Rostam is the most iconic figure in Ferdowsi's Shahnameh and consequently, the most important mythical one of Persian literature. The tales of Shahnameh, to a great extent, deal with the adventure of Rostam including The Seven Trials of Rostam (HaftKhan-e-Rostam), The Tragedy of Rostam and Sohrab, The Battle of Rostam and Esfandyār, The Tale of Rostam and his half-brother Shaghad. He also appears in other significant tales such as the Tale of Seyāvash and that of Bizhan and Manizheh. Ferdowsi was in favor of Rostam. He attended all the battlefields passionately and became a matter of interest to this prominent epic poet of Tous. Rostam among all the historical figures of Iran is considered a great emblem of Iran's national glory. He is the son of Zal and Rudabeh and his race reaches Jamshid, one of the Pishdadian dynasty's kings. Regarding the birth of Rostam, Ferdowsi wrote in his poems that Rudabeh suffered from painful labor and could not give birth to her child. It was then Zal asked Simorgh for help.
Due to Simorgh's order, it was decided to rift her side to bring the baby out. Her mother, Sindokht was worried about her daughter and cried restlessly. Therefore, they brought a priest and a physician to her bedside. At that time, clergies and priests practiced medicine, in addition to performing religious duties. The physician first anesthetized Rudābeh and then rifted her side. Rostam from his childhood was different from other babies. It is said that ten wet nurses fed Rostam. When he was weaned, his meals were about five men's. Rostam grew up and turned into a brave youth.
During his presence in Shahnameh, he is the only protagonist of the tales, the leading line of the events and narratives who solves many problems. Along with passing The Seven Trials of Rostam (Haft-Khane-Rostam), releasing Kay Kāvus from White Demon's (Div-e-Sepid) confinement, he is also fighting with Afrāsyāb and Esfandyār, revenging Seyāvash, rescuing Bizhan and killing his son Sohrab. In Shahnameh, the life span of the Sam's (Rostam's grandparent) tribesmen is very long and so the Rostam's was about six hundred years. He saw the thrones of Manuchehr, Kay Qobād, Kay Kāvus, Kay Khosrow, Lohrāsp, Garshasp, and Bahman. During the reign of each of them, he fought against various enemies several times, especially the Turanians, and defended Iran. Finally, he fell into a well and died tragically of Shaghad's, his half-brother, deceit. In this incident, another brother of Rostam, Zavareh, and his horse, Rakhsh, were also killed. Of course, he killed Shaghad before his death with an arrow. Rostam's arrow crossed the tree and made Shaghad sew the tree which was hidden behind him.