the oldest door and the fire

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I had an interview today with a charming local journalist called Olesya:

Olesya

We met for lunch, so I suggested we go to the place that made the best lagman in town. But of course this happened:

Binket closed again

It was closed.

Of course it was closed.

Abandoning the idea of having the best lagman in town, we went and had what was probably the second best. Then Olesya offered to show me some touristic sites that I had not seen before. We went to an Iraqi-sponsored mosque:

Kukcha Mosque

It was called Kukcha Mosque, and it was dedicated to Sheyh Zayniddin, who had come here from Iraq in the 13th century.

He had left behind an observatorium:

Sheyh Zayniddin’s mausoleum from the back

One of the gentlemen who seemed to be responsible for the place showed us around. The observatorium was a dome with a whole in the top:

inside of Chilla Hona

And inside that dome, there was a hole in the ground:

second hole

And under the hole, another dome:

second dome

It was all very interesting:

inside of Sheyh Zayniddin’s observatorium

Next to the observatorium, there was a mausoleum for Shey Zayniddin:

Sheyh Zayniddin’s mausoleum

A nice place to be buried.

inside of Sheyh Zayniddin’s mausoleum

It was here that I first understood that traditional doors in Uzbekistan had a special mechanism:

traditional Uzbek door

I was told that the door I was looking at was in fact the oldest door in all of Tashkent:

oldest door in Tashkent

I loved it, especially the doorknocker:

doorknob

After this, we went to Ming Uruk, a Zoroastrian excavation in the city center:

entry to Ming Uruk

The Zoroastrian religion had been dominant in this area before the advent of Islam. Fire was important in Zoroastrianism, and the dualism of good and evil.

This particular site had been a temple dedicated to fire:

Ming Uruk Zoroastrian site

It was hard to make sense of how it used to work:

Ming Uruk Zoroastrian site from the back

But I liked the idea that people had been worshipping fire exactly where I now stood:

Ming Uruk Zoroastrian site from the top

Since it became clear that I liked Zoroastrian sites a lot, we went to another temple ruin in the outskirts of town:

Shoshtepa Zoroastrian site

It was called Shoshtepa, and it was very close to the road I had taken out of town many months earlier, on the day that the Caboose died:

ruins of Shoshtepa

Sadly, it was not a particularly well-kept historical site:

moon over Shoshtepa

But I liked it anyway.



  • @NepgearGo

    Care to explain whats so special about the door mechanism? And, what were they observing in the observatory?

    Reply

    • Christoph Rehage Post author

      Hey there,

      well I thought the hinge was interesting. It’s a vertical bolt that goes all the way from the top to the bottom.
      About the observatory: They were observing the path of the sun.

      Reply

  • Moose from Montreal

    The ancient door mechanism was still in used in the countryside, when I was a kid, in China. I guess it is still being used in remote area.

    Reply

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