The Tomb of Saadi Shirazi

The Tomb of Saadi Shirazi

An introduction to Tomb of Saadi Shirazi

The tomb of Saadi (Saadieh) has been primarily his khanqah (monastery) in which he spent the last years of his life and was buried when he died.

In the 7th century SH, Shams od-Din Muhammad Saheb-e Divani built a tomb for Saadi. In the year 959 SH, under the command of Yaghoub Zolghadr, the governor of Fars, Saadi’s khanqah was destroyed and there was no trace left of it. In the year 1152 SH, on the order of Karim Khan Zand, a building known as the Kingly Emirate was constructed upon Saadi’s grave. Years after that, in the western part of the emirate, Shourideh Shirazi (Fasih ol-Molk), the blind poet of Shiraz, was buried.

During Qajar dynasty, the Tomb of Saadi Shirazi was repaired by Fath Ali Khan and a few years later, Habib Ol-lah Khan-e Ghavam ol-Molk gave the order for a part of the building to be repaired, leaving it’s custodianship to Zayn al-Abedin Chini (Hoseini Nik).

The connstruct that was built during the reign of Karim Khan was still extant until the year 1327 SH but in 1329 SH, it was ruined by Ali Asghar Hekmat, Mohsen Foroughi and Ali Akbar Sadegh, Society for National Heritage of Iran, and the current building was made.

The new building

The new building was constructed in Persian style. It includes 8 brown stone pillars at the front of the tomb. The main construct is made of white stones and tiles. The building of the tomb of Saddi Shirazi has a cubic shape from outside but from the inside, it is in the form of an octangle with walls of marble and an azure arch.

Tiles of Saadi Tomb
Tiles of Saadi Tomb

The tomb of Saadi Shirazi has an area of about 257 square meters. The main building of the tomb includes two terraces that are perpendicular to each other. The tomb of Saadi is located at the angle of these terraces. Over the tomb, there is an arch made of turquoise tiles. The stones of the bases of the construct are black and the pillars and the front part terrace are m of red granite stone. The facade of the tomb is made of travertine stone and the interior is made of marble.

Saadi’s tombstone is located in the middle of an octangular building and its ceiling is adorned with turquoise tiles. In seven sides of the building, there are seven inscriptions whose content is chosen from Saadi’s works including Gulistan (the Rose Garden), Bustan (the Orchard), Qasa’id (Odes), Badaye (aesthetics) and Tayyebat (Clean words) and is written in Ebrahim Bouzari’s font. The content of the other inscription is by Ali Asghar Hekmat, giving some descriptions about the construction of the tomb.

Saadi tombstone
Saadi tombstone

From the left side, the building is attached to a terrace that has seven rooms leading to the tomb of the poet Shourideh Shirazi. The tomb is located in a room with an inscription on top of its door that introduces the poet. A poem by Shourideh is written on the tiles of the room.

Some pieces of the stone inscription upon the doorway of the tomb that belongs to the time of Karim Khan Zand have broken off due to an accident and are being kept inside the tomb. A verse from Saadi is written on the mentioned stone that reads:

Oh, God! Humiliate me not by reason of Thy greatness; make me not ashamed by reasons of my sins.

The entrance

Entrance of Saadi Tomb
Entrance of Tomb of Saadi Shirazi

The entrance of the complex is along the entrance of the tomb. On the entrance door of Saadieh, there is a verse that reads:

From the grave of Saadi of Shiraz, if you smell, a thousand years after his death, still rises the scent of love.

The western side

In the western side, an ode is written that reads:

Life is sweat. But, Alas! It is not ever-lasting. So rely not on these few ephemeral days.

The eastern side

In the northeastern side, a verse from Saadi’s Bustan (the Orchard) is written that reads:

O thou who passes by my grave, I urge thee by the dust of the beloved to remember.

The southeastern side

In the southeastern side, another inscription can be seen from Gulistan with this sentence:

I remember I had traveled all night long with the caravan… .

The southwestern side

In the southwestern side, lyrics from Saadi’s Badaye (aesthetics) are written, starting with the verse below:

O wandering Sufi! In the chains of fame with no taste of pain, there is no relief of this agony.

The northwestern side

In the northwestern side of the terrace (close to the tomb of Shourideh Shirazi), there are twelve verses from an ode with the gist of the verse below:

I am happy with this universe that is alive through Him. I am in love with the universe whose whole existence is his.

The eastern side

In the eastern side, there are also twelve verses from an ode in Nastaliq font with the content below:

The world has graced many faces, but it will turn its back on this graced face as well.

The tombstone

Ali Akbar Khan Ghavam ol-Molk Shirazi placed the current tombstone on Saadi’s grave and wrote the inscription below from the poems of Bustan:

All things shall perish, but you will last,
The one with the best of attributes (the prophet) and the most beautiful habits ; the prophet of the creations and the mediator of the people.

The area

After many years, the houses around the tomb of Saadi Shirazi were bought, ruined and added to the area of the tomb. Now the tomb of Saadi Shirazi has an area of about 10395 square meters.

Saadi Tomb area
Saadi Tomb area

The area of the garden is adorned with trees, flowers and small gardens in Persian style. In the middle of the yard, there are two rectangular ponds with northern-eastern direction on both sides of the area of the Tomb of Saadi Shirazi and there is another pond in eastern-western direction at the front of the main terrace of the building.

The coin pond

At the front of the terrace, there is a pond by which people make wishes and throw coins in.

The aqueduct

10 meters below the tomb of Saadi Shirazi, there is an aqueduct whose water contains sulphurous material and also quicksilver. The water of the aqueduct flows underground and pours into Howz-e Mahi (the fish pond).

The fish Pond

Fish pond in Saadi's tomb
Fish pond in Saadi’s tomb

This pond lies in the left side of the tomb of Saadi Shirazi. It has an octangular shape and an area of about 30.25 square meters. It is attached to the floor of the tomb through 28 steps. It is said that near his room, Saadi had constructed ponds of marble in which water used to flow. Bathing in this water, especially on Chaharshanbeh Suri (the festival of fire on the last Wednesday of the Persian year), used to be one of the traditions of the people of Shiraz.

The tile works in the fish pond are in general Seljuqi style. In the year 1372 SH, these tile works were designed by the tile work master Tirandaz and laid by the Cultural Heritage Organization. Over the fish pond, there is an octangular skylight with two other square skylights on its both sides.

The roof of the fish pond
The roof of the fish pond

The basement of the Tomb of Saadi Shirazi has been changed into a traditional teahouse.

The image of Saadi’s tomb is on the 10,000 Toman banknote.

Saadi's tomb on a ten thousand toman banknote
Saadi’s tomb on a ten thousand toman banknote

Address: Haft Tanan Blvd., at the end of Bustan Blvd. (at the end of the street by Delgosha Garden).

Get Directions

  show options

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *