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Shahname (The Book of Kings) is the national epic of Iranian peoples and one of the greatest literary masterpieces of all time. Ferdowsi composed Shahname based on oral and written pre-Islamic sources between c. 977 and 1010 CE. It has about 50,000 verses and narrates the myths and the history of Iran (long known as "Persia" in the West) from the creation of the world until the Islamic conquest of Persia and the fall of the Sassanian Empire in the 7th century. It recounts four dynasties: Pishdadian, Kayanian, Parthian, Sassanian, and is divided into three sections: mythical (from Kayumars to Fereydun), heroic (from Kave to Rostam) and historical (from Bahman to Sassanian).

The aim of Shahname Engine is to provide users with an interface to, not only perform regular search on Shahname's text but also:

  • advanced search queries like: verses in which گفت is rhyme; verses in which both گفت and برد occur
  • and semantic search queries like: derivational and conjugational forms of the verb دیدن that occur in Shahname; verses that contain animal names, king names, body parts, etc.

Shahname Engine is a large-scale project both due to the number of verses and the extensive information that must be annotated. Unfortunately, existing digital texts from Shahname contain numerous orthographical mistakes and obsolete spellings. The absence of a ready-to-use text, impedes the project's progress. At the moment, the project is only done until the end of Manuchehr, which involves proofreading and annotating more than 37000 words.

Your comments and suggestions are welcome! I hope this application can be of help to linguists, researchers and all people interested in Shahname and Iranian culture.


Search modes:

  • Single: look for verses that contain the input word
  • Double: look for verses that contain the two input words
  • Starts: look for words that start with the input
  • Ends: look for words that end with the input
  • Contains: look for words that contain the input, either exactly or partially
  • Lemma: look for words of the input lemma
  • Rhyme: look for verses where the input is their rhyme

To limit search to a certain section of Shahname, you can select it from the section box


Thanks to the semantic annotation of Shahname, you can perform queries like: verses that contain animal names. Select "List" if you'd like to see a list of words in the indicated category and select "Verses" when you'd like to see all verses that contain words from the indicated category.

To limit query to a certain section of Shahname, you can select it from the section box