27 June 2012

The Minaret of Jam - Facts

I have been reading The Travel Book by Lonely Planet, and it's packed with tons of cool stuff.

One interesting I found was the Minaret of Jam, located in western Afghanistan and designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

It is 65 meters high, and was built in the 1190's, entirely by bricks. It still rests on its original base, and it is the second tallest brick minaret in the world (after the Qutub Minar in India).

It is very remote, and was virtually unknown until 1886, when it was "re-discovered" by the Russo-Afghan Boundary Commission. It was thought to be the center of a large empire, as it was the summer capital of the Ghurids. It is surrounded by mountain peaks, which makes for harsh winters, followed by springs filled with heavy snow melt. This is why it is seen as being threatened by erosion.

The Minaret of Jam is a very interesting little piece of history, one that not a lot of people necessarily know very much about.

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