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Gumbazi-Seyeedon Mausoleum


Gumbazi-Seyeedon Mausoleum

Two years later after the construction of the Kok-Gumbaz Mosque had been accomplished, Ulugbek ordered to construct a burial-vault, subsequently known under the name of Gumbazi-Seyeedon Mausoleum – ‘Dome of the Seyeeds’, right against the southern wall of Shamsiddin Kulol Mausoleum. Thus the Dorut-Tillavat architectural ensemble was completed.

A small, graceful, one-chamber mausoleum is crowned by a blue dome on a high drum inlaid with mosaic inscription in kufic script. Nearly square building was constructed in the architectural style typical for Ulugbek’s times. Western entrance is decorated with a small slightly protruding portal and a wooden door faced with deep three-layer carving representing vegetal ornament interlaced with epigraphic inscriptions.

The lower part of the main chamber of the mausoleum is decorated with a panel made of blue hexahedral tiles. The plafond and pendentives of the dome, arched niches and the whole surface of the walls are covered with amazingly intricate red and blue paintings. Beneath the dome there run the wall belt of geometrical ornamental pattern forming star motif. The dome itself is decorated with sophisticated multifaceted girikh (geometrical ornament). The medallions between the arches are ornamented with vegetal and floral patterns whereas the wall surface is decorated with spiral design. Through the windows cut in the base of the dome the interior of the mausoleum is lit with a magic dim light which makes the dome seem hovering high above.

The portal of the mausoleum bears an inscription in Arabic characters: “Sultan the Great, Honourable and Generous, praiseworthy among the sultans, the Lord and Patron of people and faith, Ulugbek Guragan ordered to construct this mausoleum-makbarat named “Avlad al-Mubarak” (Blessed Descendants). Let Allah perpetuate his kingdom and his reign, in the month of the Moon in the year of Hijra 841 (1437)”. For a long time there was no agreement among the scientist as to the people buried in this mausoleum. At one time it was believed that Ulugbek had constructed this mausoleum for Temurids’ descendants. However, not a single tombstone inside the mausoleum contains evidence that Ulugbek’s descendants are buried there.

Of all the marble tombs dating to the 10th-17th centuries and placed inside Gumbazi-Seyeedon Mausoleum, four tombs are assigned to prominent figures from the clan of Termez seyeeds. It should be noted that in the second half of the 14th century Amir Temur often resorted to the help of Termez seyeeds in his conflict with Mongol khans. For instance, Abu-al-Muali, whose tomb can be seen among the other tombs of Gumbazi-Seyeedon Mausoleum, personally participated in the battles against the Mongols. He also attended the celebrations on the occasion of Temur’s accession to the throne. There are some more tombstones around the mausoleum.

The burial vault of seyeeds is one of the best works of Central Asian architects of the times of Ulugbek.

Sightseeing Places in Shakhrisabz

Ak-Saray Palace Dorus Saodat memorial complex. Jahangir’s mausoleum.
Dorut-Tillaval complex with Shamsiddin Kulol Mausoleum Kok-Gumbaz Mosque
Khazrat-Imam Mausoleum Gumbazi-Seyeedon Mausoleum
Chorsu covered market