The archaeological excavations, conducted throughout Persia in the last fifteen years, have been numerous and significant; have concerned, above all, the prehistoric and protohistoric period of Iran, clarifying the very particular characteristics of this civilization which, situated as an immense crossroads between Central Asia, India, Mesopotamia and Asia Minor, it has been able to develop and enrich itself in contact with the most diverse peoples and races. The oldest settlements highlighted are those of Ganj-i Dareh, from the 9th millennium, near Kermānshāh and, from the 4th millennium, those of Godin Tépé, in Lūristān, and Choga Mish, in Khūzistān, which have shown how large was the cultural and geographical context of the first Iranian civilizations. From the 3rd millennium are the Elamite center of Shāhdād, in the district of Kérman, the collective tombs of Bāni Surmah, in Lūristān and, above all, the settlements of Bāmpūr and Tépé Yaḥyā highlighted in Iran southeastern. The Italian excavations at Shahr-i Sokhta, in the Iranian Sistān, have revealed, again for this period, an even wider cultural ecumene that has brought down any theory that believed the urbanization of these territories occurred only by diffusion from traditional civilizations. of Mesopotamia and the Indus. From the 2nd millennium is Haft Tépé, in Khūzistān, another of the largest Elamite centers, Dinkha Tépé, in Azerbaijan, and again the III C period of the very long sequence of Tureng Tépé, SE of the Caspian. Among the periods of Ḥasanlū are the IV, datable between 1100 and 800 BC. C., with buildings with hypostyle halls and the III with buildings dating back to between 950 and 782 a. C. which were destroyed by the Urartians. This phase is very important because it demonstrates, with the raising of a large fortification wall, the need to defend oneself precisely from the new organized political structures of the first centuries of the 1st millennium.
According to microedu, the remains of Bābā Jān, in the Lūristān, datable between the 9th and 7th centuries BC. C., have unearthed, among others, a building with a floor made of large baked brick tiles painted with geometric designs. The site of Tépé Nūsh-i Jān, 70 km S of Hamadān, can be dated between the 8th and 6th centuries BC and has a central building, in the shape of a lozenge, which is probably a fire temple and another, with a hypostyle hall, very important for the history of Iranian architecture and, in particular, for the origin of this type of room, of which, bearing in mind the examples of Tépé Bābā Jān and Ḥasanlū, we can now follow all phases, without necessarily having to foresee a direct dependence on Urartean or Ancient Egyptian architecture. In Haftavān Tépé, western Azerbaijan, a Urartean citadel has been brought to light which was perhaps the one destroyed by Sargon II in 714 BC; another notable Urartian site is Bastām, in the same region, from the 7th century BC. Christ.
For the Achaemenid period we should mention the excavations in Pasargade, especially on the citadel and in the area of the sacred enclosures, and the restoration works in Persepolis promoted by ISMEO which, in addition to making a significant contribution to the clarification of the architectural events of the buildings on the terrace, they also showed a new façade with cone decoration arranged like horns. It should also be remembered the discovery, in the Iranian Sistān, of the site of Dahān-i Ghūlamān, most likely Zaranka, the ancient capital of the Drangiana, exceptional for its urban layout and for a large religious building, unique of its kind, which, although problematically, it makes a notable contribution to the knowledge of ancient Iranian religiosity. The excavations, then, at Masjid-i Suleimān have shown that the site was one of the earliest Achaemenid settlements throughout the Iran and on the terrace it was possible to recognize four sanctuaries, from the Achaemenid age up to the 1st-2nd century AD. Christ. In the other capital, Susa, work continued which brought to light, on the terrace, the remains of the palace of Darius, with a hypostyle hall, and, on the banks of the Chaour, those of a palace from the period of Artaxerxes II. For the Parthian-Sassanid age, essays were performed on the Kūḫ-i Kwāǧa complex, in the Iranian Sistān, of which, by now, it is possible to determine the most ancient phase, attributable to the 4th-3rd century BC. Christ. Also important are the works carried out at Shahr-i Qomis, 30 km W of Dāmghān, and those at Kangāvar, where the excavation and analysis of the great sanctuary dedicated to Anāhitā is underway. For the specific Sassanid period, it is worth mentioning the discovery, in Gurgān, of a long fortification wall and, in Kurdistān, the remains of the site of Qal’eh-i Yazdigird; the excavations at Bīshāpūr and Fīrūzābād and those on the citadel of Takht-i Suleimān, where important Muslim remains from the Ilkhānid period have also been found (see Ilkhān). For the Muslim age, the excavations carried out in Ghubayra, near Kermān and, by far more important, those of Sīrāf, modern Taheri, on the Persian Gulf, where numerous buildings have been brought to light, including at least three mosques, a large neighborhood of houses, a bazaar and a minaret, among the oldest, from the 9th century. The construction phases range from the 7th to the 12th century. Lastly, we recall the research and restoration works in Isfahān, carried out by the Italian archaeological mission.