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Journal of Iran's Pre Islamic Archaeological Essays
A Comparative Study of the Newly-Discovered Stuccos on Qezel Qala Mound in Farahan

 submission: - | acception: - | publication: 14/01/2019


javad moghadam1*, Seyed Rasoul Mousavi Haji 2, Reza Mehrafarin 3






Plaster is among the building materials used by human whose extraction and application date back to several thousand years ago. The use of plaster in Iran, as one of the building materials, dates back to the middle Elamite period when it was used in construction of Tabpti Ahar tomb on Haft Tappeh in Khuzestan where plaster coating was applied in the crescent brick arches and the brick floor of the complex. It was after these eras that plaster was applied in decorations of different buildings so that some of its unique examples have been obtained from various periods including Achaemanian, Parthian, Sassanid, and Islamic eras. In archaeological survey of the large plain of Farahan which resulted in identification of 765 ancient sites related to a time period expanding from the late Neolithic to the Qajar periods, in one of these sites called Tappeh Qezel Qala remains of stucco art were found. The ancient mound Qezel Qala is located on a natural hill with a northwest-south-easterly direction with dimensions of 700 to 400 meters that about a few dozen meters from it there are the remains of two seasonal rivers; however, determining the original boundaries and limits of these rivers is impossible according to the current situation and without scientific archaeological speculations. Unfortunately, a large part of this site has been destroyed during the last years due to unauthorized excavations and extensive diggings. In addition to the few architectural remains and surface pottery pieces, a number of broken and crushed pieces were discovered, some of which have remarkable patterns. According to the significance of these stuccos, as one of the first examples identified in the region, an independent research was considered aiming at the chronology of these remains, as well as the classification, typology, and comparative study of these samples that the obtained results are presented in the present paper. In the current paper, which relies on the studies resulted from archeological excavations, while documenting, introducing, and describing the stucco samples, using a comparative study method through the typological comparison of the obtained stucco samples and typological comparison of the surface pottery samples collected from the site in a systematic manner, the settlement period of the site was identified and scientific chronology (dating) for the stuccos was provided. The results of the performed research, indicate that the Tappeh Qezel site of Farahan plain is among the important Sassanid sites of the region, and the stuccos obtained from this site which contain various patterns including the wing figure of a mythical beast, twelve-pointed star, abstract figure of floras, and single and multiple panels are among the Sassanid representative identified sites, such as Bishapur in Fars, Hesar in Damghan, Chal Tarkhan and Tape Mill in Rey, Qala Yazdgerd in Kermanshah, Qala Zohak, Qala Gouri of Ramavand, Susa, Tesiphon, Qala Hezardar in Lorestan, etc. Although these stucco samples have been executed through molding, casting and pre-fabricated methods, most of the decorative panels are made of plaster produced using a molding method.


Archeological Survey  Comparative Studies  Farahn Plain  Sassanid Art  Stucco Decorations. 

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