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:: year 5, Issue 16 (9-2021) ::
Parseh J Archaeol Stud 2021, 5(16): 81-96 Back to browse issues page
Translating & Transliterating Thatcher Palace Inscriptions Cincture, Sing of the Onslaught of the Enemy
Mossayeb Amiri 1, Majid Badiei Gavarti2
1- Assistant Professor, Historical Department, Archaeological Research Institute, Cultural Heritage and Tourism Research Institute (RICHT), Tehran, Iran. , amirimossayeb@gmail.com
2- Master of Archeology, Faculty of Literature and Humanities, Islamic Azad University, Central Tehran Branch, Tehran, Iran.
Abstract:   (1051 Views)
In the repository of Persepolis Museum, there are about 700 pieces of inscribed stones related to the cinctures of Persepolis Palaces, almost all of which are broken and incomplete. It us noteworthy that all the pieces are incomplete and broken in one place and only one cincture in the museum hall is complete and the rest of the pieces are all incomplete. Even the healthy piece was broken at the same point where the other cincture were broken and later repaired. All these fractures and defects have been done intentionally and from two specific places. About 40 of these pieces belonged to Thatcher Palace, and after their arrangement and reconstruction, 12 cinctures were obtained equal to the number of Thatcher Palace columns. In all this number, the name of Xerxes is seen as the builder and there is no other name of the Achaemenid kings. The sculptors have followed a certain pattern for their work. Apparently, all the pieces have inscriptions and these inscriptions were in three living languages of that time, namely ancient Persian, Elamite and Babylonian, and all the inscriptions were carved with cuneiform. These three civilizations were the most important civilizations of their time and they certainly had interactions with each other. In this article, we will try to study the cincture inscriptions of Thatcher Palace columns by descriptive-analytical method. How many paragraphs dose the writing contain and what does it contain? The three languages are compared and analyzed, their differences are identified and finally the cause of their breakdown is investigated. 
Keywords: Cuneiform, Cincture, Persepolis, Thatcher Palace.

The common script in Achaemenid times is cuneiform, which some scholars attribute to the previous kings of Darius and even the period of historical beginning (Young, 2007: 38). Elamite was the official language and Aramic language common is most areas under Achaemenid rule. But it should be considered in mind that with the vastness of the Achaemenid territory, there were certainly many linguistic differences in this land, which according to recent linguistic research, probably more than 10 languages were common in this territory, (Anthony, 2013,37). The number of inscriptions from the Achaemenid period that have been discovered so-far is over 40 inscriptions, the most famous of which is the great Bistoon, which is written in three languages: ancient Persian Elamite and Babylonian. With the coming to power of Darius, this line was completed so that the types of verbs and their tenses, as well as pronouns and objects and the construction of verbs in it were well observed, and because it was based on grammar, it was possible to decipher it. It is noteworthy that the cuneiform is the only line that there is slash sign between words, and this feature led Rawlison to decipher it for the first time, and then the starting point for deciphering other lines, such as the Babylonian, Elamute and Assyrians...... The main goal of any linguistic research based on a silent language is to go through the veils of historical and cultural language and to achieve a correct understanding of the inscriptions and a report that is as enlightening as possible, in addition, providing an opportunity to teach a silent language has been a sub-goal of this research. In this research, apart from the ancient Persian language, the Elamite language of the Achaemenid period, which was strange in its birthplace, Iran, has been studied. Unfortunately, less of this research has been by domestic researchers in the field of ancient Iranian languages in the field of Elamite language. Thatcher Palace, column and its cinctures.

