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Persia. Thousand and One Marvellous Instants
Shah Abbas "the Great". 1587 AD
The Qeysarie was the historic gateway
to Isfahan's main bazaar.
It was originally built in the 11th century, but underwent several modifications over the centuries. The most important commercial activity in the bazaar was the sale of carpets, especially kilims. A miscellany of colours and different varieties of aromas pervaded the place, while, in the long roofed corridors,
vendors and craftsmen displayed their products; one could also find numerous shops of goldsmiths and other artistic activities. Walking through the narrow streets of Isfahan's bazaar is like walking through the past of Persia's glorious history. The city, known as 'half of the world' for its beauty, abounds in handicrafts, so that it is considered
the Iranian capital of art and culture. Through the generations, the craftsmen have perpetuated the original local traditions, which are rooted in the customs and beliefs of the past, which are the true soul of Iran and recall the spiritual culture of the same society; the stories behind each pottery work, each carpet design, each print,
each engraved metal, remain imprinted in the traveller's mind, like a souvenir. The Caravanserai, the most important space in the bazaar, was intended not only for shops and workshops, but also as accommodation for travellers, providing them with camels and horses. There were over hundreds of caravanserai in the bazaar of Isfahan during the Safavid era.
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