Ahovan Caravansaries
Mohammad Yusef Kiani
Reprinted from: Traditions Architecturales en Iran, Tehran, No. 2 and 3, 1976

Ahovan is located 40 Km east of Semnan on the main Khorasan road. There are two caravansaries: the stone one, Robat Anushirvani, belongs to Sassanid era; the brick one belongs to Safavid era.

Robat Anushirvani is situated almost directly opposite the Safavid caravansary. The building is square, 75x75 Sq. m, and it is built with 4-verandas plan. The exterior of the building consists of a portal entrance on the north side; measuring 4.55 m. Towers are located at each of the 4 corners of the Robat. There are 3 semi-towers on the east, west and south walls, as well as 2 on the north wall. There are 26 chambers situated around the courtyard, each has a veranda in front.

Four verandas and chambers are not equal in size. The north veranda is 16.80x4.55, while the east is 17.40x4.85 m. There are 4 rectangular stables with different sizes at 4 corners of the Robat. The northwest stable measures 14.20x10.50 m, while the northeast stable is 13.70x11.10 m.

The entire structure is from stone, brick, cement and mortar. Early Islamic period Caravansaries, as Robat Karim on Saveh road and Qaleh-Sangi near Tehran, has a number of features in common with Robat Anushirvani.

The building is repaired during Il-khanid and Safavid eras and part of restoration is still visible in the portal entrance and vestibule.

Ahovan Safavid Caravansary is square, 74x74 Sq. m. It is designed and built with 4-verandas plan. The portal entrance is on the south side and measures 5 meters. The vaulted main entrance leads into a domed vestibule, which in turn opens into the shallow south veranda. The interior courtyard is also rectangular and measures 32x40 m.

On the cross axes of the central courtyard are 4 verandas, 4.75x5.50 m. Twenty-four chambers, each 2.90x3.35 m, are located behind the courtyard arcades. Stables are situated behind all of the chambers. The floor is of earth and walls are constructed by fired bricks.

This Safavid Caravansary had one marble inscription, a poem, in Thulth script, at the top of the entrance, before; it is stolen. It reads that at the time of Shah Soleiman Safavi, 1685, the caravansary was erected to serve pilgrims on their way to the shrine of Imam Reza, Meshed.

Safavid Caravansary of Ahovan was used even during 20th century; later the army used it. Now, 2004, it is closed.

فروش اینترنتی آثار هنری، صنایع دستی‌ و کتاب