Jul 31, 2019, 11:32 AM
Journalist ID: 1006
News Code: 83418083
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Iran's Anahita Temple: Archaic columns in vicinity of 1800-year-old mosque
Anahita Temple

Kermanshah, IRNA – AnahitaTemple of Kangavar is located west of Iran in Kermanshah province, Kangavar town. The monument belongs to Parthian era and early days of the Sassanid dynasty. This site is located on a hill in the center of the town. Anahita was considered as Goddess of Water and Beauty.

The famous structure known as the Temple of Anahita is located in the center of Kangavar City, Kermanshah province on the way from Hamedan to Kermanshah. This monument is built on a natural hill with a maximum height of 32 meters from the surrounding lands.

The architecture of this temple is in harmony with palaces and temples built during the Achaemenian period, 550 BC to 330 BC, in western Iran. Large pieces of stone are cut and shaped into blocks of rock. They are placed on top of each other; their shape usually causes them to interlock to form a wall or platform by a mountainside.

Some historians consider this structure a temple for goddess Anahita. Anahita meaning clean and free from contamination has been the goddess of water, the guardian of the springs and rain and a symbol of fertility, love, and friendship in ancient Iranian belief.

This belief existed since the period before Zoroaster in Iran and has been the center of attention in the next periods. Numerous temples and statues have been built in Iran before Islam in respect for this Iranian goddess. In addition, Pol-e Dokhtar and Qal’eh Dokhtars that have been built throughout Iran have taken the name “Dokhtar ” in the memorandum of this goddess.


Different monuments of Anahita (including temples and inscriptions) are remaining in Hamedan, Shush, Kazerun, Azerbaijan, Kermanshah, and Kangavar. The Temple of Anahita in Kangavar is the most famous temple assigned to Anahita in Iran. The ratio of the height of its columns to their diagonals is three to one and this has made it unique and inimitable among all the temples in the world. The Temple of Anahita is the second stone building in Iran after Persepolis. The architectural style of this monument is of Arsacid style.

Shapes and carvings of the columns in the temple are similar to those found in Persepolis and Palace of Darius in Shush, This temple is built in honor of "Ardevisur Anahita," the female guardian angel of waters. It is known as "Temple of Anahita"


This monument was registered among the national monuments in 1310 (1931) with the number 31.

The Arab geographer Yaqut wrote of Kangavar in 1220; he says the place was the haunt of bandits, locally called either Qasr-e Shirin, 'castle of Shirin' after Khosro's favorite wife, or more often Qasr al-Lasus, the 'Robber Castle'. He wrote: "The Robber Castle is a very remarkable monument, and there is a platform some twenty cubits above the ground and on it, there are vast portals, palaces, and pavilions, remarkable for their solidity and their beauty."

According to classic historians, the temple of Anahita at Ecbatana was a vast palace, four-fifths of a mile in circumference, built of cedar or cypress. In all of it, not a single plank or column stood but was covered by plates of silver or gold. Every tile of the floors was made of silver, and the whole building was apparently faced with bricks of silver and gold. 

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