Ayaz-Kala – remains of fortified fortifications of the Kushan culture period (III-II centuries BC), 200 km from the Aral Sea, on the right bank of the Amu Darya, in the territory of modern Karakalpakstan. For the first time, they were investigated in 1939-1940 by the Khorezm archaeological expedition led by SP Tolstov). Among the large group of settlements, three stand out. The first of them is the strengthening of Ayaz-Kala-3, with minarets and labyrinths, fenced with a powerful wall. Inside the fortress there are the remains of a spacious palace. In the north-west is the fortification Ayaz-Kala-2, built in the Kushan era and completed in the V-VII centuries. N. E. The Ayaz-Kala-1 fortification is located on the Ayaz-Kala hill, not far from Lake Ayazkol, well preserved. It was established that Ayaz-Kala-1 was a military fortification that protected part of the borders of the Kushan kingdom. During the excavations found iron daggers, knives, spearheads and arrows, bronze and gold products.
Toprak-kala is an ancient settlement with an area of more than 120 hectares, it is believed that Toprak-kala was an ancient Khorezmian capital in the era of antiquity.
Toprak-kala was the capital of Khorezm under the rule of the Afrigid dynasty.
During the excavations, the remains of the palace with 150 rooms and rooms, richly decorated with monumental paintings and sculptures, were found. The height of the palace reached 40 meters. The entire archaeological complex of Toprak-kala included several palaces, as well as the city – residential buildings.
The core of the Toprak-kala palace was the Throne Room, where solemn ceremonies took place. The walls of the palace were festively decorated, painted. The main sanctuary was a hall of dancing masks, the Anahita temple, on the walls of which there were 16 bas-relief panels depicting dancing women and men. The warrior hall is interesting, with images of mutton horns, numerous figures of kings on the mountain tops were put up, where a fire was lit in the New Year. There was also the Reindeer Hall, whose walls were adorned with a beautiful painting depicting deer and griffins. There was also a hall of kings, a hall of victories, etc.
During the excavations a palace archive of the Khorezm rulers was found.
At the beginning of the IV. The walls of the city were rebuilt, the palace turned into a citadel. By the fifth century, Toprak-kala became a place for some time where ordinary people settled, and then it was abandoned.
The archaeological monument of Toprak-kala is nominated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Kyzyl-Kala – a unique architectural monument of Ancient Khorezm
The fortress of Kyzyl-Kala is located in the territory of Ancient Khorezm (modern Karakalpakstan) and is located in close proximity to the ancient site of Toprak-kala. According to some reports, Kyzyl-Kala was part of the fortification system of Toprak-Kala, and served as an additional fortification.
Kyzyl-Kala is a monument of the last stage of the history of the architecture of ancient Khorezm and can be considered as a prototype of the Afrigidian time corrugated by massive columns.
Kyzyl-Kala is a unique architectural monument of the Ancient Khorezm of the Kushan-Afrigid period of ancient history. She stands in the middle of the plain, like a guard guarding the pearl of Ancient Khorezm – the fortress of Toprak-Kala. There is a legend that Toprak-Kalu and Kyzyl-Kalu connect an ancient underground passage. This is quite possible, since Kyzyl-Kala performed protective functions. It lasted until the invasion of Genghis Khan, entering the system of defensive structures of the state of Khorezmshah.