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Iranian Archeologists Looking for Legendary Sassanid Town

Iranian archeologists plan to discover an ancient Sassanid town whose description is mentioned on an inscription found in a fire temple northeast of Iran, Iranian Cultural Heritage News Agency reported.

Last year excavations have rendered some relics of industrial workshops dating back 15 centuries ago in Darbandian, 20 km away from Iran and Turkmenistan border. Archeologists have so far conducted 9 seasons of excavations there.

"During the latest excavation, experts have discovered 3 sites, one of which houses a famed fire temple. It is, indeed, one of the few Sassanid fire temples that have kept their religious and architectural elements as intact as possible," said Mehdi Rahbar, head of the excavation team.

Inside the fire temple, there is an inscription engraved in a neat Pahlavi script which gives an account of a nearby town, he added. While on the two sites, archeologists have unearthed a tower, possibly for ceremonial extinguishing of fire, and a foundry.

The Sassanids (226-651) consciously sought to resuscitate Iranian traditions and to obliterate Greek cultural influence. Their rule was characterized by considerable centralization, ambitious urban planning, agricultural development, and technological improvements. Sassanid rulers adopted the title of shahanshah (king of kings), as sovereigns over numerous petty rulers, known as shahrdars.

... Payvand News - 8/27/04 ... --

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