Architecture Tue, 17 Oct 2017 02:06:43 +0000 en-gb Archeologists discover ancient mounds in Iran’s Kerman Province’s-kerman-province’s-kerman-province

Archeologists have found over 40 ancient mounds in Iran’s southeastern Province of Kerman.


According to Press TV, archeologists from Germany’s Tubingen University and the Iranian Research Center for Cultural Heritage and Tourism discovered 42 ancient mounds near the city of Faryab.

Head of the Iranian archeology team Nader Alidad-Soleimani said “The mounds are scattered in an area of 8,000 kilometers and date back to the period of time between the pre-Neolithic and Islamic eras.”

The mounds were discovered during the first phase of archeological excavations in the area. The project was conducted over the past three months with the aim of studying the cultural exchange between Mesopotamia and the southeastern areas of ancient Persia during the Bronze Age.

Archeologists used drones to take aerial photos, three dimensional pictures and topographic maps of the excavation site.

The next phase of archeological excavations in the area will begin in March 2016.

Germany’s Tubingen University and the Iranian Research Center for Cultural Heritage and Tourism signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) in January 2015 to strengthen cooperation on archeology and research.

The two sides also agreed to cooperate in preservation and restoration of archeological sites, holding joint workshops and exhibitions for the next five years.


Architecture Thu, 28 May 2015 05:00:31 +0000
Archaeologists find tallest wall ever found near Iran’s Burnt City’s-burnt-city’s-burnt-city

Archaeologists have unearthed the tallest wall ever found near the ancient site of Burnt City in Iran’s southeastern Sistan-Baluchestan Province.


According to Press TV, the brick wall, which was discovered at Taleb Khan Mound, is 160 centimeters tall and dates back to the Burnt City’s fourth stage of civilization. 

The sixth phase of archaeological excavations in the area also yielded a clay piece which depicts the leg of a cow and had been part of a figurine created by inhabitants of the area.

The ancient piece is about four centimeters long and considered to be the most lifelike artistic creation discovered in the area so far.

Head of the archaeology team Hossein-Ali Kavosh said “This is the most naturalistic artwork from 4,500 years ago. The hoof cleft and the back of the leg have been realistically created and present a unique simulation.”

The excavation project also yielded a number of intact clay dishes, animal figurines and bricks bearing ancient human finger prints.

The Burnt city is one of the largest and richest Bronze Age sites in Iran and the Middle East.

The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) registered Burnt City on its World Heritage List in June 2014.


Architecture Fri, 15 May 2015 04:40:09 +0000
Iwan-e Karkheh

Iwan-e Karkheh is a Sassanid city about 20 kilometers northwest of Susa in present-day Sorkheh-ye Sheikh Aziz in Khuzestan Province.

It is the modern name of the ruins of an ancient city largely unexplored by archeologists, except for two brief campaigns in the 1950.
The first conclusions were intriguing. The city, founded in 4th century CE, is surrounded by a large, rectangular wall, Livius reported.
The enceinte, which is about four kilometers from north to south and one kilometer from east to west, can be seen over large distances.
The city was founded by Shapur II (309-379) after he sacked Susa. It is about 20 kilometers from the old city to the new, which is on the opposite bank of the river Choaspes, the modern Karkheh.
A large building, excavated in 1950, may have been his palace. The walls were covered with plaster, the building was surrounded by a garden, and it contained a transversal barrel-vault of a type that was to become popular in Christian churches, but has not been attested earlier than Iwan-e Karkheh.
This building, which also contained a square hall under a dome, later served as a mosque.


Architecture Sun, 12 Oct 2014 08:23:34 +0000
Iran working on plans to export agro products to Russia via Azerbaijan

Iranian Agricultural Jihad Minister Mahmoud Hojjati in a meeting with Azeri Industry and Economy Minister Shahin Mustafayev on Wednesday called on Baku to cooperate with Tehran in transiting its agricultural exports to Russia.


"Iran and Azerbaijan through cooperation can pave the way for export of Iran's agricultural products to Russia," Hojjati said during the meeting in the Iranian capital Tehran.

He noted that a delegation to be headed by an Iranian deputy agricultural Jihad minister will visit Azerbaijan soon to study mutual cooperation between the two countries in this regard.

Meantime, the Azeri industry and economy minister, for his part, pointed to Tehran-Baku relations, and said, "The Iranian and Azeri nations have historical bonds and we have many grounds for mutual cooperation."

He welcome Tehran's transit offer, and said Azeri companies are very experienced in transiting exports to third countries.

