Thursday, October 12, 2023

XERXES - Persepolis - the Gate of the People

Entrance to the Gate of Nations

Persepolis - the Gate of the People

It is true and accurate that Persia was a kingdom of many Nations. Some of these Nations came to Persia in request of trade or support or protection. Some Nations encroached on Persia and received due recompense as well as induction into Persia.

Under Cyrus Persia was united in glory and mercy. He was a just ruler with a heart and learned equally from those neighboring kings who sought his counsel. My father Darius fell swiftly into the footsteps of Cyrus through the great council from my Mother Atossa. Who better to know the heart of Cyrus than his daughter. Under Darius and Atossa Persia expanded and thrived.

Darius recognized the need for structure and governance in this expanding kingdom. Persepolis was begun as a capital under the direction of Cyrus. Three generations later my sons and I continued this endeavour. But it was Darius who commanded the construction of the greatest portion of this great city.

In great anticipation I was tasked with the design and construction of a ceremonial hall. One that served as a gateway to the palaces. A gallery of all Nations with space to display the best of the best that was produced in each nation. Pottery, paintings, mosaics, instruments, textiles, and even plants.

Construction of this grand structure began in the Spring. With the dedication of hundreds of hands and nearly a thousand craftsmen the Hall was completed before winter. It is true and accurate that it was dedicated as the Gate of all Nations.

It is more accurate to share that this Hall was the Gate of all peoples. Welcoming benches lined with soft cushions of the finest cotton and silk lined the interior walls. Large, hand carved wooden benches were placed throughout to encourage conversations and to provide edges to a large walkway along the walls.. In the center there were tables with displays of arts and crafts. Any one could bring a piece into this Hall and display it for all Nations of Persia to admire. The Hall was not limited to Persian access. It was a welcoming entry to the dignitaries and royalty from kingdoms both east and west of Persia. It was a jewel in the Persian crown.

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