A Zoroastrian discourse: The Menoy i khrad (‘Spirit of Wisdom’)


The Mēnōy i khrad (‘Spirit of Wisdom’), a Zoroastrian discourse.


The Mēnōy i khrad (‘The Spirit of Wisdom’) is an example of a Zoroastrian Pahlavi (Middle Persian) text, probably composed during the 6th century CE. It takes the form of questions by a wise man on philosophical matters, such as the nature of truth, wisdom and the creation of the world and answers from the ‘the spirit of wisdom.’

This manuscript

Copied at Nausari, Gujarat, in 1521 this manuscript reflects a version written in Pazand (Pahlavi written in a phonetic Avestan script) and Sanskrit created by the 12th-century Zoroastrian priest Neryosang Dhaval. Because the Avestan script reads from right to left while the Devanagari script used for Sanskrit goes from left to right, the Sanskrit portion of the text appears upside down. This is referred to as ‘upturned’ Sanskrit. On view here we see the colophon of the manuscript written in Pahlavi, most probably copied from an earlier manuscript, followed by a second colophon in Sanskrit which gives the date and place of completion as Nausari, Samvat 1577 or 890 in the era of Yazdegerd (1521 CE), copied on commission for Bahram son of Pahlan by Mihraban son of Mahyar, grandson of Padam.

Full title:
Mēnōy ī khrad
1521, Gujarat, India
Pahlavi / Sanskrit
Usage terms
Public Domain
Held by
British Library
Mss Avestan 19

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