عنوان مقاله [English]
Pottery is one of the most ancient arts which since ancient times has been a manifestation of the beliefs and the thoughts of various nations. Potteries are hand-crafted works that their designs have symboles from the past people with them. Pottery dishes have always been an appropriate means of expressing imagination, beliefs and customs of the people of its time through utilizing drawing and creation of designs. Among them, the Neyshabur pottery in the Samanian Era has a special place. These potteries are a kind of link between two periods of the most important periods in the history of Iranian art, pre and post-Islamic art, and include iconic designs and images closely related to the rituals and customs of the pre-Islamic religions in Iran. Some of the designs of these potteries have themes derived from the ritual of Mithraism; Mithraism is one of the most prominent religions in Iran over the centuries before the advent of Islam. Mithraism is based on the worship of Mithra, ancient god and god of the sun, justice, covenant, and the Aryans brought it to Iran. In this ritual, the worship of fire and the forces of nature and magic have been used. The ritual of the pre-Islamic era was widely spread. It also influences on the other religions and has persisted in the Islamic era of Iran in another way.
Samanian era is one of the most prominent historical periods in the Islamic era of Iran. This period is exclusive and important course from different views. From one hand scientific and cultural achievements, governance, social and administrative principles, on the other hand, based on the historian’s quotations. Cities of Khorasan such as Neyshabur were the important sites for scientific and theological activities. Since Neyshabur was located on the path of the Silk Road and was considered the cultural junction point of the East, Iran and Islam, much symbolism could be seen in the design of the potteries in these centuries. This symbolism has originated from the religion and the ancient traditions.
During the Samanid era, with the support of the Iranian dynasty, the Persian language and Persian literature flourished and Persian works apperead. Based on the collaboration of Samanid rulers, some national ancient customs and rituals stabilized. in this era, as the result of adopting a tolerance and moderation policy, followers of different beliefs and sects worked free of any limitations. studying the symbols which are reflection on the potteries show that Some ancient symbols were changed with the arrival of Islam and Some symbols used are the same before and after Islam. Some of these symbols related with ritual of Mithraism.
This article examines the effects of Mithraism, this ancient Persian ritual on the designs of Neyshabur’s pottery in the Samanian era. These effects are evident in some of these designs directly and in some in a coded way and in the form of a symbolic representation of the ritual of Mithraism. The present paper is responsible for examining these effects.