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  •   Written by Sady Qavipisheh
  • Category: Art
  • Hits: 978

Stone carving was started many centuries before Christ to make hunting tools and primary necessities of life in Iran and reached its zenith, gradually. Archaeological findings including the discovered objects in the excavations at Tepe Yahya ( Yahya hills) in Kerman province , Iran certify that the background of this industry dates back to 4500 years B.C. The discovery of these containers indicates that the stone carving has been in demand for making consumer and luxury goods from Green stone in Kerman. It is worth to mention that this kind of stone still is mined and transported to Mashhad. It must generally be said that Stone carving was devoted to make the agricultural tools, hunting equipments and skinning animals. Stone tools discovered in the excavations of Huto and Kamarband Caves (Belt Caves) located near the Behshahr city, Iran dating to8000 to 11000 years before Christ certify the above mentioned fact. Stone has had a crucial role for constructing the historical buildings and ancient monuments. Achaemenian palaces and stone carving belong to Sassanid period are among the most important historical buildings. Tahkt-e-Jamshid is a prominent example of stone carving industry in Achaemenian period. More than 600 healthy and fractured wares were discovered by academicians of Chicago University in the two treasury rooms of Persepolis. One of these containers is a stone footed goblet on which some pieces of gold and precious stone have been inlayed. There are some writings in the name of Ashurbanipal on it, too. Also, there is a footed goblet made of stone among these wares on which there are some epigraphs in the name of Khashayar Shah. Twelve swans looking at the inside of the cup are sculptured on the brim of this goblet.
Stone carving has been in demand in Ashkanid period. There are some typical works of stone carving in Ashkanid period in Behistun Monuments and at the bottom of the stone carving of Darius the Great. The carved faces on the surface of the works of this age are slightly projected but the figures of the characters are rigid and inflexible. Also, the Horseman Statue which attracted the attention of the craftsmen of this age and other stone carvings such as praying Zoroastrain priest who incenses Aloeswood are among the most prominent works of Ashkanid period.
The stone carving of Sassanid period can be recognized by the carving and embossed drawings on the stone, mostly created in the Fars mountain ranges. Most of these stone engravings were created to show the victory of Sassanids over the Roman Empire.
All Sassanid stone carvings include 20 sculpturing located in Naqsh-e Rostam, Naqsh-e Rajab (about 12 km north of Persepolis), Firuz abad and Mashhad.
Besides, Salmas stone carvings (northwest of the Lake Urmia) and Taq-e Bostan carvings ( located 5 km from the city centre of Kermanshah in western Iran)can be mentioned .All these stone carvings have been created during seventy years, from 225 to 295 B.C.

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