Antiquities of Samarkand. Madrasah of Tillia Kari. Main Facade (Southern). Door to the Inner Courtyard


This photograph of the door of the main entrance to the Tillia Kari 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 a madrasah (religious school). The third Registan component, the Tillia Kari Madrasah, was built in 1646-60, on the site of a former caravanserai. The entrance to the rectangular courtyard is framed by a great iwan (vaulted hall, walled on three sides, with one end open) flanked on either side by a two-story arcade. Shown here is the wooden door within the iwan niche. The panels of the door are covered with a relief of intricate carving in geometric and botanical motifs. The top horizontal panels contain carved inscription bands in a cursive style. Both sides of the door show vertical cracks and have been reinforced by metal strips at the top and bottom.

Subject Date

Publication Information

Saint Petersburg, Russia


Title in Original Language

Самаркандския древности. Медрессэ Тилля-Кари. Главный фасад. (южный). Дверь во внутрений двор

Type of Item

Physical Description

1 photographic print : albumen


  • Illustration in: Turkestan Album, Archaeological Part, 1871-1872, part 1, volume 2, plate 102.

Last updated: September 30, 2016