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Investigating the Archaeology of Maritime Landscapes of Gilan Province

 A archaeological survey project has been started in maritime landscapes of Gilan Province

1Ghoruq shipwreck,  Talesh County, Gilan Province, Iran | photo credit: Ramin Adibi

Fortunately Iran is adjacent to the Caspian Sea northerly and the Persian Gulf and Oman Sea southerly. As a results, it is among those countries enjoying long coastlines. The Caspian Sea is the largest closed body of water in the world surrounded by five countries. It has passed different oscillatory phases. Accordingly, few studies have been conducted on the capacity of southern coasts of the Caspian Sea for maritime archeological studies. To explore the untold capacities of the coasts of Gilan Province, some research will be conducted in the form of the Archaeology of Maritime Landscapes of Gilan Province. Among the main important objectives of that research are identifying, analyzing, and interpreting material and nonmaterial aspects of maritime culture in the geographical area of Gilan Province, and finally analyzing and investigating human utilization of maritime spaces in order that angles of history of this part of the world can be explored via this approach and have a portion in the maritime archeology of the world for can be found for this type of studies. The scope of the Caspian Sea enjoys capacities and elements required for maritime culture studies, whether on lands or underwater. There are a large number of historical reports in which the Caspian Sea and exchanges conducted in it has been referred to. In addition, since the middle of 19th century, some reports have been registered, for exploring archeological areas in the Caspian Sea such as studies conducted on Regions of Bandovan 1 and Bandovan 2 in Azerbaijan Country, said by: Dr. Hossein Tofighian, Head of the maritime archaeology Group in Iranian Center for Archaeological Research and the person in charge of the project.

2 Miankaleh shipwreck, Māzandarān Province in the north of Iran | photo credit: Saman soortijee

Soon, the primary and short report of those investigations will be published in a valid journal related to maritime archeology, Tofighian continued, and in future, we will extensively negotiate about this field in “Iran’s Maritime Cultural Landscape” Panel in the Asia-Pacific Conference on Underwater Cultural Heritage. This archaeologist expressed hope that with the beginning of this field research project, the attention of researchers, historians and archeologists can be lead to the underwater cultural heritage, and Department of Maritime Archeology of Iranian Institute of Archaeology can study historical ships and commercial ports of the Caspian Sea and provide grounds for protecting and maintaining the explored wrecked ships.

The license of the archeological investigations and explorations in the Caspian Sea was issued by the Head of Research Institute of Cultural Heritage and Tourism.

Press release and images provided by Ramin Adibi: Ramin.adibi2012@gmail.com

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