From Shush to Chogha Zanbil: A Journey through Ancient Elam
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Located between the Karkheh and Dez rivers, this area was the political capital of the Elamites. The Elamite fortress was situated on a hill in the center of Shush, upon which the French later built a new fort. Adjacent to it is the royal mound, possibly a ziggurat, and the artisans’s bank is nearby.
Ashurbanipal conquered the city of Shush between 465 and 460 BC and leveled it like other Assyrian conquests. Darius I of the Achaemenid Empire rebuilt the town and established his Apadana Palace on the royal mound. Xerxes also lived in Shush. During the time of Ardeshir I, a significant fire they destroyed most of Shush’s structures. The remnants of these ancient sites were unearthed in the 20th century.
Elam is the Assyrian pronunciation of the land “Haltamti” in the Elamite language, meaning “Land of the Gods.” This city has long been the cradle of the birth and expansion of great civilizations, which now have a lasting presence in history.
The Elamites, Assyrians, Achaemenids, Seleucids, Parthians, Babylonians, and Sassanids ruled in this historical city. The ancient site of Shush in the town of Shush covers a vast area that includes various architectural structures from prehistoric times to the Islamic era.
Chogha Zanbil is an ancient Elamite complex in the Khuzestan province of Iran. Dating back to approximately 1250 BC, it is one of the best-preserved ziggurats in the world. Commissioned by the Elamite king Untash-Napirisha, this architectural marvel was dedicated to the Elamite gods. Its unique structure and historical significance have earned it a place on the UNESCO World Heritage List. The site offers valuable insights into the ancient Elamite civilization’s religious, cultural, and architectural practices.
The French Castle, ancient mounds of Apadana, Shush Museum, Shapur Palace, Haft Tepe, Haft Tepe Museum, Shush Castle, and the Tomb of the Prophet Daniel are among the prominent historical sites in this ancient city.