In the history of Islamic architecture Gur Emir occupies one of the major places, as real masterpiece of Central Asian architecture. It is an ancient construction of Samarkand is Amir Timur's mausoleum – Mongolian conqueror known also as Tamerlan. In translation from Persian Gur Emir means « tomb of the emir». This family tomb of the emperor and his successors was built in 1404 in the southwest district of Samarkand city.
Construction of the mausoleum begun in 1403 in connection with sudden death of beloved grandson of Tamerlan, his lineal heir – Muhammad Sultan. And other grandson of the emperor – Ulugbek finished the construction. So the mausoleum at the time of Timur's state became a family crypt of this dynasty. In the mausoleum there is Tamerlan's grave, graves of Miran Shakh and Shakhrukh – his sons, Muhammad Sultan and Ulugbek – his grandsons. In this crypt also kept remains the Mir Said Barak – teacher Amir Timur.
The mausoleum Gur Emir is one-dome construction. Its architecture differs with solemn monumentalism and simplicity of design. From outer side of a wall there is beautiful furnish of tiles in white, light blue and blue tones. Arch of portal is decorated with mosaic and carved brick. And mosaic geometrical ornament that decorates wall in the sun pours and sparkles very beautifully.
Mausoleum dome in diameter is 15 meters, and in height 12, 5 meters of brightly dark blue color with white impregnations and deep dredging that grants special expressiveness to it.
In those far times when Ulugbek was governor, on tomb of Tamerlan there was set tombstone carved from huge dark green nephrite. This tombstone contains a family tree of the emperor. And in yard territory of the mausoleum there is well-known Kok-Tash – throne stone over which in the sixteenth century there was crowning of representatives of known dynasty Sheybanids.
Other sights in Samarkand: