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Bukhara
Buxoro
Mir-i Arab madrasah
Bukhara is located in Uzbekistan
Bukhara
Location in Uzbekistan
Coordinates: 39°46′N 64°26′E / 39.767°N 64.433°E / 39.767; 64.433
Country  Uzbekistan
Province Bukhara Province
Population (1999)
 - Total 237,900

Bukhara (Uzbek: Buxoro, Tajik: Бухоро, Persian: بُخارا, Russian: Бухара), also transliterated Bukhoro and Bokhara, from the Soghdian βuxārak ("lucky place"), is the capital of the Bukhara Province (viloyat) of Uzbekistan. The nation's fifth-largest city, it has a population of 237,900 (1999 census estimate). The region around Bukhara has been inhabited for at least five millennia and the city itself has existed for half that time. Located on the Silk Road, the city has long been a center of trade, scholarship, culture, and religion. The historic center of Bukhara, which contains numerous mosques and madrassas, has been listed by UNESCO as one of the World Heritage Sites. Ethnic majority in this city are the Persian-speaking Tajiks.

Contents

Names

Bukhara is populated with main Tajik spoken populaton. Among its minorities are Russian, Uzbeks, Armenians, etc. Bukhara was also known as Bokhara in 19th and early 20th century English publications and as Buhe/Puhe(捕喝) in Tang Chinese.[1]

Indo-Iranian Soghdians inhabited the area and some centuries later the Persian language became dominant among them. Encyclopædia Iranica mentions that the name Bukhara is possibly derived from the Soghdian βuxārak ("Place of Good Fortune").[2] Another possible source of the name Bukhara may be an evolution of the Sanskrit word "Vihara" (monastery), and may be linked to the predominance of Buddhism before the rise of Islam in the 8th century AD.[3]

History

Major sights

Fitzroy Maclean, then a young diplomat in the British Embassy in Moscow, made a surreptitious visit to Bokhara in 1938, sight-seeing and sleeping in parks. In his memoir Eastern Approaches, he judged it an "enchanted city", with buildings that rivalled "the finest architecture of the Italian Renaissance".

Po-i-Kalan complex

The Kalyan minaret

The title Po-i Kalan (also Poi Kalân, Persian پای کلان meaning the "Grand Foundation"), belongs to the architectural complex located at the base of the great minaret Kalân.

  • Kalyan minaret. More properly, Minâra-i Kalân, (Pesian/Tajik for the "Grand Minaret"). It is made in the form of a circular-pillar brick tower, narrowing upwards, of 9 meters (29.53 ft) diameter at the bottom, 6 meters (19.69 ft) overhead and 45.6 meters (149.61 ft) high. Also known as the Tower of Death, as for centuries criminals were executed by being tossed off the top.
  • Kalân Mosque (Masjid-i Kalân), arguably completed in 1514, is equal to the Bibi-Khanym Mosque in Samarkand in size. Although they are of the same type of building, they are absolutely different in terms of art of building.
  • Mir-i Arab Madrassah. There is little known about its origin, although its construction is ascribed to Sheikh Abdullah Yamani of Yemen, the spiritual mentor of early Shaybanids. He was in charge of donations of Ubaidollah Khan (gov. 1533-1539), devoted to construction of madrasah.
Samanids mausoleum (between 892 and 943)

Ismail Samani mausoleum

The Ismail Samani mausoleum (9th-10th century), one of the most esteemed sights of Central Asian architecture, was built in the 9th century (between 892 and 943) as the resting-place of Ismail Samani - the founder of the Samanid dynasty, the last Persian dynasty to rule in Central Asia, which held the city in the 9th and 10th centuries. Although in the first instance the Samanids were Governors of Khorasan and Ma wara'u'n-nahr under the suzerainty of the Abbasid Caliphate, the dynasty soon established virtual independence from Baghdad.

Chashma-Ayub mausoleum

Chashma-Ayub is located near the Samani mausoleum. Its name in Persian means Job's spring due to the legend according to which Job (Ayub) visited this place and brought forth a spring of water by the blow of his staff on the ground. The water of this well is still pure and is considered healing. The current building was constructed during the reign of Timur and features a Khwarazm-style conical dome uncommon in Bukhara.

