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Ancient Sarazm

The ancient Sarazm settlement was discovered in autumn 1976 by the archaeologist Abdullojon Isakov.  The monument is located 15km west of Panjikent and 45km east of Samarkand.  The original area of the uncovered settlement spread over an area of 130 hectares.  (

A city existed there more than five thousand years ago and had its highest level of development near the start of the bronze age.  According to radio-carbon dating, the civilization existed in four separate periods: 3,500-3,200 B.C; 3,200-2,900 B.C.; 2,900-2,700 B.C.; and 2,700-2,000 B.C.(

The area had an agricultural economy centred around farming (irrigated and non-irrigated) cattle-breeding and craftwork.  At the end of the 4th millenium B.C. Sarazm became one of largest centres for metallurgy in Central Asia. This came from the riches found near the top of Zarafshon’s mountains such as gold, silver, copper, lead  and tin. Sarazm had a strong ecomony and a well-developed industrial culture by Central Asian standards of that period.(

By the middle of the 4th millemium B.C., the Sarazmians had improved their network of contacts, spreading their culture and trading with ancient settlements in Southern Turkmenistan, Iran, Baluchistan, India and Afghanistan.  Sarazm city is a unique monument which shows the variety of cultural relationships and contacts of early bronze age people.(

The results of the excavations in Sarazm have been presented in many international symposia – in Tajikistan (1979 & 1994), Washington (1981 & 1986), Paris (1985), Germany (1992), Iran (3004), Italy (2007) and Africa (2008).

According to the decision of the Republic of Tajikistan (#391, dated 21 September 2001) the 5,500-year old Sarazm site in Panjikent region was declared a historical-architectural treasure which forms part of the culture of the land, history and tradition of the Tajiks.(

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