Raising awareness of the glory of Hamedan neglected for years: an expert
TEHRAN — Efforts to showcase the splendor of Hamedan, whose history of civilization dates back thousands of years, to the world, have been largely neglected for years, a senior cultural heritage expert said on Monday.
“Unfortunately, no great effort has been made in previous years to present Hamedan, which enjoys a precious history and ancient glory,” said Mohammad-Hassan Talebian, senior adviser to the Minister of Cultural Heritage, Tourism and Crafts.
“All areas of Hamedan are precious… In fact, in the field of intangible cultural heritage, all events, memories, cultural figures, traditions and rituals should be safeguarded,” Talebian explained.
Hamedan has been important in various historical eras, however, its historical core, Hegmataneh, is of very great importance, the official said.
Earlier this month, the Hamedan Tourism Directorate formed a task force to identify, investigate and resolve potential issues on the way to possible inscription of ancient Hegmataneh on the UNESCO World Heritage List. UNESCO.
Known in classical times as Ecbatana, Hamedan was one of the greatest cities of the ancient world. There are pitifully few remains from antiquity, but significant parts of the city center are given over to excavations. Ecbatana was the capital of Media and subsequently a summer residence of the Achaemenid kings who ruled Persia from 553 to 330 BC.
It is widely believed that the ancient city was once a mysterious capital of the Medes. According to ancient Greek writers, the city was founded around 678 BC. AD by Deioces, who was the first king of the Medes.
French Assyriologist Charles Fossey (1869 – 1946) led the first excavation at Tepe Hegmateneh for six months in 1913. Erich Friedrich Schmidt (1897 – 1964), who was a naturalized German and American archaeologist, took aerial photos of Hamedan between 1935 and 1937.
According to the Greek historian Xenophon of Athens (c. 430-c. 355), Ecbatane became the summer residence of the Achaemenid kings. Their palace is described by the Greek historian Polybius of Megalopolis. He writes that the city was richer and more beautiful than all the other cities in the world; although it has no wall, the palace, built on an artificial terrace, according to Livius, an ancient history site written and maintained since 1996 by Dutch historian Jona Lendering.
Additionally, an inscription discovered in 2000 indicates that the Achaemenid king Artaxerxes II Mnemon (404-358) built a columned terrace at Ecbatana. About twelve kilometers southwest of Hamedan is Ganjnameh, where Darius I and his son Xerxes had inscriptions carved into the rock.
Polybius, a Greek historian of the Hellenistic period known for his book The Histories, relates that the builders used cedar and cypress wood, which was overlaid with silver and gold. The tiles, columns and ceilings were plated with silver and gold. He adds that the palace was stripped of its precious metals during the invasion of Macedonian King Alexander the Great and the rest seized during the reigns of Antigonus and Seleucus. Later, Ecbatana was one of the capitals of the Seleucid and Parthian empires, sometimes called Epiphaneia.
Later, around 1220, Hamedan was destroyed by Mongol invaders. In 1386, it was sacked by Timur (Tamerlane), a Turkish conqueror, and the inhabitants were massacred. It was partially restored in the 17th century and then changed hands often between the Iranian ruling houses and the Ottomans.