Everybody, who ever have been in Bukhara, most likely, paid attention to a strange “Shaggy Caps” on the top of minarets. This is a stork’s nest. And white bird of hope can be symbol of the town, its firmness and constancy. This reach town many was attacked by enemies, especially Mongol invasion was devastating. But Bukhara each time rose again and again in same place keeping its faith to the foundations.
Fundaments of Bukhara get lost in centuries. In 1997 according to the decision of UNESCO all cultural world celebrated its 2500 anniversary. Legend binds beginnings of the town with a name of deity of the Zoroaster’s pantheon – Siyavush. The oldest part of the town is citadel – Arc, where archeologists discovered findings, dated by IV-III centuries B.C. This is a big artificial mound with height of twenty meters, where was Emir’s palace, his harem, treasury, arsenal, casemates for dangerous special criminals.
One of the oldest monuments of Bukhara is Ismail Samani’s mausoleum, constructed in beginnings of the X century by founder of Samani’s dynasty. Mausoleum is in a shape of cubic construction, with a hemisphere roof. Mausoleum of Samany is the first construction built in middle-east construction, built from burnt brick, in which brick was used as constructive and decorative element.
Main vertical of town – minaret Kalon (Big), built in 1127. This is a perfect engineering construction, colossus, rising over Bukhara 47 meters. Belts, somewhat converging up to round tower, of this the tallest minaret of Uzbekistan, faced with different small spray bricks. At the same time diversity and rhythm of motives of the ornament enriches simple and clear architectural form.
Particular qualities of the architecture of the medieval Bukhara became creation of ensembles from two monumental constructions, divided by street and square and directed to each other. According to this principle was created central ensemble of town – square Poi-Kalon (pedestal of the Great). Having arched change the minaret combined with grand Friday Mosque – Masjidi Kalon. On the opposite of it in the beginning of the XVI century was built madrasah Miri-Arab that functions nowadays.
To the XII century belongs also rising of the graveyard Chashmai-Ayub. According to the legend biblical prophet Job was crossing this waterless part of Bukhara, hit with his stick and here appeared fountain with pure and healing water. In XIV century Khorezm masters, brought by Amir Temur from campaign, constructed over water shaft building, licking into shape canonical cupola on a high rump, as typical for Khorezm. And mosque Chor-Minor, in comparison with them, you may say newly erected building of XIX century. Building has four stocky minarets and cupola, covered with blue glaze, which creates original silhouette of the mosque.
For the East is typical use of artificial reservoirs not only in practical aims but for decoration of town. In Bukhara there were eighty such well furnished ponds. The most popular of them is Labi-Khaus.
Big capital city, Bukhara was popular not only with its mosques and madrasahs, mausoleums and monuments but with palaces, rich houses, caravanserais, bath-houses and multicupola trade passages. They are retained in the town and still are used as trade rows constructed on crossroads, Toki-Zargaron (Jeweller’s cupola), Telpak-furushon (Cupola of hat sellers) and Toki Sarrafon (Cupola of shroff). Their names tells about their first primordial destinations.
In the medieval Bukhara was holy town for all Muslims of Central Asia, and in this was expressed sense of not only religious, but also aesthetic respect. Bukhara was considered as adobe of glory, it was place of meeting outstanding peoples. Author of the Islamic book that is by value the second after Koran – collection of most trustworthy khadises “Al-Jami As-Sahih” is Imam Al-Bukhari. Abu Ali Ibn Sina (Avicenna) was born in suburban village and started his activity in Bukhara. Respected in Islamic world Sheikh Bakhauddin Nakshbandi, founder of Sufi order, was chaser in Bukhara. Deference to holy grave of Sheikh was equated with Hadj to Mecca. Nowadays mausoleum of Bakhauddin Nakshbandi is also respected as main relic of the town.
Bukhara gave to the world historian Narshahi, poets Rudaki and Dakiki: but to this row people placed also their favorite, clever and revolting tranquility Hadjji Nasreddin. There is no number for his histories and sayings.
Centuries-old activities of Muslims scientists, thinkers, architects, poets gave to the town honorary titles “Cupola of religious”, “Generous Bukhara”, “God blessed Town”. We think that Bukhara by right merits all these epithets.
At the same time, town is a modern, industrial and cultural city. It has modern airport, Institutes, colleges, lyceums, theaters, gymnasiums and health centers.