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Sasanid Iran Used Commercial Labels


20 August 2004



The latest excavations at the northern gate of the Takht-e Suleiman historical site show that during the reign of the Sasanid dynasty (224-642 A.D.), Iranians used special labels on goods as a way of promoting their brands.

Since late July archaeologists have been conducting concerted excavations in the site northwest of Iran. “These labels served different functions. On one of them, you could see two abstract figures from the Sasanid Imperial court, indicating the goods were dedicated to the royal family,” said Yussef Moradi, head of the excavation team.

The labels are in the form of two seals engraved on earthenware vessels and are discovered on the top layer of soil near the northern gate. archaeologists hope to unravel bureaucratic relations of the era.

Located in a mountainous area of northwestern Iran and 42 kilometers north of Takab, Takht-e Suleyman (the ‘Throne of Solomon’) is one of the most interesting and enigmatic sacred sites in Iran.

Its setting and landforms must certainly have inspired the mythic imagination of the archaic mind. Situated in a small valley, at the center of a flat stone hill rising twenty meters above the surrounding lands, is a small lake of mysterious beauty. Brilliantly clear but dark as night due to its depth, the lake’s waters are fed by a hidden spring far below the surface. Places like this were known in legendary times as portals to the underworld, as abodes of the earth spirits.

Archaeological studies have shown that human settlements existed in the immediate region since at least the 1st millennium BC, with the earliest building remains upon the lake-mound from the Achaemenid culture (559-330 BC).



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