عنوان مقاله [English]
Bistoon relief is the only Achaemenid art-historical work that symbolically depicts the victory of the Achaemenid kings. This relief, along with its trilingual inscription, commemorates the victories of Darius I over his opponents and enemies, which are engraved on the wall of Mount Bistoon in the beginning of his reign (around 520 BC). Bistoon illustrated memorial is the first outstanding work of art of Darius's time in which some motifs and visual-symbolic features of Achaemenid art were displayed for the first time and were repeated and represented in their next works. Therefore, except for the early Achaemenid art that was created in Susa during the time of Cyrus, and now there is a little remnants of it, Bistoon relief can be considered as the foundation of Achaemenid formal art (except for statues). Many of Bistoon's motifs and visual features are taken from the motifs and art of previous civilizations and nations, which are shown in a new and different frame. The purpose of this study is to identify and track the visual and symbolic features of the Bistoon relief and how they are displayed. The questions of this research are as follows: The motifs and the visual and symbolic features of the Bistoon relief are more representations of the motifs and art of which of the earlier civilizations and nations, and which visual feature of the Bistoon’s carving distinguishes it from previous examples? According to the visual features included in the image of the winged circle’s body, which possible hypothesis does this symbol indicate? The research method of this article is descriptive-analytical with a comparative approach and the method of collecting information is library-based. The focus of this research is on the visual artistic aspect of Bistoon's relief (not the historical aspect (.This article is not written in opposition to previous research and opinions, but seeks to systematically examine some of the features that have received less attention in previous research and to examine new concerns from a particular angle. The method of analysis of this research is qualitative.
Bistoon relief is a symbolic depiction of the victories of Darius I over his enemies, whose plan and narrative are influenced by Anubanini's relief plan. Despite this, several motifs and visual features can be seen in Bistoon's relief map, which have been taken from the motifs and art of other civilizations. The use of these different and numerous visual and symbolic elements together creates a distinct framework of the victory of the kings, which has unique features. This difference is in line with the characteristics of Achaemenid art and Darius's government-propaganda ideology.
Figurative motif of stepping on the body of the enemy is a representation of this motif in Anubanini relief, but some visual features of Neo-Assyrian art are also included in it. The role of the winged circle with the body and the type of its relationship with Darius are a representation of the Neo-Assyrian art and motifs that is uniquely portrayed. The image of armed guards standing behind Darius has been a representation of the motifs of Neo-Assyrian art. The Captive Line is a combination of several different features assembled into a unique frame, which initially was focused on Anubanini's plan. Nevertheless, this frame is mostly influenced by the motifs and features of Egyptian art. The image of Darius, as a powerful emperor, who brought order to the rebellious leaders of various nations is influenced by Egyptian art.
The results of the studies (in an overview) show that the motifs and the visual and symbolic features of the Bistoon relief were representations of the Anubanini reliefs, the motifs and art of Neo-Assyrian as well as the motifs and art of Egypt. In the meantime, there are two important visual features in Bistoon relief which distinguish it from previous examples. The first feature shows the victory of an Iranian king in the form of a powerful ruler of other lands. The Iranian character of this scene is created through the display of a Persian robe on the body of Darius, two armed soldiers and his great god. The second feature is not showing violence and humiliation in the image of defeated enemies. In Bistoon relief (unlike previous monuments) attention is not paid to showing a harsh image of the king and kingdom against enemies, and the captives are not shown humiliated and nude.
Also, the visual and symbolic features that are included in the illustration of the body of the winged circle show that he is a God. Because Darius mentions Ahura Mazda as the supreme deity, protector and supporter of his kingdom in the inscription, the winged circle’s body belongs to Ahura Mazda.