Parsi


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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Parsi

 

(Parsee), a member of one of the religious communities of India. Parsis number more than 100,000 (1973). They live chiefly in Bombay and are descendants of the Zoroastrians who fled Iran during the seventh to tenth centuries, after the conquest of Iran by the Arabs, and who settled primarily in Gujarat. Their religion is Zoroastrianism. The Parsis worship fire in their temples. They do not bury their dead but allow them to be torn to pieces by vultures in “towers of silence,” in order not to defile the elements sacred to them: fire, water, air, and earth.

Material prosperity is considered the reward of religious virtue, and therefore the majority of Parsis have long occupied themselves with moneylending, trade, banking, and entrepreneurial activity. The Tatas, a family of the largest monopolists in India, are Parsis. The Parsis speak Gujarati, while their canonical literature is written in Avestan and Pahlavi. The Parsi community is predominantly endogamous, although the young people have begun to deviate from the ancient marriage regulations. The priests exert a great influence not only upon the religious but also upon the secular life of the Parsis.

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
(5) Kathryn Hansen, "Parsi Theatre and the City: Locations, patrons, audiences", Sarai Reader 2002: The Cities of Everyday Life, pp.
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Hence, it is not surprising that Parsi, the president of the Iranian American Council, has been advocating in Treacherous Alliance, as well as in his numerous commentaries in the print and broadcast media, the ending of the dangerous escalation in the U.S.-Iran relationship.
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Toilets were also built around this water trough about 20 years ago, which were razed when the columnist Ardeshir Cowasjee brought together the Parsi community to use their influence in saving the facility.
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According to reports, Wadia and Jinnah's relationship fell apart when she chose to marry a Parsi, Neville Wadia.