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city, west-central Iran. It lies in a desert at the eastern foot of the Central Iranian Range, on a once-important caravan route. It is also on the southeastern branch of the Trans-Iranian Railway. Kashan is an ancient city; 2 miles (3 km) southwest is the site of prehistoric Tepe Sialk, which yielded the most ancient remains of settled life so far found on the Iranian plateau. Kashan was the centre of Persian ceramics, producing decorated pottery and glazed tiles exported throughout the Near East. Its lustrewares were especially famous. Its woolen and silk carpets are among Iran's finest, but modern industrial development is modest. Pop. (2006) 253,509.

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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