TEHRAN — Archaeologists have dug trenches in and around Najirom in hopes of finding new clues to the history of trade and shipping in the ancient port city, located in southern Iran along of the Persian Gulf.
Three phases of archaeological work have been formulated to respectively define the legal limits of the ancient port city, the classification of the different layers of sedimentary deposits and finally the unearthing of possible relics and ruins.
Located in the province of Bushehr, Najirom was once one of the largest and most important commercial, industrial and population centers in the Persian Gulf.
Archaeologists hope to unearth mosques, ancient structures and relics from the port city, according to provincial tourism chief Mohammad-Hossein Arastouzadeh.
The historic port, which stretches more than two kilometers along the coast, had never been the subject of archaeological excavations, excavation team leader Hossein Tofiqian said last week.
Parts of this historic site have been destroyed and occupied in recent years due to the expansion of industries in the area, and large parts are on the verge of being destroyed, he explained. “As a first archaeological survey, the project aims to determine the legal limits of the historic area in order to avoid further damage and illegal constructions inside it. In addition to the delimitation of the site, stratigraphic excavations are also underway to determine the cultural sequence of this history.
It has been proven by studies that Najirom was a vibrant and active port in a wide area during all historical periods up to the early, middle and late Islamic eras, the archaeologist explained.
The project is carried out in collaboration with the Ports and Maritimes Organization and the Iranian National Institute for Oceanography and Atmospheric Sciences under the supervision of the Research Institute of Cultural Heritage and Tourism (RICHT).
Iran’s southern province of Bushehr is home to several ancient ports, including Siraf, which Iran is seeking to include in UNESCO’s World Heritage List. Additionally, Bushehr is one of the most important historical regions in the Persian Gulf, home to significant monuments from the Elamite, Achaemenid, Parthian, and Sasanian eras.
The historical and architectural monuments of Bushehr include Islamic buildings like mosques and prayer centers, mansions, old towers, castles, as well as gardens. Bushehr is also home to various archaeological mounds, including Tall-e Khandaq in the Sasanian architectural style, Tall-e Marv located near an Achaemenid palace, and the Qajar-era Malek al-Tojar mansion.