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Archaeo News 

27 August 2005
Iron Age skeleton discovered in Iran

A team of archaeologists working at the Bistun site in the Kerman-shah Province in Iran recently announced that they have discovered a 3000-year-old skeleton.
     Ali Sajjadi, team leader, said that the archaeologists surmise that the skeleton dates back to the Iron Age III.  "The skeleton was lying on its left side aligned toward the south, a burial custom only observed during Iron Age III. There were also two jars beneath the right and left feet, with three damaged brass pots next to the body," he said, adding that the items interred with the corpse indicate that the people of that time believed in an afterlife.
     "The body was wearing six metal bracelets around the right ankle and five bracelets on the left ankle with a diameter of 15 and thickness of two centimeters, which indicated that the buried individual was of a high status within his community.  Archaeologists also found shards from the prehistoric era at a depth of three to four meters at the site," he went on to say.
     The Bistun Site is located 30 kilometers east of the provincial capital city of Kerman-shah. Bistun (formerly known as Behistun and Bagistan) is a very important archeological treasure trove that containing a number of unique ancient sites from the Median, Archimedean, Parthian, Seleucid, and Sassanid eras. The Bistun Inscription, also known as Darius’ Tablet, is probably the most important monument of the site. The Tablet stands 22 feet in height, and 68 feet in circumference. It is inscribed with 515 lines of Ancient Persian texts, a trilingual statement also in Elamite and Babylonian, it chronicles Darius the Great and his triumph over the “false kings”, with his victorious ascension to the throne of the Persian Empire.

Source: Tehran Times (24 August 2005)

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