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5,000 Year old Cumin Found in Burnt City


26 January 2005


ranian archeologists have found a large amount of cumin along with its fragrant plant in the Burnt City (Shahr-e Sokhteh) in Sistan-Baluchistan province, southeastern Iran.

The new season of excavations in the Burnt City supervised by Dr. Mansoor Sajadi started about a month ago. An Italian archaeobotanist group collaborates with the Iranian archeologists in this project. As in the previous season of excavations, archeologists have found a great amount of cumin that proves the oldest cumin in the world has been discovered in the Burnt City.

"This amount of cumin comprises the only sign of this herb in an ancient site, and its discovery in the Burnt City proves that cumin was planted in this city and had many usages in the residents’ nutrition 5 thousand years ago", Masoomeh Shahraki, Iranian archeologist a member of the excavation team in the Burnt City site, said, "The black cumin placed in special barrels in the tombs is similar to the cumin we know."

"The discovery of a great amount of cumin in the Burnt City signifies that this herb was exported from Sistan-Baluchistan district to the other parts of Iran", Mansour Sajadi told CHN.

After 8 seasons of research in Burnt City, this 5000-year-old site dating back to 2nd or 3rd century BC still holds many secrets within. Burnt City was civilized and developed, and cherished very important ancient crafts including jewelry making and pottery.



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