"Mir-i-Arab madrassah" Mir-i Arab Madrassah Tip by josephescu
Mir-i Arab Madrassah, Bukhara: 6 reviews and 15 photos
The Mir-i-Arab Madrassah has ranked as the most prestigious educational establishment in Bukhara for centuries, Today it stands at the forefront of Uzbekistan?s Islamic renaissance, a place where the past, the present and the future built into one and where, as Soviet century recedes to dim memory, the 16th century looms on the near horizon.
In 1535 the Khan of Bukhara sold his share of a consignment of 3000 Persian slaves for a profit that apparently lay heavy on his soul, for almost immediately afterwards he commissioned a madrassah to face his newly built Kalon mosque.
The life of the madrassah student has changed little over the years. Up to the end of the 19th century, students received a religious stipend form the state and could freely marry, as long as their wives did not cross the holy threshold of the college. Tuition was solely in Arabic, writing and mathematics were deeply frowned upon and any student caught in the heinous study of literature, history or poetry was expelled on the spot. As Bukharan isolation intensified, the madrassah slid into a bastion of religious obscurantism and dogmatic fanaticism.
At present 125 resident students study a 4 year course of Arabic, theology and the Koran at the madrassah and its spill-over classrooms in the Kalon Mosque, on the first step to become fully fledged imams. thus the madrassah is formally closed to tourists, who can only squint trough the entrance grill at the intense tilework of its inner court. The two storey fašade alone is reward enough though, with its fortress-like buttresses and twin domes which rise from lecture room and mosque like jade balloons. At night warm pricks of light diffuse from the alabaster grills of student cells.
The madrassah was closed from 1925 ? 1946, after which it was re-opened as part of Stalin?s post-war package of concessions to the region.
More Things to Do in Bukhara (17)
More Reviews (15)
josephescu's Related Pages
Have you been to Bukhara?Share Your Travels