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date: 13 November 2019

Chach [Sogdian-Pers. Chach, Chachstan; Arab. Shāsh; Chin. Shi, Chzheshi]locked

  • Yu. F. Buryakov

Extract

[Sogdian-Pers. Chach, Chachstan; Arab. Shāsh; Chin. Shi, Chzheshi]

Ancient state centred on the Tashkent Oasis on the north bank of the Syr River in Uzbekistan. From medieval times its chief city has been known increasingly as Tashkent. Although the small domain of Chach was assimilated by a semi-nomadic state in the first centuries bc, the name Chach is first attested in the Sasanian inscription at Naqsh-i Rustam (ad 262) near Persepolis and subsequently found at Dunhuang (4th century), Afrasiab (Old Samarkand; 7th century) and in Chinese and Arabic sources. From the 3rd to the 7th century Chach was a small but powerful kingdom of farmers and herders linked to the nomads of the steppe. Agriculture was made possible by an advanced irrigation system comprising more than 50 canals. Gold, silver, copper and turquoise were mined in the mountain and steppe regions, and 13 mountain communities dating from antiquity have been discovered as well as 30 from the medieval period. In the northern regions the economy developed along the great Silk Route....

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E. Yar Shater, ed.: Encyclopedia Iranica (London, 1986)