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date: 18 January 2021


  • Michael Vickers


Pasargadae (Πασαργάδαι), an *Achaemenid centre north-east of *Persepolis, where *Cyrus (1) the Great ‘conquered Astyages the Mede in his last battle…founded a city, and constructed a palace as a memorial of his victory’ (Strabo 15. 3. 8; cf. media). The tomb of Cyrus the Great, visited by *Alexander (3) the Great (Arr. Anab. 6. 29; Strab. 15. 3. 7; Plut. Alex. 69. 4), lies to the south-west of the palace area set around an irrigated, formal garden. To the north-east is a tower of disputed function and an unfinished citadel (Tall-i Takht); to the north-west lies the ‘sacred precinct’ with a fire altar and stepped podium facing it. Excavation has revealed over 1 km. of stone-lined conduits. Soundings conducted by an Irano-French team have revealed the existence of mud-brick buildings below the surface.

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