The Archaeological Museum in Zagreb has over 450,000 varied artifacts and monuments, gathered from various sources but mostly from Croatia and in particular from the surroundings of Zagreb.
The archaeological collection of the State Institute had been kept in the Academy mansion at Zrinski Square from the 1880s and remained there until 1945, when the museum moved to its current location at the 19th-century Vranyczany-Hafner mansion, 19 Zrinski Square.
The museum consists of five main sections: Prehistory, Egypt, Antiquity, Middle Ages, Coins and Medals. The section 'Prehistory' contains 78,000 objects, ranging from the Paleolithic to the Late Iron Age. The section 'Egypt' displays about 600 objects in the permanent exhibition. The section 'Antiquity' contains an important collection of Greek vases (about 1,500 vessels) and stones with inscriptions.
The Roman Antiquity is represented by many statues, military equipment, metal objects, Roman religion and art and objects from everyday life, acquired through systematic archaeological excavations in various Croatian regions in many Croatian cities founded during the Roman Empire. The numismatic section is among the largest collections of this type in Europe.
Some of the famous artifacts include Vučedol dove, a flagon shaped as a bird, Liber Linteus, 3rd century BCE mummy and bandages with the longest Etruscan inscription in existence and Lumbarda Psephisma, 4th century BCE stone inscription detailing the founding of an ancient Greek colony on the island of Korčula.References:
Derbent is the southernmost city in Russia, occupying the narrow gateway between the Caspian Sea and the Caucasus Mountains connecting the Eurasian steppes to the north and the Iranian Plateau to the south. Derbent claims to be the oldest city in Russia with historical documentation dating to the 8th century BCE. Due to its strategic location, over the course of history, the city changed ownership many times, particularly among the Persian, Arab, Mongol, Timurid, Shirvan and Iranian kingdoms.
Derbent has archaeological structures over 5,000 years old. As a result of this geographic peculiarity, the city developed between two walls, stretching from the mountains to the sea. These fortifications were continuously employed for a millennium and a half, longer than any other extant fortress in the world.
A traditionally and historically Iranian city, the first intensive settlement in the Derbent area dates from the 8th century BC. The site was intermittently controlled by the Persian monarchs, starting from the 6th century BC. Until the 4th century AD, it was part of Caucasian Albania which was a satrap of the Achaemenid Persian Empire. In the 5th century Derbent functioned as a border fortress and the seat of Sassanid Persians. Because of its strategic position on the northern branch of the Silk Route, the fortress was contested by the Khazars in the course of the Khazar-Arab Wars. In 654, Derbent was captured by the Arabs.
The Sassanid fortress does not exist any more, as the famous Derbent fortress as it stands today was built from the 12th century onward. Derbent became a strong military outpost and harbour of the Sassanid empire. During the 5th and 6th centuries, Derbent also became an important center for spreading the Christian faith in the Caucasus.
The site continued to be of great strategic importance until the 19th century. Today the fortifications consist of two parallel defence walls and Naryn-Kala Citadel. The walls are 3.6km long, stretching from the sea up to the mountains. They were built from stone and had 73 defence towers. 9 out of the 14 original gates remain.
In Naryn-Kala Citadel most of the old buildings, including a palace and a church, are now in ruins. It also holds baths and one of the oldest mosques in the former USSR.
In 2003, UNESCO included the old part of Derbent with traditional buildings in the World Heritage List.