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Italian co-operation in Working on the Grand Mosque of Isfahan


12 May 2004



A joint team of Italian and Iranian experts has determined the architectural development of the historical Grand Mosque of Isfahan by working on more than 160,000 pieces of the one million potsherd discovered in the perimeters of the monument.

An Italian team previously had excavated the historical mosque during 1972-1978 aiming at studying its architectural development, and discovered several crocks, glass, metal, and wood items, plus remains of tile and plasterworks.

The current project started in 2000 with surveying one sixth of the one million discovered terracotta pieces, leading to the identification of crocks from the Sasanid to the Qajar era, which according to head of the Iranian team Fariba Saidi Anaraki, signifies the architectural development of the monument in different time periods.

The collaborative studies of the crocks will be completed by the year 2006, after which work on the glass, metal and wood items, plus tiles and plasters would begin.

The Grand Mosque of Isfahan is a symbolic monument of combined Islamic-Iranian architecture, the construction of whose main section started from the AD eight century, and additions were made in different eras up to the Qajars. It is considered one of the Iranian masterpieces and considering its importance, UNESCO has requested Iran to add the monument to the file for inscription of Naghsh-e Jahan Square, the famous square of Isfahan, on UNESCO’s World Heritage List.



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