As the oldest civilization in Iran, the Proto-Elamite civilization marks the beginning of the cultural history of Iran. These ancient pre-Iranian civilizations were centered in the west and southwest of the modern-day Iran, known as Elam, and the capital was the Proto-Elamite city of Susa (Shush).
The Elamites, under Mesopotamian domination for a long time, was closely tied to Mesopotamia culturally, and gradually adopted their language, the cuneiform writing, as well as their gods and temple.
The massive ziggurat of Chogha Zanbil, an ancient Elamite complex in the Khuzestan province of Iran, is one of the few existing and best preserved ziggurats in the world. This monument was from the Elam Civilization which was disappeared by the Assyrians.