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Konye Urgench

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'''Konye Urgench''' is a city in Northern [[Dashoguz Province]], [[Turkmenistan]].
==Understand==
The town was called Urgench '' Gurgandzh'' from the 10th century AD onwards and is now called Konye Urgench (Old Urgench), as the inhabitants moved to modern [[Urgench]] in [[Uzbekistan]] in the 17th century.
Konye Urgench, the ancient ''Gurgandzh'', was built on the crossing of two major caravan routes from the South to the Volga in the Northwest and from the West to China in the East. From the 1st century AD onwards Konye Urgench was an important trade center on the Northern Silk Road leading to the Caspian Sea and Russia. Around 1000 ''Emir MahmumMamun'' unified the country of ''Khwarezm [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Khwarezm]'' and made Konye Urgench its capital. In the 10th cent. Urgench was the capital of the powerful Khwarezm state which occupied the whole area of the Amu Darya [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amu_Darya] delta in Northern Turkemnistan and Western Uzbekistan.
Konye Urgench became one of the centers of the Islamic world and was called "the heart of Islam" and "the capital of thousand wise men". Great scholars as ''Al Biruni (Abu Reikhan Biruni) [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Al_Biruni]'' and ''Avicenna (Abu Ali Ibn Sina) [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Avicenna]'' lived here. After its conquest by the Mongols in the 13th century, the city became an important trade center again. The famous Arabic traveller ''Ibn Batuta [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ibn_Batuta]'' described Konye Urgench as the 'biggest among the Turkish cities with broad streets and splendid bazaars'. The main part of the magnificient monuments in Konye Urgench were built during the reign of ''Kutlug Timur'' and his wife ''Tyurabek-khanym''. In the 14th century the city was destroyed by the troups of ''Timur [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Timur]''.
Konye Urgench was declared UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2005.
==See==
* '''Nedjameddin Kubra Mausoleum''' was built in the 14th century It is considered as the holiest place in Konye Urgench. ''Nedjameddin Kubra'' lived in the 12th/13th centuries. He was born in Khiva and became a famous religious teacher and known as 'designer of saints'. He left several treatises on mystic experiences, founded an important Sufic order. He and was killed by the Mongols. Please inquire locally if you are permitted to enter the mausoleum.
* '''Konye Urgench Museum''' in the modern ''Dash mosque'' ( US$1, 8am to 1pm, 2pm to 4pm closed Tue). Some rooms contain ethnographic exhibits including a pottery workshop and carpet looms.
The most interesting monuments are on both sides the Ashgabat road about 1 km south of the town. Admission is US$ 1, camera US§ 0,70, open from 8 am to 6pm.
* '''Turabeg Khanum Mausoleum''' is one of Central Asia's most beautiful buildings. It was built in the 14th cent by ''Kutlug Timur'' for his wife ''Turabeg Khanum''. It's portal with a height of 21 meters high and a breadth of 14 meters is richly decorated with majolicas. The central building measuring about 100 square meters is also ornamented with colourful tiles. The interior of the dome (height: 20 meters) shows 365 stars symbolizing the days of the year, 12 open and 12 closed arches symbolize the hours of day and night, 12 bogger bigger arches symbolize the 12 months and 4 big windows the four seasons.
* '''Kutlug Timur Mínaret''' was begun in the 11th century and ginished finished in the 14th century unter ''Kutlug Timur''. It was the minaret of the main mosque in [[Konye Urgench]]. With a height of 60 meters, it is the highest minaret in [[Central Asia]]. The minaret is divided by 18 belts with an ornament and 3 belts with Kufi inscriptions.
* '''Sultan Tekish Mausoleum''' is the mauseoleum mausoleum of ''Sultan Tekish [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sultan_Shah_of_Khwarezm]'', shah of Khorezm in the 12th century, who conquered great parts of a huge territory from the Aral Sea the the Persian Gulf and from what is today northern [[Iran]] and northern [[Afghanistan]]to the Pamir. This mausoleum is one of the few monuments in Konye Urgench surviving from pre-Mongol times. The dome was richly decorated with blue tiles and geometrical patterns. The mausoleum was 30 meters high and serves both as a lighthouse in the desert and as a symbol of authority (as it stood high above ordinary houses).
