The latest discovery at Jiroft

ABBASI Hassan Siyavash AWESTA

The latest discovery of the Persian civilisation, has interested the magazine called  “dossier d’archeologie” which has dedicated its number of a 145 pages of the October month 2003 (n 287)to the fabulous discovery at Jiroft.

The month of October 2003 has informed us throughout all the media of this discovery, which took place after the 2001 flood, which the surface was filled of an extraordinary quantity of funerary settings filled of objects.

We are presenting to you few passages of the articles written by martin gozlan, Jean Perrot, Youssef Majidzadeh, Karl Lamberg Karlowski .

A “before” and an “after” Jiroft

 The discovery of the Jiroft knocks over the ideas received. From now on there will be a before and an after Jiroft. The existence of an old culture from a high artistic level inside the Iranian plateau puts an end to our entire question concerning the origins of these prestigious artefacts made of chlorite found on the oriental sites of the Euphrates at Indus. By revealing a iconography and an independent culture, Jiroft drives the need of, once again asking the question of the influence of the Iranian plateau on the bases of Mesopotamia and the sumerian iconography.

Expressions such as “intercultural style” or “transelamite” are now obsolete .We could talk of an “Jiroft style” or of Kerman, of an Iranian iconography, elamite, or pre elamite, depending on their age, if we spread the appellation “elham” throughout the plateau, on the east side until the lut desert. Transposed on the Mesopotamia cultural context, this iconography will be left exotic, in the form of a prestigious artefact, where it would be re interpreted according to the functions of the environment; eventually she will be modified in its elements and in its organisation. It is less probable that she could have conserved its first original aspect. From as far as more than 1000 km of Kerman, on the rabic peninsula parts, the shores of the Euphrate and of the tiger or the stretches of the central Asia. 

The civilisation was not born where we thought it was!

By Martin GOZLAN

The discovery in Iran of a civilisation old of 7000 turns all the archaeological data’s ups and down. Another world has preceded Sumer. Welcome to Jiroft, the valley of the first philosophical artists. Inside a lost valley at the south east of Iran, between the eternal snow of the Djebel Barez , and the Hormoz Detroit, on the Persian golf , laid down for thousands of years an untouched secret. Those of the rise of our civilisation. A couple of weeks ago, we firmly believed that it has begun at Sumer, at Mesopotamia. And all of a sudden like a lightning bolt for the decipher of the past, a storm of adrenaline for the archaeologist: The human thought, its vision over the beauty and of the terrible .Its quest for a social organisation, its chaotic exploration for a superior principle, all of these has been shaped and token form a few century before Sumer, 1000 km more toward south, at Jiroft, in Iran. Nothing corresponds to what we knew any more, all the certitude crumbles down. In the past, of never having to be dogmatic on an ideology, let us beware forever! Jiroft would of staid an obscure place, despite lights of its sky and the splendour of its palm groves, of its green water river, the sumptuous Halil roud, did not get out of his bed in 2001. The floods made to come back to the surface an extraordinary quantity of funerary settings, filled of thousands of blue shaded artefacts. Many vases an cups, made of chlorite and of copper .All that a millennium ritual could of bury inside the tombs of its disappeared ones for a travel that ends here, in a providential swelling, among the fascinated villagers of the Kerman province, where no ones goes there, only when they import throughout all Iran the inflated fruit of a truly oriental paradise.

A new look on the origins of the oriental civilisation.

The information that we dispose at the moment does not allow us more than a rescue operation. They do not authorise any statistic and even less of analysing between the diverse elements of the collection made. However, due to the spread and efficiency of the Iranian archaeological services, this material, is not without a conserve a certain unit. Concerning its origins, the valley of the Halil roud at the south of the Jiroft. Inside the Kerman province; from the fact that it could be dated, in general, of the third millennium before J.C; from the fact that again, in their absolute totality, the artefact that are presented here come from tombs, cemeteries, which are prolonged to about 40 km on the side of the two shores of Halil roud situated at the south of Jiroft. This cemetery belongs to the villages and the cities where the relics have been located. They weren’t touched at all by the looters; their methodical exploration is running under the charge of professor Yousef Majidzadeh , in charge of the Jirfot program in Iran.

The documentation’s that are already gathered gives the answers to a Seri of question asked in the past decade concerning the beginning of the oriental civilisation.

