Wednesday, April 12, 2006

A Forgotten Sassanid City Discovered in Hormozgan


Tehran, 12 April 2006 (CHN) -- A 40-hectare forgotten city belonging to the Sassanid era has been discovered in Bastak city in the southern Iranian province of Hormozgan. This city was called Sibeh during the ancient times; however since the name of the city has not been mentioned in any historical document, archaeologists know it as the Sassanid Forgotten City.
“Archaeological excavations near a construction called “Hamame Sibeh” (Sibeh Bath) led to the discovery of a 2000-year-old city with 40-hectare area. Studies on this historical site indicate that its most ancient layer must have belonged to the Sassanid era,” said Ali Asadi, archaeologist and head of excavation team in Bastak city.
Some parts of the city have been buried under present Kukhrad Village and its cemetery. According to Asadi, the main part of the city is a water channel which transferred the drinking water of a spring from one side of Mehran River, located south of Sibeh discovered city, to the other side where the discovered city is located. The water of Mehran River is very salty; therefore the inhabitants of the city had to transfer the drinking water of a spring from one side of the river to the other side through a channel which was constructed very firmly on the basin of the river with stone and mortar.
The usage of some parts of this channel is still unknown to archaeologists. However, they believe that some parts of this channel structure might have been used as a transportation path by the inhabitants of the city.
According to Asadi, two water reservoirs have also been discovered in the area which might have been constructed during the initial settlement of human beings in the area. “Only the ceiling of the Sibeh bath has been remained almost intact and the rest of it has been destroyed and buried under mud due to the regional floods,” said Asadi.
Archaeologists believe that the name “Sibeh” was a common name during the Sassanid period. The usage of the famous Sibeh bath is not yet known since the building is almost completely buried in mud.
Prior to the discovery of the city, the Cultural Heritage and Tourism Organization of Hormozgan province was determined to register Sibeh Bath as the only remained construction of the city in the list of Iran’s National Heritage. Now with this new discovery it has been proposed to register the entire city, the bath, and the water reservoirs in the list of National Heritage.

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