On the southern outskirts of Yazd, there are two
hilltop circular building, known as
Dakhmeh-ye-Zartushtioon or Towers of Silence.
In accordance with Zoroastrian beliefs about the
purity of the earth, dead bodies were not buried but
left in these uncovered stone towers so that the
vultures could pick up the bones clean. A priest
would sit with the bodies, which were placed in a
sitting position, and watch to see which eye the
vultures plucked out first : The right eye and the
soul faced a good future, the left and the future
looked grim. Such towers have not been used since
At the foot of the hill are several other disuses
Zoroastrian buildings, including a defunct well, a
water cistern and lavatory.