Persepolis

 Iran (Islamic Republic of)
Fars
N29 56 3.984 E52 53 25.008
Date of Inscription: 1979
Criteria: (i)(iii)(vi)
Property : 12.5 ha
Ref: 114
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Founded by Darius I in 518 B.C., Persepolis was the capital of the Achaemenid Empire. It was built on an immense half-artificial, half-natural terrace, where the king of kings created an impressive palace complex inspired by Mesopotamian models. The importance and quality of the monumental ruins make it a unique archaeological site.

Persepolis, whose magnificent ruins rest at the foot of Kuh-e Rahmat (Mountain of Mercy) in south-western Iran, is among the world’s greatest archaeological sites. Renowned as the gem of Achaemenid (Persian) ensembles in the fields of architecture, urban planning, construction technology, and art, the royal city of Persepolis ranks among the archaeological sites which have no equivalent and which bear unique witness to a most ancient civilization. The city’s immense terrace was begun about 518 BCE by Darius the Great, the Achaemenid Empire’s king. On this terrace, successive kings erected a series of architecturally stunning palatial buildings, among them the massive Apadana palace and the Throne Hall (“Hundred-Column Hall”).

Inspired by Mesopotamian models, the Achaemenid kings Darius I (522-486 BCE), his son Xerxes I (486-465 BCE), and his grandson Artaxerxes I (465-424 BCE) built a splendid palatial complex on an immense half-natural, half-artificial terrace. This 13-ha ensemble of majestic approaches, monumental stairways, throne rooms (Apadana), reception rooms, and dependencies is classified among the world’s greatest archaeological sites. The terrace is a grandiose architectural creation, with its double flight of access stairs, walls covered by sculpted friezes at various levels, contingent Assyrianesque propylaea (monumental gateway), gigantic sculpted winged bulls, and remains of large halls. By carefully engineering lighter roofs and using wooden lintels, the Achaemenid architects were able to use a minimal number of astonishingly slender columns to support open area roofs. Columns were topped with elaborate capitals; typical was the double-bull capital where, resting on double volutes, the forequarters of two kneeling bulls, placed back-to-back, extend their coupled necks and their twin heads directly under the intersections of the beams of the ceiling.

Persepolis was the seat of government of the Achaemenid Empire, though it was designed primarily to be a showplace and spectacular centre for the receptions and festivals of the kings and their empire. The terrace of Persepolis continues to be, as its founder Darius would have wished, the image of the Achaemenid monarchy itself, the summit where likenesses of the king reappear unceasingly, here as the conqueror of a monster, there carried on his throne by the downtrodden enemy, and where lengthy cohorts of sculpted warriors and guards, dignitaries, and tribute bearers parade endlessly.

Criterion (i)The terrace of Persepolis, with its double flight of access stairs, its walls covered by sculpted friezes at various levels, contingent Assyrianesque propylaea, the gigantic winged bulls, and the remains of large halls, is a grandiose architectural creation. The studied lightening of the roofing and the use of wooden lintels allowed the Achaemenid architects to use, in open areas, a minimum number of astonishingly slender columns (1.60 metres in diameter vis-à-vis a height of about 20 metres). They are surmounted by typical capitals where, resting on double volutes, the forequarters of two kneeling bulls, placed back-to-back, extend their coupled necks and their twin heads, directly under the intersections of the beams of the ceiling.

Criterion (iii)This ensemble of majestic approaches, monumental stairways, throne rooms (Apadana), reception rooms, and annex buildings is classified among the world’s greatest archaeological sites, among those which have no equivalent and which bear witness of a unique quality to a most ancient civilization.

Criterion (vi)The terrace of Persepolis continues to be, as its founder Darius would have wished, the image of the Achaemenid monarchy itself, the summit where likenesses of the king reappear unceasingly, here as the conqueror of a monster, there carried on his throne by the downtrodden enemy, and where lengthy cohorts of sculpted warriors and guards, dignitaries, and tribute bearers parade endlessly.

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Shiraz is the capital city of the Fars province and a treasure trove of Persian culture. It was the capital of Iran during the Zand dynasty’s era (1747–79), and is the celebrated birthplace of the great Persian poets Hafiz and Saadi. The city has a population of about 1,500,000. Shiraz was historically famous for Shiraz wine, though commercial production has ceased since the Islamic Revolution. See Old quarters. Arg of Karim Khan (Karim Khan Citadel). Formerly a prison, but now an architectural wonder on exhibit. The design of the citadel combines military and residential architecture, for it was the home of Karim Khan and the military centre of the dynasty. Tile works depicting legendary tales were added at the entrance gate of the citadel during the Qajar period. 200,000 rials. Shah Cheragh. A funerary monument and mosque, housing the tomb of Seyed Amir Ahmad, known as Shah-e Cheragh, the brother of Imam Reza, came to Shiraz in the latter half of the 8th century [read more].

Marvdasht (also romanized as Marv Dasht) is a city and the capital of Marvdasht County, Fars Province, Iran. At the 2006 census, its population was 123,858, in 29,134 families. Some historians hold that Marvdasht was originally the name of one the neighborhoods of the ancient city of Estakhr, until gradually the whole area was called Marvdasht. Others have argued that marv was the name of a plant which grew in the area and the suffix dasht (meaning plain in the Persian language) was added to form a descriptive placename. Marvdasht is as ancient as the history of Iran and the Persian Empire. Its former capital Persepolis is in the vicinity of the city, and few kilometers farther Naqsh-e-Rostam, Naqsh-e Rajab and the ruins of the ancient city of Estakhr are reminiscent of the region’s importance in historic times. Archeological excavations have shown that civilized people had already been living in the Marvdasht Plains for millennia when Darius chose the plains of mount Rahmat for his royal residence [read more].

Jahrom (Middle Persian: Gahrom) is a city with population of 140,000 in Fars province, Iran. Jahrom, the second largest city of Fars, sits in the center of the province, 180 km south of Shiraz. Most of the people are Muslims and speak Persian language. It is located 1050 m above sea level. It is famous for Date and citrus fruits. You can get around the city by taxi (including online) or bus. You can also go to the small towns near the city such as Qotb Abad, Khafr and Duzeh and villages by bus or taxi. See Sangeshkan cave, South of the city. The biggest handmade cave in the world; Ghadamgah, Azadegan boulevard, across from the literature collage. A Sassanid Fire temple; Jahrom Bazaar, Jomhuri street. Historical bazaar from Zand dynasty period; Khan school and mosque, Ebrat street. A building from Safavid dynasty period; Jame mosque, 22 Bahman street. A Jame mosque from Seljuk period [read more].

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