Yaakov Elman The Other in the Mirror: Iranians and Jews View One Another. Questions of Identity, Conversion, and Exogamy in the Fifth-Century Iranian Empire. Part One



Both Zoroastrian and Rabbinic Jewish authorities were particularly concerned with the effects of a very close degree of socializing between the two communities. This is indicated by Zoroastrian Middle Persian texts associated with the late-fourth-early fifth-century Sasanian authoritys Soŝāns from a variety of compilations and Babylonian Jewish Aramaic texts from the Babylonian Talmud associated with his contemporary Ravina, and redactional statements from both. In addition, both sets of authorities attempted to discourage these close ties. What is perhaps even more astounding is the fact that both groups set about this policy in very similar ways, thus demonstrating once again the participation of these authorities in a common ambient "academic" religious culture.