Simurg (also written Simurgh, Simorgh, Simoorgh, Simour, and Senvurv) is a legendary bird from ancient Persia. The scale-covered body of this eternal, huge female winged creature, with a dog’s head and foreparts, lion’s claws, and peacock’s wings and tails, is commonly described. It is sometimes represented with a human face.
The Simurg was seen as a beneficent guardian with healing and protective abilities. It was thought to cleanse the streams and the soil, as well as provide fertility. It was also seen as a messenger or intermediary between the Sky and the Earth, as well as a sign of their marriage. The Simurg appears frequently in both classical and modern Persian literature, and is utilized as a symbol for God in Sufi mysticism.
Several classic creation stories feature the mysterious bird. According to Persian traditions, the Simurg was extremely old, having witnessed the destruction of the earth three times.