Historical City of Meybod and Its Cultural Heritage

A General View of Meybod
Historical City of Meybod from Above
A view of Meybod from above

Meybod is one of the historical cities of Yazd Province, dating back to the Sassanid era. This city has managed to gain a particular place among the world’s spectacular heritage sites because it has accommodated some of the most spectacular monuments of Iran. Meybod is a populated city in Yazd province and an active city in terms of economy and industry.

The weather conditions of the desert city of Meybod is of a dry city. It is located in the northwest of Yazd City. The eastern part reaches some flat plains, and the western part overlooks the mountains and heights nearby.

Agricultural lands constitute some areas around Meybod, in which various agricultural and horticultural products are cultivated.

As there are many qanats and underground water resources, Meybod has a great value in Yazd Province. The qanats are valuable resources for irrigating agricultural land.

History of the Meybod City

The most important historical and archaeological finds of the historical city of Meybod show that the first traces of the appearance of the region originates around it. In fact, the earliest settlements of the people have started at Firuzabad, Bideh, Mehrjerd, and Barjin near the old rivers of the region.

Qanat Maintenance on the Ground
Qanat needs to be maintained continually

The local people were well acquainted with the traditional extraction of water from underground qanats and used these water resources for their livelihood and prosperity. If we want to express a certain period for the emergence of Meybod, it dates back to the time of the Sassanid era. Of course, the existence of several special bricks remained from Medes’ era in Narin Qal’eh clearly expresses the powerful reign of some local rulers in Meybod.

Historical Buildings and Tourist Attractions in Meybod

With its valuable buildings and handicrafts, Meybod is one of the tourist attractions of the world. The handicrafts and special events of this city are not only famous throughout Iran, but also throughout the world. Today, most of people are familiar with the monuments of Meybod. Iranian Cultural Heritage Organization is trying to introduce the valuable handicrafts of the city to the world more than ever.

Narin Qaleh in Meybod
A watchtower attached to the walls surrounding Narin Qal’eh

As one of the ancient cities of Yazd Province, the historical city of Meybod has monuments dating back to several thousand years ago. One of the oldest attractions of Meybod is Narin Qal’eh.

This ancient castle is made of very sturdy sun-dried bricks and belongs to the pre-Islamic period. This monument is now in the middle of the city and on relatively high mounds. If you stand over Narin Qal’eh, you can easily see the whole city around you.

Pegion Tower in Historical City of Meybod
Inside a Pegion Tower in Meybod

Another famous attraction of Meybod is the Kabutar Khaneh tower, which literally means pigeon tower. This beautiful building, an example of Iranian vernacular architecture, has long been the place to produce agricultural fertilizers. The architecture of Kabutar Khaneh Tower is unique and impressive. There are many holes in the interior of the tower accommodating thousands of pigeons. Each one is a nest for one pigeon.

Some of the other attractions of the historical city of Meybod are:

• The historical “Mehrjerd Castle” dating back to the Zand and Afsharid dynasties,
• The Friday Mosque of Firuzabad with its valuable inscriptions,
• The Friday Mosque of Meybod with its beautiful architecture, and
• Safavid Caravansary with Zilu (a woven rug like kilim) and pottery museums of Meybod in it.

Intangible Cultural Heritage of Meybod

Two important ceremonies take place in Meybod, considering a part of the intangible cultural heritage of this city:

  1. The ceremonies of Shah Hassan and Shah Hossein in Meybod, held with special religious practices in the first ten days of the month of Muharram. These ceremonies are ancient and original;
  2. Another ritual ceremony held in this city is “Nakhl Gardani”, which is a procession while carrying a wooden structure called Nakhl. The ceremony takes place in a very magnificent manner on the tenth day of the Muharram month (Ashura Day) to commemorate the resistance and martyrdom of Imam Hussein in all areas of Yazd, including the historical city of Meybod.

Nakhl Gardani ritual is deeply rooted in the beliefs of the local people of Yazd Province. This endeared ritual is one of the most valuable national intangible heritage you can find in several parts of Iran.

Handicrafts in Meybod

Meybod Handicrafts

The reputation of the city of Meybod is not only due to the existence of its ancient monuments. Handicrafts, ceremonies and celebrations held in this city are also among the intangible cultural heritage of Iranians for various occasions.

The handicrafts consist of woodturning, pottery, zilu weaving and Karbafi. The latter is a traditional handicraft of this region and includes sewing scarves, towels, bundles, Appliqués and tablecloths.

The textile related industries of Meybod are expanding. If highly skilful people do this art, it will undoubtedly turn out to be at least an important handicraft in Iran.

Economy and Industry in Meybod

In terms of economics and industry, Meybod has achieved a high status in the world. The most significant tile and ceramic factories of Iran are located in Meybod. Tiling, pottery, ceramics and construction materials, metal industries and iron foundry are among the most active industries in Meybod County.

Another source of economic revenues of Meybod is the tourism industry. With its historical monuments and beautiful tourist attractions, the city attracts several visitors and improves its people’s economic status. Currently, many export several industrial and handicraft products of the city to different countries of the world.

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