Temurid’s Necropolis

The Gur-Emir underground crypt contains graves of three more rulers along with Amir Temur and Muhammad-Sultan. They are Temur’s son Miranshah (1366-1408) and Shahruh (1377-1447), and his grandson Mirzo Ulugbek (1396-1449). Miranshah was Temur’s third son who at the age of 14 was appointed by his father the governor of Khurasan. In the 1390s Miranshah received “the throne of Hulagu”, i.e. became the governor of the southwestern Mongolian territories annexed by Temur’s empire. In 1408 Miranshah was killed in a battle. Several years later his remains were brought to Maverannahr and buried in Gur-Emir. Amir Temur’s youngest son Shahruh was enthroned in Khurasan and after his father’s death he became the supreme ruler of the empire. He gave Maverannahr to his son Mirzo Ulugbek who reigned there for over forty years being supported by his father’s power. Shahruh died during a military campaign and was buried in Herat.

Ulugbek twice campaigned in Khurasan and finally took Herat’s throne of his father. Then Shahruh’s remains were reburied in Samarkand. In 1449 Ulugbek’s son Abdullatif rose against his father, dethroned and killed him. Abdullatif was soon dethroned and the remains of Ulugbek were buried in Gur-Emir. The arrangement of the Temurid kings’ burials can be clearly seen in the top room where the symbolic tombs stand. The tomb of Sayid Berke occupies an honored upper place, Amir Temur’s tomb is at his “feet” and it is made of precious dark green jade. To the east of it stands Muhammad Sultan’s tomb with stalactite infringements. To the west of Temur’s tomb lie the tombs of his sons Shahruh and Miranshah and to the south – his grandson Mirzo Ulugbek. Right under these decorative tombs, in the underground crypt there are the burials and the grave tombs of these people. Amir Temur’s remains lie in wooden coffin inside the marble sarcophagus.

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© Marakanda Expedition, 2017 .