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Religious Relics Unearthed Near Bam


20 November 2004



Excavating historical sites near Bam and Baravat, in Kerman province, Iranian archeologists have dug out religious relics dating back to the Achaemenid and Parthian dynasties.

Archeological studies as well as aerial and ground mapping of Bam have led to the discovery of archeological sites covering an area of 12 so km and Iran’s oldest aqueduct, all of which are home to objects ranging from the Achaemenid to the Islamic periods, said Shahriar Adlsaid, an expert with the Bam Citadel project.

Four pairs of structures resembling prayer niches have also been unearthed in the area. Subsequent research on these prayer niches can throw light on the religious beliefs of the people who used to live in the region 2,000 years ago, he said, adding that the evidence gained from research studies reveal that these structures probably had religious application.

"Nevertheless, we have not yet managed to determine their exact usage, antiquity and the type of religion prevalent at that time," he noted.

The four pairs of prayer niche-like structures, which were dug within soft stones, each include a large prayer niche measuring 120 cm by 80 cm and a small one measuring 50 cm by 25 cm.

Highlighting the significance of the studies on the 12-square-kilometer site, Adl further said given lack of precise information on early life in Bam, research works can provide information on the development of life in the quake-stricken city from the Achaemenid era to subsequent periods.

The historical city of Bam is considered one of Iran's ancient cities. Archeologists have no clue when the city was first inhabited due to lack of research.



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