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Khazrati-Imam Complex

A walkway leads east from Kok-Gumbaz to a few melancholy remnants of a 3500-sq-metre mausoleum complex called Dorussiadat or Dorussaodat (Seat of Power and Might), which Timur finished in 1392 and which may have overshadowed even the Ak-Saray Palace.

Lacking an Ulug Beg connection, restoration is more leisurely on this once imposing dynastic mausoleum. The original complex, stretching 50 by 70 metres, was on a par with Tamerlane's greatest projects. It arose on the death of his eldest and favourite son Jehangir, killed in 1375, aged only 22, falling from his horse. When another son, Umar Sheikh, joined Jehangir in 1394 (Timur’s other sons are with him at Gur-e-Amir in Samarkand), Tamerlane even built himself a crypt. In 1404 Clavijo observed: "here daily by the special order of Timur the meat of twenty sheep is cooked and distributed in alms, this being done in memory of his father and of his son." Jehangir's mausoleum, crumbling yet impressive, is all that remains above ground. A tiled corner tower reveals the mausoleum as left pylon of a grand entrance facing the street, while the unusual conical dome, 27 metres high on a 16-sided drum, shows the hand of captured Khorezmian craftsmen.

To the side of the mausoleum, amidst the restored foundations of the building is Tamerlane's crypt, rediscovered in 1963 when a child playing football fell through the ground 35 metres behind the mausoleum. A green door leads down to a small, clammy room faced in white limestone and sandstone slabs. The marble sunduq (casket) waited in vain for Tamerlane, though the crypt later received two anonymous bodies. The room, plain except for Quranic quotations on the arches, is nearly filled by a single stone casket. On the casket are biographical inscriptions about Timur, from which it was inferred that this crypt was intended for him.

Entry to Jehangir's Mosque is through the adjacent Khazreti Imam Mosque, a 19th-century building with an attractive wooden avian (veranda). It marked by a wide silver-coloured dome. Though it is not explicitly named in honour of one particular man, the inscription across the doors perhaps links it to Abu Abdulla Muhammad ibn Nasr al Keshi, a local holy man in the 9th century, whose corpse legend says Tamerlane brought back from Baghdad.

Such imported sanctity gave local mullahs weight to prevent Abdullah Khan and other purgers of the Timurid legacy from destroying the whole complex. Old men in turbans, long maksi boots and flowing chupans come through the mosque's courtyard, shady with huge 650-year-old chinor trees, to drink at the well before prayer under the high wooden iwan. It's a pleasant spot with plenty of mature trees, a haven set back from the street.