Antiquities of Samarkand. Mausoleum of the Saint Sheikh Nuredin Basir Kutbi-Chaardakhum. General View from the South


This photograph of a mausoleum at the Bukhara emir’s palace 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. At the center of this view is a mausoleum dedicated to the spiritual leader Sheikh Nuredin Basir. Although lacking the complexity of 15th-century centralized mausoleums such as Rukhabad, this structure achieves monumental form with the design of its high dome, supported by a double construction on the interior. Despite clearly visible damage to the tile surface of the dome, the cylinder supporting it is in good condition, with a large ceramic inscription band intact. The mausoleum is located near the palace of the emirs of Bukhara, who ruled Samarkand after the expulsion of the Timurids in the early 16th century. The palace was referred to as “Kok Tash” after the throne of (Timur) Tamerlane, who built a citadel in Samarkand. Of special interest in this photograph is the row of cannons and the Russian guard (in white tunic), an indication of the capture of Samarkand by Russian forces in 1868.

Date Created

Subject Date

Publication Information

Saint Petersburg, Russia

Title in Original Language

Самаркандския древности. Мавзолей святаго Шейха Нуретдина Башира Кутби-Чаардахум. Общий видъ с юга

Type of Item

Physical Description

1 photographic print : albumen


  • Illustration in: Turkestan Album, Archaeological Part, 1871-1872, part 1, volume 2, plate 129.

Last updated: September 30, 2016