The discovery of orthography and architectural
remains in the historical Jiroft area by the bank of the
Halilrud river in southeastern Iran indicates there was a huge
civilization in the area, head of an international archeological
group said at the end of a second season of explorations in
Attending a briefing session, Dr Yousef Majidzadeh noted the
second season of explorations yielded one of the oldest
ziggurats in the world which is believed to date back 2300 years
B.C. it measures 400x400 meters in the first floor and 250x250
meters in the second, he said.
"An orthographic work of the third millennium B.C. is the
first orthographic system to be discovered in eastern Iran and
this shows that eastern Iran entered the historical period since
the third millennium B.C.," Majidzadeh added.
All these discoveries suggest that there have been sophisticated
government and economy with a booming trade some 5000 years ago,
the archaeologist credited with first throwing the spotlight on
the area said.
"The discovery of orthography, ziggurat and many cultural
remains in Jiroft thought to be of the same age as those of the
Sumer civilization in Mesopotamia as well as the independence of
the Halilrud river civilization could shift the archaeological and civilizational landscape in the middle east," he
Other members of the team also presented their findings in this
meeting, including Holly Pittman, an arts professor from the
University of Pennsylvania, who said the discovery of writing on
an artifact backed theories that a large civilization existed in
eastern Iran when a civilization thrived in Sumer.
Stressing the importance of the archaeological excavations in
Jiroft, Pittman noted they would open a new chapter in middle
eastern archaeology, which is characterized by existence of early
The second season of explorations in the historical area by the
bank of the Halilrud river started two months ago as a number of
international experts from Sorbonne, Pennsylvania university and
other universities converged on eastern Iran. The 30-strong team
included five foreign scholars.
The historical Jiroft area is located in Iran's Kerman province
near the city of Jiroft. Dating back some 3000 years B.C., they
are among the world's richest historical places. So much so that
so far some 100 historical sites have been located along 400 km
of the Halilrud river.
Many archaeologists believe what has been discovered in the area
is indicative of a settlement in a territory with a civilization
as large as that of Sumer and Mesopotamia, while Majidzadeh is
on the belief that it shows the Jiroft civilization is older and
richer than Sumer civilization, the oldest known human