The Damghan Earthquake was an earthquake of magnitude 8.0, that struck a 200-mile (320 km) stretch of Iran on 22 December, 856 A.D. The earthquake's epicenter was said to be directly below the city of Damghan, which was then the capital of Iran. This event happened on December 22, 856, an earthquake of magnitude 8 struck the city of Damghan, at that time the capital of the area we now know as Iran
Iran has always been highly susceptible to earthquakes due to its location along fault lines. The 856 Damghan earthquake, which cost an estimated 200,000 lives, was the most devastating in the nation’s history.
The area of significant damage extended along the Alborz for about 350 km, including the towns of Ahevanu, Astan, Tash, Bastam and Shahrud, with almost all the villages in the area severely damaged. The total death toll for the earthquake is reported as 200,000, with 45,096 casualties in Damghan alone.
The memory of the event was so vivid that, two generations later, detailed memories of all that had happened were still being recounted. In mountain areas close to the center of the earthquake the surface of the ground parted in several places. One third of the town of about fifty miles east of Damghan, collapsed.