Mesopotamians (Iraqis) and Persians (Iranians) Maintain Distinction During Medieval Period

Mesopotamians (Iraqis) and Persians
(Iranians) Maintain Distinction During Medieval Period

Despite being under the same rule for much of
the past 1000+ years, Mesopotamians and Persians remained very
distinct and separate from one another. They developed their
respective cultures and sense of unified identity in isolation
from one another, as the Iranian Plateau and Euphrates-Tigris
River Basin were separated by harsh desert and mountainous
terrain.

(Continued Below)

Therefore, Mesopotamian culture and lineage was
strongly distinguished from that of Persia before falling under
rule of the Persian Empire in 539 BC. This pronounced
differentiation would endure during the two centuries of common
rule under the Persian Empire, and another three centuries of
common rule under the Greek Seleucid Empire.

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The distinction was
further pronounced during the Roman Era, when Mesopotamia would
fall under Roman rule for the better part of the time period
between 116 and 363. During this time, many Mesopotamians became
Christianized, while another significant portion continued to
practice ancient Mesopotamian polytheist religions. During the
Roman Era, the Persians resisted the Roman threat, maintaining
sovereignty under the Persian-ruled Parthian and Sassanid
Empires.

Zoroastrianism remained the dominant religion among the
Persians. Zoroastrians did not believe in proselytizing, nor
converting people without either a father or mother belonging to
the faith. As Christianity and Islam would unify previously
separate nations, Zoroastrianism may have been able to
accomplish the same within the Persian Empire had conversions
been permitted.

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After Mesopotamia fell under Persian rule again
following the withdrawal of Rome in 363, these separate
cultural, lineage and religious roots were too deeply ingrained
to be erased. Consequently, even after Iran and Iraq would be
consolidated under Arab Muslim, Mongol and Turkish rule in the
following centuries, they remained separate nations.


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