and French archaeologists cooperating to save the
heritage behind the soon-to-be-flooded Sivand Dam
in Bolaghi Gorge have got their hands on a
skeleton that has an iron bracelet in hand, an
iron awl and an arrowhead next to it, and a bronze
knife with a broken tip to its throat.
The 18-kilometer Bolaghi Gorge is located 4
kilometers from the world heritage site of
Pasargadae and is considered as part of its
landscape. The Gorge is known to be the location
of the most important ancient road of Iran built
by order of Darius the Great, the Achaemenid King.
During the recent months, foreign experts have
given their Iranian counterparts a hand to save
the ancient relics of the Gorge, and right not
beside the French, the German and Polish
archaeologists are working on the site. So far,
more than 120 historical sites, including
prehistoric hills, metal kilns, prehistoric caves
and settlements, and two collective cemeteries
dating to the Parthian times, have been identified
in the area.
According to the Iranian head of the joint team of
Iranian and French experts, Mohammad Taghi Atayi,
the skeleton discovered in one of the stone
cemeteries of the site is buried in a contracted
position along with some ancient objects, and is
believed to date back to the Sasanid era.
While removing the skeleton from the grave, the
archaeologists found that it was not covered with
any soil. Apparently, the residents of the area
buried their dead in contracted positions over the
earth and then surrounded them with stones. The
burial method has never before been seen in any
historical site of Iran.
Due to the popularity of Zoroastrianism in the Sasanid
era and burying the dead in ossuaries, studies on
these graves and burial methods is of great
importance for a better understating of the era.
The skeleton and objects buried next to it have
now been transferred to the research center of the
site for further studies.