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@The Culture and History of the Silk Road

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The third of five lectures:
gArchaeological perspectives on the Achaemenid Persian Empire: from the survey around the Bolaghi valley and the Pasargadae Plain, Southern Iranh

Dr. Shin'ichi Nishiyama
Associate Professor, Chubu University, Japan

March 3rd, 2014

Associate Professor Nishiyama as giving a lecture

MWU is holding a series of lecture entitled gThe Culture and History of the Silk Roadh inviting five foremost experts as lecturers.

The 3rd lecturer was given by Associate Prof. Shinfichi Nishiyama of Chubu University, who had involved in several archaeological projects in West Asia and Central Asia including Iran. He talked about the formation of the Achaemenid Persian Empire from the viewpoint of archaeological evidence.

The lecture begun with explaining the purpose of the lecture, and on to the basic historical information of the ancient Persian Empires, the relationship between the Persian Empires and the Silk Road, the cultural links between the Persian Empires and Japan, the current state of the archaeological study of the Persian Period, and the general history of the Achaemenid Empire.

In the second part of the lecture, he discussed the achievements of his archaeological investigation in the Bolaghi valley and the Pasargadae plain in the Fars province, southwest Iran. This was the region where the heart of the Achaemenid Empire lied. First, the architectures and artefacts of the royal cities of the Empire were explained. Then, the detailed account of the two royal cities in the Fars province, Persepolis and Pasargadae were looked into. He argued that the foundation of the Empire was laid by strategically placing the transport, irrigation, and defense systems around the royal cities, especially around Pasargadae, the first royal city of the Empire. Especially important was the controlling of the human movements, i.e. pastoral nomads, who provide not only goods, but also vital information to control the Empire.

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