Konye-Urgench (Turkmen: Köneürgenç, Roushie: Куня Ургенч, frae Persian Kuhna Gurgānj کهنه گرگانج) an aa kent as Konya-Urgench, Auld Urgench or Urganj, is a municipality o aboot 30,000 inhabitants in north-eastren Turkmenistan, juist sooth frae its border wi Uzbekistan. It is the site o the auncient toun o Ürgenç (Urgench), which contains the unexcavatit ruins o the 12t-century caipital o Khwarezm. Since 2005, the ruins o Auld Urgench have been protected by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site.
Umwhile situatit on the Amu-Darya River, Auld Ürgenç wis ane o the greatest ceeties on the Silk Road. Its foondation date is uncertain, but the extant ruins o the Kyrkmolla fortress hae been datit (rather ambitiously) tae the Achaemenid period. The 12t an early 13t centuries were the gowden age o Ürgenç, as it surpassed in population an fame aw ither Central Asian ceeties barrin Bukhara. In 1221, Genghis Khan razed it tae the grund in ane o the bloodiest massacres in human history.
The ceety wis revived efter Genghis's assault, but the sudden chynge o Amu-Darya's course tae the north an the toun's destruction again in the 1370s, this time bi Timur, forced the inhabitants tae leave the site foriver. A new toun o Urgench wis developed tae the Sootheast, in present-day Uzbekistan. First archeological research on the auld ceety site wis conductit bi Alexander Yakubovsky in 1929.
Maist o Ürgenç's monuments hae completely or pairtly collapsed. Nouadays, the site contains three sma mausoleums o the 12t century an the mair elaborate 14t-century Törebeg Hanym Mausoleum, which wis muckle restored in the 1990s.
The maist strikin extant landmark o Auld Urgench is the early 11t-century Gutluk-Temir Minaret, which, at 60 meters, uised tae be the tawest brick minaret prior tae the construction o the Minaret o Jam. An aa o note is the Il-Arslan Mausoleum - the auldest staundin monument: a conical dome o 12 facets, hoosin the tomb o Mohammed II's grandfaither, Il-Arslan, who dee'd in 1172. Somewha tae the north, sprawls a vast medieval necropolis.
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