At one time the centre of one of the largest empires of the world, tadalafil Persia has borne some of the world’s greatest treasures. Various intricate arts, sickness lyrical literary styles, this and architectural techniques can find their beginnings in the area in and around Iran that is attributed to Persia.
Persia can be considered as beginning with the Achaemenid Empire, known as the realm of Cyrus I, Darius I, and Xerxes. These leaders achieved almost mythological standing, expanding their empires, implementing public works and constructions, and patronising arts of all origins. The empire was known for incorporating elements from those they conquered, endeavouring to create the best of all worlds.
Another major influence was Zoroastrianism, the main religion until the widespread adoption of Islam after the Arab conquest of Persia in the 7th century AD. But its origins go back to around the 10th century BCE, so its influence can’t be over-emphasised. Its main tenets are Humata (good thoughts), Hukhta (good words), Huvarshta (good deeds). The rites and traditions surrounding these seemingly simple ideas are represented in temples and artwork that survives to this day. Notably, the purifying and protective endowments of earth, air, water, and fire can be found throughout.
With the Arab conquest, Islamic influences found its way into Persian arts and culture. And Egyptian, Greco-Roman, and Mesopotamian traits also had their hands in – showing that trade as much as war can impact artisans.
The epitome of Achaemenid architecture is Persepolis, the capital of the First Persian Empire. This UNESCO World Heritage site exemplifies how Persian artists, artisans, and architects worked together to combine the best in urban planning, construction, and art. Building on naturally terraced land, additional terraces were created to erect regal structures featuring elegant friezes, slender columns, and majestic sculptures.
The columns are a unique design – the engineers at the time could construct lighter roofs to make a lighter load for more slender columns. These were often topped with ingeniously designed animal sculptures, also known as capitals.
As a counterpoint to the many temples and palaces, Persian mausoleums and tombs also received great attention and detail. Are simple sepulchres, other necropolises, but all adorned with sculptures and some with intricate metalwork.
Within and around these sites can be found even more artistry. Monuments carved out of mountainsides, mosaics depicting scenes from history and mythology, sculptures in bronze and other metals, all adorned homes and palaces, and now can mainly be found in museums and private collections.
Persian metalsmiths didn’t only master bronze work, but also excelled at many techniques for working silver and gold to create decorative jewellery pieces as well as functional drinking vessels and dishes, sometimes inlayed with gems and decorated with abstract designs or scenes of feasting.
The one thing that most people know of is the quality and beauty of Persian carpets. But they aren’t just a single type — Persian carpets covers a wide range of styles and materials. This tradition is thought to have dated back a few thousand years. Each village, city, region developed their own techniques and methods.
Some use cotton, wool, silk, or unique mixes. Some feature geometric designs, birds and flowers, hunting scenes. Some use brilliant, bright colours, others more subdued hues. There are myriad weaves and knots as well. All work together produce beautiful functional works of art. And unlike some arts that are relegated to antiquity, these lovely pieces are being created to this day.
It’s a testament to the quality and handiwork required that two traditions of Persian carpet weaving is listed as on UNESCO’s list of intangible cultural heritages.
The nine Persian gardens are listed as UNESCO natural world heritage sites, recognising the tradition and its influence on landscaping since Cyrus the Great. They are designed to integrate natural surroundings with manmade structures. They are thought to be representative of Eden or of the Zoroastrian principles of air, fire, water, and earth, often being separated into four sections. Often featuring innovative engineering and water management, these gardens have passed the test of time, offering themselves oases to visitors, past and present.
The beauties and wonders of Persia’s heritage is being rediscovered as the region pulls out from its recent tumultuous history. What once could only be discovered in history books or museums is now available to those who wish to experience this culture first-hand. Plan a visit soon and see the wonders that come when so many worlds meet and combine!
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