Nishapur: Wikis


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Nishapur (Neyshabur)
Tomb of Farid ad-Din Attar
Nishapur (Neyshabur) is located in Iran
Nishapur (Neyshabur)
Coordinates: 36°12′N 058°48′E / 36.2°N 58.8°E / 36.2; 58.8Coordinates: 36°12′N 058°48′E / 36.2°N 58.8°E / 36.2; 58.8
Country  Iran
Province Razavi Khorasan
County Neyshabur County
Elevation 1,250 m (4,101 ft)
Population (2006)
 - Total 270,972
Time zone IRST (UTC+3:30)
Free-blown, wheel-cut carafes. First half of 11th century. Excavated at Teppe Madraseh, Neishapur. New York Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Nishapur, or Neyshābūr (Persian: نیشابور), is a city in the Razavi Khorasan province in northeastern Iran, situated in a fertile plain at the foot of the Binalud Mountains, near the regional capital of Mashhad.

The region's economy is largely agricultural, based on grain and cotton,and also it is the second industrial city in Khorasan, and it is one of the most prosperous localities in Iran, although somewhat blighted by drug smuggling from nearby Afghanistan. In 2005 it had an estimated population of 270,940 people.[1] The main east-west railway line through Iran passes through the town. The region is very prone to earthquakes, with the most recent significant ones occurring in 1986 and 1997.



Tomb of Omar Khayyám, Neishabur

Nishapur occupies an important strategic position astride the old Silk Road that linked Anatolia and the Mediterranean with China. On the Silk Road, Nishapur has often defined the flexible frontier between the Iranian plateau and Central Asia. The town derived its name from its reputed founder, the Sassanian king Shapur I, who is said to have established it in the 3rd century CE. Nearby are the turquoise mines that supplied the world with turquoise for at least two millennia. It became an important town in the Khorasan region but subsequently declined in significance until a revival in its fortunes in 9th century under the Tahirid dynasty, when the glazed ceramics of Nishapur formed an important item of trade to the west. For a time Nishapur rivaled Baghdad or Cairo: Toghrül, the first ruler of the Seljuk dynasty, made Nishapur his residence in 1037 and proclaimed himself sultan there, but it declined thereafter, as Seljuk fortunes were concentrated in the west. In the year 1000CE, it was among the 10 largest cities on earth [2]. After the husband of Genghis Khan's daughter was killed at Nishapur in 1221, she ordered the death of all in the city (~1.7 million), and the skulls of men, women, and children were piled in pyramids by the Mongols. This invasion and earthquakes destroyed the pottery kilns. In 1979, the 15th World Scout Jamboree was scheduled to be held in Nishapur, but it was cancelled because of the uprising against the Shah of Iran led by Khomeini Ayatollah.


Tomb of Kamal-ol-Molk, Neishabur.

Nishapur is also home to many poets and cultural celebrities. The poet Omar Khayyám was born in Nishapur in 1048 and is buried a few miles outside the town, near the Imamzadeh Mahroq Mosque. The 12th century poet and mystic Farid al-Din Attar, another native of Nishapur, is also buried nearby. And Iran's greatest contemporary painter, Kamal-ol-molk is buried in the same place. Also Nishapur has been the hometown of famous people including:

  1. Muslim ibn al-Hajjaj (one of Islam's greatest muhaddiths, whose collection of hadith, Sahih Muslim, is second in authenticity only to Muhammad al-Bukhari's Sahih al-Bukhari)
  2. Imam al-Hakim (another one of Islam's greatest muhaddiths and scholarly giants)
  3. Prof. Mohammad Reza Shafiei-Kadkani (great contemporary Persian poet and writer and Persian literature Professor, who is famous for his literary criticism)
  4. Ostad Parviz Meshkatian (famous Musician, researcher, Santur player and composer).
  5. Heydar Yaghma (an illiterate worker who began telling poems and published them.)
  6. Hajji Bektash Wali (Muslim mystic, humanist and philosopher)
  7. Wakil-i-Mutlaq, Burhan ul-Mulk, Itimad ud-Daula, Nawab Sayid Sa'adat Khan Bahadur, Shaukat Jang (Circa 1680-19 March 1739), better known as Saadat Khan or Burhan-ul-mulk, was the founder of the Awadh dynasty,UP, India.

