Persepolis Ruins (World Heritage)

By | September 13, 2021

Persepolis is considered a unique testimony to ancient Persian culture. The city was founded by Darius I (522 – 486 BC) and was the capital of the Achaemenid Empire for a long time. The palaces, temples and other buildings were on an artificial terrace. Persepolis was founded in 330 BC. Destroyed by Alexander the great. The first systematic excavations began in 1931.

Persepolis Ruins: Facts

Official title: Persepolis ruins
Cultural monument: Ceremonial center built over a period of 58 years, representative buildings on an artificially laid out terrace such as the throne room (Apadana), the southern Apadana staircase with reliefs of the elevator of the emissaries of the multitudes of the Persian empire, which began under Xerxes I and completed under his son Ataxerxes I » Hall of the Hundred Columns «as well as the palaces of Darius and Xerxes
Continent: Asia
Country: Iran, Fars; According to agooddir, Iran is a country in Middle East.
Location: Persepolis, northeast of Shiraz
Appointment: 1979
Meaning: a unique testimony to the ancient culture of the Middle East

Persepolis Ruins: History

520/19 BC Chr. under Darius I, the reigning great king, creation of the “wonder of the world of Persepolis”
486-565 BC Chr. Reign of Xerxes I and the beginning of the decline of the glorious Achaemenid dynasty
333-323 BC Chr. Battle of Issus (333) and subsequent conquest of the Persian Empire by the army of Alexander the Great
330 BC Chr. The pillage of Persepolis and the assassination of Darius III.
1931 scientific excavation under Ernst Emil Herzfeld
1933 by Friedrich Krefter Fund of two document boards for the foundation of the throne room
1971 Construction of a tent city on the occasion of the 2500th anniversary of the Persian Empire

A capital of antiquity

When the Macedonian ruler Alexander the Great was preparing to attack the mighty Persian empire of the Achaemenid great king Darius, his act was for contemporaries as astonishing as it was cold-blooded provocation, but by no means an unheard of risk devoid of any prospect of success.

Despite all the victims, the successful retreat of a Greek mercenary army after a bloody failed internal Persian power struggle was clearly remembered. The equally talented Greek writer and occasional general Xenophon stylized the threatening debacle in his seven-volume historical report “Anabasis” into an epic of Greek superiority over the mass armies of the Near East that fascinated posterity. Sparks of pan-Hellenistic European self-confidence have since ignited this “mother of all military retreats”. The whole force of the Persian attacks on the heavily armored front of the Greek phalanx was repeatedly shattered. It did not succeed in stopping the train of 10,000 Greeks marching across the Persian empire. The failed usurper only wanted to get home unscathed – Alexander, however, wanted more. He felt the looming power vacuum in the east of the Aegean and with it the unique opportunity to turn the wheel of history vigorously. Fortunately for the future of Europe, the Greek general turned out to be a charismatic military genius, but not a power-obsessed blow from the shape of a Genghis Khan. Attracted by the fading splendor of the ancient civilized countries of the Near East, including Egypt, he set out to destroy the heart of the ancient Persian Empire in order to assimilate its body. The complete destruction of Persepolis – as a splendid power center and “mythical fairytale city on the green field” – was the price.

The coolly planned pillage destroyed the old dynasty of the great kings in one fell swoop and left behind a monumental mound of rubble, ideally suited to serve the hardliners of Greece who had stayed at home by retaliation for the cremation of the Athenians a century and a half earlier, as it were with “surgical precision” Acropolis was practiced.

When, about two and a half millennia later, they were preparing to investigate the 125,000 square meter desert of the legendary Persian summer residence near the Iranian provincial nest Tahr-e Djamshid, the ancient scientist James Henry Breasted thanked all the gods of archeology for letting the self-important Alexander had not proceeded with “Roman thoroughness” in carrying out his work of extermination. Their army pioneers would inevitably have leveled the ruins of Persepolis and then built over them with a selectively boring veterans’ settlement. Instead, the monumental truncated columns of the imperial audience halls and magazines appeared, protected by enormous mountains of rubble and almost intact. Exquisite relief representations clad the plinths and steps of the artificial terrace of Persepolis. In the more than fifty years of construction, various achievements of the ancient Orient were merged into a unique design language, and the Persian court art was able to measure itself without further ado with the best achievements of European antiquity. The “Persian lion beats the bull”: The unheard of dynamic relief at the entrance to the ancient audience hall, despite all its stylization, was intended to inspire neo-Persian nationalism and, by the way, triggered a considerable tourist boom. At times even the ceremonial capital of antiquity under Shah Mohammed Resa Pahlewi flourished for a short time. However, the planned revival of its former size broke up at the outset due to its internal contradictions.

Persepolis Ruins (World Heritage)