Discover the Iron Age burial in Gilan: eerie patterns and rituals


TEHRAN – As mentioned earlier, the Iron Age in Iran and Gilan is divided into three sections: Iron Age I, II and III. In addition, some archaeologists believe in the existence of the Iron Age IV, which continued until the middle of the Parthian (Ashkanian) period (end of the 1st millennium BC).

According to a scientific paper by senior Iranian archaeologist Yousef Fallahian, in almost all Iron Age sites in Gilan, the dead were buried on the right shoulder or left shoulder and the legs bent with degrees of low and high curvature. Only a small number of bodies were buried on their backs (face up) in some cemeteries.

Jamshid Abad

The old Jamshid Abad Cemetery, which is located in the central district of Roudbar township, covers an area of ​​about six acres and is located in a residential context.

As mentioned by Fallahian, of the seven tombs discovered in the excavations of Jamshid Abad in 2000, five tombs were simple vacuolar tombs and the other two had a number of stone pieces on themselves (stackable stone). The other had a row of dry walls. All of the graves were found at a depth of one to three meters about 270 cm above ground level like that of the average mass graves.

In addition, the nine tombs discovered at Jamshid Abad in 2006 were simple vacuolar tombs. Most of the graves found at Jamshid Abad had a single body, but in some cases some graves with the bodies of two dead men or women had been made. One condition that is almost common in the graves of Jamshid Abad is the burial of corpses as a bent flank and foot burial. It should be mentioned that no buried objects found next to a corpse appear to belong to a woman in the second tomb of the seventh trench.

Most of the objects found at Jamshid Abad were made of clay or bronze. During the first season of excavation, 42 pieces of ceramic objects were found, representing 78% of the total number of objects found. On average, six pottery artifacts were found in each of Jamshid Abad’s tombs. Among them, the discovery of two types of pottery including a series of narrow-necked urns sometimes of different colors and wide-necked vessels in various shapes were considered the most discovered artefacts.

During the second season, metallic objects were discovered which are also all bronze, including three groups of weapons (swords and daggers), ornaments (bracelets, rings and bar) and tools with specific applications (punch ).


There are three Iron Age sites in Shahran named: Lame Zamin, Painmahal and Mohtesham.

Lame Zamin is one of the Iron Age sites in Shahran Village, located in Roudbar Township. Thirteen tombs were discovered during the first season of excavations at Lame Zamin by the Japanese team over an area of ​​several hundred square meters, all of the vacuolar type. But during the second excavation in 1978, foreign explorers had discovered twelve graves in an area of ​​two hundred square meters of land. In this excavation, the tombs discovered were simple vacuolar vacuolar tombs and in piles of stones. Some of these tombs were elliptical and belonged to adults. The other type was a rectangular vacuolar tomb belonging mainly to children.

The objects and artifacts found in the graves of adults were mainly black and gray pottery. Typically, artefacts found in Lame Zamin’s tombs mainly include gray and red pottery in the form of rounded-bottom pottery (requiring a tripod to stand) with large covers like a large funnel and large tubs as well as other objects such as humanoid pottery figurines. It should be noted that the metallic objects found in the tombs of Lame Zamin of Shahran were only copper. Human bones have been studied at this site and it has been expressed that most of them belong to the Mesocephalus.

Generally, three types of tombs were discovered during excavations at Shahran. The first type consisted of vacuolar tombs discovered in the nearby low-lying area of ​​Shahran. The second type consisted of encrypted tombs mostly found in the neighboring elevated areas of Shahran. The third type were stone cavity tombs which have mostly been found at the Lame Zamin site in Shahran.

Characteristics of the Iron Age funerary culture in the Roudbar (Sefidrood) domain

Generally, the oldest cemeteries linked to the Iron Age can be traced in the Roudbar cultural area to Gilan. In other words, there are more Iron Age1 sites in this area than any other Iron Age area in Gilan. Important sites in Roudbar include Lamezamin de Shahran, Kalouraz and Jamshid Abad which arguably belong to the Iron Age.

There appears to be a direct relationship between the Vacuolar Tombs and the chronology of the Iron Age sites at Gilan. This means that the vacuolar tombs generally belong to the early Iron Ages and that a large percentage of these tombs are found in the cultural domain of Roudbar and that the depth of these tombs is distinct and significant from that of the tombs of Deilaman, Amlash and Tavalesh. areas. Vacuolar tombs are also common at the sites of Halima Jan, Jamshid Abad, Joboun and Shirkooh. Of course, this type of burial can be observed in some other sites such as Ghale Kouti and Boye in the areas of Amlash and Deilaman as well, but their total number is less, especially in the area of ​​Tavalesh.

Figurines of all kinds such as animal or human, or their combinations (Griffin) have been discovered largely in Iron Age cemeteries in this area. The abundance of cattle figurines known as zebu is considered to be the Iron Age characteristic of this domain, while this characteristic is not seen either (like Eshkor Bala of Deilaman and Amlash domain) or a a lower frequency in the other two domains of Gilan. Considering the number of figurines, the sites of Marlik, Kalouraz and Halima Jan are exemplary.

More gold and silver artefacts have been found in Iron Age cemeteries in the Roudbar Cultural Estate than in any other region to the present day. Overall, the richness and abundance of the Iron Age cemeteries in Roudbar Realm are greater than in the other two realms, and even the average number of objects found is greater.

A large number of weapons, especially swords and other combat tools in this area are more comparable to the Deilaman, Tavalesh, and Amlash areas. This is probably due to the occurrence of violence in the area.

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