عنوان مقاله [English]
Ilām region is among the areas which encompass considerable archaeological monuments in terms of dispersion and multiplicity of such works, indicating its strategic importance throughout the history. Among these works are ancient cities, which have not been scientifically and archaeologically studied so far. One of these cities is the ancient city of Seymare in Dareh-shahr that according to the excavations conducted recently, its archaeological data have provided the researchers with valuable information. Archaeological data, while confirming historical information, imply the continuation of the city’s life from the Sassanid period to the early Islamic centuries. Here, by studying the archaeological data and comparing them with historical and geological data we intend to provide a date for the formation and collapse of this ancient city. This research aimed at investigating the formation changes of Seymare and the possible changes that occurred during the establishment of the city and also the main cause of its destruction with regard to available data, such alike geological information, historical and geographical texts, and archaeological data. Accordingly, two questions are raised: How is the residence situation in the city of Seymare and to which period does it date back? Despite the importance and geographical location of Seymare, according to geological information, historical and geographical texts and archaeological data, what has been the main reason for abandonment of Seymare? In general, it was revealed that a city with such an authentic geographical and historical context has been suddenly abandoned. Therefore, the afore-said data were studied and it was found that due to a terrible earthquake hit in the early Islamic centuries the city was completely destroyed in 258 AH.
During the ancient times, Ilām Province had countless works related to this period, due to its proximity to Ctesiphon and also because it functioned as a pathway towards Khuzestan and Fras. From among these works, the ancient cities of Seymare, Sirvān, Juliān and Darband can be mentioned that most archaeologists have attributed them to historical eras; but according to the research recently conducted in some cities, especially the ancient city of Seymare, the his-tory of these cities in addition to the historical periods has been also attributed to the Islamic era (Lakpur, 2010). The social and political life of the Sassanid era, which is reflected in the urbanization of this period until the domination of Muslims over the western regions of Iran and the abundant historical and geographic information about Seymare have been the logical reasons to study this city from its formation to the collapse.
The particular political and regional situation of the Ilām province during the Sassanid era and the early Islamic centuries and the role of cities in social changes, and the description of the sociological characteristics of cities in this period are among the most important issues dis-cussed in this paper. The political and historical geography of Ilām province, which has been the location of clash and conflicts among different political groups and important governments, and given presence of important and unknown cities in this region provides an appropriate space for reviewing the social changes of this geographical area during the Sassanid and the early Islamic centuries.
Here, it is attempted to answer the following questions regarding Seymare: How is the resi-dence situation in the city of Seymare and to which period does it date back? Despite the im-portance and geographical location of Seymare, according to geological information, historical and geographical texts and archaeological data, what has been the main reason for abandon-ment of Seymare?
The purpose of this study was to determine the formation time of Seymare and the possible changes that occurred during the formation of this city and also the main cause for its destruc-tion according to the available data. According to historical texts, the construction of Seymare took place during the Sassanid period that after the arrival of Islam and the changes and devel-opments occurred subsequently, the city developed and grew during the Islamic era. But with respect to the historical and geographical texts, and archaeological data, and eventually geolog-ical information, the city of Seymare has been evacuated due to a terrible earthquake.
According to the archaeological excavations conducted in the ancient city of Seymare and ar-chaeological data such as pottery and stuccos, the emergence and foundation date of the city date back to the Sassanid era, and it was continued to be utilized with the arrival of Islam. Gen-erally, the reasons for the collapse and abandonment of the city can be studied from three per-spectives, i.e. geological studies, historical and geographical texts, and archaeological excava-tions. According to geological studies, it was revealed that the area of the ancient city of Sey-mare is located on the earthquake line and the earthquake occurrence and its severity are con-firmed according to historical texts. From archeological point of view, with respect to urbani-zation and architecture and archaeological data such as pottery, it was determined that the basis of urbanization and architecture in these cities starts from the Sassanid period. Also, the infor-mation obtained from the pottery indicates that the typical ceramics of the Sassanid period have been obtained from among the ceramics discovered in this city that similar examples of them with absolute dating have been found among the findings of the Sassanid period. The his-torical pottery points to a date from the Sassanid period until the second and third centuries AH. Other important archaeological data in the ancient city of Darreh-Shahr, which have great-ly contributed to the analysis and the conclusion of this research, are stucco decorations. Ac-cording to the research conducted on these stuccos, it seems that they are an evolved example of the stucco masterpieces of the Sassanid period and the early Islamic centuries. Also, accord-ing to the excavators of Seymare, the traces of earthquake destruction have been discovered in some excavated buildings, including the building in section C in room C2. Moreover, in some cases, the rotation seen in the ceiling debris of room C1 is another sign of the earthquake occur-rence and its consequences. Therefore, it was concluded that the city destroyed by an earth-quake hit in 258 AH which caused abundant damage and destruction. Notwithstanding, inhabit-ants of the city evacuated it after the earthquake hit in the third century AH and the city re-mained abandoned for centuries and it was completely left without any urban life, until the re-cent centuries that due to the gradual seventies of the nomads in the region a new town was es-tablished next to the ruins of the ancient city.
Generally, historical texts have referred to Seymare as the center of Mehre-jānghazagh state in the Sassanid era, and they have pointed to its critical role in that period. Archaeological evi-dence regarding Seymare also suggests that Seymare played an important role since the Sāsānian era, and also indicates the continuation of the city’s life until the early Islamic era. This city has survived in the Islamic era under the influence of Sassanid texture and given the strategic location of the region and economic trade it had with other regions, including Khuzestan, especially Susa and Mesopotamia (Samarra) and Sirāf, it was developed and flour-ished.
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