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Thursday, September 11, 2008
Factory bulldozing Iran’s 7000-year-old mound for brick production
Tehran Times Culture Desk
TEHRAN -- The 7000-year-old mound of Pardis in the Qarchak region is currently being bulldozed by a factory for brick production.
The mound is located in an area owned by individuals using the earth from the mound for producing bricks in their nearby factory, an informed source who preferred to remain anonymous told Tehran Times on Wednesday.
The upper strata of the ancient site have been seriously damaged and ruins of artifacts are visible nearby, said the source, who has recently visited the site located near the city of Varamin in southern Tehran.
Meanwhile, the director of the Archaeology Research Center of Iran (ARCI) warned cultural officials of the illegal excavations at the site during an interview with the Persian service of CHN published on Wednesday.
The excavations have completely destroyed about 70 percent of the site, said Mohammad-Hassan Fazeli Nashli. However, he declined to give more details about the excavations.
“Despite the unique character of the site and its potential to become a site specific museum, the Tehran Cultural Heritage, Tourism and Handicrafts Department has no plans for the site, which is in danger of destruction,” he added.
“Based on the third season of archaeological excavations carried out at Pardis, the site could shed light on the nature and the date of many important developments that occurred in the central Iranian Plateau,” explained Fazeli Nashli, who is also the director of the archaeological team currently working at the site.
A joint team of Iranian archaeologists and experts from Kingston University, Durham University, and the University of Leicester in England took part in the third season of archaeological excavations in April 2006.
Iron necklaces, bracelets, and some other ornaments were discovered in the graves of the site’s cemetery during the excavations.
Discovery of the ruins of a great number of kilns used for pottery making in the region negated the theory that 7000 years ago, pottery was not mass-produced in the central Iranian Plateau.
They also unearthed the remains of a potter’s wheel, which had been made of an amalgamation of mud and animals’ horns.