With a long-standing and proud civilization, Persian culture is among the richest in the world. Two and a half millennia of inspiring literature, thousands of poets and writers, magnificent and impressive architecture, live customs dating back to Zoroastrians over 3000 years ago, and other unique characteristics of the nation are rivaled by only a few countries.
Throughout the history, this grand treasure of Persia was gradually transferred to eastern and western nations. Iran's significant contribution into the world civilization in many respects is indispensable. Many ceremonies of the ancient Persians are the basis of western celebrations.
Among the ceremonies still being held are Norouz, Charshanbeh Suri, Sizdah Bedar, Yalda Night and Haft Sin. Sitting around Haft Sin and reciting Hafez, visiting family and friends during Norouz celebration, night of Charshanbeh Suri and jumping over the bonfire in the hope of getting rid of all illnesses and misfortunes, spending Sizdah Bedar, the 13th day of the New Year, in nature, are old interesting traditions coming from the Achaemenid Empire.
Another eminent feature of Persian culture is art. In fact culture and art are two closely interwoven concepts forming the soul of human civilizations. Persian exquisite carpets, subtle soulful classic music, outstanding tile work of unique blue mosques, old influential architectural style and countless brilliant literary works are famous in the world.
Persian or Farsi, is one of the world's oldest languages still in use today, and is known to have one of the most powerful literary traditions and potentials. Persian poetry with masterpieces of Saadi, Hafiz, Rumi and Omar Khayyam is well known around the world.
As all Persians are quick to point out, Farsi is not related to Arabic, it is a member of the Indo-European family of languages.
One more art intertwined with Persian culture, worth mentioning, is the art of cooking. Persian foods, accompanied by herbs and spices are product of the creativity, skill and patience of many generations of cooks.