The Palace at Shushan
The ancient city of Shushan was positively identified about one hundred and fifty years ago as a city in Iran called Susa or Sush. Archaeological excavations carried out since then have revealed the remains of the ancient palace of Shushan which was originally built by Darius and expanded upon by other kings.
For a panoramic of the remains of the palace at Shushan, please click on the image below.
The images below originally decorated the the palace in Shsushan and allow us to get a feel of its art and grandeur.
However, perhaps even more interesting is how the remains of this palace allows us to better understand the meaning of the Megillah.
The layout of the palace gives meaning to phrases that we could only imagine about earlier.
To view a map of the layout of the palace click on the image below.
Map numbers explained:
Area # 1 on the chart is the inner courtyard where entering without permission was punishable by death. It led straight into the throne hall # 4.
The area below #4 is thought to be the women's quarters.
The area between area between #1 and #8 is the women's courtyard where Vashti held her feast for the women.
Area # 5 is the "Gate of the King" where Mordichai overheard the plot of Bigtan and Sheresh.
Area # 8 is the western gate which was the gate before the courtyard of women. This is the area where Mordichai would visit to inquire about the welfare of Esther.
Area # 3 is the outer courtyard. The megillah tells us Haman came to Achashbveirosh in middle of the night and was in the outer courtyard.
Area # 6 is called the Apadana and had a huge banquet hall and had a garden outside of it. It is thought the 180 day party of Achashveirosh was held here.
Additional Links Related to Shushan:
The video below which describes Alexander entry into Sushan begins with the host walking through the ruins of the palace at Shushan.