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Notes on the Geography of Uzbekistan: Khiva: Tash Hauli

The Tash Hauli or Stone Palace was built between 1830 and 1848, and it replaced the Ark as the emir's residence.  It is reputed to have 163 rooms, but it's dominated by three courtyards: one for celebrations (the Ishrat Hauli), one for business (the Arz Hauli), and a third for the emir's personal use (the harem).

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Uzbekistan: Khiva: Tash Hauli picture 1

Locked gate on the back side.

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Detail of door.

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On the other side, an open door leads--can you believe it?--straight to the harem.

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Before we go in, a glimpse of the tiled crenelations.

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Through the door, we step into a courtyard.

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It's dominated by a set of iwans.

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This is the first, nearest the entrance.

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The detailing was by a famous craftsman, Abdalla Djinn--Abdulla the magician, so-called from his artistry.

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Column base. If you're not taken by this place yet, you should go home.

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Painted tiles.

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Another example.

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Column.

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Carving detail.

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Most of the rooms off the courtyard are closed, but this one is open and used as a gallery.

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Windows are deeply recessed and perforated to reduce the blindingly bright summer light.

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Another open door leads into a room decorated wherever possible.

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To get to the other sections of the Tash Hauli, we have to leave the harem and come around to the other entrances.

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The Arz Hauli, sometimes called the Law Court.

Uzbekistan: Khiva: Tash Hauli picture 19

Panning to the right.

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Every side is tiled. 

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Blue, blue, blue.

Uzbekistan: Khiva: Tash Hauli picture 22

Behind us, an iwan in blue, of course.

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Its column base.

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The column.

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The wall tiling.

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The opposing wall.

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This is the Ishrat Hauli, most easily distinguished by the celebratory yurt.  The tiles are in comparatively poor condition.

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The iwan is intact.

Uzbekistan: Khiva: Tash Hauli picture 29

Closer.

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Ceiling detail.

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Wall panel.


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