Cultural and historical flashback

The territory of Zhambyl oblast was inhabited since the Ancient Stone Age, the time of palaeolith. Beginning with i the most ancient Andron culture, various cultures were formed on its lands - the cultures of Sak, Usun, Kangly tribes and many others, replacing each other over time.
But historical and cultural foundation of the region was set up around the ancient town of Taraz and a part of the Great Silk Road running through its territory. The Great Silk Road appeared as the result of development and strengthening of political and economical ties between the largest countries of that period China, India, Byzantium, Persia. Ancient Russia and Western Europe. The Way crossed valleys of the rivers Shu, Talas, Assa. Trade, mild climate, fertile lands, rich pastures in the valley of the Talas River stimulated foundation and development of the ancient town of Talas in that area. The conventional year of its foundation is considered to be 586 A.D. According to the data of Chinese traveler Syuan-Tszhyan, in 630 A.D.the town was as large as contemporary towns of Samarkand and Shash (Tashkent), and was larger than Isfidzhab, Kasan and others. Arriving from various countries merchants used to stay here and sell their goods of every sort and kind. The town reached its fullest prosperity in the 11*- 12th centuries.
The town had underground network of tile pipelines, paved roads and sidewalks, sewage collector and municipal bath-house made of baked bricks in the form of a building with several domes.
In 1220, after the Mongols had conquered nearly all Central Asia and the territory of modern Kazakhstan, the residents of Taraz showed strong resistance to Mongol troops and the town was ruined to the ground. Under the Mongols the famous town lost its former importance and independence.
Both endless internal wars in Central Asia and discovery of a sea route from the West European countries to India hindered from using the Great Silk Road for trade with remote countries. Gradually the Great Silk Road ceased being used for trade and the towns along the way were devastated. The last mentioning of Taraz was made in 1513 in relation to a war campaign of Kazakh Khan Kasym. Finally, once famous medieval town in the early 15th century turned into an ordinary settlement and its territory became part of Kazakh Khanate. Materials of archeological diggings, drawings on the walls of mazaras, rock paintings testify to an important role of Kazakh nomads in renewal of life in the area and the cultural ties of ancient medieval Taraz with later culture of the Kazakh | people. That can be proved by the names of the artificial canals of the Talas River. These names corresponded to the names of nomadic tribes settled there. The memorials that were discovered during long-term archeological and historical architectural research represent a valuable fund of historical and cultural heritage of the region.
At the beginning of the 19th century a line of fortresses were built in the region for protection of the borders and caravan ways. One more fortress was built on the rains of the ancient Taraz and its favorable position facilitated development of a new town named Namangan-koche. In 1856 the town was given a new name Auliye-Ata in the honor of Karakhan. In its appearance and planning Auliye-Ata was very much like other Central Asian towns. In the centre of the town there was a bazaar with lots of shops and workshops of craftspeople. By that time the
population of the town was about 2,000 - 3,000 citizens.
Beginning with the first days after the victory of the Soviet Regime, the Bolsheviks of Auliye-Ata focused their efforts on elimination of the old colonial rales as well as on establishment and consolidation of the new local authorities. Consequently, on the 10th of January, 1936 the town was renamed into Mirzoyan (to commemorate
the name of Mirzoyan, the first Secretary of Kazakh Regional Party Committee).
On the 5lh of June, 1939 the town was given the name of the great Kazakh akyn Zhambyl Zhabayev, who was born in a foothill village of the same name.
The historical name "Taraz" was given back to the town on the 8th of January, 1997, when the President of the Republic of Kazakhstan N.A,Nazarbayev issued a historic Decree on renaming the City of Zhambyl to the City of Taraz,
Talas.. .Taraz.. .Auliye-Ata.. .Mirzoyan.. .Zhambyl.. .Taraz.
That is how the name of the ancient town of Kazakhstan was changing during the centuries. This mere fact testifies to its not simple destiny.

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