Samarkand and Shakhrisabz (2004, 2006, and 2012)

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Return to main 2004-2012 Uzbekistan webpage

 

Both Samarkand and Shakhrisabz have changed significantly between my visits (and may have changed even more since then). A number of historical buildings have been restored (often too much) and the bazaar of 2004 has been moved to a more modern setting. For that reason, each of the photos below is labeled with the year when it was taken.

 

Samarkand

 

Statue of Amir Timur:

 

One of the greatest military leaders in history, Amir Timur (1336-1405) was born some 80km south of Samarkand near Shakhrisabz.

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2004

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2012

 

Gur-e Amir mausoleum:

The name ″Gur-e Amir″ translates to ′′Tomb of the King″. The mausoleum contains the tombs of Amir Timur, his sons Shah Rukh and Miran Shah, and his grandsons Ulugh Beg and Muhammad Sultan. The ensemble also includes the madrasah of Muhammad Sultan.

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2012

 

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2004

 

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2004

 

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2012

 

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2012

 

2012

2012

 

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2012

 

Registan:

 

- Panoramic view of the square and its three madrasahs. From left to right: Ulugh Beg madrasah, Tilla-Kari madrasah, and Sher-Dor madrasah.

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2004

 

- Ulugh Beg madrasah.

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2004

 

- Tilla-Kori madrasah.

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2012

 

- Sher-Dor madrasah.

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2004

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2004

 

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2012

 

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2012

 

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2012

 

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2004

 

Modern statues erected next to the Registan, reminding the tourists that Samarkand was one of the most important cities on the Silk Roads.

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2004

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2004

 

Bibi-Khanym Mosque:

 

- View from the Khujar Khidr mosque.

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2012

 

- Mosque′s massive entrance portal (35m high).

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2004

 

- Central iwan.

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2012

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2004

 

- Inside the mosque: mirhab and golden dome ceiling.

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2012

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2012

 

- Side iwan and its dome.

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2012

 

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2004

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2004

 

Shah-i Zinda necropolis:

 

- Uzbek women entering the necropolis.

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2012

 

- View from the entrance of the necropolis. The stairs lead to a long, almost straight alley bordered on both sides by old buildings (mostly mausoleums) distributed over three levels.

2004

 

- Entrance of the necropolis seen from the middle layer.

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2012

 

- Three photos showing about the same buildings near the entrance of the necropolis. I took the first photo in 2004 (before restoration) and the other two in 2006 (after restoration), all from a location west of the entrance of Shah-i Zinda. The differences are striking.

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2004

 

2006

 

2006

 

- In the necropolis′ alley. Eleven mausoleums stand on the two sides of the alley.

2006

 

2012

 

2012

 

2012

2012

 

2012

 

2004

2012

2012

 

2004

 

2004

 

2012

 

 

2012

 

2012

 

- Portal of the mausoleum of Timur′s niece, Chadi Moulk Aka.

2012

 

2012

2012

 

- Dome ceilings in mausoleums.

2012

2012

 

2012

 

- View from the modern cemetery adjacent to Shah-i Zinda.

2012

 

Khujar Khidr mosque:

 

2012

2012

 

Ulugh Beg observatory:

 

- Under the reign of Ulugh Beg (1394-1449), a grandson of Timur, Samarkand became a major center for astronomical study and an observatory was built around 1920 on a hill north of Samarkand. Only the lower part of the observatory′s huge so-called ″sextant″ (actually, more likely, a quadrant) remain today: two circular rails in polished marble in a trench.

2012

2012

 

- Uzbek women visiting the observatory.

2012

 

Khoja Akhror Wali madrasah and mosque:

 

It is located about 4.5km southwest of the Registan next to the road toward Shakhrisabz.

2006

 

In the bazaar:

 

- Photos of 2004.

 

 

 

 

 

- Photos of 2012.

 

 

Left: two generations of women near the bazaar. Right: carpet weaving.

2006

2012

 

Shakhrisabz

 

Men in a traditional restaurant, along the road between Samarkand and Shakhrisabz, near Shakhrisabz.

2012

 

2012

 

Statue of Amir Timur erected in front of his Ak Saray palace and remains of this palace. (Amir Timur was born in a village near Shakhrisabz.)

2006

2006

 

2006

2006

 

The Dorut Tilovat madrassah (the building with the two smallest domes in the two photos) and the Kok Gumbaz mosque (the building with the largest dome in the photo on the left).

2006

2006

 

Portal, interior, and dome ceiling of the Kok Gumbaz mosque.

2006

2006

 

2006

 

Jahangir mausoleum.

2006

 

In the bazaar:

 

- Photos of 2006.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Photos of 2012.

 

 

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Return to main 2004-2012 Uzbekistan webpage