A Summarized History of Rab-e -Raschidi
The Stone Hill (Dash Tabiyeh) - One ofihe remaining sites of Rab-e-Raschidi June-July 2000
The Rab-e-Raschidi of Tabriz
In the thirteenth Century A.D. (Circa 6th Century after the Prophet Mohammad's Hejrat) the capital of Iran at the time,Tabriz,witnessed the inception of that periods largest scientific, educational and medical science institution, called the Rab-e-Raschidi. Rab-e-Raschidi was established on the north-eastern side of Tabriz, through the efforts of one man, Khajeh Raschid-e-Din Fazlollah Hamedani, the ptime Minister (Vizier) of Khazan Khan and one of the most significant scientists and writers of his age. By attracting scientists, philosophers, physicians, skilled artists and professors from various parts of Iran and the world, this institution became a renowned international university and scientific center, providing free educational services.
This great university institution, the Rab-e-Raschidi was composed of three parts, as follows:
· Rab-e-Raschidi-the main part of the institution
· The town of Raschidi-incorporation the housing and related installations
· Rabz-e-Raschidi-the living area housing the elite wealthy
The main part of the Rab-e- Raschidi consisted of:
I-The Roozeh Complex which included:
a) Shatavi Mosque (winter quarters) and Seifi Mosque ( summer quarters) for holding lectures on science,
interpretations of traditions and prayer sessions, in the cold and and hot reasons respectively.
b) The offices of the Trustee (the Head of the University), the Overseer and the Monitorthe three high officials,
who had their own offices.
c) Rooms and lodgings for professors, lecturers and readers as well as the students.
d) Leisure facilities consisting of bath, pools, sanitary services and potable water provision
e) Library ( Beit-ol-Kotob) - under the great dome and on the two sides of the mausoleum of the Trustee.
f) The rest of this part included the treasury, reception area for the Trustee's guests and the private chambers.
2-The Lodge (Khaneghah) consisting of the sleeping quarters of the Sheikh and the Sufis, including facilities
such as kitchen, dining quarters and the hall for the Sema (the mystical dance).
3-The guest quarters (Dar-ol-Ziafeh) consisting of two buildings, each of two floors, the first uilding functioning
like a pension for residents of Rab-e-Raschidi (lecturers, professors,employees,support staff and students)
while the second building functioned as guest house for travelers.
4-The Dar-ol-Shafa- The hospital and medical college.
5-The Dar-ol-Masakin - situated outside and next to the Rab-e-Raschidiand used for provision of free food to
one hundred poor and deprived persons on a daily basis.
This was a huge residential area consisting of different localities, avenues, streets, leisure centers, and economic centers, including 24 Caravansarai, lSOO crafts workshops, 30000 houses, a large number of gardens, as well as flour mills, baths, textile works, dye shops, paper manufactures and even a currency mint.These were all related to the Rab-e-Raschidi educational complex and were for the prime purpose of the welfare of the residents of the town of Raschidi.
This area consisted of the residential housing of the families of the Trustees, the Overseer, and the Monitor along with their special servants as well as some other important officials, engineers and architects.
Education at Rab-e-Raschidi
The educational system in the Rab-e-Raschidi was organized in the following way:
1- Primary school
2-Vocational training-for skills and crafts learning
3-High schools a: moral philosophy and interpretation of traditions
b: speculative science and mathematics
c: natural science
4-Medical colleges and hospitals ( Dar-ol-Shafa ) - which will be summarily described below. As Khajeh Raschid- e-Din Fazlollah was a medical practitioner, and KhazanKhan and the rest of the II- Khans were highly
interested in medicine as well, the Dar-ol-Shafa had a special position of its own. Its Director was
Mohammad-ebn-al-Nili known as the Jalinoos of his time. Iranian and other moslem students would spend
five years under the tutelage of both Iranian and foreign physicians (from India, China, Egypt, Syria and
other Provinces) who had different specialities such as surgery, opthalmy, orthopedics and etc. and their
assistants. These would teach theory in the mornings and practice in the afternoons.
The physicians were divided into two groups - part time and full time. The part time physicians lived in Mo-alejan Street and the full time physicians lived in the Salehieh area. In the Dar-ol-Shafa of Rab-e-Raschidi no money what-so-ever was received from patients and the treatment was completely free, even though the drugs were purchased at high cost from all over the world and stocked in a large and special pharmacuetical warehouse.
5-The Library (Beit-ol-Kotob) held more than sixty thousand volumes in various scientific fields and was
considered to be the largest library of period. The Library was on two sides of a large dome which Khajeh- Rashi-e-Din had built as his own mausoleum. For each part of library, one librarion and one book keeper
had been allocated to manage affairs.
In the year 718 after the Prophet Hejrat, Khajeh Alishah-e-Jilani who had been jealous of Khajeh Raschid-e-Din's post as Prime Minister managed, by intrigue, to finally change Sultan Abu-Saeed's goodwill towards Raschid-e-Din, and the Sultan ordered that Khajeh-Raschid and his son Ibrahim be murdered. All his possessions and wealth were pillaged and Rab-e-Raschidi itself also fell to the pillagers.
The ruins and remaining site of Rab-e-Raschidi can now be seen at the end of the Sheshkalan area of Tabriz, next to Baghmishe and Bilan Kooh and at the foot hills of the Sorkhab (Einali) mountains.
On the north side of the ruins of Rab-e-Raschidi, a school named Khajeh-Raschid-e-Din Fazlollah Hamedani, and in the northeast side a building housing the National Health Management Center of the Medical University of Tabriz, have been established. In another area is situated the Rab-e-Raschidi research center. All, in order to commemorate the first University of this town, built seven hundred years ago.
The preliminary evaluation study of the NPMC Center started in 1995. In order to value the services of Khajeh-Raschid-e-Din and the Rab-e-Rashidi Science Institute it was agreed that an institute would be established in the area. This Center is situated in approximately 4500 m2 of building space, in a 10,000 m2 land area and was built in 1999.
This Center will train national and regional health managers and has already planned to organize 30 short and long term training courses.
Rab-e-Raschidi Research Center
This Research Center has been established in an area called Pashmineh which was aoriginally textile factOry, established in 1939,whose land was bought from the Mostazafan Foundation in 1995. This Research Center has been built under 7,800 m2 of space and in a land area of 14,907 m2 after having been thoroughly studied for the purposes of a research complex. The Rab-e-Raschidi Research Center consists of 18 research labs specializing in basic science, 4 general labs, 1 computer center, 1 reference center and1 EDC center. Facilities include professors and staff leisure clubs.
The main objectives of this research center are as follows:
1- Research according to need.
2- Training of students at masters and PhD levels.
3- Integration of basic and applied research in the medical universities.
The most important research labs in the center are as follows:
1- Pharmacuetical lab
2- Formulation lab
3- NMR lab
4- Animal physiology lab 5- Breathing lab
6- Electron microscopy
7 - Biotechnology lab
8- Immunology assay lab 9- Normal plantation lab
10- Radioimmunoassay lab
11- Electrophoresis lab
12- Bacteriology lab