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Five Ancient Game Boards Identified among Jiroft Relics


05 February 2005



Five ancient game boards have been identified among the items taken back from illegal excavators of the historical site of Jiroft, Halilrood area of Kerman, indicating that people of the area enjoyed playing games some five thousand years ago.

Three of these game boards look like eagles, one looks like a scorpion with human head, and the other is a flat board, and all have 12 or 18 holes with similar sizes.

The discovery site of the boards, Halilrood, is considered one of the richest archeological sites of the world where ancient objects and architectural remains have been found by both archeologists and looters. More than 700 sites have so far been identified in a 400 kilometer long area of the Halilrood River bank.

According to head of the archeology team of Jiroft, Yusef Majidzadeh, the holes in the boards, which count to 12 or 18 and their similarity in size indicating that they were most probably used as games by the ancient residents of the area.

It is not yet sure how the boards were exactly used, Majidzadeh told CHN, however, the equal numbers of the holes and the holes all being in one size show that they were games most probably played with some sort of beads.

Jean Perrot, a world-known archeologist and a retired expert of Louvre Museum who has also studied the boards told CHN that boards similar to these, plus some beads, have previously been discovered in the historical sites of Mesopotamia, and their form and structure shows that ancient people used them as games to entertain themselves.

The boards are right now kept in the archeology museum of Jiroft and Iranian and foreign experts are studying them further to find out how they were played.



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