István Maróthy in Persepolis

Persepolis is one of the most popular tourist sights in Iran, the loss of the once prosperous city was caused by the conquests of Alexander the Great. Its name means “Persian”. The city has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1979, thanks to its unique architectural monuments. One of the city’s most prominent buildings is the palace of King Darius I. There is an engraving of István Maróthy on one of the western windows of the palace.

István Maróthy’s engraving was discovered by Ármin Vámbéry on the side of the palace. Maróthy visited the ruins of the city in 1838/39 and wrote his name on the palace wall. István Maróthy was born in Szeged in 1799, where he studied medicine, but also paid special attention to language learning. By the end of his studies, he was fluent in Turkish, Persian and Greek. During his first trip he established a medical institute in Constantinople, which was even visited by the Sultan himself.

He came to Persepolis as a doctor of the Persian army when he was in the Persian Shah’ s service with the army during the Afghan campaign, when he was the chief medical officer of the army. The first listed Hungarian traveler to arrive in Persepolis, and this is also evidenced by the material memory. Finally, due to his illness, he had to return to his home country, where he died in 1845.