Chashma-i Ayub Mausoleum (Museum of Water Supply)
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Chashma-i Ayub Mausoleum, which features a Harezm-style conical dome, which is uncommon in Bukhara, appeared in the 12th century beside the spring that is associated with the biblical Prophet Job. Chashma-i Ayub Mausoleum is located near the Samani Mausoleum, in the middle of a small, ancient cemetery by the ruins of ancient walls of Bukhara. The current building was constructed during the reign of Tamerlane and features a Harezm-style conical dome, which is uncommon in Bukhara. According to the legend, in ancient times Prophet Job came to Bukhara as a wanderer, when the country was tired of drought, struck the ground with his staff in this very place, and a well with clean and healing water appeared.
The first construction of Chashma-i Ayub Mausoleum is dated 1208-1209 .A.D. or the 605th year of the Muslim Calendar. Since then the mausoleum has been repeatedly reconstructed. New premises covered with smaller domes were added to the existing ones, and today’s Chashma-i Ayub Mausoleum has the form of an elongated prism and consists of many chambers of various sizes and designs. They are shadowy, with only dim light coming from under the domes, which creates the special aura of seclusion. The central part of the mausoleum, which was built in 1380 by order of Amir Temur (Tamerlane), remained intact to the present day. During his reign, Amir Temur brought the best architects and artists to Movarounnahr (which is now Uzbekistan) from the countries he conquered. From Khorezm he repatriated masters to Bukhara and they built over the well the original structure with a characteristic Khorezm conical double cupola on a high cylinder. The construction suffered some losses, but the preserved parts represent a combination of a harmonious entrance portal, and adjoining it are the remains of the western curtain wall.
What to See
The present day mausoleum stands in fortress-like austerity, almost devoid of decoration, a few hundred meters from the Ismael Samani Mausoleum. It hosts Museum of Water Supply, which displays collections from the time of the Bukhara emirate, when professional water carriers sold inflatable skins of worm riddled water in the bazaars, to the ecologically overambitious schemes of the Soviet era, such as the Amu-Bukhara and Samarkand-Bukhara Canals.