Ctesiphon, the imperial capital of the Persian Parthian Arsacids, and of the Persian Sassanids, was one of the great cities of ancient Mesopotamia.
The ruins of the city are located on the east bank of the Tigris, across the river from the Hellenistic city of Seleucia. Today, the remains of the city lies in Baghdad Governorate, Iraq, approximately 35 km south of the city of Baghdad.
Ctesiphon in "The Banner of Kaviyan"Edit
Ctesiphon was the Persian Imperial Capital but the King of Kings Khusro feared to enter it since it was prophesized that he would be destroyed if he did so. He did send the Banner of Kaviyan there for safe-keeping, having it hidden in the Imperial Palace. With the Romans reversing his previous successes, he was forced to enter the city to retrieve the banner since it would grant invincibility to an army flying it but was unable to find it. Khusro fled empty-handed and was eventually captured by his son and killed by slow torture thus fulfilling the prophesy.
Generations later, Shahin entered the sacked ruins of the city seeking the banner. He had been given advise from a desendant of one of Khusro's treasure-keepers and so sought the throne-room of the Imperial Palace. There he found the King of Kings' throne missing. It had been made of gold with jewels and ivory inlay and so stolen during the sack. However, three plain stone chairs in front of it remained. The one on the left, for the defeated Emperor of China, had a chunk from the back broken away and the one on the right, for the great klagan of the steppe nomads was overturned. The chair in the center, for the defeated Emperor of the Romans remained standing.
Shahin had been told the banner had been hidden under the central chair so he tried to push it to one side but it would not move. He studied it closely but the chair was flush with the marble floor with no room for anything to be pushed under it. In frustration, Shahin kicked it but he hurt his foot and not the chair. He sat on the floor and leaned against the chair for China to ease his foot. When he did so, the chair shifted under his weight. When he could, he stood up and examined the Roman chair once more. He noticed the legs of the chair went into the floor. He seized the seat of the chair and managed to lift it until it toppled over.
Shahin then examined the sockets the chair legs had fitted. Three had solid sides but the fourth had a small hole drilled into one side. He probed it with a finger and pushed a spring which released a catch. A cubit-square section of floor tilted on hinges revealing a cavity. Inside, was a folded cloth. Shahin spread it out on the floor revealing it as blue silk with a golden sun and silver moon embroidered on it; it was the banner. He refolded it, took it out of the palace and put it into a saddlebag on his horse. He then led his horse out of the city where he mounted and rode off.