History of Iran briefly
Early Civilizations in Iran Man's presence on the Iranian plateau during the Paleolithic and Mesolithic ages has not yet been properly studied. Life during the Neolithic period, however, is much better known. Considerable geological and natural evidence has proven that Iran was home to one of mankind's first major cultures, ahead of every other part of the world except Egupt, Mesopotamia, and India.
Significant shifts 111 tool manu vase, excavated at Susa, is facture settlement patterns and subsistence methods, including domestication of plants and animals, characterize the Neolithic Iranian settlements, all of which date wholly or in part from the 8th and 7th millennia. Iranians were probably the first to cultivate wheat and dates, and to tame camels and sheep. The existence of rich mines in Iran can be an indication that metal was excavated and processed here since ancient times. One of the recently excavated archaeological sites - Arisman (p215) - has proved to be one of the world's earliest centers of the metallurgical industry. By approximately the 6th millennium B.C., village farming was widespread over much of the Iranian plateau and in lowland Khuzestan. Among others, Sialk (pp 194-195) on the rim of the central salt desert has yielded evidence of fairly sophisticated patterns of agricultural life.
Having begun in the Paleolithic era, Iran's first vigorous growth had developed by the 3rd mil-lennium B.C. into a civilization of great sophistication - Elam.
Elam (2500-644 B.C.) In the late 4th and early 3rd millennia, a brilliant ancient culture came into being on the Iranian territory - Elam, "The Land of Gods" The origin of the Elamites is unclear.
Their earliest kings reigned around 2700 B.C. These early rulers were succeeded by the Awan (Shustar) dynasty, which was then replaced by a new ruling house, the Simash dynasty. About the middle of the 19th century B.C., power in Elam passed to a new dynasty, that of Eparti. About 2500 B.C., the Elamites founded Susa, the capital of their country and the seat of their king. At that time, Elam first appeared on the world stage as an advanced civilization, centuries I ahead of Crete and Mycenae (2000 B.C.), Anatolia (1800 B.C.), China (1500 B.C.), Phoenicia (1300 s.c.), and the Hebrews (1200 B.C.).
The Middle Elamite period began in the 15th century B.C. with the rise to power of the Anzanite dynasty, of which Untash-Gal was the most renowned king. He founded the city of Dur Untash (modern Chogha-Zanbil), one of the wonders of ancient architecture, which has survived to this day. During the reign of Untash-Gal's successor, Shutruk-Nahhunte, Elam became one of the great military powers of the Middle East. Shutruk-Nahhunte captured Babylon and carried off to Susa the stele on which was inscribed the famous law code of Hammurabi (the original is now in the Louvre, but the National Museum in Tehran has a copy). The days of the Elamite military empire were, however, numbered.
|The Big Three at the Tehran Conference 1943|
In a series of campaigns between 692 and 639 B.C, the armies of the As A high point of Elamite syrian king Ashurbanipal destroyed Susa and brought B.C., life-size bronze statue of Queen Napirasu from the Elamite kingdom to an end. Other important ethnic groups that coexisted with the Elamites on the Iranian plateau were the Urartians and the Mannai. The king¬dom of Urartu, which arose in the 9th century B.C., was centered in northwestern Iran and extended
into present-day Turkey and Armenia. The Mannai kingdom was located to the south-west of the Urartians and was overtaken by them in about 800 B.C. Arr.an Tribes in Iran POOO-I000 B.C.)
The beginning of the Iron Age in Iran is marked by major dislocations of cultural and historical patterns, caused by the Aryans' arrival. Most probably, the Aryans came to Iran via routes around the Caspian Sea and through the Caucasian Mountains. The Aryans started to migrate about 3000 B.C. and, in three major and successive movements, finally settled on the Iranian plateau around 1000 ac. Cold, population pressures, overgrazing in their home areas, and hosThe neighbors may have prompted these migrations. The natives of the Iranian plateau enthusiastically greeted the newcomers, who brought with them the technologies that could help them to survive.
Among the Aryan tribes in Iran, three major groups are identifiable - the Scythians, the Medes, and the Persians.
The Scythians established themselves in the northern Zagros Mountains and clung to a seminomadic existence in which raiding was the chief form of economic enterprise.
The Medes settled over a huge area, reaching as far as modern Tabriz in the north and Esfahan in the south.
The Persians settled in three areas: to the south of Lake Orumiyeh, on the northern border of the Elamite kingdom, and in the environs of modern Shiraz, where they established their main settlements, to which they gave the name Parsa (or Persia, in Greek).
Gradually Iranian tribes, especially under the pressure of constant Assyrian attacks, started to reorganize themselves into kingdoms and then empires. The first-known Iranian empire was that of the Medes.