- Bakhchisaray
- Khan Palace

- Scheme of Palace


Palace Square

Khan Mosque

Sarı Güzel Bath

Demir Qapı Portal

Divan Hall

Summer Arbour

Smaller Mosque


"Fountain of Tears"
Living Rooms
Falcon Tower
Cemetery of Khans
Durbe of Dilara
- Giray dynasty
- List by names
- List by reigns
- The Preserve
- Contacts
- Work time


Khan Palace in Bakhchisaray

the museum website


Golden Fountain

Before making a pray, Muslims always perform abdez or ritual ablution. A fountain by the entrance into the Smaller Khan Mosque was built for this purpose. Having intention for prayer, Crimean Khans went to the Golden Fountain, performed ablution and then entered the sacred building.

The fountain made of white marble is decorated with carved gilt ornament of flowers, leaves, fruits, grapevines. Such a luxurious ornamental vegetation is called to represent gardens of Paradise and a large rosette in the centre of the construction symbolises eternal life. The Fountain bears two Arabic inscriptions. The upper one informs that this fountain was built in 1733 by Qaplan I Giray. The lower inscription is a quotation from the Quran: 

"And the Lord gave them a pure drink" (76:21).

Natural springs possessed an important place in cultural traditions of the Crimean Tatars. Their significance was explained not only by practical reasons and a draughty climate of Crimea, but also by that sacral meaning which was inherent to the conceptions of Water and Source. Water is a prototype of the rivers flowing through Paradise; water symbolizes life itself. The spring is an eye of the Earth (the Crimean Tatar word çeşme “water spring” derives from a Persian word which means “the eye”).

To take care of a natural spring and to build a fountain there was considered as a good doing pleasant to God. That is why many noble and rich Crimeans built fountains at their own expenses for fellow citizens. The Crimean khans followed this tradition and built fountains for the inhabitants of the capital and of other Crimean cities. Fountains in Crimea were often called following the name of person who built them: “Fountain of Mehmed Giray han”, “Fountain of İslam Giray khan”, “Fountain of Sefer Ğazı ağa”, “Fountain of Abu Ahmed ağa” etc. These names were carved on stone plates (sometimes accompanied with a short verse) for people who came to take water could pray for the one who built the fountain.

A public fountain on a street of Bakhchisaray

The valley of the Çuruq Su river, which Bakhchisaray located in, was noticeable for abundance of natural springs sheding water down by hill slopes. Builders of the Crimean capital directed these flows into underground ceramic pipes and created in due course a dense and complex water supplying network, which delivered sufficient amounts of fresh water to Bakhchisaray (which was populated with about 7000 people) and its fountains (there were 120 street fountains in the town).

© B.H.C.S.P. 2004
Texts © Oleksa Haiworonski, 2004
Я ехал по Уральским горам и вдруг увидел природа ландшафты картинки.