Madrasah Kukeldash is located on a high hill in the area of Chorsu square. The builder of the madrasah was a vezir of the Tashkent khans (1551-1575), called Kukeldash ("the foster-brother of the khan"). The madrasah has a traditional composition: an extensive court yard, built on khudjras, with darskhana and a mosque in the corners.
The main facade has a high portal, two story loggias, and angular turrets called guldasta. At the end of the 18th century, the maadrasah was used as a caravanserai, in 1860 it served the khans of Kokand as a fortress, and also as a place of execution (from the top parapet, women convicted of infidelity were dumped in bags onto a platform covered with stones). Madrasah Kukeldash is one of the largest madrasahs of 16th century still preserved in Central Asia, with the advanced layout and specific construction of that time.
Head out from the Hotel Uzbekistan to leafy Amir Timur Square where a statue of Tamerlane on horseback. The most eccentric reminder of tsarist Tashkent is the former residence of Grand Duke N.K. Romanov(1850-1917), a first cousin of Tsar Nicholas II , exiled here in 1881 for exploits involving the crown jewels. Ahead sprawls Independence Square flanked by public buildings and walls of fountains. Besides the globe stands the former Government House, first built in 1931 and now hoising the Bakhor Concert Hall and the Alisher Navoi Library. Part of it survives at the library's rear, where the Ankhor Canal, one-time border of old and new Tashkent, meanders through a verdant swimming and leisure area.
The madrasah was constructed from baked brick. Only one facade is decorated. On the portal, the remains of carved decor, glazed bricks and majolica have been preserved: they were restored in 1950. The monument has a huge historic and architectural value. Madrasah Kukeldash, despite its critical condition, was preserved and restored.
Built in 1570 by Governor Dervish Khan, known as Kukeldash, which means “milk brother” of khan, it is as originally a Muslim school. Preserved vakuf letter of Dervish-Khan (1569-1570) leaves a caravansarai in favor of the madrasah that indicates the existence of the finished building at that time.
According to the Tashkent merchant Nur-Muhammad, whose story was recorded in 1795 by the Orenburg expedition, the madrasah in the late 18th century was used as a caravanserai. Apparently, the collapse of the crowns of the towers - guldasta also dates back to that period. Existing until 1800 the blue domes above the mosque and darskhona, and also the second floor of khujras were dismantled to brick in 1830-1831 during the reign of the Tashkent ruler Bekler-bek. After that, there was the repair by Tashkent masters who left their names in the inscriptions on majolica tiles above the entrance doors. The madrasah was used by Kokand khans as a fortress (in 1860 the Tashkent rebels were taking cannon fire from the fortress), and as the place of execution (before the conquest of Turkestan by Russia in 1865, the wives, proved of being unfaithful were dropped in bags off the parapet down to stone yard).
Madrassah have repeatedly fallen into ruins. Tumbled by an earthquake in 1866 and 1886, the portal was then restored. Madrassah was renovated in 1950-1960-1977 years.
Kukeldash Madrasah is one of the largest madrasahs to remain intact in 16th century in the Central Asia. The monument is elevated on a high pedestal, emerged on the ancient cultural layers. Its plan is traditional - a rectangular courtyard with khujras, stately decorated front facade with high portal, arches and minarets covering the corners. The lobby had elbowed passages, rectangular courtyard with a large number of khujras (living cells of madrasah students) located in one, two-storey, the entrances to which were decorated by arches.
To the north-east of the Kukeldash madrassah, there is preserved a monument of an earlier time, construction of which is connected with the name of Khoja Ahrar. It’s Friday mosque.
All these buildings are organically woven into the exotic flavor of bazaar, with its bright colors, noise and bustle. Market has long attracted the attention of Russian and Western European travelers and tourists.
Uzbekistan is full of history and this restored Madrassah is a good example of that. I recommend it.Read full
A working madrasa with a nice garden inside, definitely worth a visit. Plus, it is located near Chorsu bazaar, so makes it a good combo.Read full
Compared to other spots in Uzbekistan, Kukeldash is not really a highlight. We passed it while strolling around in Chorsu bazar and the market.Read full