Found in: Iranian provincial capitals
Kerman is a city in Iran. It is the center of Kerman province. Located in a large and flat plain, this city is located 1,076 km (669 mi) south of Tehran, capital of Iran.
Kerman city had an estimated population of 533,799 in 2005.
Kerman was mentioned by the Greeks by the name Karamani. Historical documents also refer to Kerman as Karmania, Kermania and Zhermanya. The city was probably founded by the Sassanid king Ardashir I in the 3rd century, and for this reason it was called "Ardasheer Khoreh". The Muslim Arabs called this place Bardeseer or Bardesheer and the Iranians used to call it Guasheer.
When Marco Polo visited the city in 1271 it had become a major trade emporium linking the Persian Gulf with Khorasan and Central Asia. Subsequently, however, the city was sacked many times by various invaders.
Kerman was expanded rapidly during the Safavid Dynasty. Carpets and rugs were exported to England and Germany during this period.
In 1793 Lotf Ali Khan defeated the Qajars and in 1794 captured Kerman. But soon, he was besieged in Kerman for six months by Agha Mohammad Khan. When the city fell to Agha Mohammad Khan, angered by the popular support that Lotf Ali Khan had received, all the male inhabitants were killed or blinded, and a pile was made out of 20,000 detached eyeballs and poured in front of the victorious Agha Muhammad Khan.Hasan Pir Nia, A. Eghbal Ashtiani, History of Persia (Tarikh-i Iran), ISBN 9646895166, Tehran, 2003, p.655 The women and children were sold into slavery, and the city was destroyed over ninety days.
The present city of Kerman was rebuilt in the nineteenth century to the northwest of the old city, but it did not recover until the twentieth century.
Kerman is located on a high margin of Kavir-e lut (Lut Desert) in the central south of Iran.
The city's many districts are surrounded by mountains which bring variety to Kerman's year round weather pattern, thus the northern part of the city is located in an arid desert area, while the highland of the southern part of the city enjoys a more moderate climate. The mean elevation of the city is about 1755 m above sea level.
Kerman city has a moderate and the average annual rainfall is 135 mm. Because it is located close to the Kavir-e lut, Kerman has hot summers and in the spring it often has violent sand storms. Otherwise, its climate is relatively cool.
For the Iranian Paleontologists, Kerman has always been considered a fossil paradise. Finding new dinosaur footprints in 2005 has now revealed new hopes for Paleontologists to better understand the history of this area.
Carpet weaving is one of the main industries of the city, and the carpets produced there are renowned internationally. Carpet weaving is a very old tradition in Kerman. The oldest carpet discovered in Kerman, belongs to about 500 years ago, which proves the precedence of weaving in this city. Cotton textiles and goats-wool shawls are also manufactured.
The archeological ancient city of Jiroft is located south of Kerman.
Most of the population of Kerman are Shi'a Muslims; But Kerman also has a small but culturally significant Zoroastrian minority.
Politics in Kerman are influenced by the former President Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, his brother and Vice President Mohammad Hashemi, and the Vice President Hossein Marashi, both from the nearby Rafsanjan.
Colleges and universities
Shahid Bahonar University of Kerman is one of Iran's leading technological institutions. Other universities are:
Kerman University of Medical Sciences
Kerman is on the Tehran, Bandar Abbas and Zahedan route. Kerman Airport is counted as one of the main airports which has daily & weekly flights to Tehran, Ahwaz, Yazd, Esfahan, Bandar Abbas, Mashhad and Shiraz. Also the Trans Iranian Railway passes through this city.
Famous people from Kerman
Peyman Soltani, conductor of Persepolis Orchestra
Dr. Javad Nurbakhsh
Ali Akbar Abdolrashidi
Mirza Reza Kermani
— ''Masjed-e Ja'meh-e Kerman: (1)
— Gonbad-e Jabalieh: (1)
— Bagh-e Shazdeh'' (in Mahan): (1)