The ruins of Persepolis, symbol of Persian might at its zenith, rise starkly today from a plain in southern Iran, set on a walled terrace near the foot of a mountain. A double stairway led to the Gate of All Lands, Persepolis main entrance, a portal originally commissioned by King Xerxes with wooden doors and two limestone bulls (now headless).
Once inside the citadel’s walls, monumental staircases, covered with reliefs of tribute bearers and animals, rose to the porticoes, where the king sat elevated on his portable throne.
Limestone columns rose more than 65 feet to held the massive wooden roof of the audience hall. Of the 72 original columns only 13 still stand.