* '''Kerk Mollah''' ''(Hill of the 40 mullahs)'' is one of the best known places of pilgrimage in [[Turkmenistan]].
* '''Il-Arshan Mausoleum''' is Konye Urgench's oldest surviving monument. It contains the grave of ''Il Arslan [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Il-Arslan]'', the father of ''Sultan Tekish''. The dome in the form of a tente tent and the facade of the monument with a pattern of bricks are the firts first of this type and were the prototype for similar buildings in [[Samarkand]].*<see name="Minaret of Mamum" alt="" address="" directions="" phone="" url="" hours="" price="" lat="" long="">The minaret of the 10th to 11th cent. collapsed about 100 years ago. The foundation slab was found indicating that the minaret was constructed by order of Shah Mamun.</see>*<see name="Ib-Khadzhib Madrasa" alt="" address="" directions="" phone="" url="" hours="" price="" lat="" long="">14th to 16th cent.</see>*<see name="Mausoleum of Fakhr ad-Din Razi" alt="" address="" directions="" phone="" url="" hours="" price="" lat="" long="">13th cent.</see>*<see name="Mausoleum of Azizan Al-Ramatani" alt="" address="" directions="" phone="" url="" hours="" price="" lat="" long="">13th to 14th cent.</see>*<see name="Mausoleum of Seid Ahmed" alt="" address="" directions="" phone="" url="" hours="" price="" lat="" long="">12th to 14th cent.</see>*<see name="Mausoleum of Piryarveli" alt="" address="" directions="" phone="" url="" hours="" price="" lat="" long="">13th cent.</see>*<see name="Mausoleum of Gulidergan" alt="" address="" directions="" phone="" url="" hours="" price="" lat="" long="">12th cent.</see>*<see name="Mauseoleum of Khorezimbag" alt="" address="" directions="" phone="" url="" hours="" price="" lat="" long="">13th to 18th cent.</see>*<see name="Mausoleum of Dashgala" alt="" address="" directions="" phone="" url="" hours="" price="" lat="" long="">14th to 16th cent.</see>*<see name="Mausoleum of Matkarim Ishan" alt="" address="" directions="" phone="" url="" hours="" price="" lat="" long="">19th to 20th cent.</see>*<see name="Mausoleum of Sultan Ali" alt="" address="" directions="" phone="" url="" hours="" price="" lat="" long="">16th cent.</see>*<see name="Mausoleum of Dashmedzhet" alt="" address="" directions="" phone="" url="" hours="" price="" lat="" long="">20th cent.</see>*<see name="Ak Kala Fortress" alt="" address="" directions="" phone="" url="" hours="" price="" lat="" long="">1st to 13th cent.</see>*<see name="Izmukshir" alt="" address="" directions="" phone="" url="" hours="" price="" lat="" long="">The ancient city of ''Zamakshar'' with magnificent fortress ruins was the birthplace of the great 10th cent. philosopher ''Az-Zamakshari''</see>*<see name="Dashmechet Madrasah" alt="" address="" directions="80 m East of the Nadzhimetdin Kuvra Mausoleum" phone="" url="" hours="" price="" lat="" long="">The Madrasah was erected in the beginning of the 20th cent. It is a one storey brick building with a high portal, 4 towers and 19 living rooms for the students.</see>
==Do==
==Eat==
*<eat name="Bedev Cafe" alt="" address="Azadi köcesi" directions="" phone="21044" url="" hours="7am to 9pm" price="US$ 3" lat="" long=""></eat>
 
==Drink==
*<sleep name="Chapayev Guesthouse" alt="" address="" directions="on the road between the town and the Uzbekistan border post, not signposted" phone="no phone" url="" checkin="" checkout="" price="US$ 2.50" lat="" long="only recommended if you have your own transport"></sleep>
There is no comfortable hotel in [[Konye Urgench]]. Therefore it It is better to stay overnight at [[Dashoguz]].
==Contact==
There are frequent buses and marschrutki to [[Ashgabat]] (US$4, 10 to 12 hours) and to [[Dashoguz]] (US$ 0.50, 2 hours). Taxis to [[Ashgabat]] cost about US$6 per seat or US$ 24 for the whole car, to [[Dashoguz]] US$ 0.75 per seat or US$ 3.50 for the whole car.
==Further information==
* Wikipedia article Konye Urgench [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Konye-Urgench]
   {{IsPartOf|Dashoguz Province}}
{{outline}}
{{cityguide}}
 
[[wikipedia:Konye Urgench]]
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