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Discovery of Parthian Fortress behind Gelabar Dam

By Ladan M. Sadeghioon

Archeological excavations behind Gelabar Dam, in Iranian Zanjan Province, revealed that the existing fortress which was supposed to date back to Islamic period belongs to Parthian dynastic era.

Gelabar Dam, Zanjan province

Tehran, (CHN) - Archeological excavations behind Gelabar Dam in Zanjan province, northwest of Tehran, brought into light that contrary to previous belief the fortress located behind the dam dates back to Parthian dynastic era (248 BC- 224 AD). This is while prior to this it was believed that the fortress belongs to Islamic period (651 AD afterwards).

Abolfazl Aali, head of archeology team behind Gelabar Dam told CHN: "Prior to this, based on earthenware vessels which were gathered from the surface layer of the fortress, it looked as if the fortress dates back to the Islamic period. However, further excavations and discovery of Parthian earthenware dishes and evidence of architectural remains belonging to this period, revealed that this fortress must have been constructed during Parthian dynastic era."

By inundation of Gelabar Dam, the Parthian fortress located behind the dam, only a small part of the fortress will remain like an island amidst the reservoir of the dam.

"At the same time, another two sites, one belongs to Copper and Stone Ages and the other to Parthian era and Iron Age are also under archeological excavations," added Aali.

Head of excavation team behind Gelabar Dam further explained that the site which belongs to Copper and Stone Ages is a mono periodic residential settlement which will be submerged completely by inundation of Gelabar Dam. "A similar fate is in store for the Parthian and Iron Age discovered residential settlements as well," added Aali.

Archeological excavations will continue until next month behind Gelabar Dam, which its inundation has already started.

... Payvand News - 6/13/07 ... --

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