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SHAKI

 Yerləşmə: Azerbaijan

 Sahə: 9 km2

 Əhali: 68,360

Shaki is situated in northern Azerbaijan on the southern part of the Greater Caucasus mountain range, 370 km from Baku and 700 meters above the sea level. Shaki with 2700 years of history, was also known as Nukha, is enclosed by fortress walls. Considering the numerous historical and architectural monuments and the antiquity of Shaki as well as its special contribution into the world culture, the Yukharybash part was declared the Historical and Architectural reserve. The architectural reserve and the Khan Palace of Shaki were included into the list of historical and cultural monuments of the world.

This summer palace of Shaki khans started to be used during 1761-1762 in the period of Huseyn khan, the grandson of the founder of the first independent khanate of Azerbaijan Haji Chelebi. The palace of the khans is a two-storeyed construction with 6 rooms, 4 corridors and 2 mirror-balconies. The main front of the building is composed of the ornament windows and the doors made of the different geometrical-shaped coloured little pieces of glass placed between the wood pieces; there is no the second sample in the world similar to this. Each square metre of the ornament is composed of averagely 5000 and the complex parts of it of 14000 wooden and glass places into each-other. Nazim Hikmet, the world-famous Turkish writer told about this palace: “If Azerbaijan had no other ancient constructions, it should be enough to show the palace of Shaki khans to the world”.

Yukhari Karvansara covers the area of 6000 square kilometers. The combination of brick and river stone, that peculiar to the Shaki architecture, gives particular color to the monument. Corresponding to the relief the building is 14 m high in the part facing the street and 8 m high in the inside of it. 3-storeyed caravanserai composed of more than 300 rooms and a cellar has 2 entrance gates. In the cellar, the merchant kept their goods, the trade carried-out in the ground floor and the first floor was used as residence.

The top of the inner part of the gates are domes built of bricks. For very inclination of the relief, rich decorated arch of the main gate, that is considered to have the largest dome in the Near East, built in the corner of the monument-in the same level with the second floor. The general composition is completed with the ordinary yard, the bastions, same in size with the arches, streets balconies, pool and the surrounding greens. Yukhari Karvansara, preserving its beauty and architectural style up today and currently used as a hotel, is an evident sample of the rich material and cultural wealth of Shaki.

The tower of the temple and close walls are constructed of local shirim (furrow) stone and plastered with alabaster. The walls of the tower may draw metal coins from 3 sides. This peculiarity is explained by concretion of paraffin layer on the walls in the result of long candle burning in the damp condition and the air stream within the tower.

4-5 m away from the north-western part of the temple there is a flat, pan stone 2 m long and 1 m wide.

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