Retrieving Achaemenid palaces in Borazjan with the Help of Archeological Findings

Document Type : Research Article



Although historical texts and stone reliefs from the Achaemenid
era offer valuable information about the way this vast and
mighty empire was managed, archaeological findings that could
help determine the detailed designs of ceremonial structures
have been very limited. In addition, despite the fact that the
construction materials used to build these ceremonial structures
and their mere magnitude, were meant to render them
indestructible, the scourge of time and the forces of nature have
hit them so hard that their retrieval seems impossible without
lengthy archaeological studies. If we add the number of royal
structures constructed upon the orders of Achaemenid princes,
subordinates (known as the Satraps) and other rulers to the
number of various regional and seasonal palaces built for the
kings, we can easily estimate that the vast territory under
Achaemenid rule held tens of such structures. Nevertheless,
questions about the exact number of these palaces, their
geographical distribution, their forms and functions as well as
the political ranks of their inhabitants and the methods used to
construct them remain unanswered. The discovery of three
palaces belonging to the Achaemenid dynasty near the city
of Borazjan (in Iran’s southern Bushehr Province) will
help researchers find some answers but at the same time
begs further questions about the date of these palaces’
construction, the motives of their builders, their architectural
style, as well as the time and causes of their annihilation.
This paper, which has been prepared based on data collected
from archaeological excavations at the aforementioned sites, is
an attempt to answer those questions. Analysis of the collected
data has revealed that all three palaces were built at the
beginning of the Achaemenid Empire and probably by the same
architects that constructed the Pasargad. Based on the same
findings, it may also be concluded that the construction of at
least one of the palaces was abandoned in an emergency
wrought by foreign invasion and possible conflagration.