Saadat Khan hailed from a noble Saiyid family from Nishapur in Khurasan. Born Mir Muhammad Amin, he entered the Mughal court as a camp superintendent but went on to obtain a mansab under Furrukhsiyar. He played an important role in the ascension of Muhammad Shah to the throne and overthrow of the Saiyid Brothers. He earned the title of Saadat Khan Bahadur in 1720 and was awarded the Governorship of Awadh as reward in 1722.

At the time, Lucknow was under the influence of a Muslim community, the Shaikhzadas. Saadat Khan settled the disturbed fortunes of his territory by military force, and established his court at Faizabad. He was summoned to Delhi by Nadir Shah, and died there in 1739.

Popular culture

US band Santana released an instrumental track entitled "Incident at Neshabur" on their 1970 LP release, "Abraxas".

Archaeology sites

Bowl with white slip, incised design, colored, and glazed. Excavated at Sabz Pushan, Neishapur. 9th-early 10th century. New York Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Little archaeology has been done on this vast and complicated site. George Curzon remarked that Nishapur had been destroyed and rebuilt more times than any other city in history, an evocative statement whether or not it is statistically true. The Metropolitan Museum of Art undertook excavations from 1935 that were interrupted in 1940. Searching largely for museum-worthy trophies that they shared with the government of the Shah, the Metropolitan's publications were limited to its own Nishapur ceramics. The site of Nishapur has been ransacked for half a century since World War II, to feed the international market demand for early Islamic works of art.

A panorama of current view of Kohandezh (2007, Neyshabur, after excavations in 1940


Shadiyakh (in Persian: شادیاخ, which is a contracted form of شادی کاخ 'Shadi-Kakh' or 'Palace of Happiness') was one of important palaces in old Neyshabur up to the 9th century AD (2nd century after Islam) and became more and more important and populated after that. Some notable people like Attar lived there. Attar's tomb is nowadays in that region. This palace was completely ruined in 13th century AD (?).

One of the skeletons which was found in Shadiyakh, Neyshabur. It is kept in a glass box at the original place.

ٍExcavations began in 2000 there and continued for around 2 years and some buildings (which were possibly a palace), skeleton, equipments and... were found there.

Recent incidents

  • In the Summer of 1987 (24.7.1987), a flood in Boojan village killed over 1,000 people and destroyed some villages.
  • On February 18, 2004, in the Nishapur train disaster, a train carrying flammable goods derailed and caught fire near the town. Five hours later, during fire fighting and rescue work, a massive explosion destroyed the train and many nearby buildings. Around 300 people were said to have been killed, mainly fire and rescue workers but also the local governor and mayor and the heads of the fire and rail services. [3]


The most important Neyshabur souvenirs include turquoise and rhubarb.

Neyshabur Turquoise has been used for more than 2000 years and for this turquoise it is sometimes called "the turquoise land". Neyshabur turquoise and jewellery made from it are sold as souvenirs in Neyshabur and Mashhad resorts.

Rhubarb, a sour fruit, grows at the foot of Mount Binalud. Soft drinks made from this fruit, such as "Sharbate rivaas" (in Persian:شربت ریواس) and "Khoshaabe rivaas" (in Persian:خوشاب ریواس), are sold at some Neyshabur resorts as souvenirs.


Sister cities

These cities were major cities of Greater Khorasan:

External links

Travel guide

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikitravel

Asia : Middle East : Iran : Khorasan : Nishapur
Khayyam thomb
Khayyam thomb

Nishapur (also Neyshābūr, Persian: نیشابور) is an ancient city in Khorasan near Mashad. It was one of the largest cities of old Persian Empire before the Mongolian attack.

Get in

By train

There are train routes from Tehran and Mashad.

By minibuses

Several minibuses leave from Mashad to Nishapur every day.

  • Tomb of Farid ad-Din Attar
  • Tomb of Omar Khayyám
  • Shadiyakh excavations
  • Imamzade Mahruq
  • Mazare Shahmir
  • Caravanserai
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