عنوان مقاله [English]
نویسندگان [English]چکیده [English]
The ancient city of Shapurkhast has been one of the Islamic cities on the western of Iran that has been attributed to the Sasanian period and developed at early Islamic era. According to the historical sources (the 3rd to 8th A.H), it has been constructed by Shapur I the Great and is located on the ancient routes of Hamedan to Khuzestan. The present research analyzes the data derived from the historical resources and archaeological evidences in order to study and determine the location of this ancient city and investigate the factors in settling in the area. Since there has not been much research about the city from the formation to the fall, and available research are relatively old and so new comprehensive research has not been done on the city with archaeological viewpoint and also some reports about it have not published, we will try to use the archaeological evidences, the written sources and the historical maps aiming to provide suitable information about this unknown city. The results of this study imply that 1. Shapurkhast has been an Islamic city that its foundation has been made at pre-Islamic periods. It was an important city at Sasanian period and the summit of the development and prosperity of it has been the 4th A.H that it had a key role at the western of Iran as the capital of Al-e Hasnuye and its Castle had been as royal property treasury of Badr-Ibn-E Hasnuye based on historic sources. 2. Islamic city of Shapurkhast is located at the place of current Khorram Abad valley (Qazi Abad, kouy-E- Felestin districts and around of Minaret at the southeast of Khorram Abad city). 3. It seems that Shapurkhast has been abandoned at the 7th or 8th A.H at Ilkhanid era and modern Khorram Abad began to function as the central town of the region.
Keywords: Location, City of Shapurkhast, KhorramAbad Valley, Archaeological Evidences, Historical Sources.
Introduction & Method
Archaeological studies of the ancient cities play a significant role in understanding the formation, development and fall of cities in the different historical periods. The investigation on finding the exact location of the ancient cities is one of the interest’s fields of researchers. This study deals with the formation, development and peak situation and then the fall of Shapurkhast city. The information about Sassanid- Islamic cities are rare, in comparison with the large number of the cities have survived from these periods, investigating on Shapurkhast as one of presumably Sassanid- Early Islamic cities could complete the information and the details about urbanism of Sassanid- Islamic periods. Moreover, this city has been one of the important cities at the Sasanian and Islamic periods especially at 4th century A.H, so it is necessary that it be investigated. A review of preliminary literature shows that the past studies are primarily focused on locating city only with concise and short introduction. In addition, the history of city is thought to belonged to the Sassanid era. The most important question in this research is that where was this city exactly located and is it possible to locate Shapurkhast to the place of modern Khorram Abad city?
By developoing of Khorram Abad, deposits of Shapurkhast are remained underneath the urban fabric. Remnants of the old city have been found at the southern and southeastern parts of the modern city especially from the excavations carried out in 2007. In addition, these remains are observable in the aerial photo of modern Khorram Abad in 1956. Having appropriate environmental conditions and also lying at the middle of west to east and north to south communication routes, the south plain of Khorram Abad has potentially provided suitable living conditions for human population. The Environmental and ecological conditions are the most important factors for the collapse of this city.
The historical texts in this research are divided into 3 categories: 1. Resources of the 3rd and 4th AH/ 10th AD-, 2. Resources of the 5th and 6th AH/ 11th and 12th AD, 3. Resources of the 7th and 8th AH/ 13th and 14th AD-. The oldest source that has mentioned Shapurkhast is Al-Buldan of Ibn al-Faqih (290 AH/ 903 AD) (Ibn al-Faqih Hamadani, 1970: 25). Hamza al-Isfahani (first half of the 4th century AH/ 10th AD), in mentioning the news of the kings of Iran, wrote the cities built by Shapur, the son of Ardeshir, Sassanid Dynasty. There is no mention of the city in any of the texts of the 5th century AH/ 11th AD, but its name again appears in the texts in the sixth century AH/ 12th AD. The written information from the city of Shapurkhast is devided into four categories: A. The informations that refer to the location of the city and its distances to other cities in ancient routes. B. Information about the history of construction of the city. C. Based on these texts, it is possible to understand the period of the fall and destruction of the city, because its name disappears after the 8th century AH/ 14th AD, and in spite of the fact that it was an extended city in the past, it became a village during this period and gradually declined. c. With the study of historical texts, it is clear that the majority of the texts referring to the city of Shapurkhast were related to the 4th century AH/ 10th AD. d. Based on these texts, it is possible to understand the period of the fall and destruction of the city.
The archaeological evidences
1. Survey in 2000 and 2016: In a survey which was carried out by the Cultural Heritage Organization of Lorestan in Khorram Abad gorge in 2000, and its results were held in two volumes at the Document Center of the organization, a total of 45 archaeological sites were identified in the gorge. Based on the information obtained from this survey as well as a survey carried out by the authors in Khorram Abad gorge in 2016, these sites were classified and studied.
2. Excavation in 2007: In the excavation of Pa-Menar site in the southeast of Khorram Abad, which was under the supervision of Jalal Adeli in 2007, the remnants of Islamic era of Shapurkhast were discovered. This area was at the east of Brick Minaret. The remnants date back to the 3rd, 5th and 6th centuries AH/ 10th, 11th and 12th AD.
It is clear from the historical sources that Shapurkhast has been a city in the western Iran in a region named “Jebal” or “Lor Mountains” where matches with our studied location, Khorram Abad valley, based on distances indicated in the historical sources. Archaeological findings are the evidences for locating the city as well. We can locate the traces of Shapurkhast in the Islamic period located at the southeastern of Khorram Abad in Qazi Abad, Kooy-e- Felestin and around Brick Minaret and these quarters are parts of this ancient city. the location of the city before the Islamic era needs more research. So, we have not reached the pre-Islamic layers at excavated area.