Iranian expert Abdolmajid Arfaei has been assigned to decipher
inscriptions in Susa, the capital of ancient Elam in the southwestern
Iranian province of Khuzestan.
Deciphering the ancient inscriptions is part of the obligations Iran
must fulfill to convince UNESCO to register the site on its World
Heritage List, Khuzestan Cultural Heritage, Tourism and Handicrafts
Department Director Afshin Heidari told the Persian service of IRNA on
A group of UNESCO experts is scheduled to visit Susa during July to access the site for registration on the list, he added.
Heidari said that brick and stone inscriptions along with their
translations and a collection of other artifacts will be put on display
in an exhibition at the site in July.
A graduate of the Oriental Institute at the University of Chicago
Arfaei, 75, is an expert on the Avestan, Pahlavi and Elamite languages.
He is the author of “The Decree of Cyrus the Great”, a book giving a
unique elucidation of the Cyrus the Great Cylinder, which is inscribed
with what is considered to be the world’s first charter of human rights.
Susa is composed of the Haft-Tappeh site, Chogha Zanbil Ziggurat, the Shush Castle and several other sites.
The Shush Castle was constructed in the late nineteenth century by the
French civil engineer, geologist and archaeologist Jacques Jean-Marie de
Morgan (1857-1924), who had come to Iran to carry out excavations in
De Morgan managed to convince the French government of the time of the
necessity of sponsoring the construction of the stronghold, which was
used as a safe haven for his team and as a place to carry out their
Bricks dating back to various historical eras, which had been scattered
at the Susa region’s ancient sites of Haft-Tappeh and Chogha Zanbil,
were used in building the castle.
The Code of Hammurabi, a stele bearing the most complete and perfect
extant collection of Babylonian laws developed during the reign of
Hammurabi (1792–1750 BC), was discovered near the castle in 1901 by
French Orientalist Jean-Vincent Scheil. It is now preserved in the