Monday, January 14, 2013

Ectabana

Mani was a "native of Ectabana". In central Iran, the modern name for the town is Hamadan- 400 km south west of Tehran. 

The tomb of the great Iranian scientist/philosopher, Avicenna, is in Hamadan. He was a vizier there - though much later than Mani (11C). 

The whole city was tribute to astrological knowledge - what a fitting place for Cubricus/Mani to be.


Astrological colors and jewels featured in the palace- the walls were colored after the planets.


Herodotus writes:
Deioces bade them build for him a palace worthy of the royal dignity and strengthen him with a guard of  spearmen. And the Medes did so: for they built him a large and strong palace in that part of the land which he told them [...].

He built large and strong walls, those which are now called Ecbatana, standing in circles one within the other. And this wall is so contrived that one circle is higher than the next by the height of the battlements alone. And to some extent, I suppose, the nature of the ground, seeing that it is on a hill, assists towards this end; but much more was it produced by art, since the circles are in all seven in number. And within the last circle are the royal palace and the treasure-houses.
 The circuit of the outer wall is very nearly the same with that of Athens. On this wall the battlements are white, of the next black, of the third scarlet, of the fourth blue, the fifth orange; all these colors with paint. The last two have their battlements coated respectively with silver and gold.

These walls then Deioces built for himself and round his own palace, and the people he commanded to dwell round about the wall.
[Herodotus, Histories, 1.98-99]


 Ectabana is also mentioned in the Bible- Ezra.

Then King Darius issued a decree, and search was made in the archives, where the treasures were stored in Babylon. In Ecbatana in the fortress, which is in the province of Media, a scroll was found and there was written in it as follows: “Memorandum— “In the first year of King Cyrus, Cyrus the king issued a decree: ‘Concerning the house of God at Jerusalem, let the temple, the place where sacrifices are offered, be rebuilt and let its foundations be retained, its height being 60 cubits and its width 60 cubits; with three layers of huge stones and one layer of timbers.

And let the cost be paid from the royal treasury. ‘Also let the gold and silver utensils of the house of God, which Nebuchadnezzar took from the temple in Jerusalem and brought to Babylon, be returned and brought to their places in the temple in Jerusalem; and you shall put them in the house of God.’

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