Lab-i Hauz

Phoenix on the portal of Nadir Divan-Beghi madrasah (part of Lab-i Hauz complex)

The Lab-i Hauz (or Lab-e hauz, Persian: لب حوض, meaning by the pond) Ensemble (1568–1622) is the name of the area surrounding one of the few remaining hauz (ponds) in the city of Bukhara. Until the Soviet period there were many such ponds, which were the city's principal source of water, but they were notorious for spreading disease and were mostly filled in during the 1920s and 1930s. The Lyab-i Hauz survived because it is the centrepiece of a magnificent architectural ensemble, created during the 16th and 17th centuries, which has not been significantly changed since. The Lyab-i Hauz ensemble, surrounding the pond on three sides, consists of the Kukeldash Madrasah[4] (1568–1569), the largest in the city (on the north side of the pont), and of two religious edifices built by Nadir Divan-Beghi: a khanaka[5] (1620), or lodging-house for itinerant Sufis, and a madrasah[6] (1622) that stand on the west and east sides of the pond respectively.

Transportation

The M37 highway connects the city to most of the major cities in Turkmenistan including Ashgabat.

Demographics

Bukhara (along with Samarkand) is one of the two major centres of Uzbekistan's Tajik minority. Bukhara was also home to the Bukharian Jews, whose ancestors settled in the city during Roman times. Most Bukharian Jews left Bukhara between 1925 and 2000.

Poetry and literature

Being a cultural magnet, Bukhara has long appeared in much local and Persian literature. Many examples can be sought.

ای بخارا شاد باش و دیر زی
Oh Bukhara! Be joyous and live long!
شاه زی تو میهمان آید همی
Your King comes to you in ceremony.
---Rudaki

Dehkhoda defines the name Bukhara itself as meaning "full of knowledge", referring to the fact that in antiquity, Bukhara was a scientific and scholarship powerhouse. Rumi verifies this when he praises the city as such:

آن بخارا معدن دانش بود
"Bukhara was a mine of knowledge,
پس بخاراییست هرک آنش بود
Of Bukhara is he who possesses knowledge."

In the Italian romantic epic Orlando innamorato by Matteo Maria Boiardo, Bukhara is called Albracca and described as a major city of Cathay. There, within its walled city and fortress, Angelica and the knights she has befriended make their stand when attacked by Agrican, emperor of Tartary. As described, this siege by Agrican resembles the historic siege by Genghis Khan in 1220.[7]

Notable people

Many prominent people lived in Bukhara in the past. Most famous of them are:

Sister cities

These cities were major cities of Greater Khorasan:

Other cities:

See also

References

  1. ^ "UMID" Foundation, Uzbekistan. "General Info". http://www.umid.uz/Main/Uzbekistan/General_Info/general_info.html. Retrieved 2007-10-04. 
  2. ^ Richard N Frye, 'Bukhara i. In pre-Islamic times', Encyclopædia Iranica, 512.
  3. ^ Gregoire Frumkin, Archaeology in Soviet Central Asia, Brill, Leiden, 1970.
  4. ^ Dmitriy Page, Pagetour.narod.ru. "Kukeldash Madrasah". http://www.pagetour.narod.ru/bukhara/bu/Kukeldash.htm. Retrieved 2007-10-04. 
  5. ^ Dmitriy Page, Pagetour.narod.ru. "Nadir Divan-Begi Khanaka". http://www.pagetour.narod.ru/bukhara/bu/Khanaka.htm. Retrieved 2007-10-04. 
  6. ^ Dmitriy Page, Pagetour.narod.ru. "Nadir Divan-Begi Madrasah". http://www.pagetour.narod.ru/bukhara/bu/Nadir_Divan_Begi.htm. Retrieved 2007-10-04. 
  7. ^ Boiardo: Orlando innamorato, verse translation by Charles Stanley Ross (Oxford University Press, 1995), Book I, Cantos 10-19 and Explanatory Notes, pp. 401-402. ISBN 0-19-282438-4

Further reading

  • Moorcroft, William and Trebeck, George. 1841. Travels in the Himalayan Provinces of Hindustan and the Panjab; in Ladakh and Kashmir, in Peshawar, Kabul, Kunduz, and Bokhara... from 1819 to 1825, Vol. II. Reprint: New Delhi, Sagar Publications, 1971.

External links


Coordinates: 39°46′N 64°26′E / 39.767°N 64.433°E / 39.767; 64.433


Travel guide

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikitravel

Chor Minor Madrassah
Chor Minor Madrassah

Bokhara (also spelled Bukhara Bukhoro or Buxoro) in Uzbekistan was historically one of the great trading cities along the Silk Road. The city center is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Get in

By plane

Uzbekistan Airways http://www.uzairways.com operates flights form Tashkent to Bukhara and back on Mondays, Tuedsays and from Thursday to Saturday (by IL-114, flying time: 1:25 hrs) and on Wednesdays and Sundays (by B-757, flying time: 1:05 hrs)

By train

Trains run from both Samarkand and Tashkent regularly. The trains themselves are comfortable ex-Soviet type things, with cabins usually accommodating 4 people.

There are two daily trains between connecting Tashkent with Bukhara via Samarkand.

