Mobed in Classical Images: By Eduljee 


Mobeds (Zoroastrian Priests) in Classical ImagesPadam, Clothing & Weapons
Clothes/Padam:

In relevant classical images with several people, it is only the priest(s) tending the ritual fire who wears a padam, the mouth covering. In the Median and Achaemenid era images (c.700-330 BCE), from east to west of Aryans realms, the padam appears to be attached to the head covering. The old style padam may have been movable and brought over the mouth when tending to the fire. 
Clothes/Head Covering:

The head covering also seems to have evolved to a turban that further evolved to the head covering of today. As the head covering evolved so did the padam or mouth covering.
Clothes/Overcoat:

Median and Achaemenid era images also have the priests wearing either an overcoat or a tunic. I would guess that when shown together, it is the senior priest (say, the Zaotar) who wears the overcoat and the assistant priest (say, the Raspi) who is without an overcoat. The Median-Achaemenid tunic appears to have evolved to a type of loose gown similar to today’s angrakha and ‘jama’.
Clothes/Belt; Kusti(?); Kamarband-Pichhori:

The narrow Median-Achaemenid era belt that looked like a kusti worn externally appears to have evolved to a kamarband or pichhori. 
Weapons:

Given that we can identify priests as those wearing a padam when praying before the ritual fire, we also see some of them carrying weapons. This may have been a tradition and an outcome of the Turanian attack on Zarathushtra while he was praying. The attackers also the desecrated the sacred-ritual fire. The Farvardin Yasht at 13.88 has Zarathushtra as the first priest, leader-warrior & worker. The inner sanctum in many Fire Temples has weapons on the walls. Zoroastrian priests, Mobeds, were likely required to defend themselves, the fire and the religion from attack.
While some nobles/warriors (especially Parthian) may have been part of priestly families, this was not the case with all priests. 
Images – line drawings of the reliefs and artifacts shown earlier.

Western: the reliefs at 7th-6th cent. BCE Median era tomb at Qyzqapan (also Qizqapan/Kizkapan) in Iraqi Kurdistan.

Eastern: Achaemenid era gold artifacts – the Oxus Treasure – attributed to the Oxus River (Amu Darya) region (Tajikistan, Afghanistan & Uzbekistan).

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