One of two remaining fragments of Tamerlane tomb in the world presented in Yekaterinburg

Last time the fragment of a marble slab was showed to the public before the revolution of 1917
26 October 2015
Sverdlovsk Regional Museum of Local Lore

A fragment of a marble slab from the tomb of Tamerlane (1336-1405) was presented in Yekaterinburg. According to local historians, it is one of the world's two remaining authentic artifacts from the Gur-Emir mausoleum in Samarkand (Uzbekistan).

"We have made inquiries, and talked to historians who specialize in the biography of Tamerlane," researcher at the Sverdlovsk Regional Museum of Local Lore Nikolai Neuimin said.

Researcher at the Sverdlovsk Regional Museum of Local Lore Nikolai Neuimin

To our knowledge, this is the second of the known to world authentic parts of the tomb in Samarkand. The second fragment is in Uzbekistan

Neuimin noted that the tomb of Gur-Emir, which was reconstructed in 1950, is a replica. "Everything is done according to archival records. The found fragments was made of marble at the beginning of the XV century, and everything in Samarkand is made of alabaster," he added.

According to him, scientists from Uzbekistan are interested in the Ural artifact. "It will become an object of scientific study. Presumably, the fragment is made of Italian marble. We will need to know how this material got into the Tamerlane’s empire," Neuimin said.

A fragment of a marble slab is shown in Yekaterinburg for the first time in the last 100 years. Last time it was shown to the public before the revolution of 1917. Previously, it was part of the inner fence around the tombstones of Tamerlane and his family. It was brought to the Urals by the participant of Turkestan campaigns, Colonel-General Alexander Baranov. Baranov received the artifact in June 1868 in a battle with Bokharans on Chapan Ata heights near Samarkand. Later, he presented it at the Ural-Siberian exhibition in 1887 and was awarded a large silver medal of the Ural Society of Naturalists "for a rare artifact in historical terms."


History of the Tamerlane’s curse

Soviet archaeologists on orders of Stalin opened the Tamerlane’s tomb in June 1941. According to the legend, before the operation the elders warned the archaeologists of the curse - war would start if the tomb were open. It was decided to open the tomb on June 21, 1941. There, indeed, were the remains of Tamerlane and his family that were later sent to Moscow. According to some reports, when Stalin heard about the "curse", he ordered the return the remains to Samarkand immediately.

Great Turkic warlord and a conqueror, the founder of Timurid dynasty and Empire, Tamerlane or Timur played a significant role in the history of Central, South and West Asia and the Caucasus, the Volga region and Russia. He died in 1405 and was buried in Samarkand (Uzbekistan) family tomb - the Gur-Emir mausoleum. His sons and grandsons were also buried there.


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