Antiquities of Samarkand. Madrasah of Ulugh Beg. Main Facade (Eastern)


This photograph of the main facade of the Ulugh Beg Madrasah 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 architecture, such as 14th- and 15th-century monuments from the reign of Timur (Tamerlane) and his successors. In the center of Samarkand is the Registan ensemble, composed of three major examples of the madrasah (religious school). The oldest extant component on Registan Square is the Ulugh Beg Madrasah, a leading center of Islamic education, built in 1417-20 by the scholar-king and grandson of Timur, Ulugh Beg (1393?-1449). Shown here is the eastern view of the main facade. The great iwan (vaulted hall, walled on three sides, with one end open) arch at the entrance to the madrasah is also visible.

Last updated: April 3, 2018