Iranian schools of the Achaemenid era (558-331 B.C.) consisted of
four sections. One section was for children, one for young adults,
the third section was for adults, and the last was for military
training for men. They all had to be at school early in the
morning before sunrise.
young adults used wake up with the call of a bronze trumpet, and
they were then divided into groups of fifty. The leader of each
group was called the “Little Satrap.” The little satraps had
to take their groups to the place where the lessons were held
every day. The students were obliged to answer the questions in
loud voices so that their lungs would open and close. There were
lessons on bravery, principles, and heroism.
their daily exercises, they ate bread, honey, and pastries, and in
the afternoon they would work in the gardens. Later, they
practiced hunting with bows and arrows. They were not allowed to
eat the animals they killed but had to take them home to their
families. The king was given the trophy kills.
were several stages of education. The Persians were always proud
when they had baby boys and their sons were raised by their
mothers until the age of seven. This was done so that the fathers
did not get too attached to their sons at that early age.
of royal families were sent to special schools. The level of
education children received depended on their socio-economic
was no special season for the beginning of the school year and the
students used to attend school year-round. Teachers taught the
youth to avoid all types of business since parents believed that
trade was not suitable for children.
teachers were Zoroastrian priests (magi). They used to teach
students to avoid the bad habits of lying and swearing.
worst thing for an Iranian was to be in debt to someone and lie.
The importance of law was another lesson taught at ancient Iranian
schools. In the Achaemenid era, the Iranians were famous for their
respect for the law. And since the Achaemenid government was a
military government, honesty and keeping secrets were also taught
was very important for the Achaemenid Iran and they set up
educational centers in all their cities. Susa was the major
scientific and cultural center of ancient Iran. Poets, writers,
and artists often visited Susa Palace.
are convinced that some Greek science had an Iranian origin.
According to historical sources, the Greeks studied the teachings
of Iranian doctors, surgeons, and botanists After the fall of
Achaemenid dynasty, and looting Iranian libraries especially the
Dedz Nepesht (the written fort) Imperial library, by Alexander the
Macedonian warlord in 333BC, the Persian books were translated into Greek.