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Naqš-i Rustam


The second tomb at Naqš-i Rustam. Photo Jona Lendering. Naqš-i Rustam: archaeological site in Fars (Iran), best known for its Achaemenid tombs and Sasanian rock reliefs.
   
History Photos

Tomb IV (Xerxes?)

Unlike its model, the tomb of Darius, the fourth tomb at Naqš-i Rustam has no inscriptions that mayhelp us identify its owner. However, most scholars agree that it must have been the final resting place of king Xerxes (486-465). He carefully copied the tomb of his father.

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The upper part of the second tomb. Photo Marco Prins.
The upper part of the second tomb

The upper register is identical to the relief of Darius' tomb: Xerxes (if the king is Xerxes, of course) is standing in front of an altar, praying to the supreme Ahuramazda and sacrificing to the holy fire. In his right hand, the king has his bow, the royal attribute par excellence. Again, the plaform is carried by people that represent the subject nations. The symbol in the upper right corner represents the moon.

The central part of the second tomb. Photo Marco Prins.
The central part of the second tomb

This central part is very interesting because it shows what the columns discovered at, for instance, the Apadana of Persepolis must have looked like. Representations like these have helped archaeologists to reconstruct the façades of Achaemenid palaces.

Literature

Louis Vanden Berghe, Reliefs rupestres de l' Iran ancien (1983 Brussels), #26.


History Photos
© Jona Lendering for
Livius.Org, 2004
Revision: 15 Nov. 2009
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