40 historical monuments restored in Zanjan

May 20, 2020 - 21:41

TEHRAN – Some 40 historical buildings and structures in northwestern Zanjan province were restored during the previous Iranian calendar year 1398 (ended March 19).

Gonbad-e Soltaniyeh, Historic Bazaar of Zanjan, Chehel Sotun Mosque, Hakimian Mansion and Seyyed Mohammad Bridge are among the restored sites, CHTN quoted provincial tourism chief Amir Arjmand as saying on Tuesday.

He also noted that over 840 historical and natural sites across the province have been inscribed on the National Heritage List.

The UNESCO-registered Mausoleum of Oljaytu, locally known as Gonbad-e Soltaniyeh, is the highlight of Zanjan’s tourist attractions.

Dominating the skyline, the 14th-century monument is highly recognized as an architectural masterpiece particularly due to its innovative double-shelled dome and elaborate interior decoration.

According to UNESCO, the mausoleum’s interior decoration is so outstanding that scholars like A.U. Pope have described the building as “anticipating the Taj Mahal”.

The UN cultural body adds the Mausoleum of Oljaytu as an essential link and key monument in the development of Islamic architecture in central and western Asia.

Zanjan is one of the cities founded by Sassanid King Ardashir I (180-242 CE). The province makes a base for wider explorations with the architectural wonder of Soltaniyeh, the subterranean delights of the Katale-Khor caves, colorful mountains, and the UNESCO-registered Takht-e Soleiman ruins are nearby.

In late January, Zanjan was designated as a “world city of filigree” by the World Crafts Council after the WCC assessors visited various craft workshops, stores, exhibits, and bazaars of the city in a two-day itinerary in last December.

Filigree consists of curling, twisting, or plaiting fine, pliable metal threads and soldering them at their points of contact with each other with a metal groundwork.