Mausoleum of Khoja Daniyar

On the suburb of Afrosiab in the direction of the Ulugbek Observatory, there is another shrine. It is honoured by three world religions - Christianity, Judaism and Islam. Muslims call it as the Mausoleum of Khoja Doniyor, while Christians and Jews call it as Mausoleum of Saint Daniel. However, there are also other tombs of Prophet Daniel – in Israel, Iraq, Iran and Turkey.

Khoja Daniyar is considered as the patron of Samarkand. People of Samarkand say that he brings prosperity to them. Pilgrims ask health and success from him. But others ask that their wishes come true.

History and legends

During campaign to Iran in the 14-15th centuries, Amir Temur could not conquer Susa. The spirit of the Old Testament prophet Daniel defended the small town. Powerful army of Amir Temur lifted the siege with heavy losses. Amir Temur visited the grave of the saint and immediately sent his remains to Samarkand.

According to the legend, the remains of the saint are growing and his sarcophagus is growing as well. That’s why the length of the tomb is 10 meters.

Another attraction is the holy spring, which is located at the foot of the hill with the mausoleum. Its water has healing and miraculous properties. In 1996, the Patriarch of All Russia Aleksiy II poured water to withered almond tree, which was planned in the courtyard of the tomb. To the amazement of Samarkand citizens, it revived and bloomed.


Mausoleum of Khoja Doniyor was reconstructed in 1900. The mausoleum has no external and internal decorations in distinction to other famous burial-vaults. The building was constructed with usual gray bricks with reddish veins. There are also five domes on flat roof, which one can hardly notice. Everything is also modest and simple inside as well. There are several arches and domes, which still manage to convey the identity of Oriental architecture.

People should take off their shoes before entering to the mausoleum. Tomb almost fully occupies the mausoleum and there is sarcophagus. The sarcophagus is covered with dark green fabric with gold prayer rugs. There are stone testimonies at the head side with texts in Arabic and Persian.

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