Pasargadae is the ancient capital of Cyrus the Great (559-530 BC) and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The site lies about 100km northeast of Shiraz, along the road from Shiraz to Yazd. There are a number of structures on the site, of which the most significant is the Tomb of Cyrus the Great which was previously known as Mashhad-e Madar-e Soleyman ("Tomb of Solomon's Mother") but identified in 1820 as the tomb of Cyrus the Great. According to Alexander historians, it originally stood in the middle of a vast park made up of various royal gardens. The tomb is over 11m high. It is built with massive blocks of stone some 7m long and consists of two distinct parts: a solid platform made up of six receding tiers and measuring 164.20m² at the base, and a small gabled chamber with walls some 1.50m thick and a cell 2.11m high and measuring 2.11*3.17m. A single entrance in the northwestern front leads into the cell (the original stone door has vanished) wherein the embalmed body of Cyrus was placed inside a golden coffin on a golden throne next to his weapons and valuables, all of which were destroyed during Alexander's invasion of Persia.
Other structures on the site are the Solomon prison (Persian name "Zendan-e Soleyman") which is what is left of a former square stone tower and the Mozaraffian caravanserai, a structure measuring 18m * 16m built with stones from the palace of Cyrus. The private palace (known as Palace P) covered and area of 3192m² and had a main hall with five rows of six columns surrounded by two long porticoes and two courtyards. The Tall-i Takht citadel occupies 6000m² on a natural hill overlooking the plains. The function is unclear. Some think it was a temple, others think it was a treasure house, but most probably Cyrus had prepared the structure as a platform for some royal palaces.
Page viewed 7286 times since 11.05.15
©Copyright Alfred Molon