Samarkand is one of the oldest inhabited cities in the world, prospering from its location on the trade route between China and the Mediterranean (Silk Road). At times Samarkand has been one of the greatest cities of Central Asia. Founded circa 700 BC by the Persians it was already the capital of the Sogdian satrapy under the Achaemenid dynasty of Persia when Alexander the Great conquered it in 329 BC (see Afrasiab, Sogdiana). Samarkand has been one of the main centres of Persian civilization from its early days.
Samarkand Registan Place - Tilya-Kori-Madrasa on Flickriver