Thatcher’s stone cinctures in Persepolis are divided into three categories in terms of material, shape, color, and size. 
1. Cinctures made of limestone which has a light gray color and in terms of shape and form has a simple cut and no geometric tools and on it inscriptions in three languages of ancient Persian, Elamite and Babylonian in a very beautiful, technical way carved without the slightest fracture. All letters and symbols have a dimension in the sculpture and have elongated symbols and are neither short nor long due to the small space. For this reason, this type of current is called cuneiform by Nasta’liq writers. (picture7). This cincture sample has not been found more than two samples so-far, for this resin, this specimen must belong to the columns inside Thatcher Palace Hall. The stones with which the sculptors used to build these types of columns were extracted from the mines of the same area. (picture, 1,4,5). 
2. The cincture is made of decorative stone or hematite, which is glossy black, this type cincture is smaller in diameter and height than the other two, similar in shape to the first sample, which is made of limestone. The reason for the simplicity of this sample is probably the high degree of hardness of the lathe. On this cincture unlike the first sample, trilingual inscriptions with cuneiform lines are carved in a row and in the same order, a few centimeters apart. In this way, the last sign of the Babylonian cuneiform, which is the end of the inscription, is located a few centimeters behind the beginning  of the ancient Persian inscription, the carving of the symbols and letters on it were simple and had no dimension, and perhaps due to the hardness of the stone, they used narrow and simple symbols and letters, and had no small, crushed pieces and also there are two samples of this cincture, one almost complete, which attracted the inside the Persepolis Museum, and the other was half of cincture that was placed in the tank of the same museum. (Picture 2 and 8). 
3. Cincture made of decorative stone and light blue color with a gutter tool around its upper edge, also this cincture is larger in diameter and height than the other two types, and triple cuneiform are carved in a row on it. This type of cuneiform has beautiful but it does not have concave dimension and beauty of the first type. (Picture 3and 6). The size of the cinctures starts at 5 Cm and covers up to one third of a cincture. Its inscriptions were masterfully sculpted in ancient Persian, Elamite and Babylonian languages. After arrangement, the pieces reached 12 cincture, which were the number of columns in the Palace. After translating each word, it replaced them and finally a text was obtained that was repeated 12 times in 3 languages. The important point with our discussion was that a common part this text disappeared in the sentence and then continued the sentence to the end.

When Alexander entered Persepolis, more than two centuries had passed since the Achaemenid Kings ruled the world, and more than one hundred and seventy years had passed since the construction of Persepolis. Conqueror historians have written that after Alexander’s conquest of Persepolis, he ordered it Tobe burned while intoxicated at the request of his mistress, and they know this commandment against his inner desire and try to remove this shameful act from his face on the other hand, if Xerxes or his father Darius, he immediately rebuilt it, although such an action, ie the burning of Athens by the Achaemenids, was never reported. With these details, the authors of this article found that the fire and destruction of Persepolis had nothing to do with the above story, Greek soldier, consciously and under Alexander’s direct order, destroyed the inscriptions, symbols and looted the architecture and its treasures. When they translated these inscriptions for Alexander, he saw himself defeating the Achaemenids without a rival to the emperor of the world. As a result, he ordered the destruction of all inscriptions that had such meanings, especially titles such as king of the world etc., for this reason, broken pieces were not found when translating the cincture. There is also a broken statue of Darius in the treasury of Persepolis, which is clearly visible due to the strong blow, especially the left eye of the statue, which is split on both sides and the place of the blow corresponds to the arrow of Alexander’s soldiers, and as you fill the gap with the sculpting paste, it becomes an arrow, the same shapes can be found at the fracture site of the cincture.
Keywords: Cuneiform, Cincture, Persepolis, Thatcher Palace.
Full-Text [PDF 1394 kb]   (279 Downloads)    
Type of Study: Research | Subject: Interdisciplinary
Received: 2021/04/3 | Accepted: 2021/06/19 | Published: 2021/09/1
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Amiri M, Badiei Gavarti M. Translating & Transliterating Thatcher Palace Inscriptions Cincture, Sing of the Onslaught of the Enemy. Parseh J Archaeol Stud. 2021; 5 (16) :81-96
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year 5, Issue 16 (9-2021) Back to browse issues page
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