By filling and completing the archaeological data’s, already gathered in the Kerman province, mainly situated o the site of Shahda and of the Tepe Yahya , they reveal the existence , at the south east of Iran, of an important cultural centre which was

barely seen until now . This part of the country was known to have nomad tribes, which use to live there a long time ago. Question were asked about the presence in Mesopotamia or on the side of the Arabic peninsula of the prestigious artefacts imported, mainly consisted of vases made of chlorite decorated by half-precious stones, finding here an answer; The Iranian origin are confirmed and also the possibility that their iconography had influence those of the Sumerian world. Unlike a current opinion that up until now made the Mesopotamia the unique and shinning centre of the technological and economical development, social and cultural, political, and artistically of the first historic civilisation. The Jiroft discovery, created the reflection; she guides us to take a new look about the origins and formation of the oriental civilisation from the fourth and the third millennium before J.C, just like the French and the foreign specialist of Iranian archaeology have recognised it.

There would be from now on a before and an after Jiroft. The content of this number of the “dossier d’archeologie” is to deliver quickly to the knowledge of the archaeological community and for all the public, data’s where everyone will felt the interest and the importance of it. It is published by the lined authorisation given to the Faton edition of reproducing a large part of the illustration of the catalogue prepared by professor Youssef Majidzadeh from the archaeological research centre of the patrimonial cultural organisation of Iran. The site of Jiroft is situated inside the Kerman province. Covers a surface of around 18000 km2 .it adjoins at the east to the Seistan and Balouchestan provinces; at the west the sites of baftand Sirjan; at the north and north east, respectively, the mountain hill region of Jabel baryof the sardouyeh and the of the country of Bam ;at the south finally, the hormozgan province , an altitude of generally 650mtr but the depression of the Jiroft is encircled by volcanic summit (Jebel Barez, Sar douiyeh) which reaches in its highest points to 4400mtr.The climate of the Jiroft is hot and humid, nearly tropical .This big diversity of the climate explains the variation of the agricultural production, tropical and also belonging to the cold regions .The main source of water in Jiroft is the Halil roud ,which goes down from the north west to the south west ,of 4 mountains , Balt, hezar, lalezar and Bhar aseman; it waters the whole length of the region of Jiroft before ending inside the Jazmurian swamp .Its total length is of 400 km2 ;Its basin is spread at around 8400km2.Its been a few years that a dam has been constructed at 40 km upstream from the town of Jiroft , in order to develop the irrigation for the region .the Lac has reduce compare to the normal flow of the river and at certain period of the day it is nearly or totally dry  .In the past ,since the fifth millennium until today ,the Halili roud and 3 of the oldest river that are least important , the Shour , the Khoshkand, the melenti, also the seasonal river that furnishes the necessary water for the cultures of the region .These particular climate and geographical conditions ,highly temperate mountains on the north , vast fertile plain , humid and sub tropical at the centre , tropical at the south , have doted this part of Iran of an exceptional environment . Within conditions as favourable as these, the halil roud basin has become an economical centre in the ancient oriental well as cultural and artistically important. Fine works of art, in particular chlorite vases produced inside different workshops all along the third millennium, were exported throughout the ancient orient.


The archaeological publication mentioned a lot of artefacts found in the excavation at the south west of Iran, inside multiple Simerian cities, in the Diyala and until Mari on the middle Euphrates; at Tarut inside the Persian Gulf; on the coast of the Arabic peninsula.

At the beginning of the year 2001, a few habitat of Jiroft committed themselves for a clandestine excavation. These illegal excavations were made on the 400 km of the Halil roud shores, from its source inside the mountains of Hezar and of lalezar, until north. These reprehensible activities were progressing on the sight and knowledge of the functionaries throughout a whole year Unfortunately the patrimony of the organisation couldn’t intervene through the police since it couldn’t assure the safety of the archaeologist.

The extent of the destruction was considerable. Thousand of people have participated to the carnage, for the search of the treasure.

They search from early the morning until when the sun went down.

A square of 6x6mtr was allotted to each family, by the worries of the equity; a fragment of the same surface was given to groups of 6 widows.
This very long and massive looting was mainly centred on the cemetery, where the funerary offerings were laid down.

The professor Cori c. Lmaberg Karlowski

“25 years ago, I was finishing my excavation program at Tepe Yahya, an iconography that puts into the same...

None of the archaeological searches had battles of snakes, lions, facts that were undertaken since then in the south of Zebus, architectural motifs, were, from Iran.

This dramatic discovery has known long periods of times .We know that the discovery of the Jiroft at 75 km of Tepe Yahya, turns upside down our comprehension of this region. In the process of the excavation Tepe Yahya in Iran, it puts back our vision to the right spot. We have discovered fundamental conceptual workshops which had a connection between the origins of the fabrications of the chlorite vases and of the middle east civilisation, In 1973,