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500-year-old Hiding Place Discovered in Western Iran


04 May 2004



A hiding place dating to 500 years ago was discovered accidentally in one of the villages of the western province of Chahar Mahal va Bakhtiari, providing evidence on human life there.

While destroying a mosque in Harouni village for restoration, a tunnel was found leading to a hiding place of 1.5 hectares and 5 meters deep. Remains from stables, ovens for baking bread, and bones of farm animals such as sheep were discovered in the place.

Director of the cultural heritage department of Chahar Mahal va Bakhtiari, Ardeshir Akhundi, provides an explanation: since the province has been on the route of bandits during the Safavids and even before, villagers made tunnels under their houses and farms to keep their wives, children and animals safe from the attacks.

Akhundi says that such hiding places exist underneath many houses and today are being used as storehouses for food and grains; however, the recent one is archeologically significant because signs of life were also discovered within.

Following the discovery, residents and officials have decided to rebuild the new mosque outside the perimeters of the hiding place, and intend to preserve and carry out more studies on the place.

Harouni village is located 35 kilometers out of the capital city of Shahr-e Kurd and is considered one of the old rich villages of the province.


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