Jul 5, 2014, 3:29 PM
News Code: 2720305
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Italian archeologists survey Pasargad

Tehran, July 5, IRNA - Italian archeologists and experts visited Iran to assess humidity and safety of Pasargad, an archeological site in the southern province of Fars, director general of Fars Cultural Heritage Department said.

Mosayyeb Amiri added that the six-member delegation conducted a survey of the site over two weeks.

They are to revisit Iran in October for conducting further studies, according to Sunday edition of Iran Daily.

Amiri said they conducted preliminary studies for assessing the situation of the historical monument, including the impact of climatic factors on its stone monuments.

"They may conduct renovation works in the next stages," he said.

Pasargad, the capital of Cyrus the Great (530–559 BCE) and also his last resting place, was a city in ancient Persia.

The first dynastic capital of the Achaemenid Empire, Pasargad was founded by Cyrus II the Great in the 6th century BCE, UNESCO reported.

Spanning the Eastern Mediterranean and Egypt to the Hindus River, it is considered the first empire that respected the cultural diversity of its peoples.

This is reflected in Achaemenid architecture, a synthesis of different cultures. Its palaces, gardens and the tomb of Cyrus are outstanding examples of royal Achaemenid art and architecture, and exceptional testimonies of Persian civilization.

The archeological site is spread over 1.6 square kilometers and includes a structure commonly believed to be the tomb of Cyrus, the Tull-e Takht fortress on top of a nearby hill and the remains of two royal palaces and gardens.

Pasargad Persian Garden represents the earliest known example of the Persian Chahar-Bagh, or quadrilateral garden design.

Antiquity and location

The dynastic capital of Pasargad was built by Cyrus the Great with the participation of different strata of empire. It was unfinished when he died in battle.

The remains of the tomb of Cyrus’ son and successor, Cambyses II, have been found in Pasargad. It was identified in 2006.

Pasargad remained the Persian capital until Cambyses II moved it to Susa. Later, Darius founded another capital in Persepolis.

Pasargad is located in the plain near Polvar River. The position of the town is also denoted in its name: "Camp of Persia".

The core zone of the site is surrounded by a large buffer zone and contains many monuments.

The tomb of Cyrus the Great was built from white limestone around 540-530 BCE. The tomb chamber, at the top, resembles a simple gable house with a small opening in the western side.


In the medieval period, the monument was thought to be the tomb of Solomon’s mother and a mosque was built around it, using columns from the remains of the ancient palaces.

A small prayer niche was carved in the tomb chamber. In 1970, during a restoration, the remains of the mosque were removed and the ancient fragments were deposited close to their original location.

Tull-e Takht's limestone structure is built of dry masonry, using large, regular stone blocks and a jointing technique called anathyrosis, which was known in Asia Minor in the 6th century.

The first phase of the construction was halted after the death of Cyrus the Great in 530 BCE. The second phase was started under Darius the Great and used mud-brick construction.

The color scheme of the architecture is dominated by the black and white stones used in its structure. The main body of the palaces comprises a hypostyle hall, to which porticoes are attached.

Different sections

The Audience Hall was built around 539 BCE. Its hypostyle hall has two rows of four columns. The column bases are in black stone and the column shafts in white limestone.

Sculptures were in black stone, including one representing a hybrid, horned and crested lion.The palace had a portico on each side. Some of the bas-reliefs of the doorways are preserved, showing human figures and monsters.

The Residential Palace of Cyrus II was built during 535-530 BCE and its hypostyle hall has five rows of six columns.

The Gate House stands at the eastern limit of the core zone. It is also a hypostyle hall with a rectangular plan. In one of the door jambs is the famous relief of the "winged figure".

In later periods, Tull-e Takht continued to be used as a fort.