The Azeri industry and economy minister, heading a high-ranking delegation, arrived in Iran on Tuesday to discuss bilateral relations with Iran in energy, oil, customs, agriculture, tourism and transportation.

Architecture Thu, 18 Sep 2014 11:55:59 +0000
Foroumad Jame’ Mosque’-mosque’-mosque

Foroumad Jame’ Mosque is located in Foroumad Village in Shahroud, Semnan province.

According to Iran Daily, the mosque, which boasts a special status in architecture, is believed to have been established on the foundations of a fire temple.
The mosque, spread over 820 square meters, has two porticos. It has impressive plasterworks and brickworks.
The oldest document about the antiquity of the mosque is a writing by Abolhassan Beyhaqi about holding Friday prayers in the cities of Sabzevar, Khosrowjerd, Bashtin, Khosrowabad, Mazinan, Bahmanabad and Foroumad.
Some believe that the southern portico of the mosque was established in Seljuk era and the northern portico was annexed to it during the Ilkhanid era.
According to American Architect Donald Newton Wilber who has written a book themed “Iranian-Islamic Architecture in Ilkhanid Era”, the southern portico of the mosque was established in Seljuk era. It was reconstructed in Mongol era along with the northern portico.
However, some believe that the mosque was established in Seljuk era and repaired in Ilkhanid era.
The mosque has no inscription bearing the name of the founder, but the valuable decorations are proof of a rich custodian’s investment.
Its prayer niche is considered a spectacular example of architecture and art pertaining to Ilkhanid era.  The mosque has inscriptions adorned with Qur’anic verses written in Kufic and Reyhani scripts

Architecture Fri, 22 Aug 2014 06:44:23 +0000
Eight monuments registered on Nat’l Heritage List’l-heritage-list’l-heritage-list

Eight monuments of Iran were registered on the National Heritage List last week, according to Thursday edition of the English language newspaper Iran Daily.


Farhad Nazari, director general of Iran’s Cultural Heritage, Handicrafts and Tourism Organization’s (ICHHTO) Office for Preserving Natural and Intellectual Heritages, said two of the monuments, namely Alishah Khanqah and Zahir-ol-Eslam House, are in Tehran Province.
He added that Balaqi Bathhouse and ancient gardens of Qazvin have also been registered on the list.
Nazari said other relics include the House of Rashidi in Bushehr, Clock Square in Tabriz, Mausoleum of Javanbakht in Yasouj and the ancient castle of Anoushirvan in Isfahan.
ˈCastle of Anoushirvan, located in the ancient city of Jandaq, dates back to 2,000 years,ˈ he said.
ˈForeign and domestic tourists are interested in visiting the city because many people are still living in the city.ˈ
Nazari said the Mausoleum of Javanbakht also dates back to 100 years ago.

Architecture Thu, 21 Aug 2014 07:22:50 +0000
Godin Tappeh

The historical site of Godin Tappeh (hillock) is located about ten kilometers east of Kangavar, in the western province of Kermanshah.

According to Iran Daily, Nomadic cattle-herders speaking an Indo-Iranian language moved into the Zagros region in the first quarter of the first millennium, and settled among the native population, Livius reported.
They are mentioned for the first time in the Assyrian Annals as enemies of king Salmaneser III (858-824).
The inhabitants of the land of the Medes were divided into several smaller clans, and although the Assyrian kings were able to subdue some of them, they never conquered all of Media.
One of the Median princes lived on a hill that is now called Godin Tappeh, which dominated a fertile plain along the road from Ecbatana, the Median capital, to the west, to Behistun and beyond, to Babylonia and Assyria.
The fortified manor consisted of at least three halls (reminiscent of the throne hall of Cyrus’ Palace in Pasargadae), several storage rooms, and a comparatively small throne hall with banks on four sides. There was also a kitchen with three ovens and a drain.
On the north face of the hill, the remains of a heavy wall with five bastions have been excavated.
The cemetery was to the south of the ancient town. The site is not unlike nearby Tappeh Nush-e Jan or the Urartian fort Çavustepe, which also date back to the Iron Age.
Although Godin Tappeh offers a splendid view of the plain, the modern visitor will be slightly disappointed by the site itself.


Architecture Sat, 26 Jul 2014 08:08:10 +0000
Wonders of Iranian architecture

Iranians have blended art and creativity with architecture and built monuments centuries ago, which are the world’s architectural wonders.
Today, architecture is considered a social art. Socialization and adaptation of buildings with the environment and society are of high importance.

