, Strab. 15.730), a great city of the early Persians, situated, according to the best authorities, on the small river Cyrus (now Kúr
), in a plain on all sides surrounded by mountains.
It contained, according to Strabo, a palace, the treasures, and other memorials of the Persian people, and though not so magnificent as Persepolis, was highly esteemed by that people for its antiquity (15.728).
In another place the same geographer states that the most ancient palace was at Pasargadae; and in its immediate neighbourhood the tomb of Cyrus, who had a regard for the spot, as that on which he finally overthrew Astyages the Mede (15.730).
It is by the notice of the tomb of Cyrus in Strabo (l.c.
), and more fully in Arrian (6.29), that we are now enabled to identify the site of the ancient Pasargadae with the modern Murgháb.
a building has been noticed by many modern travellers, and especially by Morier and Ker Porter, which corresponds so well with the description in ancient authors that they have not hesitated to pronounce it the tomb of Cyrus ; and the whole adjoining plain is strewed with relics of the once great capital. Among other monuments still remaining is a great monolith, on which is a bas-relief, and above the relief, in cuneiform characters, the words “I
am Cyrus, the king, the Achaemenian.” The same inscription is found repeated on other stones. (Morier, Travels,
i. p. 30, pi. 29 ; Ker Porter, i. p. 500; Lassen, Zeitschrift,
vi. p. 152; Burnouf, Mémoire,
p. 169; Ouseley, Travels,
ii. pl. 49.)
The name of the place is found in different authors differently written. Thus. Pliny writes “Passagarda” (6.26. s. 29), Ptolemy “Pasargada” (6.4.7), Sir W. Ouseley. (l.c.
) thinks that the original name was Parsagarda, the habitation of the Persians, on the analogy Dakáb-gerd, Firúz-gerd,