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Gardanah Gavlimash

Gardanah Gavlimash: Iranian rock relief from southern Persis.

Gardanah Gavlimash, archer
Gardanah Gavlimash, archer
The rock relief of Qir-Karzin, locally known as "Gardanah Gavlimash" or simply "Gardanah" (the way down), is carved into a rectangular frame on the south side of a freestanding rock, some five kilometers north of the city of Qir, along to the Firuzabad-Qir road.

This relief shows an archer stretching a bow, ready to shoot an arrow. This is a classical Achaemenid image, but the style and fashion of the weapons and the short dress, although clearly inspired by Achaemenid art, are unusual, and so is the fact that the archer is shown moving forward. Classical Achaemenid art is usually more static.

This has made scholars think that the relief dates to the late Seleucid era, when southern Persis was under the rule of a local, native dynasty. They continued Achaemenid traditions and were not yet influenced by the later Parthian art.

Gardanah Gavlimash, general view
Gardanah Gavlimash, general view
From a technical point of view, the relief is simple and superficial; the rocky surface is not marked in depth. This led scholars such as Vanden Berghe to qualify the cutting technique as "provincial", while Huff atttributes it to a local nobleman.


This page was created in 2012; last modified on 28 March 2014.