Sites & cities that bear the name of Maragheh


Today in : Iran (Islamic Republic of)
First trace of activity : ca. 3rd century C.E
Last trace of activity : today
Recorded names : مراغه‎, ماراغا, Marāgha, Marāġe

Description : Maragheh (Persian: مراغه‎, Azerbaijani: ماراغا), also Romanized as Marāgheh; also known as Marāgha), is an ancient city and capital of Maragheh County, East Azerbaijan Province, Iran. Maragheh is on the bank of the river Sufi Chay. The population consists mostly of Iranian Azerbaijanis who speak the Azerbaijani language. It is 130 kilometres (81 mi) from Tabriz, the largest city in northwestern Iran. Maragheh is an ancient city encompassed by a high wall ruined in many places, and has four gates. Two stone bridges in good condition are said to have been constructed during the reign of Hulagu Khan (1256–1265), who made Maragheh the capital of the Ilkhanate. Shortly thereafter it became the seat of the Church of the East Patriarch Mar Yaballaha III. One of the famous burial towers, the Gonbad-e-Kabud (Blue Tower, 1197), is decorated with decorative patterns resembling Penrose tiles. The 14th century book Al-Vaghfiya Al-Rashidiya (Rashid's Deeds of Endowment) describes many of the estates in the town, and several of the quanat of the time. The local stone known throughout Iran as Marageh marble, is a travertine obtained at the village of Dashkasan near Azarshahr about 50 km north-west from Maragheh. It is deposited from water, which bubbles up from a number of springs in the form of horizontal layers, which at first are thin crusts and can easily be broken, but gradually solidify and harden into blocks with a thickness of about 20 cm. It is a singularly beautiful substance, being of pink, greenish, or milk-white color, streaked with reddish copper-colored veins. It is exported and sold worldwide under such names as Azarshar Red or Yellow. Late Miocene strata near Maragheh have produced rich harvests of vertebrate fossils for European and North American museums. A multi-national team reopened the fossil site in 2008. Hamdollah Mostowfi of the 13th century mentions the language of Maragheh as "Pahlavi Mughayr" (modified Pahlavi, Pahlavi being the name for Middle Persian). The 17th century Ottoman Turkish traveler Evliya Çelebi who traveled to Safavid Iran also states:“The majority of the women in Maragheh converse in Pahlavi”. According to the Encyclopedia of Islam: "At the present day, the inhabitants speak Adhar Turkish, but in the 14th century they still spoke “arabicized Pahlawi” (Nuzhat al-Qolub: Pahlawi Mu’arrab) which means an Iranian dialect of the north western group."

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