GANJ-NĀMA

GANJ-NĀMA (lit. treasure book), location in a pass at an altitude of about 2,000 m across the Alvand Kūh (q.v.) leading westward to Tūyserkān, 12 km southwest of Hamadān (q.v.). Apparently, in the pre-Hellenistic period, this was the major east-west pass through the Alvand. On a vertically cut rock face are two trilingual (OPers., Neo-Babylonian, Neo-Elamite) cuneiform inscriptions in panels each measuring 2 by 3 m. The texts, praising Ahura Mazdā and listing lineages and conquests, are identical except for the royal name. The text on the upper left is by Darius I (521-485 B.C.E.; Kent, Old Persian, pp. 111, 147), while that on the lower right is by Xerxes I (485-65 B.C.E.; Kent, Old Persian, pp. 113, 152). The reliefs are flanked by holes, which probably secured protective covers. Investigations by Heinz Luschey (unpublished) identified a rock-cut terrace above the inscriptions (for photographs, see Lockhart, lower plate opposite p. 95 and Vanden Berghe, pl. 138a). See also ECBATANA.

Bibliography:

L. Lockhart, Persian Cities, London, 1960.

L. Vanden Berghe, Archéologie de l’Iran ancien, Leiden, 1959.

(Stuart C. Brown)

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