“The Most Notorious Garden”
Shah (King) Garden or Fin Garden is probably the most infamous garden. Whenever it is mentioned, the story of Amir Kabir’s, the former chancellor of Persia, brutal murder and his bloodbath is reminded. This garden is an ancient mansion next to the Sulaimaniyah Spring where earlier Fin village was located. The distance to Kashan city center is 9 km.
The original building of the Fin Garden is associated with pre-Islamic Sialk civilization, which is inextricably linked to the roaring Spring at the top of the current garden, known as the Sulaimaniyah Spring. Far in the past, there was a garden that was lower than the current garden that was destroyed by an earthquake in 982 AH. After 1000 A.H., by the order of Shah Abbas Safavi, a garden was built in the present place, which was actually a part of the old garden. There is no clear picture of the original place. The garden was developed more during the Safavid dynasty, until Shah Abbas II. It was highly expanded during the reign of Fat′h Ali Shah Qajar. After that, the garden was partly destroyed due to negligence until 1935, when it was listed as a National Heritage List. Due to its astonishing structure, UNESCO declared Fin Garden as one of the nine Iranian gardens on the World Heritage List in 2012.
The architecture of Fin garden is a combination of natural elements such as water and trees.
The garden covers the area of 2500 square meters, containing 579 cypress and
plantain trees and combines architectural features of the Safavid, Zandiyeh and Qajar periods. Most of the garden trees are between 100 and 470 years old, which were exposed to drought in the last 15 years.
It is a traditional Persian garden, the most prominent features of which is a principle of ‘four gardens’ – square garden divided into four parts by waterways that represent the harmony of four Zoroastrian elements – sky, earth, water, and plants.
Water plays a significant role in Persian gardens. In this garden, the water streams out of Sulaimaniyah Spring.
In the early design of the garden, symmetry was particularly important. In the early design of the garden, maintaining symmetry was particularly important, but it was diminished gradually, with the interference of kings.
• Different Parts of Fin Garden
- Safavid belvedere (kushk)
The kushk is a small palace, which lays at the center of Iranian Gardens and in the confluence of the longitudinal and transverse axis. This palace was built in two floors for holding ceremonies. The Belvedere is quadrilateral and opens to the four sides of the garden. The pond at its center provides a pleasant atmosphere.
- Tower & Rampart
The Garden tower and rampart has made it a castellated building which not only reminds its high strength and security, but also the splendor and majesty of the garden and sets it apart from other ordinary gardens.
There are two small and large bathrooms situated on the eastern side of the garden which are known as the Safavid and Qajar Bathrooms. Amir Kabir, the chancellor of Iran during the reign of Nasser al-Din Shah, was killed in the small bathroom. After the death of Amir Kabir, the name of the Fin Garden changes to the Fin Bathroom.
- The Vestibule
The vestibule is a two-story building built in the Safavid era and contains a large hall and some porches which overlook the garden.
- Howz-e Joosh
This pool contains 160 small holes that are a beautiful way of using water in Fin Garden. These holes have a specific mechanism in which water gets out of the 80 holes and drops into the pool by the 80 other holes.
- The Aclove (Shah-Neshin)
Shah-Neshin is a five doors hall with two small rooms (Gooshvareh) on both sides that was built in the Qajar era. This hall was used to host the guests.