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Niasar Tetrapylon

Chartaqi of Niasar: Calendric Structure of Niasar

August 8, 2008

فارسی

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By: Reza Moradi Ghiasabadi

Name: Čārtāqi Niāsar (Tetrapylon/ Squared-Base Arcs).

Location: Niasar, West of Kashan, Isfahan Province, Iran (250 km from south of Tehran).

Age: ~2000 years.

Latitude: 33˚ ۵۸.۲۸′ N (±۰.۰۱′).

Longitude: 51˚ ۰۸.۵۳′ E (±۰.۰۱′).

Altitude: 1,760 meters.

Altitude of the surrounding plain: 380 meters.

Orientation of its plan: 11˚ from true north (±۰.۵˚), eastward.

Floor area measure: 142 m2.

Height: 10.50 m.

Length and Width: 11.90 m (±۲ cm).

Chartaqi of Niasar located near the city of Kashan (Fig. 1.1) and was constructed during the late Parthian or early Sassanid Dynasties′ eras. Its plan is square in shap.

نقشه نیاسر و کاشان

Fig. 1.1
Map of Falling rain

This Chartaqi is one of the greatest and the oldest ones in Iran, which remained intact for over 2000 years.

It is like a quadrangle with sides that are 11.9 m (Fig. 1.2; Plan 1).

چارتاقی/ چهارطاقی نیاسر کاشان

Fig. 1.2
Chartaqi of Niasar

For the construction of this monument, ancient Persian (Iranian) architects used residual rocks, which contain holes, and as the result are light and resilient to weathering and especially earthquake, which is why this monument is still standing in this earthquake prone region of Iran after 2000 years.

نقشه چارتاقی نیاسر

Plat 1
All sides of this Chartaqi like the other existing Chartaqis are open with no door or window (Fig. 1.3).

چارتاقی نیاسر
Fig. 1.3
Chartaqi of Niasar

Chartaqi of Niasar is unique from architectural aspect, in that its’ quadrangle plan matches with circle cupola place in the centre very accurately.

In the year 2000, the author proposed a theory about the function of Chartaqi of Niasar, as a calendar monument that works with sunlight. In summer and winter solstice the sunrays enter the monument from different angles, which determines the time of the year.

Observe:

بنای تقویمی یا تقویم آفتابی چارتاقی/ چهارطاقی نیاسر کاشان

Plat 2

There are, however, some theories that state that in ancient times Zorvanists used this place for their religious practices. Near this Chartaqi, there is a shrine and holy tree (plantain) and also a fountain that makes it some what a holy place. Also near Chartaqi, there is a modern observatory. Today Niasar is place for people who like astronomy in Iran.

Every year Chartaqi of Niasar hosts a large number of Iranians that gather to cherish their ancestral way of life and to mark the observance of sunrise in summer and winter solstice (Fig. 3.1, 3.2).

بنای تقویمی یا تقویم آفتابی چارتاقی/ چهارطاقی نیاسر کاشان- انقلاب تابستانی

Plat 3
Two lines for summer solstice at sunrise

بنای تقویمی یا تقویم آفتابی چارتاقی/ چهارطاقی نیاسر کاشان- انقلاب تابستانی
Fig. 2.1
Astronomical alignment SS 1
Photography time: Five minutes after sunrise

بنای تقویمی یا تقویم آفتابی چارتاقی/ چهارطاقی نیاسر کاشان- انقلاب تابستانی
Fig. 2.2
Astronomical alignment SS 2
Photography time: Five minutes after sunrise

بنای تقویمی یا تقویم آفتابی چارتاقی/ چهارطاقی نیاسر کاشان- انقلاب زمستانی
Plat 4

بنای تقویمی یا تقویم آفتابی چارتاقی/ چهارطاقی نیاسر کاشان- انقلاب زمستانی
Fig. 2.3
Astronomical alignment WS
Mountain height on the horizon: 2˚
Photography time: Two minutes after sunrise

بنای تقویمی یا تقویم آفتابی چارتاقی/ چهارطاقی نیاسر کاشان- انقلاب زمستانی
Fig. 2.4
Astronomical alignment WS
Mountain height on the horizon: 2˚
Photography time: Two minutes after sunrise

بنای تقویمی یا تقویم آفتابی چارتاقی/ چهارطاقی نیاسر کاشان- انقلاب تابستانی
Plat 5

بنای تقویمی یا تقویم آفتابی چارتاقی/ چهارطاقی نیاسر کاشان- انقلاب تابستانی
Fig. 2.5
Astronomical alignment ST
Mountain height on the horizon: 9˚
Photography time: Ten minutes before sunset

بنای تقویمی یا تقویم آفتابی چارتاقی/ چهارطاقی نیاسر کاشان- انقلاب زمستانی
Plat 6
Two lines for winter solstice at sunset

بنای تقویمی یا تقویم آفتابی چارتاقی/ چهارطاقی نیاسر کاشان- انقلاب زمستانی
Fig. 2.6
Astronomical alignment WT
Mountain height on the horizon: 7˚
Photography time: Two minutes before sunset

بنای تقویمی یا تقویم آفتابی چارتاقی/ چهارطاقی نیاسر کاشان- دیدار طلوع خورشید
Fig. 3.1

بنای تقویمی یا تقویم آفتابی چارتاقی/ چهارطاقی نیاسر کاشان
Fig. 3.2

بنای تقویمی یا تقویم آفتابی چارتاقی/ چهارطاقی نیاسر کاشان- انقلاب تابستانی
Fig. 3.3

For further details, refer to Čārtāqihā-ye Iran (Persain Squared-Base Arcs), Tehran, 2010, (Published in Persian), by the author of this article.

See also the book: The Sun in Tetrapylons



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