Pasargadae: How Alexander the Great and UNESCO saved it

Tomb of Cyrus the Great copy
Road to Cyrus the Great
Tomb of Cyrus the Great
Passer-by, I am Cyrus, who gave the Persians an empire, and was king of Asia.Grudge me not therefore this monument.

Pasargadae looks pretty barren today and its simple remains says nothing of how great of a leader Cyprus was to Persia.  The limestone tomb contained a golden coffin which rested on top of a table also made of gold.   Tall trees, flower beds, pools and waterways encircled the resting place of Cyprus the Great.  It’s called the “Four Garden”  style today is still the prototype for Western Asian architecture and design

When Alexander the Great arrived in 334 BC, the tomb had been destroyed by those who wanted it’s treasures.  Cyrus bones were scattered around outside of the tomb and thieves carried away treasures found inside.  Alexander was outraged and ordered the thieves to be prosecuted and had the tomb restored.

More is still be discovered today at the site.   Iran had announced that it intended to make the a dam near the site.  The dam could have caused the area to flood and the dampness created by the water would accelerate the deterioration of the fragile limestone.  The UN encouraged Iran to allow a team of architects from around the world excavate what they could before the dam became fully operational.  They  scrabbled for a bit in 2004 and uncovered many sites including a road that linked Pasargadae and Persepolis and caves believed to be inhabited 7000 years ago.   The site became a UNESCO site in 2004 and things are looking pretty good for this site and many others waiting to be discovered in the area.

The Audience Hall of the Pasargadae Palace
The Audience Hall of the Pasargadae Palace and the Zagroes Mountains
The Audience Hall of the Pasargadae Palace
The Audience Hall of the Pasargadae Palace
The Audience Hall of the Pasargadae Palace
The Audience Hall of the Pasargadae Palace
The Audience Hall of the Pasargadae Palace
The Audience Hall of the Pasargadae Palace
The Audience Hall of the Pasargadae Palace
The Audience Hall of the Pasargadae Palace
The Audience Hall of the Pasargadae Palace
The Citadel to the right and the Prison of Soloman to the Left
Prison of Solomon
Prison of Solomon

2 thoughts on “Pasargadae: How Alexander the Great and UNESCO saved it

  1. Damavand December 14, 2011 / 3:48 am

    I believe there is something wrong in your post, because when Alexander attacked Persia there was no Islam in Persia, not only in Persia but nowhere else, as you said Alexander arrived to Persia in 334 BC, but Muhammad(the Prophet of the Islam) was born in 570, almost 900 years after Alexander’s conquest of Persia, so how did those Persians feel that tomb wasn’t Islāmic?
    I’m not a big fan of history but I know Alexander destroyed and burned Persepolis and I think that tomb had been ransacked by some of Alexander’s troops you can find more information here: http://books.google.com/books?id=QY9bF60I5pAC&lpg=PA187&ots=Wi3vF2vm8n&dq=Cyrus%20bones%2Balexander&pg=PA187#v=onepage&q=Cyrus%20bones%20alexander&f=false

  2. farflungistan December 14, 2011 / 8:23 am

    Hi,
    Thanks for pointing out my big mistake. I’m not a student of history and apologize. The Arab conquest happened much later. I changed it 🙂 Thanks again..cheers!

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