Iranians History on This Day

 Dec 13 

Division of the armed forces of Iran into 4 armies during the reign of Yazdgard I
Yazdgard I Coin

This piece of history will be completely edited later

    After two years of study and survey, on 13 December 402 AD, Yazdgard I from Sassanid Dynasty, approved the reorganization of the armed forces of Iran. The amicable relationship of Iran and Rome during the reign of Yazdgard I gave the opportunity to the Iranian generals to sit, after about two centuries, to reconstruct the army organization, by using past experiences and considering the world situation of that time and new threats.
    In the new organization, details of which were found in the archives transferred from Constantinople to Rome, in 1453 AD, the armed forces of Iran were divided into 4 armies, as follows:
    The first army: Headquarters in Marv city. The units of this army were responsible for preventing migration and/or armed invasion of yellow and semi yellow tribes of central Asia and northwest China to this side of Syre Darya. Under no condition should these units of the army have been used except in that area, because, in the opinion of the designers of this plan penetration of the above tribes, which had backward civilization and weak character, into Iran, was not only considered as assault on the borders but also irreparable cultural destruction. The units known as frontier guard, which already existed and stationed in the northeast borders, joined this army. In this army, the proportion of cavalry and infantry was one and two.
    The second army: Headquarters Sitar. The units of this army were divided equally into half and stationed on two sides of Gorgan Sea (Mazandaran Sea – Qazvin Sea = Caspian) and guarded Darband in Caucasia upto the roads of Daghestan and the penetrating points of the Khazars in the west of Aral (east of Mazandaran Sea). The units of this army were four cavalry and one infantry in proportion.
    The third army: Headquarters Ctesiphon. This army guarded the west and northwest borders and the capital and prevented the Romans until arrival of the second and fourth army.
    The fourth army: Headquarters Sepahan (Isfahan). This army was auxiliary and reserve, and the section of the army that was stationed in Sistan (present day Kandahar) would be dispatched to boost other armies. The headquarters of this army was responsible for mobilizing forces and collecting and training soldiers, in war time. The proportion of the different categories would vary.
    This division shows that there was no danger in Persia (present day Fars, Kerman, Yazd, Makran and Islands).
    This army organization did not change until the end of the Sassanid reign, for about two and a half centuries. The same inflexibility of this arrangement was one of the causes of the defeat of Iran from the Arabs and Yazdgard III did not call the first army for help, but himself went towards the headquarters of this army in Marv, after his defeat in Nahavand, where he was killed and his son even did not make use of the fixed unit of the fourth army in Sistan. After fall of the first army the Saljuqid tribes migrated to Transoxiana.
    After Iran joined the central treaty (CENTO) in the 1960s, once again the armed forces of Iran, which consisted of 10 armies changed to four armies.
    Translation by Rowshan Lohrasbpour (AmordadNews writer)





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