The fortress Chaush Tepe lying in the vicinity of Lake Van in modern Turkey is currently being investigated by archaeologists. The fortress is built from virtually perfect stone blocks going down into the earth. Archaeologists haven’t yet reached the base of the fortress.
However, the small area that they have already unearthed amazed many researchers. This structure is considered to be one of the earliest exemplars of the architecture of the Kingdom of Van.
This structure is fairly similar to the buildings discovered in Pasargadae, the capital of the ancient Achaemenid Empire. However, those are built from soft shale, while the Van structure is built from hard basalt. Besides, the Chaush tepe is several centuries older.
At a depth of about one meter around and within the fortress, archaeologists discovered the oldest sewage in the world with 3000 years of age.
The neatness of the fortress’ stone blocks is particularly amazing because scientists aren’t aware of a technology that would be able to produce such stones thousands of years ago. To be more precise, the researchers don’t yet understand how the architects of Van managed to shape such a hard material as basalt. The well-thought-out design of the sewage also amazed the archaeologists.
The excavations in the fortress commenced relatively recently, so archaeologists have much more to discover under the earth.