Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Tajikistan | More On Rudaki

Still trying to straighten out where 10th century Persian Poet Rudaki was born and buried. As noted earlier, a source in Samarkand indicated that he may have been born near the Town of Urgut in Uzbekistan, very close to the Tajikistan border. Most written sources indicate, however, that he was born and buried in the village of Panjrud (also spelled Panj Rud, Panjrudak, Panj Rudak, etc.) in Tajikistan. Traveler Nicholas Jubber was apparently in Panj Rud and in his book Drinking Arak Off An Ayatollah’s Beard says that Rudaki is buried there, but says nothing about where he was born. This Panj Rud is about twenty-six miles east-southeast of Panjkend, up the valley of a tributary of the Zerafshan River.
Map showing location of Panj Rud (click on image for enlargement)
This Site shows photos of what is apparently Panj Rud, although unfortunately there are no captions (photos below from the website).
 Mountains looming above what is apparently the village of Panj Rud
 Presumably the Mausoleum of Rudaki in Panj Rud
 Presumably a statue of Rudaki in Panj Rud
A billboard in Panj Rud with what is presumably an example of Rudaki’s poetry. It reads “There is no happiness in this world greater than a glimpse of a friend’s face”. Thanks to Abbas Daiyar for the translation.)
 There is also a monument and statue to Rudaki in Dushanbe, the capital of Tajikistan. 
I have never been in Tajikistan, but the last time I was in Samarkand I was told that tourist agencies  there could get a one-day Tajikistan visa for people who want to visit the famous ruins of Panjakend, thirty-seven miles east of Samarkand and eleven miles within Tajikistan. They also arrange for you to get back into Uzbekistan at the end of the day if you have only a single-entry Uzbek visa. Presumably one could also visit Panj Rud in one day also. I might just try this the next time I am in Samarkand


  1. You should've saved this one so you could sell it to Facebook. Oh, well, wisdom in hindsight is, as they say, a dime a dozen.

    "“There is no happiness in this world greater than a glimpse of a friend’s face”"

    But from recent experience, I know that it's dead on.

  2. According to some accounts Rudaki was blind, which makes the quote particularly poignant.

  3. That Mausoleum of Rudaki in Panj Rud is gorgeous! Wow. The way that it's dome mimics the sky....

    -a mes

  4. I am so embarrassed that I mistook you for an Assyrian! I have done a little research on Your Namesake and now realize who you really are. Love that headdress!

  5. Thanks, Don! Actually, my mother made me wear an exact replica (pure gold leaves and all) of that famous headdress at my wedding, since I'd forgotten to get a veil (due to the pressures of dissertation writing and defense). She's had it for many years, and it ended up being my "something borrowed."

    Anyway, I suppose that, ethnically/genetically speaking, "Arab" Iraqis probably have a healthy contribution of Sumerian and various Semitic tribes (Akkadians, Babylonians, Assyrians, and Arabs) in their blood. So, it's OK - you can call me anything. Well, not *anything* - you know what I mean. : )

    -a mes