Behind the Dorus Saodat complex in Shakhrisabz is a Crypt of Amir Temur, which experts believe the great army leader prepared for himself. The monument is a unique architectural construction. There is no comparable type of crypt in the entire Near and Middle East.
The crypt was found by archaeologists in the middle of the XX century. This underground structure has a cruciform floor plan and is covered in marble with carved inscriptions. The excavated foundations show that there was a mausoleum with a funeral mosque above the crypt.
On the walls and arches of the crypt are inscriptions that say, “Sovereignty belongs to Allah. Only Allah is eternal”, “Good is in the hands of Allah and he is powerful in all things”. The first acquaintance with the text of the inscriptions was made by Y. Later, in 1942, the monument became the subject of research by M.E. Masson and G.A. Pugachenkova. According to them, the crypt is intended for a single burial, which affects its austere solidity and extraordinary size.
In the centre of the vault is a marble sarcophagus covered with a thick monolithic slab more than 10 cm thick. At the corners and in the centre of the slab are steel rings designed for its installation. Inscriptions have been engraved on the slab, consisting of messages to Temur and referring to his life.
Amir Temur’s life was interrupted in 1405 during his campaign to China. Amir Temur was never buried in Shakhrisabz in the Crypt intended for him, but was buried in Samarkand in the mausoleum of Gur-Emir.