Prehistoric objects, recovered from illegal excavators, restored

TEHRAN–A cultural heritage laboratory in Kerman has restored 12 prehistoric objects, previously recovered from unauthorized excavators in Iran’s southern province.

“A laboratory affiliated with the cultural heritage directorate of Kerman province has restored 12 metal objects, dating back to the third millennium BC,” the deputy head of tourism said on Sunday.

“Including decorative needles, ax heads, metal daggers and arrowheads, these historical objects have been obtained from smugglers and illegal diggers,” Mojtaba Shafiei said.

“In addition, six coins dating back to the Islamic period have been restored,” the official said.

Referring to the magnificent Jiroft archaeological site, once a cradle of civilization, the official added: “The pottery pieces discovered in the Jiroft excavations are also currently being restored by cultural heritage experts from the province.”

“Most of the restored objects had been unearthed in excavations carried out in different cities of the province, especially (near or within) the towns and villages of the south.”

“Many of these historical objects reveal the customs and (way of) thinking of the past, so their public display supports social identification,” explained the official.

The large and sprawling province is something of a cultural melting pot, blending various regional cultures over time. It is also home to rich tourist spots and historical sites, including bazaars, mosques, caravanserais, and ruins of ancient urban areas. Kerman borders the provinces of Fars to the west, Yazd to the north, South Khorasan to the northeast, Sistan-Baluchestan to the east, and Hormozgan to the south. It includes the southern part of the central Iranian desert, the Dasht-e Lut.

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Kerman (the capital city) was probably started by the Sassanian king Ardashir I (reigned 224-241 AD). Under the Safavids, who took control in 1501, it came to be known as Kerman and became the capital of the province. The city was sacked by the Uzbeks in 1509 but was quickly rebuilt. The decline of Safavid power in the 17th and early 18th centuries allowed Kerman to be attacked and occupied by Afghan tribesmen in 1720.

From a broader point of view, and based on archaeological evidence, the first well-documented evidence of human habitation is found in deposits from various excavated cave and rock shelter sites, located mainly in the Zagros mountains of western Iran and dating from the Middle Paleolithic. or Mousterian (c. 100,000 BC).

Indeed, the earliest well-documented evidence of human habitation is found in deposits from various excavated cave sites and rock shelters, located primarily in the Zagros Mountains of western Iran and dating to the Middle Paleolithic or Mousterian (c. 100,000 BCE). C). A 2019 study published by the Journal of Human Evolution suggests that Neanderthals roamed the Iranian Zagros mountain range between 40,000 and 70,000 years ago.

It is worth mentioning that Neanderthals existed before and during the last Pleistocene Ice Age in some of the most unforgiving environments ever inhabited by humans. They fostered a fruitful culture, with puzzling stone tool innovation, that relied on hunting, some foraging, and a variety of local plants. Their resilience over the tens of thousands of years of the last ice age is a remarkable testament to human adaptation.

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The Iranian plateau stretches for about 2,000 km, from the Caspian in the northwest to Baluchistan in the southeast. It covers most of Iran, Afghanistan and Pakistan west of the Indus River, with some 3,700,000 square kilometers. Despite being called a “plateau”, it is far from flat but contains several mountain ranges, the highest peak being Damavand in the Alborz range at 5610m, and the Dasht-e Loot east of Kerman in central Iran. , falling below 300 m. .


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