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Latest Archaeological and Cultural News of Iran and the Iranian World


Sasanian palatial house discovered in Lorestan


26 February 2013



LONDON, (CAIS) -- During the second season of archaeological research in western Iran, Iranian archaeologists have discovered the ruins of a Sasanian palatial building.   The ancient building is located in the area called Guri Fortress (Dež-e Gūri) near Zir Tang-e Siyāb of the district of Konāni, 70 kilometres southwest of the city Kūhdasht, in the western Iranian province of Lorestan. The director of the dig is archaeologist Atta Hassanpur.   The discovered structure which is speculated to date to around 600 CE is described as having five interconnected halls, two columned halls and a courtyard.

The archaeologists have uncovered several pieces of glazed and unglazed earthenware, decorated with low relief designs as well as stucco, carved in geometric, natural, human, animal and mythological motifs; among them is a representation of  a boar, which is the identification of the Zoroastrian archangel Verethragna (Av. vərəθraγna, MPer. Warahrān, NPer. Bahrām). Ancient builders deployed moulding techniques combined with hand carvings for creation of the stuccos, which are in relatively good conditions.

Among the discoveries were two Middle-Persian (Sasanian-Pahlavi) earthenware ostracons, one of them contained 13 paragraphs and the other contained 8. This is the first time that such ostracons have been discovered in this part of the country and they are currently under study to be translated by the linguists, said Hassanpur.  The recently uncovered building, was possibly used as a summer house, and must have belonged to one of the noble families living in a nearby Sasanian city, which is now under millions of gallons of water, as the result of the Seimareh Dam, constructed by the Islamic Republic. One Iranian archaeologist believed that the lost city was as important as Persepolis for Iranian heritage.  The head of the Lorestan Cultural Heritage, Handicraft and Tourism Organisation (LCHHTO), Qassem Qorbani, claimed the discoveries will be put on display in Shāpur-Khāst Fortress (Falk ol-Aflak) for the coming Iranian New Year, which is March 21st.
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