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An overview of the historical city of Isfahan
An overview of the historical city of Isfahan
The city of Isfahan (capital city of Isfahan province) lies on the verdant plain of Zayandehrood River in the center of Iran. It is bounded to the north by the provincial towns of Ardestan, Natanz and Kashan, to the south by Shahreza, to the East by Naeen and Yazd province, and to the west by the provincial city of NajafAbad.
Isfahan extends over an area of approximately 15263 square kilometers. Isfahan lies at an altitude of 1570 meters above sea level. It has a population of nearly 1,600,000. The city of Isfahan embodies the districts of Koohpaye, Meimeh, Jarghooyeh and Borkhar.
Khajoo Bridge
Isfahan is situated in an area known as Jolgeh (plains). Vast fields surround these sedimentary plains. Hence, it can be concluded that Isfahan consists of sedimentary plains and fields.
Isfahan has a semiarid and temperate climate, with four seasons occurring regularly during the year. The unique location of Isfahan (i.e. in the central Iranian plateau), its distinctive natural features (e.g. high snow-covered mountains and fertile plains), and its climatic variety have all contributed to Isfahan turning into a center of settlement since ancient periods.
Therefore, Isfahan is thought to have been among the locations where ancient civilizations developed, and Iranian culture and commerce evolved.
Chehel Sotoon Palace
Isfahan is located at the conjunction of roads linking north and south of the country, thus it enjoys an exceptional position.
In the past, the city of Isfahan served as a bridge connecting Asia and Europe. It was part of the commercial route whereby goods were carried to different parts of the world.
The highlands around Isfahan Include Mount Pila (Seyyed Mohammad) northwest of Atashgah (The fire temple), Mount Donbeh west of the city, Mount Kollah Ghazi, Mount shahkooh and Mount Sofeh to the south, and the hills of Abshar and Shahrestan to the east.
Sio-Seh-Pol Bridge
There have been no major earthquakes, floods or fatal lightings in the area, hence contributing to Isfahan turning into a metropolis around which numerous villages have taken shape.
The strategic location of Isfahan, in terms of military defense has also furnished the city with enormous advantage during history.
Cities in the past formed in places, which enjoyed defensive advantage over other areas. Such was the location of Isfahan in ancient times.
Naqshe-Jahan Square
This is affirmed by numerous fortresses built around the city, namely Atashgah (The fire Temple), Tabark and Sarooyeh and remnants of fortifications around the city dating from different periods.
According to most historians and researchers, Zayandehrood River, which runs across Isfahan, has contributed hugely to the progress and development of this city. The river is of so much significance that the name of Isfahan has always been accompanied by that of Zayanderood River. This is the most important river flowing in the central Iranian plateau.
Hasht-Behesht Palace
It originates from the highlands of Zardkooh Bakhtiari and a mountain range called Koohrang. Zayanderood River runs from east to west before terminating in the Gavkhooni lagoon.
Most researchers believe Zayanderood River has changed course many times in different geological periods, leaving sediments in Isfahan.
Some ancient writers such as the author of Al Alagh Alnafiseh (10th century A.D.) have referred to this river as 'Zarinrood'.
Sheikh-Lotfollah Mosque
Ebn Hooghal Baghdadi, the author of Sooratolarz and Hamze Isfahani renowned geographer and historian has called the river "Zarnrood'.
By referring to different old and new sources, and pondering upon the works of writers, historians and researchers alike, one finds out that Zayanderood has always enjoyed great importance throughout the history of Isfahan.
Further studies indicate that many beautiful castles and palaces were built along Zayanderood.
Jame-Abbassi Mosque
The most famous of these palaces are those dating from the Safavid era. Even though many of these palaces do not exist today, one can read about them in different travel accounts and even find drawings of them in different books.
Handicrafts constitute a tradition perpetuated by human hands, because they are partially or wholly, made by hand. A nation's handicrafts are shaped by its philosophy and express its artistic inclinations.
Juyee Bridge
The wheel and the spool are said to be the oldest samples of items crafted by human hands, which is tantamount to saying that the human hand is the founder of all handicrafts.
Handicrafts of every nation mirror the artistic taste of their forefathers and founders, and represent an incarnation of human talent and creativity. Toward the end of the seventh century A.D. Iranians embraced Islam. At this time, Iranians' artistic essence merged with Islamic values, yielding yet richer and more genuine works of art.
Marnan Bridge
Profoundly influenced by the Islamic culture, Iranian arts and crafts, entered a new stage of evolution, and blossomed even further, especially in the field of architecture.
Renowned researchers, like Professor Pope, Girshman, and Schmide have provided detailed and analytical accounts of Iranian handicrafts. Today, Iran enjoys global reputation as one of the major producers and exporters of handmade works of art.
Khajoo Bridge in the evening

Last update:  Saturday  7  September  2003

Isfahan University of Medical Sciences
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