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Kids' Zone Brian Dispatch

Exploring the Ancient City of Persepolis
April 19, 2000

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Today we are hanging out at the ruins of Persepolis!
The poem Ozymandius tells the beautiful story of a King who thought he would live forever through the wonderful things he built. The King built big palaces and great cities, and proclaimed that he and his kingdom would never end. One day a tired traveler is walking through the desert and he sees a statue of the King. The only thing that is left of the King and his kingdom is this old statue which is really just a pair of really big feet. Everywhere else is sand, sand, sand. Looks like his Kingdom didn't last forever!

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Abeja and Kavitha strike a pose beneath Xerxes' Gate.
I am thinking of this silly King as I visit the great kingdom of Persepolis in Iran. Persepolis is in the desert with nothing around for miles. All that is left is ruins - old buildings that are falling down. Still, if you look at the place hard enough maybe you can imagine what it was like a long time ago. Use your imagination. I bet you can picture the King, his servants, his nobles and
his friends, too. Peoples called the Persians and the Medes lived there. All different kinds of people, doing wonderful things. Persepolis was built over a 150-year period. That's a long time to build one city.


proclaim - to tell something in public
carvings - an object that it made by cutting into something

A special part of the city is the Xerxes gate built by King Xerxes. It has big columns with carvings on it that tell the story of King Xerxes. He told everyone that he was the greatest ruler ever and that he would live forever through the buildings he had built.

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Even though this carving is over two thousand years old you can still see the curly hair on his head.
If you could make up a story of Persepolis and the Kings, what would happen in it? Do you think that every King thinks his kingdom will last forever? Do you think that is a good thing for a King to think?


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