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Search for second reflecting pool to begin at Isfahan’s Chehel Sotun


News Category: Cultural

 17 December 2005



Chehel_Sotun.jpg (130278 bytes)A team of archaeologists is to begin excavating the western side of the grounds of the Safavid Apadana, Isfahan’s Chehel Sotun Palace to search for a second reflecting pool next week, the Persian service of the Cultural Heritage News (CHN) agency reported on Saturday.

A large reflecting pool on the eastern side and miniature paintings of Safavid era artist Reza Abbasi are the trademarks of the Chehel Sotun Palace, which was built by Shah Abbas II (1642–66) as his personal entertainment and reception center.


“According to initial studies, archaeologists surmise that there is probably another pool on the western side of the palace, which was filled due to the changes that took place during the Qajar era (1794-1925),” team director Fariba Saeidi told CHN.


“The excavation work is being conducted in line with a project which aims to revive historical Iranian gardens,” she added.


“Historical Iranian gardens used a specific water circulation system, which will be restarted with the unearthing of the second pond. It is expected that we will find a pond smaller than the eastern pool, because the eastern pool has been expanded by construction projects carried out in preceding years,” she explained.


The name Chehel Sotun (Forty Columns) was inspired by the fact that the twenty slender wooden columns supporting the entrance pavilion, together with their reflections in the water of the pool, appear to be forty.


The palace has also been decorated with many frescoes and paintings on ceramic. A number of the ceramic panels have been dispersed and are now in the possession of major museums in the West. The artworks depict specific historical scenes.


Chehel Sotun Palace, Hasht Behesht Edifice, and the collection of Naqsh-e Jahan Square were three of the main governmental building complexes of the Safavid kings in Isfahan.  





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