The Yādegar-e Bāstān (Tehran) and the Avestan Digital Archive have joined their efforts in order to start the series “Avestan Manuscripts in Iran”. Its main goal is to publish high quality colour facsimiles of the Avestan manuscripts produced and today still hosted in Iran. The main editions of Avestan texts are based mainly on manuscripts produced and hosted in India. It was a widespread idea that there were no Avestan manuscripts in Iran since they were either destroyed or sent to India for preservation. Luckily, an intensive research on the Avestan manuscripts produced and hosted in Iran, initiated with a ground breaking paper by Katayoun Mazdapour in year 2008, has brought to light an important number of Avestan manuscripts produced and still hosted there.
The series hopes to contribute to the preservation of this important cultural and religious heritage, publishing the most important manuscripts. Although many of them are in public libraries and, as we hope, in safety, others are in private collections, sometimes, in unsatisfactory conditions. Furthermore, we risk that some might disappear in the black market. Therefore, we consider extremely important to digitize and get them published in electronic and paper format for ensuring their preservation.
The starting funds for the series have been provided by the Avestan Digital Archives and the continuity of the series depends mainly on the revenues from the selling of the first volume. The complete revenues of the sales will be dedicated to the continuity of the series. Therefore, purchasing the facsimile is the best way to contribute to our endeavour.