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General info

Citadel Toprak Kala | Ancient Khorezm & Desert Citadels

The citadel Toprak-Kala is located in the area of the district Ellikkala, in autonomous republic of Karakalpakstan, Uzbekistan. Toprak mean “soil, ground” and kala is “citadel or fortress” in Uzbek language.

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This old citadel of the ancient Khorezm is one of the antique cities of Central Asia built close to the shore of the Amu Darya. The territory of the ancient Khorezm stretched from Khiva to the shores of the Aral Sea. And nearly all of them were built close the Amu Darya.

Toprak Kala was found in 1938 by archaeologist S.P. Tolstov. The first archaeological excavations were held in 1940 and slow by slow with lots of pauses they lasted up to 1992. The citadel had a rectangular from (500x350m) with 8-9m high walls.

Following the historians we know that a small part of the citadel was used as a Zoroastrian temple and the visitors can still see the circular forms of sun on the walls of some apartments. Another part had lots of interesting documents written on different kinds of materials, mirrors, jewelry products, fragments of small sculptures from alabaster, wall paintings, golden statuettes etc.

During the reign of the Kushanid Empire Toprak-Kala was one of the capitals of the empire. The citadel was destroyed by the Arabs (8th century) and Mongols (13th century).  

 

 

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