New theories about the history of the
Cyrus cylinder have postponed the Achaemenid clay document's exhibition in Iran, Press TV reported.
The relic, which is currently housed at the British Museum in
London, was set to be displayed in Iran from Jan. 16, 2010.
The museum recently announced in a letter that some new parts of the cylinder's broken pieces have been found, which might be a clue to some other documents sent by Cyrus the Great to other regions.
"The British Museum has invited an Iranian team to collaborate on studying the newly-found pieces," head of Iran's Cultural Heritage, Handicrafts and Tourism Organization (ICHTO) Hamid Baqaei told reporters on Saturday.
"The new finding supports the theory that 10 cylinders were made by Cyrus and sent to different territories," he said, adding, "We might start excavations to find traces of some other cylinders in Iran."
Baqaei said that in order to make up for the exhibition delay, the ICHTO has asked the British Museum to send some other ancient Persian relics to be displayed along with the cylinder.
The Cyrus the Great cylinder is inscribed in Babylonian cuneiform with an account by Cyrus II, king of Persia (559-530 BC) and is considered the world's first charter of human rights.
The ancient cylinder was scheduled to be given to Iran on loan in September 2009; however, the British Museum backed out of the agreement, citing Iran's post-election unrest.
Tehran had earlier said that it would cease cooperation with the British Museum until the cylinder is loaned to the National Museum of Iran.
Iran has assured the British side about the safety of the priceless artifact.