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11/18/05

Guests of Siraf International Congress stumble upon ancient grave

TEHRAN, Nov. 18 (Mehr News Agency) -- A grave with a distinct burial style was inadvertently discovered on Wednesday by a group of foreign and Iranian guests of the Siraf International Congress during their visit to an ancient site in the port of Siraf in Bushehr Province.

The visit was organized by the officials of the congress, which was held from November November 14 to 16 in the Persian Gulf port city. Archaeologists and experts in the group were not able to immediately determine what era the grave dates back to.

"The artifacts previously discovered in Siraf mainly date back to the Parthian, Sassanid, or early Islamic eras, but the burial does employ any of the styles current during those eras," said Omid Esfandiari of the Iranologists Society, who was one of the visitors who stumbled upon the find.

"The skeleton discovered in the grave was not buried facing the qibla, thus it cannot be related to the early Islamic era. The Sassanids buried their dead in tombs and the Parthians placed them in large pots buried in the ground facing southeast. They didn't use very many stones for burials," he explained.

The body is buried facing north and its gravestone has no inscription.

"Research on the grave could produce new findings and theories about burial (customs) in Siraf," Esfandiari said in conclusion.

Located on the northern coast of the Persian Gulf, Siraf has been one of the most important geopolitical points of the Persian Gulf during ancient and modern times.

... Payvand News - 11/18/05 ... --



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