TABRIZ

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Bazaar


Strolling in the center of Tabriz, particularly Motahari Avenue, one is reminded very forcibly that it is a commercial city: one cannot miss its very large and 15th-century covered bazaar occupying an area of one square kilometer, It is already much diminished 'in its variety of goods, but still a great place for getting hopelessly lost amid its dusty architectural splendors. Its architectural style, numerous caravansaries, mosques, and schools have added further beauty and glory to this complex. Exact information othe history and origin of the bazaar is not available; however, historical buildings such as the Jam'e Mosque, Talebieh School, and Sadeqieh School indicate that the complex is oneof the oldest structures of the city. The present structure of bazaar dates back to the closing years of the land dynasty ( 1750- 1779 AD). While seeing the real bazaar, the visitor will understand with the amusement of recognition the shocked tone of the Moor, that indefatigable traveler Ibn Battuta, who visited Tabriz in 1334:

"I passed through the jewelers' bazaar, and my eyes were dazzled by the varieties of precious stones that 1 beheld. They were displayed by beautiji~1 slaves wearing rich garments with ai waist-sash of silk, who stood in front of the merchants, exhibiting the jewels to the Turks' wives, who bought them in large quantities to outdo each other. A riot broke out among them -may Allah preserve us from such a din! We went on to the ambergris market, and witnessed the same rowdiness, if anything even worse. "
The complex has high brick domes and arches. It includes several small bazaars, or bazaarches, each for a specific guild and craft. Carpet making is the main trade, but Tabriz is also renowned for its silverware and jewelry. The spice bazaar, one of the most pungent and impressive in Iran, is an excellent place for picking up henna. Look out also for the traditional Azari hats resembling those worn by the gypsies of Western Europe.

 
 
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