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By the 15th century, Samarkand and Bukhara were the most important cities along the Silk Route, hives of international trade and centres of art and science. By the 18th century, they had become forbidden cities to all but Muslims, and until quite recently were only rarely visited by travellers from the West. This book describes the turbulent history of the creation and conquests of Samarkand and Bukhara, their architecture, and the cities' commercial and cultural activity. The book's photographs illustrate the exotic architecture, much of which has been restored.
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