Persepolis, also known as the “City of Persians,” was a grand capital city of the Achaemenid Empire. It was located in the southwestern region of present-day Iran, approximately 70 kilometers northeast of Shiraz.
Persepolis was founded in 518 BC by King Darius I and served as the capital city of the Persian Empire until it was burned down by Alexander the Great in 330 BC. The city was known for its impressive architecture, including massive stone columns and intricate reliefs that depicted scenes from Persian mythology and history.
Persepolis is situated on a large terrace overlooking the plain of Marvdasht. The city’s location provided strategic advantages for defense and trade, as it was surrounded by mountains on three sides and had easy access to important trade routes.
The terrace is approximately 450 meters long and 300 meters wide, with a height varying between 10 to 25 meters. The terrace had a grand staircase leading up to it, which opened into a large courtyard with multiple buildings surrounding it.
One of the most impressive structures at Persepolis is the Gate of All Nations, located at the eastern entrance to the city. The gate was constructed during the reign of Xerxes I and featured four massive stone bulls, each standing over two meters tall.
The Apadana Palace
The Apadana Palace was located at the northern end of Persepolis’ terrace and served as a ceremonial hall for receiving guests and conducting important state affairs. The palace had 36 columns, each standing over 19 meters tall.
- Fact: The Apadana Palace’s roof was supported by wooden beams covered in gold.
- Fact: The palace’s walls were adorned with intricate reliefs depicting Persian soldiers and dignitaries.
The Tachara Palace
The Tachara Palace was located at the southeastern corner of the terrace and served as a private residence for the king. The palace was smaller than the Apadana Palace but was no less impressive, featuring a grand staircase and intricate reliefs on its walls.
Persepolis, once a grand capital city of the Achaemenid Empire, now lies in ruins. However, its impressive architecture and rich history continue to captivate people around the world. With its strategic location, grand temples, and palaces adorned with intricate reliefs, Persepolis remains a testament to the power and grandeur of ancient Persia.