Project description

The project aims at a long-durée landscape history of the Oasis of Bukhara in present-day Uzbekistan. It is part of a cooperation of the Institute of Iranian Studies with the Mission Archéologique Franco-Ouzbèke dans l'Oasis de Boukhara of the Musée du Louvre (Principal investigator Dr. Rocco Rante).

The groundwork is laid by a study of the historical geography of the Oasis. Major progress in comparison to earlier research is made through the systematic study of historical documents (such as endowment deeds) and the integration of textual and archaeological evidence. The identification and localization of toponyms, hydrogaphy and administrative structures in antique, medieval, early modern and modern texts, inscriptions and documents is the first step towards establishing a reliable framework to tackle questions such as the dynamics of population, settlement, administration and communication, the management of economic resources, interactions between (sub-)urban and rural communities, sacred landscapes, and social dymanics in the longue durée.