Discovery of a Staircase in Babak Fortress ( Eternal Fortress)
Tehran, 22 January 2006 (CHN) -- For the first time, a staircase and a double-floor building were discovered during archeological excavations in Babak fortress near Tabriz city.
Babak fortress is one of the most important historical sites of Iran, located in a mountainous region in Eest Azarbaijan province. This fortress was built during the Sassanid era; however it is famous for the 23 years residence and resistance of Babak Khoramdin who fought against the Arab rulers of the Caliphate of Baghdad. At last, Babak was betrayed and murdered in this castle.
Following the recent excavations in Babak fortress and removing of the debris, some important parts of the fortress, which had previously been unknown, were unearthed. “Archeological excavations in Babak Fortress have started since 2002, and some parts of this fortress have been unearthed so far. The most important discovery has recently been made in this historical site which was finding of a staircase with a double-floor building dating back to the beginning of Islamic period,” said Mohammad Pashayi, head of excavation team in Babak Fortress.
According to Pashayi, the main activities of the excavation team was excavating and restoring the western part of the main staircase of the fortress which dates back to the Islamic period. Due to the large number of visitors, this part of the staircase was not in a good condition and if nothing had been done to preserve it, it would have suffered a real harm in the future.
“A 4.5x 5.5 meter room with two windows, which must have been a guard room, was discovered during the latest excavations in this historical site. There is a 35-meter corridor beside the room. This corridor leads to two towers which have already been unearthed. The discovered staircase and the two-floor building at the back of the corridor and towers all belong to the beginning of the Islam era,” added Pashayi.
Since removing the debris has not been finished in the two-floor building, the usage of this discovered staircase may not be determined yet. Considering that the staircase leads to the two-floor building with a steep slope, experts believe that this building might have been a reservoir or food storage.
“Stonework with mortar was used in the construction of this double-floor building, a feature not found in the construction of the staircase. Using stones and mortars in the construction of buildings was an architectural style common during the Sassanid era; therefore, we can not say for sure that the staircase and the building were constructed during the same historical period,” explained Pashayi.
The discovered staircase is walled from both sides but experts believe that it should not have been covered from the beginning.
Every year in early July, tens of thousands of Iranians gather at Babak Fortress in the town of Kelidar, in East Azarbaijan province to commemorate the braveries of Babak Khoramdin, Iran’s national hero who fought in this site for many years.