A Study on the Parthian Burial Traditions at Veliran Cemetery in Damavand, Iran

Document Type : Research Paper


1 Iranian Centre for Archaeological Research

2 Iranian Center for Archaeological Research


Since the ancient times, burial practices have displayed certain characteristics among different Iranian ethnic groups and regions were influenced by the local religious orientations, traditions and environments, and are regarded as part of the spiritual culture of any given population. Indeed, religious beliefs play the main role in this diversity. Because of the empire’s long endurance and vast extent as well as its exceptional cultural diversity, various burial customs prevailed during the Parthian period. Large number of cemeteries with a plethora of different burial practices has been excavated at different Parthian sites lying both within and outside modern Iran, including jar burial, cellar burial, mausoleum, coffin burial, well burial, parallelepiped graves, simple pits and cairns.
Unlike the most area in the Iranian central plateau, the vast plain around Tehran have no been the focus of any serious archaeological surveys or excavations thus the historical setting, archaeology and burial patterns of the region during the Parthian period remained totally unknown. However, a number of burials have recently been discovered and excavated during two seasons of excavations at Veliran. Their preliminary study has revealed important information on burial practices and religious attitude of the residents of Damavand area during the Parthian period. The results of this study are described in the present paper.


Volume 4, Issue 2 - Serial Number 2
February 2013
Pages 103-121
  • Receive Date: 08 October 2012
  • Revise Date: 04 August 2013
  • Accept Date: 20 February 2013
  • First Publish Date: 20 February 2013