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Islamic period in Samarkand


Islamic period in Samarkand

In the early 8th century AD, Samarkand was conquered by the Arabs and soon became an important center of Muslim culture. Excavations beneath the mosque show a rapid succession of monumental buildings. A massive enclosure, perhaps the temenos of the pre-Islamic temple mentioned in the sources, was razed some time after the Arab conquest of 712. The site was occupied by a large palace (ca 115 x 84 m), which was according to numismatic evidence built in the 740s by the last Omayyad governor Nasar b. Sayyar. Between 765 and 780 the Friday mosque was first built on a square plan, which probably at the beginning of the Samanid period, ca. 820-30 was enlarged and the remaining parts of the palace were levelled. It subsequently grew as a trade center on the Silk Road, the great trading route between China and the Mediterranean region. In 1220 Samarkand was almost completely destroyed by the Mongol ruler Genghis Khan. It flourished again when Timur-i-Leng (known as Tamerlane in the West) made it the capital of his empire in 1369. As his capital Timur put Samarkand on the world map and much of the architecture visible today was built by him or his descendants. The empire declined in the 15th century, and nomadic Uzbeks (Shaybanids) took Samarkand in 1500. In 1784 the emirate of Bukhara conquered it. The city was taken by Russia in 1868 and once again began to assume importance. From 1924 to 1930, Samarqand was the capital of the Uzbek Soviet Socialist Republic (SSR).

The Most Frequently Asked Travel Questions about Samarkand

Climate Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Daily highs (°C) 6 8 14 21 26 32 34 32 28 21 15 9
Nightly lows (°C) -3 -1 3 9 13 16 16 16 11 6 2 -1
Precipitation (mm) 44 39 71 63 33 4 4 0 4 24 28 41
Daylight (hrs/day) 4 5 6 7 10 13 13 12 10 8 6 4

Samarkand has a typical continental climate with hot summers and cold winters. Best seasons for travels to Samarland is Apr/May and Sep/Oct.

Where To Stay & Best Hotels in Samarkand - updated Jul 2024

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Samarkand Travel Guide from Wikitravel. Many thanks to all Wikitravel contributors. Text is available under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0, images are available under various licenses, see each image for details.

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