The Anahita temple is a place of respect and worship dedicated to water Goddess, Anahita, situated in Kangavar, Kermanshah province. In ancient Persian, Anahita is one of the Iranian goddesses, the Guardian angel of springs and rain that is known for being the Water goddess. Since she is associated with water, she becomes the symbol of fertility, healing and wisdom. The goddess Anahita is equivalent of Ishtar in Semites and Artemis in Greek mythology.
There are several theories about this temple. For the first time Isidore of Charax, the Greco Roman geographer mentioned that perhaps this temple is dedicated to Artemis, which as it was mentioned in Iran is known as Anahita. In history, this structure was known with different names like Shirin Palace, Khosro Parviz Palace and Ghasr ol Ghosous that mean Pirate palace. Therefore, for a long time all there was to this place was a series of theories and speculations. Eugene Flandin and Pascal, two European orientalists were the first historians who tried to draw the plan of this temple. They used the plan of Palmyra temple in Syria as their base plan, a plan that includes a platform that the whole construct is built upon, and three rows of columns and a roofed inner section that dominates the central section of the temple. This plan is the common plan of Greek temples with the usual architecture known as Doric and Corinthian that are two of the three style of ancient Greek architecture.
For the first time Isidore of Charax, the Greco Roman geographer mentioned that perhaps this temple is dedicated to Artemis, which as it was mentioned in Iran is known as Anahita.
What is witnessed in Anahita temple is the result of cultural exchange between Iranian and Greek made in a span of time between Achaemenian and Parthian. Based on Roman Ghirshman, the French archeologist, and Louis Vandenberg, the Belgian archeologist, the temple is attributed to Anahita and was built at the time of Seleucid Empire in 200 BC. Ernest Herzfeld, the German archaeologist and Hasan Pirnia the Iranian researcher attribute this building to Parthian era. As it was mentioned, the temple, like all other constructs of this Era, was built on a platform. The structure includes rows of thick columns with the exception of the northern side and the two passages of southern stairs. This structure is a foursquare in an area of about 224×209 m on a hill that is 32 meter in height. The main material used in its construction is stone that have been beautifully carved and applied in some sections like the columns. It seems the columns were considered as the fence and decorative protectors of the place. Each column consists of a capital, a plinth and the body or shaft of the column, and are about 354 centimeters in height with a diameter of about 144 centimes. The entrance of this structure is located on the South and North-East sides. The one on the Sothern side has a two-sided stair 154 meter in length and the one on the North East side of the place has a one-sided stair.
In 1968, the Kangavar hill was excavated and about 43000m2 of historical lands were found. From the magnificent Temple of Anahita just some broken carved capitals are remained. This site was recorded as National Heritage in 1931.