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- History of Iran . Sasanian Empire . Sculpture of Shapur . Shapur Cave . Shapur The first . Visiting Shapur's Statue .
Sculpture of Shapur The first; a statue standing on the opening of a cave
A tall and square-shouldered, decisive and powerful has been a guard of a cave for many years. And he looks at the men and women o his land.
He is Shapur The first, a man from Sasanid ancestor which has stood on the entrance of Shapur cave in Tang-e Chogan and after many centuries it is still an intact and stable statue.
A tall and powerful statue with a well-built body stands among the entrance of the cave and his eyes stare into the space; your feet begin to droop thanks to the statue’s grandeur and magnitude and you feel that you must not enter the cave without permission since he has protected this cave for many years. A statue with a huge trunk and a toothed hat. When you see his feet you consider yourself as a small creature who has come to visit a nobleman in order to hear his story and destiny.
There is a historical cave 6 km away from the ancient city of Bishapur and 14 km away from Kazeroon. The only survived stone statue of ancient time has stood and prevailed on the entrance of the cave for many years. The cave was a religious and ritual place for the residents of this area before Sasanid era. Several ceramics of Sasanid era have been found here and for this reason the researchers estimate its antiquity to Sasanid era.
There are two caves around this cave; but the entrance of Shapur cave is bigger than theirs and Shapur cave consists of four big entrances, five small entrances, four sub directions, and three halls.
The beginning of internal space of the cave is wide and as you go forward more it becomes narrow. Two near by stone ponds have been constructed in order to collect water dripping from ceiling of the cave; the dimensions of the ponds are different, they are connected by a waterway, and a little far away from that you see a horseshoe-shaped pond.
The inside of the cave beyond two ponds which are about 80 meters far away from the great statue of the King is very dark and damp.
Temperatures, humidity, limy sediments, and so on are different in various parts of the cave and this diversity has created an impressive elegance.
Visiting Shapur’s Statue
A seven-meter long and two-meter wide (the width of its shoulder) statue which has a toothed crown on his head and with a mass of wavy hair coming out of the crown, and a very big and powerful body which has muscular trunk and becomes narrow in the lower part has been standing in the entrance of Shapur cave in Tang-e Chugan. The length of the entrance is about 30 m and its height is about 15 m.
A statue which has been made of a stone column that connected the ceiling of the entrance into its floor in such a way that the end of its hat has engraved on the ceiling and its shoelace on the floor. Its face shows that he is from a royal ancestor and tells about his power and dignity and inspires the feeling of obeying a nobleman.
Undoubtedly, the sculptor of Shapur’s sculpture (240-272) has been a brave and assertive and to engrave the image of the king from a natural column has not deliberated but has created a really great sculpture; and after finishing, he has polished it.
The skillful sculptor may has had a small model like a mud or stone sculpture in order to be able to engrave such exact details of this sculpture carefully from a stone.