of their army gone, shaken by defeat, ruled by an unstable dynasty, its civil and military system disrupted, her people alienated by the excruciating taxes and corrupt petty lords, the Sassanid of Persia easily collapsed beforr the Rashidun Caliphate and were quickly absorbed into the newly found Islamic Empire. Nevertheless, the Arabs who defeated them held high regards and respected the Persian so much, that it's culture, civil, science and military system became the basis and were highly influential in the medieval Islamic society, so much so, that it contributed greatly to the era known as "Islamic Golden Age"


When I first started this series, I thought that it would be enough to represent the Persian Faction as somewhat similar to the Sassanids, to give a distinction over all the other middle-eastern faction. But after much further reading, simplifying Persia like this would grossly underestimate and under-represent the richness and wealth of interaction that was experienced by the Iranian people, from its native Persian ruler, the Arabs, the Turks and finally, the Mongols who came into their land. This is somewhat similar to saying that Scandinavia throughout the middle ages remained "Vikings", an idea which may not sit well with the academic society.

Nevertheless, Persia, or Iran, has a special place in my heart amongst all the cultures I have studied and became exposed to. To that, I would like to dedicate my love of Persian culture in this series of mine, in a hope to make people see, that this land of Aryan, is so much more than what Hollywood Movies portrayed them. :)

As you may have noticed, the previous drawing shows her in Clibenarii armor. At that time, I only have a few slight knowledge of how the Sassanid arms and armors would look like. After much reading, I decided to stick with the original design, albeit with little bit of modification and correction. Here, Shahdokht Soraya Baharamdokht of the Bahramiyan Dynasty is depicted in a heavy mail armor, with decorated skirt, shield with the Simurgh drawing, Persian straight sword and bow. All of these are based on the carving of Sassanian Emperor from Taq-i-Bustan (Nash-i-Rustem) sketch of the Sassanian Bas Relief/Stone Carving. As for her helmet, it's a product of my own stylization, with anthropomorphic eye-mask (like the Khazar) and Sassanian Spangehelm based on the British Museum Collection. Their accuracy may be debatable, but one thing that I can say about her outfit, is that, it was only reserved for the Shahanshahs and shahzadis of the Sassanid Persian Empire.

On the left, I have included a super Sassanian heavy infantry with scale armor and mail shirt, while the ones on the right, is based on the Sogdian or Afghan nobles under the Persian Empire.


Maybe related to the following:

The Byzantine (Eastern Roman Empire) Basilissa Sotirisa of Basileia Rhiomanion (Greek) by Gambargin, the Chinese Wu Xuan Gongzhu of Yang Chao (Han Chinese) by Gambargin, The Arabs Sultana Ahu of Sultanat Misr Al-Sarraviyah (Egypt) by Gambargin,
The Turks Beylerbayan Apek of Orhanli Beylerbeylik (Turkish) by Gambargin and the Indian Maharani Indira of Jaganavanshi Raj (India/Rajput) by Gambargin

A Part of the Historically Wrong Sketch Series: Medieval Revisited - You can find more on the various faction on the map here:

HWS Medieval Revisited - Faction Map v.1.30


Is under
heavy revision
Image size
1606x2248px 1.47 MB
Shutter Speed
1/25 second
Focal Length
5 mm
© 2014 - 2023 Gambargin
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Burksaurus's avatar
Amazing job on her gear. She looks intimidating