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The magnificent palace complex at Persepolis was founded by Darius the Great around 518 B.
C., although more than a century passed before it was finally completed.
One of the great imperial dynastic centers, the wealth of the Achaemenid Persian empire was evident in all aspects of its construction.
The splendor of Persepolis, however, was short-lived; the palaces were looted and burned by Alexander the Great in 330 B. The ruins were not excavated until the Oriental Institute of the University of Chicago sponsored an archaeological expedition to Persepolis and its environs under the supervision of Professor Ernst Herzfeld from 1931 to 1934, and Erich F. The magnificent ruins of Persepolis lie at the foot of Kuh-i-Rahmat, or “Mountain of Mercy,” in the plain of Marv Dasht about 400 miles south of the present capital city of Teheran.
ʿAli-Akbar Tajwidi conducted five seasons of excavations (late 1960s) in the same area of the plain and also cleared part of the fortification on the “ Royal Hill.” In 1965, an Irano-Italian Restoration team (mainly directed by Guiseppe Tilia) began scientific investigation and restoration at Persepolis and other sites of Fārs (Zander, pp.
After their departure, André Godard, Sayyed Moḥammad-Taqi Moṣṭafawi and ʿAli Sāmi continued to excavate the remaining parts (mainly in the north and east of the terrace and in the plain south of the platform).
C., visualizing Persepolis as a show place and the seat of his vast Achaemenian Empire.
Franz Stolze and Friedrich Carl Andreas (1877) and Marsel and Jane Dieulafoy (1881) made the first photographic documentations, and the entire field of Persepolis scholarship was surveyed and updated by George Perrot and Charles Chpiez and George N. At the invitation of Persian authorities the German antiquarian Ernest Herzfeld surveyed the ruins and recommended scientific methods of investigation and restoration (Herzfeld, 1929).152) maintain that it was built as the site for celebrating Nowruz, the Persian New Year festival.Others (notably Nylander, 1974; Calmeyer, 1980; Mousavi, p.The structures were built by Darius I the Great and his successors, Xerxes (486-66 BCE) and Artaxerxes I (466-24 BCE), and maintained until 330 BCE, when they were looted and burnt by Alexander of Macedon.The aims of Darius, and hence the function of Persepolis, are debated. 270, Krefter, Erdmann, Ghirshman, and Porada, 1965, pp.
Finally, in 2002, the old Persepolis institute was reconstituted, with more authority and means and supported by the UNESCO, as The Foundation for Parsa-Pasargadae Research, with the aims of scientifically investigating, preserving, and publishing the Achaemenid heritage with the co-operation of the scholarly world.