Gur-i Mir

Type: Mausoleums
Date: 1400–1404
Location or Findspot (Modern-Day Country): Uzbekistan
Description: The Gur-i Mir (Persian for "Tomb of the Emir" or "Grave of the Prince") is an octagonal mausoleum in Samarkand where Timur, his grandson Ulugh Beg, and other descendants are buried. The exterior features patterns of glazed and matte bricks. Its ribbed dome is covered in turquoise tiles and it features a monumental inscription around the drum that reads "God is eternal."

In the square tomb chamber, the walls are ornamented using a mix of materials that includes plaster, paint, and different kinds of revetments. There is an onyx dado and an inscription band with gold painted on jasper. The muqarnas vaults are clad with painted molded paper, a technique imported from China. Marble and jade cenotaphs indicate the locations of marble tombstones in the crypt below. For Timur's cenotaph, Ulugh Beg acquired a monolithic block of jade from Khotan.

Relevant Primary Sources
Relevant Textbook Chapter(s): 10
Repository and Online Resources: See more images and plans of Gur-i Mir.
Image Credits: Wikimedia Commons; Navid Jamali

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Gur-i Mir Mausoleum, interior Gur-i Mir Mausoleum, exterior Gur-i Mir Mausoleum, ribbed dome Gur-i Mir Mausoleum plan, 14th-c. phase in black Cenotaph of Timur, Gur-i Mir, Samarkand