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In the second cycle, we see the beginnings of family hatred, bad behavior, and evil permeating human nature.
The text is written in the late Middle Persian, which was the immediate ancestor of Modern Persian.The first to undertake the versification of the Pahlavi chronicle was Abu-Mansur Daqiqi, a contemporary of Ferdowsi, poet at the court of the Samanids, who came to a violent end after completing only 1,000 verses.These verses, which deal with the rise of the prophet Zoroaster, were afterward incorporated by Ferdowsi, with acknowledgment, in his own poem.There is a Phaedra-like story of Shāh Kay Kāvus, his wife Sūdābeh, and her passion for and rejection by her stepson, Sīyāvash.It is only in the characterizations of the work's many figures, both male and female, that Zoroaster's original view of the human condition comes through. All of Ferdowsi's characters are complex; none is an archetype or a puppet.The work is of central importance in Persian culture, regarded as a literary masterpiece, and definitive of the ethno-national cultural identity of modern-day Iran, Afghanistan and Tajikistan.
It is also important to the contemporary adherents of Zoroastrianism, in that it traces the historical links between the beginnings of the religion and the death of the last Sassanid ruler of Persia during the Muslim conquest which brought an end to the Zoroastrian influence in Iran.
The murdered prince's son avenges the murder, and all are immersed in the cycle of murder and revenge, blood and more blood.
In the third cycle, we encounter a series of flawed shahs.
The best characters have flaws, and the worst have moments of humanity.
Traditional historiography in Iran has claimed that Ferdowsi was grieved by the fall of the Sassanid Empire and its subsequent rule by "Arabs" and "Turks".
The Shahnameh is a monument of poetry and historiography, being mainly the poetical recast of what Ferdowsi, his contemporaries, and his predecessors regarded as the account of Iran's ancient history.