Zoroastrian of India. The Parsis, whose name means “Persians,” are descended from Persian Zoroastrians who immigrated to India to escape persecution by Muslims. The migration occurred sometime between the 8th and 10th century. The Parsis settled in Gujarat and became a farming community. When the British East India Co. took control of the region around Bombay (now Mumbai) in the late 17th century and established religious freedom, many Parsis moved there, and by the 19th century they had become a wealthy merchant class. The Parsis still live chiefly in the Mumbai area, though other Parsi communities exist in Bangalore, India, and Karachi, Pakistan. See also Zoroastrianism and Parsiism.

Variants of PARSI

Parsi or Parsee

This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise.
For the full entry on Parsi, visit

Seen & Heard

What made you look up Parsi? Please tell us what you were reading, watching or discussing that led you here.