Iranian architects have designed monuments that cause amazement because of their artistry and beauty after a lapse of centuries, ISNA wrote.
Architecture in Iran dates back to 7th millennium BCE.
Precise calculations, observance of scientific technicalities, high porticos and columns, and eye-catching decorations are some of the characteristics of Iranian architecture.
Iranian architecture employed various styles. The styles of Median, Parthian, Achaemenid, Seleucid and Sassanid dynasties belonged to eras before the advent of Islam, while styles of Khorasan, Razi, Isfahani and Azari pertained to post-Islam era.
Some of the emblematic Iranian monuments, which are recognized as global architectural wonders, are as follows:

Takht-e Jamshid

The architectural style of Takht-e Jamshid in the southern Fars province is one of the wonders of design and construction across the world.
It used to be the mountainous capital of Persian Empire. Greeks called it Persepolis.
Stones have been mainly used in building the Takht-e Jamshid palace with columns, statues and engravings.
The monument’s columns have remained intact in spite of the lapse of long years and climatic effects.
The columns have been set up by using melted plumb that have made the structures resistant to even earthquakes.
Using precious metals for decorating the designs and construction of stairs that people could use while riding horses are interesting aspects of this monument.
Takht-e Jamshid’s construction lasted 120 years. It was built by Iranian architects and artisans as a manifestation of the glory of Achaemenid kings.
The palace was used for hosting foreign guests and holding national ceremonies and festivals, particularly Norouz that marks the advent of the Iranian New Year.
The glorious monument caught fire after the attack of Alexander III of Macedon in 330 BCE, which destroyed books, cultural relics and the palace.
However, remnants of Takht-e Jamshid still draw millions of Iranian and foreign tourists to Fars province throughout the year.

Taq-e Kasra

Taq-e Kasra (also called Ivan-e Kasra), with the largest brick arch worldwide, is an architectural site pertaining to the Sassanid era.  It is said that Sassanid kings brought the most famous architects and used 3,000 workers to build the huge monument over 20 years.
The exterior of the palace was made of bricks and its columns and perforated stones were covered with copper plates and decorated with gold and silver.
Taq-e Kasra is currently outside Iranian borders. Its remnants are along the banks of Tigris River, which flows 37 km from Baghdad, Iraq.




Sheikh Lotfollah Mosque

Sheikh Lotfollah Mosque is located in the eastern wings of Naqsh-e Jahan Square. It is considered one of the most famous mosques worldwide in terms of architecture.  
The mosque was built on the order of Safavid King Shah Abbas during 1602-19 CE. Master Mohammad Reza Isfahani was its architect.
Sheikh Lotfollah Jabal-Ameli was an eminent Safavid scholar who came to Iran from Lebanon upon the invitation of Shah Abbas. He taught methodologies of jurisprudence.
The mosque is a collection of visual arts and follows the Isfahani architectural style.  Master Alireza Tabrizi Abbasi designed the calligraphy on tiles used inside and outside the dome.
Professor Arthur Pope wrote, “It can hardly be a manmade monument. It looks faultless. The sizes and measures are appropriate, and the design is very beautiful and perfect.”


Soltanieh Dome

Iranian architects constructed Zanjan’s Soltanieh Dome as the world’s highest brick dome. It is 48.5 meters in height and its diameter is 24.4 meters.
The monument was a great achievement in Iranian-Islamic architecture. It is considered one of Islamic architectural masterpieces.
The brick dome was established on the order of Mongolian ruler named Oljaitu—also known as Soltan Mohammad Khodabandeh—during 1283-91.
Soltanieh Dome is considered a special architectural model in terms of volume, architectural style, resistance, aesthetics and decorations.
The monument manifests the Azari architectural style. At first, it was built for transferring the body of Imam Ali (AS), the first Imam of Shias, from Najaf to Soltanieh. But after the issue was settled and he was laid to rest in Najaf, the monument turned into the mausoleum of Oljaitu.
Over 3,000 workers built the monument during 10 years.
The major monument has eight doors and eight minarets. It includes an entrance area, tomb and dungeon. The dome is decorated with azure tiles.
The skylights of Soltanieh Dome are interesting for visitors. They act like a sundial. When the light shines from the opening of major dome, it marks the time for midday prayer.
The light radiating from bigger windows shows the hour, while the light from smaller windows indicates the minutes.


