Demetra Hummel

Demetra Hummel

Published: 14 Sep 2023


Shahr-e Sukhteh, also known as the “Burnt City”, is one of the most fascinating archaeological sites in the world. Located in southeastern Iran, it is believed to be one of the oldest civilizations in the region, dating back over 5,000 years. The ruins of this ancient city have provided archaeologists with a wealth of knowledge about the past, offering a glimpse into the lives of those who inhabited the area millennia ago.

In this article, we will uncover 20 intriguing facts about Shahr-e Sukhteh, shedding light on its significance in human history. From its advanced urban planning and remarkable artifacts to its mysterious abandonment, prepare to embark on a journey of discovery as we delve into the enigmatic world of Shahr-e Sukhteh.

Table of Contents


Shahr-e Sukhteh dates back to around 3200 BCE, making it one of the oldest known urban settlements in Iran.

UNESCO World Heritage

In 2014, Shahr-e Sukhteh was designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, recognizing its outstanding universal value and significance.

Size and Layout

The site covers an impressive area of around 151 hectares and comprises a well-organized urban plan with streets, buildings, and a complex water management system.

Advanced Civilization

Shahr-e Sukhteh was home to a highly advanced civilization, evident from the intricate architectural designs, pottery, and artifacts discovered at the site.

Trading Hub

It is believed that Shahr-e Sukhteh served as a prominent trading hub, connecting different regions and civilizations through long-distance trade routes.

Social Hierarchy

Evidence suggests the presence of a well-defined social hierarchy within the city, with distinct residential areas for different classes of society.

Technological Innovations

The inhabitants of Shahr-e Sukhteh were skilled in metallurgy, pottery making, and seal carving, showcasing their advanced technological capabilities.

Female Figurines

One of the peculiar finds at Shahr-e Sukhteh is the abundance of terracotta female figurines, suggesting the importance of women in the society of that time.

Elaborate Burials

The city is known for its unusual burial practices, such as burial jars and various burial positions, providing insights into the religious and spiritual beliefs of the inhabitants.

Urban Planning

The layout of Shahr-e Sukhteh demonstrates careful urban planning, with different sections designated for specific purposes, including residential, administrative, and industrial areas.

Ancient Plumbing System

Shahr-e Sukhteh boasted an advanced plumbing system, with evidence of indoor toilets and a complex network of underground channels for water supply and drainage.

Trade Connections

Archaeological finds at Shahr-e Sukhteh include objects originating from distant regions such as Mesopotamia, Central Asia, and the Indus Valley, indicating extensive trade connections.

Writing System

Researchers have discovered proto-writing signs at Shahr-e Sukhteh, indicating the existence of an early form of writing system used by the inhabitants.

Astronomical Observatory

Recent studies suggest that the inhabitants of Shahr-e Sukhteh had advanced knowledge of astronomy, with the presence of an astronomical observatory at the site.

Cultural Exchange

Shahr-e Sukhteh served as a multicultural melting pot, with evidence of cultural exchange and the presence of objects and artifacts from different civilizations.

Artistic Expression

The city was adorned with beautiful wall paintings and intricate pottery designs, showcasing the artistic expression and creativity of its inhabitants.

Ancient Surgery

Archaeological findings include evidence of early surgical procedures, such as trepanation, suggesting the presence of medical knowledge and practices.

Early Dentistry

The inhabitants of Shahr-e Sukhteh had rudimentary knowledge of dentistry, as evidenced by dental tools and treatments found at the site.

Environmental Challenges

Studies reveal that Shahr-e Sukhteh faced environmental challenges, such as soil erosion and limited water resources, which may have contributed to its eventual abandonment.

Research and Excavation

Ongoing research and excavation at Shahr-e Sukhteh continue to reveal new insights into the ancient civilization that thrived there, adding to our understanding of human history.

Exploring the rich history of Shahr-e Sukhteh is truly captivating, as it allows us to delve into the mysteries of an ancient civilization that has left behind an enduring legacy.

Whether it’s the advanced urban planning, technological achievements, or its significance as a trading hub, Shahr-e Sukhteh remains a fascinating archaeological site, providing glimpses into the lives of our ancestors.

So, the next time you find yourself immersed in the wonders of history, remember the “20 Intriguing Facts About Shahr-e Sukhteh” and uncover the secrets of this remarkable ancient city.


Shahr-e Sukhteh, also known as the Burnt City, is a fascinating archaeological site located in southeastern Iran. Over the years, numerous discoveries have shed light on the ancient culture and lifestyle of its inhabitants. From advanced urban planning to intricate artifacts, Shahr-e Sukhteh continues to captivate archaeologists and history enthusiasts alike.Through the excavation and analysis of the site, we have uncovered 20 intriguing facts about Shahr-e Sukhteh. These facts offer a glimpse into the achievements and mysteries of this ancient civilization. From the world’s earliest known artificial eyeball to the world’s first known caraway seed, Shahr-e Sukhteh provides us with a treasure trove of information about the past.Whether it’s the intricate pottery, the advanced metallurgy, or the enigmatic clues found within the walls of its buildings, Shahr-e Sukhteh remains an important window into our history. The discoveries made here continue to deepen our understanding of ancient societies and their contributions to human civilization.


Q: What is Shahr-e Sukhteh?
A: Shahr-e Sukhteh, also known as the Burnt City, is an archaeological site located in southeastern Iran. It is one of the largest and most important Bronze Age sites in the region.

Q: How old is Shahr-e Sukhteh?
A: Shahr-e Sukhteh dates back to around 3200 BCE, making it more than 5,000 years old.

Q: Why is it called the Burnt City?
A: It earned the name “Burnt City” due to evidence of a massive fire that destroyed a significant portion of the site.

Q: What are some notable discoveries from Shahr-e Sukhteh?
A: Some notable discoveries include the oldest known example of artificial eyeball, intricate pottery, advanced urban planning, and evidence of early dentistry practices.

Q: What does Shahr-e Sukhteh tell us about the ancient civilization?
A: Shahr-e Sukhteh provides valuable insights into the urban planning, advanced metalworking techniques, trade networks, and cultural practices of ancient civilizations in the region.

Q: Can visitors visit Shahr-e Sukhteh?
A: Yes, Shahr-e Sukhteh is open to visitors and offers guided tours to explore the fascinating archaeological site.