Monday, December 29, 2014


I have wanted to visit Persepolis for a long time.  Finally, here I am.  I have seen photographs of it before and I have had an idea what it looks like.  But I am still surprised by how big the place is, how high the platform is, and how tall the gates and pillars are.  

It is believed that Cyrus the Great, who repatriated the Jews and other displaced people to their homelands, started building the ceremonial palace around 515 BC.  And it was Darius I (the Great) was built most of it. So it was roughly around the time that Confucius, Buddha, and Isaiah were alive. Amazing.  

When I am up close to the Gate of Nations and other pillars, they look even more oversized. 

When I get up to what is believed to be the tomb of Artaxerxes II in the mountain behind and above Persepolis, the gates that looked huge a moment earlier is now so small.  And the people are no more than specks of dust, or little ants. 

Such a huge complex of palaces.  Yet it was built just to receive (and impress) delegates from other nations, not even to live in.

At the time when Persepolis was built, the Persians also built the greatest empire that the world had known up to that point.  China was in the Warring States Period then.  We are always proud of our 4,000 (some say 5,000) years of civilisation.  Yet we have nothing left from that period of the scale of Persepolis.  

No comments: