General Information about Uzbekistan

Area: 447,4 square kilometers;
Population: more than 26 million of people;
Average population density is 59.4 people for 1 sq. km;
State language: Uzbek;
Capital: Tashkent;
Currency unit: Sum;

Uzbekistan has been the UN, OSCE member since 1992. It is the member of CIS since 1991.

Uzbekistan is situated in the central part of Central Asia. It borders on Kazakhstan in the North, Turkmenistan – in the Southwest, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan – in the East, Afghanistan – in the South. The general length of the borders is about 5300 kilometers. Uzbekistan takes vast territories – from the Ustyurt Plateau in the West to the Tian Shan and the Pamir Mountains in the East.

Tashkent is the capital of the Republic of Uzbekistan. It is situated in the Northeast of the Republic, in the middle part of Chirchik-Angren oasis. It is one of the ancient cities in Central Asia. Its history is more than 2 thousand years. In different periods Tashkent was called Chach, Shash, Bin-ket.

Uzbekistan is a multinational Republic. The main part of the population is the Uzbeks (more than 71%). In anthropological terms, this people are of mixed descent. The Uzbeks refer to the south Caucasians of Central Asian Mesopotamia. At the same time a strong Mongoloid influence is traced in their formation. The literary Uzbek language belongs to the Karluk group of the western branch of Turkic languages. There are many different dialects in the spoken language. There is a deep historical connection between the Tajik and Uzbek languages. It reveals in phonetics, syntax, and especially in vocabulary.

Khiva in the History of the Great Silk Road

Khiva is one of the most ancient and still surviving cities of the Great Silk Road in Central Asia. At the time of the blossoming of Khoresm it was the largest world trade center; a key point on the Great Silk Road. Merchants travelled from afar; from the Volga region, India and Iran. They gathered here, with trading caravans from the region travelling to the Near Eas, to East Turkistan and China.

There were routes to Mongolia from Khiv, and through the Polovtsian Land - to Saksin, a trading city at the mouth of the Volga River. Goods were traded further afield to Russian princedoms and even to Europe. Archaeologists have discovered new routes which ancient caravans travelled; in particular, from Khoresm to Mangushlak and from there to the sea in the lower Volga region; proving that Khoresm marchants connected a considerable part of the Central Asian states with Eastern Europe trade.

The Great Silk Road is a unique phenomenon of the history of the development of a civilization through its aspirations towards the exchange of cultural values, the conquest of living space and the development of trade.*

This, the largest transcontinental trade path in the history of humanity connected Europe and Asia, and in ancient times stretched from Rome to the ancient capital of Japan - Nara.

It is important to note that this road was never the only path it included various routes which branched off like the crown of a mighty tree. As a matter of fact, one of the main roads crossing Asia from east to the west had its beginnings in the capital of ancient China - Changan - and weaved its way to the north-west border. Having being ferried over the glaciated Tyan-Shan mountains, part of the caravans passed through the Fergana Valley staying awhile in the Tashkent oasis and continuing on to Samarkand, Bukhara, Khoresm. Some continued further to the Caspian and Black Sea shores, Bactria and India.

The istablishment of trade links contributed significantly to the development of semi-precious stone quarries in the mountains of Central Asia which enabled lazurite, nephritis, cornelian and turquoise to be utilized.

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