Iranian architectural art thrived during the Safavid era.
Due to the interest of Safavid king in architecture and splendid monuments, Isfahan hosted the best architects. Its monuments are the most popular tourism sites.
Chehel-Sotoun, Khajou Bridge, Tavouskhaneh Garden, Shabakeh Garden, Qoushkhaneh Garden and Sa’adatabad Garden are some of the monuments belonging to the Safavid era.  
The edifice was initially constructed as a mansion on the order of Safavid king, Shah Abbas I.
Then, it expanded during the ruler of Shah Abbas II and was declared Chehel-Sotoun.
It includes a mirror hall, two great rooms in northern and southern wings of the mirror hall, terraces and a big pool.
The columns of this edifice have been made from sycamore and pine trees. There are actually 20 columns in the water and their reflection in water creates the 20 others. Therefore, it is called as Chehel Sotoun.

Goharshad Mosque

Goharshad Mosque in Mashhad, Khorasan Razavi province, is one of the most beautiful mosques across Iran.
The mosque was built near the shrine of Imam Reza (AS) on the order of Goharshad Beigom, wife of Timurid King Shahrokh.
Qavameddin Shirazi built the mosque that features the Timurid architectural style. It included four terraces and seven courtyards.






Eram Garden

The main building of Eram Garden was constructed by a famous architect during the rule of Qajar King Fathalishah. The monument has been constructed in Qajarid style.
It is a three-story building. The first floor has a cool weather and is constructed as a rest area for the summer. The seven-color tiles have been applied in the building’s columns.
Paintings, tileworks and plasterworks used in the monument are architectural masterpieces of Qajar era.
There is a large pool in front of the monument, which reflects the monument’s columns.
These monuments feature in the itineraries of most foreign and domestic tourists.





Translated by Katayoon Dashti
Taken from Iran Daily’s website


Architecture Sat, 03 May 2014 06:24:17 +0000
Iran offers Wind Towers to UNESCO Iran offers Wind Towers to UNESCO

Iran has presented the historical structure of Wind Towers file to the UNESCO for a possible inscription on the World Heritage list of the organization.


According to Press TV, the deputy director of the Cultural Heritage, Tourism and Handicrafts Organization (CHTHO) Mohammad Hassan Talebian announced the historical records of the structure were compiled in a file by cultural heritage experts and delivered to UNESCO last week.

The officials are hopeful that the file to be assessed at the year’s World Heritage Committee session.

Wind Towers (Wind Catcher) are considered as the remarkable ancient Iranian architecture that can be seen in the country’s eleven cities.

Designed in various forms, a wind tower is applied as a traditional element to create natural ventilation in buildings.

While central Iran always shows large diurnal temperature variation with an arid climate, the wind catcher's effectiveness had led to its routine use as a refrigerating device in the past Persian architecture.


Architecture Sun, 13 Apr 2014 08:52:59 +0000
Ameries House: Kashan historic treasure-trove

Ameries Historic House is located in the Iranian city of Kashan in Isfahan Province as one of the earliest settlements of the ancient people.


According toPress TV, the house, which is also famed as the Ameries Mansion, dates back to Zand dynasty at 18th century built for Agha Ameri, the governor of Kashan, who was responsible for maintaining the security of the route between Tehran and Kerman.

The current structures go back to the Qajar era at mid-nineteenth century when they were rebuilt by Saham al-Saltani Ameri. 

Due to a deadly earthquake toward the end of 18th century, a lot of structures collapsed in Kashan. Many of renowned historical buildings of the area were rebuilt at the late 18th as well as 19th century.

The mansion has got seven courtyards built for seven independent families Covering an area of 9000 square meters. There are more than 80 rooms in it.

The unique and magnificent architecture of the Ameries structures such as fascinating decorations, porches, ponds, courts and gardens make them spectacular edifice.

The materials used in the buildings include bricks for construction of the main structure, mud and straw for insulation and facade, gypsum for decoration facade and interior, mirrors for making inner spaces (particularly ceilings) more beautiful, thick wooden doors for protection.

It is believed that on its completion the Ameries Mansion will turn into one of the most desirable points of interest for tourists in Kashan after the Fin Garden.

Completed in 1590, the Fin Garden is the oldest existing garden in Iran which dates back to the Safavid dynasty.

Fin Garden as a historical Persian heritage comprises a large garden and Fin Bath where the Qajar chancellor Amir Kabir was murdered during an assassination planned by the King Nassereddin Shah’s men in 1852.

The Garden was listed as a national property of Iran in 1935 and was inscribed in the UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2011 along with 8 other Iranian heritage.


Architecture Mon, 20 Jan 2014 08:30:02 +0000