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Ancient Human, Animal Footprints in Southwestern Iran


News Category:


 24 April 2004



Among finds usually made at historical sites worldwide are footprints of human beings and animals. In fact the oldest of human traces are those found in Mesopotamia estimated to go back to 4,000 years B.C.

The oldest human footprints in Iran, believed to be more than 3,000 years old, can be seen in Choqa Zanbil, an ancient ziggurat in southwestern Iran.

There are four human footprints seen on the brick floor of the historical Choqa Zanbil compound, believed to belong to children as well as several animal footprints from the cats family.

Despite their significance, no scientific study has so far been carried out on them.

A Choqa Zanbil expert Hamid Fadai said the human and animal footprints which total ten had been imprinted when the brick floor were drying up outdoors or in brick making workshop.

“During the last season of explorations, two footprints were documented and mapped. However, little scientific work has been done on them,” Fadai noted.

The size and depth of the footprints could provide clues as to the height, weight and other features of those who had stepped on the brick.

Studies on animal footprints could determine which animals used to roam the area some 3,000 years ago.

Given their size, the four human footprints in Choqa Zanbil are believed to belong to children between 10 to 15 years of age.

Located in the southwestern province of Khuzestan, the two-storied Choqa Zanbil ziggurat is the remains of a huge temple built by the Elamite king Untash Napirisha in the city of Duruntash in the 13th century B.C.



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