cais1.gif (153930 bytes)

CAIS Persian Text.gif (34162 bytes)

CAIS

The Circle of Ancient Iranian Studies


 Persian Section.PNG (9914 bytes)


Home


About CAIS


Articles


Daily News


News Archive


Announcements


CAIS Seminars


Image Library


Copyright


Disclaimer


Submission


Search


Contact Us


Links


Facebook-Button.jpg (107165 bytes)



.

CAIS ARCHAEOLOGICAL & CULTURAL NEWS©

 

Mystery of Achaemenid City Abandonment still Unresolved

 

05 February 2005

 

 

The planned abandonment of the Achaemenid city of Dahaneh-gholaman is still a mystery to archaeologists, even after more than 40 years of research on the site.

Located 44 kilometers from Zabol in Iran’s southeastern province of Sistan-Baluchistan, the ancient city was identified by Italian archaeologists in 1960. They could not find any artifacts during several excavations from 1962 to 1965 but were satisfied with their architectural studies of Dahaneh-gholaman.

A group of major monuments and some individual buildings were discovered at the site, which covers an area of 120,000 square meters.

The studies in the 1960s indicated that the residents abandoned the city about 200 years after it was founded and may have relocated to present-day Pakistan.

“The evidence shows that the people abandoned the city methodically in a calm manner and that there were no factors like war, fire, or an outbreak of a dangerous contagious disease behind the migration. The people eventually reached a consensus to evacuate the city without leaving any trace,” Mansour Sajjadi, the director of the Iranian archaeological team working in the region told CHN.

However, archaeologists have surmised that the city was abandoned due to an important political decision, a strong sandstorm, or because the river which supplied water for the inhabitants ran dry.

According to the team’s studies, there was no important political decision for the migration, said Sajjadi, pointing out that the region was in its heyday during the Achaemenid era (circa 550 to 331 B.C.) and only 150 to 200 years passed from its construction to its evacuation, and thus it seems strange that a political decision would have been behind the relocation. In addition, the city was an important political center as a regional capital of the Persian Empire, he stated.

“The second proposition is also not likely, because sandstorms were ordinary occurrences at that time. Moreover, the people had enough time to evacuate the city and transfer their property,” he noted, saying that a storm forcing the people to abandon their homes would have inflicted heavy casualties and burdensome financial losses, but no evidence has been found proving this second possibility.

According to Sajjadi, the best hypothesis to explain the sudden migration is that the river ran dry.

“It is likely that one of the branches of the Hirmand River, which supplied water to the city, ran dry for some reason, and thus the people had to leave the city, but this is not certain,” he said.

The team of archaeologists is still trying to determine why the people abandoned the city in such a planned and precise way.

 

 

Top of Page


Relevant News

 

 

 

my_Iran.jpg (13682 bytes)

"History is the Light on the Path to Future"

 

Persian_NOT_Farsi_by_Shapour_Suren-Pahlav_3D2.gif (177309 bytes)


 

Encyclopaedia Iranica


BIPS.jpg (15695 bytes)

The British Institute of Persian Studies


"Persepolis Reconstructed"

Persepolis_reconstructed2.jpg (36944 bytes)

Persepolis3D


The British Museum


The Royal

Asiatic Society


Persian_Gulf_Facebook.jpg (1935028 bytes)

The Persian Gulf

Facebook Page




Please use your "Back" button (top left) to return to the previous page

Copyright © 1998-2015 The Circle of Ancient Iranian Studies (CAIS)