oldest qanat (aqueduct) of Iran, dating to the time of the
Achaemenids, was discovered during the
preliminary studies in a historical city which surfaced
near Bam as a result of the earthquake of 26th of December
Archaeologists discovered an old city and qanats dating to
more than two thousand years ago in a three hectare area,
three kilometers south of Bam.
According to head of the Bam Citadel project, Shahriar Adl,
studies on the pottery found in the area led the experts
to date it to the Seleucids-Achaemenid period, which makes
the qanat system there so far the oldest one, identified
scientifically in Iran.
The discovered qanats were systematically constructed in
areas where water existed underneath and they routed water
toward the farms and residential areas, therefore Adl
considers their discovery of importance.
The system was functioning until the Islamic period, when
they gradually dried out some 800 years ago as a result of
foreign invasions and not being cleaned, added Adl.
Iran has many ancient qanats, the construction date of
some, such as that of Gonabad, goes back to the Achaemenid
era; however none of them have been seriously studied so