50 properties on UNESCO’s world heritage tentative list

TEHRAN, Aug. 18 (MNA) – 50 Iranian historical sites and monuments are included in the UNESCO’s world heritage tentative list, Deputy minister of cultural heritage said, visiting historical and cultural monuments in Bastam City, Shahroud, Semnan.

Referring to the value of ancient historical sites and monuments, Mohammad Hassan Talebian said on Tuesday: “They are the foundations of tourism industry development in the country”.

A tentative list is an inventory of those properties which each country intends to consider for nomination in the world heritage list.

Countries are encouraged to submit their tentative lists of properties that they consider to be cultural and/or natural heritage of outstanding universal value.

According to Talebian, among the properties included in Iran’s tentative list are Bastam and Kharaghan as well as Persian Caravanserai, many of which are in Semnan province.

The case for Bastam and Kharghan includes the complex of Sheikh Bayazid Bastami, the chief mosque, the towered dome of Kashaneh and a part of old wall of the city.

The complex of Sheikh Bayazid Bastami comprises the grave of Sheikh Bayazid Bastami, one of the five elevated Sufis of the world. For the same reason, from 19th century onward, several important properties have been constructed around it. The oldest property of the complex dates back to 8th and 9th centuries AD.

The authenticity and integrity have been kept for one thousand year. Scientifically, the properties have been confirmed through excavations and renovations.

The complex of Sheikh Bayazid Bastami can be compared with other religious complexes in the Islamic world but its remarkable issue is that it has had a regular trend of development through one thousand year.

The caravanserais are one of the most important form of Persian architecture that emerged and created cause of routes development and needs related to the travel’s demands and requirements.  

In the file submitted to UNESCO, there are 25 caravanserais, from all over Iran, which are selected from hundreds of caravanserais.

As Iran historically is located between the main ancient civilizations, the historical roads are playing a critical role in Persian civilization. From the beginning of the history to the current time, the role of Iran as a bridge has encouraged the rulers and people to always care about roads and related structures as one of the main financial income resources. For example, Silk Road is one of this long lasting corridors which played an important role in Persian Empire during the history.  

The historical roads have had several elements related to their functions. Bridges, checkpoints, castles bazaars and specifically caravanserais as a main element of historical road in Iran, were not only a simple place for travelers to rest and keeping safe their belongs, also were a meeting point for travelers, merchants, scientists, and many other scholars who wanted to exchange knowledge and ideas, as well as discover new civilizations.

Caravanserais are usually a place that provides safety for Caravans and travelers against natural risks like rain, snow, storms and floods, or from danger of robbers in the roads. That’s why the structure of caravanserais is like a castle and good fortified.  From a simple enclosure building at the first prototypes, to the highly decorated ones at the middle centuries or the very fortified types of it, are the evidence of progress, improvement and evolution of this kind of buildings.

The most characteristic element of Persian caravanserai is the central courtyard, this design is very functional and it’s the result of evolution. The central court allows the best form of fortification and provides four rows of rooms around the yard. On the back of rooms there are four halls for animals and stores.

Carvanserais are from unique examples of Iranian architecture that in each historical period and in different parts of the Iran, significant examples have remained which can be considered as architectural masterpieces.


News Code 162427


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