Antiquities of Samarkand. Mausoleum of Khodzha Abdu-Derun. Window from the Tomb of the Saint Looking out into the Gallery Called a Ziaretga


This photograph of the Khodzha Abdu-Derun mausoleum in Samarkand (Uzbekistan) is from the archeological part of Turkestan Album. The six-volume photographic survey was produced in 1871-72 under the patronage of General Konstantin P. von Kaufman, the first governor-general (1867-82) of Turkestan, as the Russian Empire’s Central Asian territories were called. The album devotes special attention to Samarkand’s Islamic architectural heritage. The Khodzha Abdu-Derun memorial complex was dedicated to a revered 9th-century Arab judge of the Abdi clan, with the word derun (inner) added to signify its location within Samarkand and to distinguish it from another complex commemorating the sage located just beyond the city. The original domed mausoleum, erected perhaps as early as the 12th century, was expanded with a pilgrimage shrine in the 15th century. The complex also included a courtyard pool, a mosque, and a separate entrance portal. The caption states that this view, taken through a window in the burial chamber, looks out on a gallery connected to a ziaratkhana (a vestibule for ritual prayer at a burial shrine). The robed man in the gallery is wearing a white turban, often a symbol of spiritual authority. In the background, a wooden gate leads to a sunlit yard.

Date Created

Subject Date

Publication Information

Saint Petersburg, Russia

Title in Original Language

Самаркандския древности. Мавзолей Ходжи Абдудерун. Окно из гробницы святого выходящее в галерею называемую зиаретга

Type of Item

Physical Description

1 photographic print : albumen


  • Illustration in: Turkestan Album, Archaeological Part, 1871-1872, part 1, volume 2, plate 135.

Last updated: September 30, 2016