Alamut fortress to be registered in World Heritage Site

QAZVIN, Nov. 12 (MNA) – The head of provincial Cultural Heritage Organization in Qazvin has said illegal constructions in the vicinity of the fortress pose barriers on its registration in World Heritage Site.

Mohammad Ali Hazratiha told Mehr News that the cheaply built structures in the vicinity of the fortress should be destroyed by the public participation; “Alamut fortress is a natural capital for Iran and the province; now that the opportunity to register the legendry fortress in the World Heritage List is available, and the latest documents are prepared to be submitted to UNESCO, a handful of opportunists seeking their petty personal interests would not be allowed to sully the natural and historical background of Alamut fortress,” he demanded.

Hazratiha welcomed judiciary and law enforcement forces’ intervention in the issue as highly appreciated. “The intervention revealed a considerable amount of coordination among provincial authorities, and they are resolved to save sustainable tourism in all parts of the country,” he asserted.

Alamut fortress is a magnificent and well-insulated castle northeast of Gazerkhan village built on a massive rock in an altitude of 2100 meters above sea level and leads to horribly stiff cliffs. Historian and geographer Hamdollah Mostofi wrote that the fortress was founded by da’i Hassan ibn Zeid al-Baqeri in 226 AH, and in the night of Rajab 6, 483 AH (September 10, 1090 AD) was overtaken by Hassan Sabbah, and now it is called Alamut or Hassan Sabbah fortress.

The only entrance path allowing way to the fortress is located in northeastern part- few meters below the eastern tower of the fortress- and Mount Houdkan overlooks the entrance from relatively farther. The entrance is a tunnel roughly 6 meters length, 2 meters width and 2 meters height carved into the rock. Passing the entrance, the relics of southern tower and southwestern rampart of the fortress built in the very steep bedrock invites the eyes of the visitors. In southern slopes, a gorge roughly 50 meters long and 2 meters wide has been engraved in a rock and is full of water coming out of the fortress to block the leading paths to the fortress. On the other rather steep slope, the rock wall has been carved into gorges with impassable walls to thwart any infiltration in points suspected of giving way to enemy’s attacking line.

The cracks and openings were also blocked by brick or stone walls for defensive purposes. Passing by the eastern wall of the fortress, 10 meters long and 5 meters high, a main venue of the fortress appears which has been Hassan Sabbah’s seat of power for nearly 35 years in Alamut, and where relics of few roofless chambers could be traced.

The fortress was demolished and set in blazes by Hulegu of Mongolia in November 1256 after Roknoddin Khurshah surrendered, and in later times, it was only used as prison and place of exile.

A great feature of the fortress is its aqueduct system. The ducts of 10 centimeters diameter, carried water to the fortress from Koldar spring nearby which had been stored in stone-carved pools.

In southwestern part of the fortress in a very steep slope, such a pool is carved on the rock, roughly 5 meters in 8 meters dimension, which has never been without water.

SH
MNA
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News Code 104610

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