Train 9/10 is a daytime express train linking Tashkent and Bukhara in just six and a half hour.

Train 10: Tashkent dep. 8:15 - Samarkand dep. 12:00 - Bukhara arr. 14:45

Train 9: Bukhara dep. 8:05 - Samarkand arr. 10:50 - Tashkent arr 14:40

Train 661/662 is a slower overnight train with sleeping waggons:

Train 662: Tashkent dep. 19:50 - Samarkand dep. 1:40 - Bukhara arr. 6:55

Train 661: Bukhara dep. 19:15 - Samarkand arr. 0:40 - Tashkent arr. 6:30

By road

Bokhara is 600 km from Tashkent, 300 km from Samarkand and 445 km form Khiva.

Get around

The Old Town is where you want to be. The beauty of it is that there is no need at all for any form of transport other than your feet as the town is so small. Also, many of the streets are far too slim to allow cars down them.

Kalyan Minaret
Kalyan Minaret
  • Kalyan Minaret.  edit
  • Ark citadel. From the most ancient times the Ark was the fortified residence of the rulers of Bukhara. Everything could be found there - palaces, temples, barracks, offices, the mint, warehouses, workshops, stables, an arsenal, and even a prison. Nowadays there is a museum inside. edit edit  edit
  • Lyabi-khauz. The Lyabi-khauz is considered to be the center of the Old City. Plaza Lyabi-khauz is derived from Persian and means “ensemble near the pool”. The main element of this ensemble is the pool. Ensemble Lyabi-khauz is comprised of three monumental structures. These are: * Kukeldash madrassah (16th century) built by Abdullah II was, at the time, the biggest Islamic School in Central Asia. * Nadir Devanbegi Madrassah (16th century) was inteded to be a caravan saray, but according to the order of the ruler Imam Kulimkhan, was reconstructed into a Madrassah. * Nadir Devanbegi Khanaka (winter mosque) was built at the same time as the Lyabi-khauz (16th century).  edit
  • Ismoil Somoni mausoleum. The mausoleum was built during the reign of Ismail Samani, one of the most outstanding members of the Samanids dynasty, who ruled Bukhara from 892 until 907. Originally, the mausoleum was intended for the grave of Ismail Samani’s father, Akhmad, but later became the burial vault of the Samanids.  edit

Sleep

There are numerous bed and breakfast places around the Lyabi Hauze complex. These are excellent for independent travellers. Rooms can be had quite cheap (less than $20 per person but standards and prices vary place to place), but make sure you look at a few before you make your choice. Some of them are amazing houses set round courtyards and provide an unforgettable experience much better than any hotel. You can also expect some top quality breakfasts with fruit, bread, cheese, yoghurt, and an unlimited supply of tea!

  • Amelia Boutique Hotel, 1 Bozor Hodja Street, +998 65 2241263 or 998 65 2242631, within Uzbekistan 8 365 2241263 or 8 365 2242631, [1]. All rooms have a A/C, satellite TV, bathroom facilities, fridge, hairdryer, phone. US$ 20 per person with full breakfast.  edit
  • Hotel Grand Nodirbek, 10 Sarafon Street (25 meters from the Lyub-i-hauz ensemble), +998(65) 224-3446, [2]. Nice Interior Courtyard, friendly receptionist named Fahreddin, satellite television (great if you understand Uzbek, Russian, or Turkmen), a/c. Bathrooms are extremely clean and modern. US $20-30 with breakfast.  edit
  • Hotel Malika, 25 Shaumyana Street, +998 65 2246256 (), [3]. checkout: Air conditioning and satellite TV.. US $35-45 with breakfast.  edit
  • Hotel New Moon, Eshoni pir str., 8, 998652244442 (, fax: 998652242034), [4]. Located in centre of town. US $20-30 with breakfast.  edit
  • Madina & Ilyos B&B, Mehtar Anbar St. 18, +998-65-224-6162. Located in centre of town. US from $12 with breakfast.  edit
  • Hotel Amulet [5] located in the old city of Bukhara, just next to the ancient Lyabi Khauz ensemble (16-17th century). It was built in the early 19th century by a famous merchant, Said Kamol, as a madrasah where students lived and studied everything from philosophy to religion. Today it remains a national monument that has been reconstructed to allow others the chance to experience the traditional life of years ago. Room facilities: bath room with the shower; air conditioning; heating; satellite TV; hair-drier.

Get out

Khiva - another silk road city

Samarkand

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Wiktionary

Up to date as of January 15, 2010

Definition from Wiktionary, a free dictionary

English

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Wikipedia

Proper noun

Singular
Bukhara

Plural
-

Bukhara

  1. One of the major cities of Uzbekistan, capital of the Bukhara region.

Translations








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