Sunday, July 13, 2003

Ganjnameh ( Treasure Inventory)

The Ganjnameh Or (Jangnameh) is located in Abbas Abad Valley, 5 km. west of Hamedan, the ancient Ecbatana or Hecmatane, which served as the capital of the Medes and Achaemenids. The site contains scripts which have been carved in to the gigantic rocks of Alvand mountain and describe the conquests of two Achaemeniad Kings namely, Darius and his son Xerxes, (khashayar) who call Ahuramazda for help. However,the later generations who could not read the cuniform alphabets of the ancient Persian, Elamite and Babilian scripts, thought it was the guide to an uncovered treasury. The two tablets are set in stones as protection from the elements and written in 3 languages in cuniform writing. The tablet on the right side embracing the name of Xerxes and the one on the left embracing the name of Darius the Great. The translation of the text of the right side plate attributed to Xerxes is as follows:
"The mighty lord is Ahuramazda, the god of gods, who created this land, the sky and the people, the same god who brought people happiness, who appointed Xerxes as king, the unique king of kings, the unique ruler of the rulers, I am Xerxes, the great king, king of kings, king of multinational countries, king of this large land, the son of Darius the Achaemenid."
This translation corresponds with part of the inscription attributed to Xerxes at the main entrance of Persepolis and the other plate inscription of Ganj Nameh attributed to Darius the first, the father of Xerxes, had the same sentences with the difference that instead of Xerxes it has the name of Darius. These two plates too, similar to the majority of inscriptions by the Achaemenid kings include greetings to Ahuramazda and the fathers and forefathers of these kings.
Today two new carved tablets have been added in the parking lot of this site with modern Farsi and its English translation. One noticable element in visiting this site is the delight in nature and landscaping that the Persians take in presenting their culture. While you are at Hamedan also visit, Alisadr cave, tombs of Babataher (poet) and Abu alisina (the greatest Scientist of all time), Gombade Alavian (a beautiful building of carved bricks), Borje Gorban ( a tomb from 13th century) and Sange Shir (the only monument of the old Ecbatana).

Click below to see the two famous tablets: