Circle of Ancient Iranian Studies
Oldest Zigurat in the World
Iranian archeologist Dr. Mohammad Sadeq
Malek Shahmirzadi presented the results of his studies
on excavations carried out in 2001 in the Siyalk hills
near Kashan in central Iran in a scientific meeting of
the Forum on Ancient Cultural Bonds between Iran and
He divided the whole Siyalk hills into four areas of
south and north of the A and B cemeteries and noted what
Grishman achieved some seventy years ago was so
considerable that to do it now would take between 10 to
20 years. At that time, he defined six cultural eras in
the area. He had discovered a platform in the northern
hill in 1937, the Iranian scholar noted.
According to Dr. Shahmirzadi, he was assigned with the
task of mopping up the Siyalk area now located within
the town of Kashan.
However, he had to do some excavations which led to the
discovery of extra facilities mounted on a second
platform. He called the discovered mud brick structure a
The archeologist put the number of mud bricks used in
building the ziggurat at some 1.25 million, adding a
huge social, economic and cultural force must have been
involved in building the ziggurat since every person
could carry only one single piece of mud brick.
Showing a few relics found in the site, Shahmirzadi
claimed the Siyalk ziggurat built some 4700 years ago
was the world’s oldest ziggurat, outdating even the Ur
ziggurat thought to have been built some 4100 years ago.
is the Light on the Path to Future"
British Institute of Persian Studies