Azerbaijan > Atashgah
A unique temple which has retained the features of ancient altars of fire is
located 30 km away
from Baku, in the Surakhany settlement. "Atashgah" is translated as
"a place of fires". It was
constructed in the XVII century on the "eternal fires" plain where
cones of natural gas outputs
flared day and night. It was constructed by a Hindu community which lived in
Baku and belonged to
the Sikhs caste.
The earliest of the temple's structural constituents is dated to 1713. The ones
built later are the
C iHi.il temple-altar constructed, according to an inscription on it, through
the financial support of
igMIvliiuil K.inchanagar in 1810. In the course of the XVIII century, prayer
houses, monastic cells and
4HNNV(IIIMI'|.M appeared in the neighbourhood of the sanctuary. The cells have
made using Hindu writing symbols.
What we see today is what the Temple conceptually looked like in the early
XIX century. Atashgah is a pantagonal structure with a castellated outside wall
and an entrance portal above which ,INMII'I " I guest room (called 'balakhaneh')
was set up. The "eternal" blazing gas fountaiped from an altar sanctuary
with a well positioned in the centre of the yard.