Shakhrisabz which means “greet city” in Persian is one of the ancient and historical cities of present day Uzbekistan. It is situated in the south part of the country, about 80 kilometers of SAmarkand. Being very popular as a birth place of Amir Temur, it was formerly one of the largest cities in Central Asia. According to archeological data the foundation of the city goes back to the middle of the first millennium. At the beginning of the Common Era and in the early middle ages the city was called with different names such as Kesh, Nautaka, Sugda and some others.
The history of the city during the Mongol invasion is scarcely found in historical scripts. The name “Shakhrisabz” was met on the silver coins impressed in 1351. Sharafuddin Ali Yazdi, one of the famous historians of the XV century wrote that Turkic people had called the city “Kesh”. During the Temur’s and Temurids’ period Shakhrisabz became the summer residence of Barlos noblemen and one of the largest cities of the great empire. At that time a lot of historically famous monuments and buildings such as Ak Saray palace and the complex of Dorus-Saodat were built and the city was surrounded by a wall.
In 1556 Shakhrisabz was conquered by Abullakhan II. Later, the city was a part of Karshi province of the Khanate of Bukhara. The city was still encircled with a defense wall in the middle of the XVI century.
As per the description of Mahmud Ibn Vali, the historian of the XVII century, Shakhrisabz was not only one of the cities of Movaraunnahr with very beautiful green orchards and garden-beds, but also all over the world.
In the reign of Ashtarkhanids, Shakhrisabz had a lack of political influence. In the struggle to take the control of the city firstly Mangits and later Kungrats won and they attempted not to be subject to the Khanate of Bukhara. In the first quarter of the XVIII century regular invasions of Kazakhs of Deshti-Kipchak caused the city life unfavorably. 1750-1752 years Shakhrisabz was integrated to the Emirate of Bukhara. In the middle of XVIII century the city was regained and it was in included in the Emirate of Bukhara until 1920.
The most part of the population of the city was engaged in trade and handicrafts. But in the 1930-1940 years historical memorials in the city were in sorrowful conditions. Though they were being used in private purposes, after getting the independence, the authority has focused much attention on reconstruction of those historical monuments and the appearance of the city has totally been changed.
In 2002 the 2700th anniversary of Shakhrisabz was extensively celebrated by the decision of the UNESCO. Here below are the monuments of Shakhrisabz having been preserved:
- Ak-Saray Palace (1380-1404);
- Kok-Gumbaz Mosque (1435);
- Dorus-Saodat ensemble (XIV c.);
- Shamseddin Kulyal's Mausoleum and Necropolis (XV c.);
- Khazrati Imam Mosque (XIV c.);
- Mausoleum of Djakhongir (XIV c.);
- Gumbazi Saidon (XV-XVII c.).