Tomb of Daniel the Prophet - Shush, Khuzestan Province, Iran (Persia)

Shush or Susa is one of the oldest cities in the world, which is located in Khuzestan province, and was built about 4000 BC. The city has been through much difficulties, and has experienced days of victory and defeat, boom and record, and development and destruction. With the fall of the Achaemenid Empire in 332 AD, it fell on a slide, and in the Middle Ages, it completely lost its prosperity and turned into a small village around the Tomb of Daniel the prophet.

Daniel is one of the Prophets of the Israelites who lived in Babylon in the 7th century BC. Prophet Daniel along with some of his Jewish people immigrated to land of Persia, and gradually resettled in the city of Susa. His descendant goes back to the fourth son of Jacob’s first wife. There is a belief “Nebuchadnezzar” king of Babylon took him into captivity and brought him to Persia. Daniel interpreted Nebuchadnezzar’s dream, and became the messenger sent from God.

The exact time of the Prophet Daniel’s life is unclear, but the last mention of Daniel in the Book of Daniel is in the third year of Achaemenid Cyrus. The exact burial place is also not clear as today six cities claim that the tomb exist there but the most famous one is in Susa. He died at the age of 83, and after being mummified, he was buried somewhere at the east of Shavur river (Shahpoor River).

The Tomb was built in 1833 by the order of the Shiite cleric, Ja’far Shushtari. There was a massive flood in the same year that damaged the tomb, and it had to be reconstructed. This place is famous for its double-layered Pineapple Dome that is not commonly found in Iran. The height of the dome is about 20 meters and its diameter is about 5 meters. It was built in Seljuk period, but apparently, the architects had ancient Persian style of architecture in their mind. The western side of the tomb is decorated with Iranian-Islamic tiles on which its written threshold of the holy prophet Daniel. On the eastern side, there are two minarets dating back to 1911.

In some books the prophet Daniel is referred as the prophet of the rain, some stories say after his death whenever people were in need of rain used to take his mummified body and pray over it for rain and by the grace of God it happened to rain.

“The book of Daniel” is the prophet’s book, which has 12 chapters in Hebrew, mostly talking about the memories of his life, the interoperation of dreams. In the last chapter, the name of a holy person is mentioned that will save the world. Shiites believe that during the presence of Imam Mahdi, four other prophet will accompany him; Daniel will be the commander of his army.