An ancient Iranian research center is set
to be revived in northeastern Iran some 800 year old
after it was ransacked. Efforts are underway to build a
huge scientific research center in what was once the Rab’
Rashidi academic center in the East Azarbaijan province.
The research center’s board of trustees, including the
culture and Islamic guidance minister, the sciences,
research and technology minister, the health minister as
well as the heads of the endowments organization, the
cultural heritage organization and the state management
and planning organization has started practical steps
for the revival of the historical center, including
reclamation of land in the area.
Deputy head of the East Azarbaijan province cultural
heritage department Saed Hodai said the reconstruction
of the scientific complex would take note of the current
Rab’ Rashidi was built on orders from Khajeh
Rashidoddin Fazalollah Hamedani, the powerful chancellor
of sultan Mahmoud Qazankhan on slopes of the Sorkhab
mountain. Considered on of the architectural wonders of
the 13th century century, it accommodated thousands of
people in its heyday who gathered there to pursue
Hamdollah Mostofi wrote in his book Noz’hat ol-Qoloub
that the complex included a school, a hospital, a
library, monastery, weaving factory, paper mill, bath
house, 1500 shops, 30,000 houses, flour mills, gardens
and a tomb for Khajeh.
Once he died, his enemies ransacked the complex and
reduced it to rubble. In its place now only a hill and
remains of a tower can be seen.