Farrokh has collected data and primary sources on Sassanian cavalry for 18 years resulting in travels to locations such as Naghsh-e-Rustam (Iran). The book was most recently reviewed by Shahnaz Hojati of the University of Tehran in the peer-reviewed journal below (available also on Academia.edu):

– شهناز حجتی (۱۳۸۹) – ساسانیان سپر تمدن شرقی- تاریخ و جغرافیا – ماهنامه تخصصی اطلاع رسانی و نقد و برسی کتاب – شماره ۱۴۸- صفهه ۹۴-۹۵–Hojati, Sh. (2010). The Sassanians as shields of Eastern Civilizations. Tarikh va Joghrafiya: Mahnameye Takhasosiye Etela-resani va naghd va Baresiye Ketab

[History and Geography: Monthly edition for Information, Description and Critique/review of books], no. 148 [August-September edition], pp.94-95 (pdf).

See also an earlier review in Persian by the Shahrbaraz website.

Farrokh’s first book, which is the first to specifically discuss the Sassanian dynasty’s elite cavalry (Savaran). This text has outlined the specific Pahlavi terms of the Sassanian cavalry’s elite units (e.g. Gyanavaspar; Zhayedan, etc.), military tactics, insignia and pitched battles. The role of Iranian women in the Sassanian military system has also been emphasized.


Paperback; July 2005; 64 pages; ISBN: 9781841767130; Available from Amazon.com or OspreyPublishing.

Early Reviews

Dr. David Khoupenia of The University of Georgia in Tbilisi has noted the following in his review:

Dr. Kaveh Farrokh has written the first book to be ever written exclusively about the Savaran (elite knights) of Sassanian Persia. Despite very little “press coverage”, these Persian knights inflicted upon Rome, some of her most desperate defeats. The Savaran blocked the Romans from gaining control of the Silk Route and denied their expansion towards China and India. They also fully avenged the conquests of Alexander the Great, almost a millennia before them. Many westerners falsely believe that Alexander’s conquest of Persia was final. In reality, Persia recovered, not only to expel the Greeks from Persia under the Parthians, but to challenge Rome itself under the Sassanians. Farrokh is correct when he notes that Persia was “the other superpower… This book has bought an almost forgotten great people back to life. Every year we seen dozens of new books about Rome and Greece in western book stands, and very few book of the caliber of  Dr. Farrokh’s book about Persia. It is my hope that more books like these will be printed; after all Sassanian Persia and her Savaran knights are an important part of world civilization…”

Translations into Persian in 2009, 2011 and 2014

Farrokh’s text has been tranlsted into Persian in two versions: the first is by Yusef Amiri in 2009 (in canada) and the other by Behnam Mohammad-Shah in 2011 (in Iran). The two versions have been translated independently of each other.

The complete and authorized Persian translation of Sassanian Elite Cavalry by Yusef Amiri was published in 2009. This is the only translation that has the permission of the author and the original publisher (Osprey). Please see sample pages (in pdf).

Book cover of the Asvaran e Sassani (اسواران ساسانی), Yusef Amiri’s translation of Farrokh’s original text on the Elite Sassanian cavalry.

Yusef Amiri has significantly enriched and expanded the original English text by providing footnotes and additional information for Iranian readers using references such as Shahnameh of Ferdowsi, Iranica, “Golden Age of Persia” by Richard Nelson Frye, and “Iran under Sassanians” by Arthur Christensen among others.

There is also another  translation of the Farrokh text entitled -سواره نظام زبده ارتش ساسانی – Elite Cavalry of the Sassanian Army by -بهنام محمدپناه  -Behnam Mohammad-Shah which was published in early January 2011 in Tehran, Iran by  –سبزان–  Sapzan Publishers:

سواره نظام زبده ارتش ساسانی

Farrokh’s 2005 book translated into Persian  within Iran in 2011 (independent of Yusef Amiri’s 2009 project in Canada) by -بهنام محمدپناه  -Behnam Mohammad-Shah.

This book has been translated for the third time into Persian in 2014 (translated by Maysam Alini -میثم علیئی- of Tarbiat Modarress University, Tehran), by one of Iran’s most long-standing and academic publishing houses, Amir Kabir Publishers (انتشارات امیرکبیر):

Elite Sassanian Cavalry-Amir Kabir Publishers-1The most recent translation of Farrokh’s third text, Sassanian Elite Cavalry made in 2014 by Amir Kabir Publishers (انتشارات امیرکبیر) of Iran (independent of the first and second Persian translations by Yusef Amiri and Behnam Mohammad-Shah respectively). For more information see -خبرگزاری کتاب ایران- (Iran book News), and -خبرگزاری اریا- (Arya News).