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Minaret Kalyan

Minaret Kalyan (the Great) is the main symbol of sacred Bukhara. From it top, the call for prayers had gathered the musli m population of the city.

The supremacy of the minaret in the city meant predominance of Islam for all the people living in Bukhara. Minaret represents a gigantic vertical pillar which is constructed from bricks. Its height is 46.5 metres and the foundations of the construction go down into the ground up to 10 metres.
Diameter by the plinth reaches 9 metres. This magnificent conical pillar is complimented by cylindrical lamp-rotunda on the stalactitic wreath. The lamp rotunda has 16 reach-through ark holes. Throughout the whole length of the minaret there are 12 decorative belts on each of which there is a unique ornament.
On three of its belts the ancient construction date inscriptions can still be seen -1127 as well as the name of the contributor - the governor of Bukhara, Arslankhan and the name of the architect is Usto Bako, whose grave, according to the legend, is situated in one of the neighboring blocks.
Minaret Kalyan is linked to the roof of the Kalyan mosque by a small bridge. This is the point from which it is possible to get inside the minaret and lift up to the rotunda through a thin brick vintage ladder which has 105 steps.
One of the old legends relates that once upon a time there was a shah who had a wife. He was a very cruel man and decided to kill his wife throwing her down from the top of the tower. But she was a very smart woman and had asked her husband to make her last wish come true. He agreed. When the woman showed up on the execution day, she was dressed up in all her dresses and skirts. Being absolutely calm, this wise woman had raised up to the top of the tower and all the people had been waiting and watching her. When she jumped down from the tower, it looked like a miracle: she survived as her dresses blew up like a parachute and led her land safely on the ground.

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