|• Total||91 km2 (35 sq mi)|
|Elevation||476 m (1,562 ft)|
|• Seongnam||South Korea|
Namangan (Uzbek: Namangan / Наманган; Russian: Наманган) is the second-largest city in Uzbekistan (2011 pop. 449,200). It is the capital of Namangan Province, in the northern edge of Fergana Valley of north-eastern Uzbekistan. The city is served by Namangan Airport.
The city takes its name from the local salt mines (in Persian: نمککان namak kan).Namangan, like other cities in the Fergana valley, was originally populated by the Sogdian people, later becoming a Persian/Tajik speaking city. The influx of the Turkic people into the region starting in late medieval times led to gradual turkification of the region and the city. However, until the middle of the 19th century, Namangan still had a Tajik majority. Today, the city is an Uzbek/Turkic speaking city, albeit with a large Persian speaking Tajik minority.
Politically, Namangan became a part of the Uyghur Empire of the Karakhanid State and was known to have been a settlement in the 15th century. On the eve of the Russian invasion in 1867, the town was a part of the Khanate of Kokand since the middle of the 18th century. After annexation by the Russians in 1867, cotton production and food processing became the dominant economic activity and it did in many places in the country. Namangan was hit by a destructive earthquake in 1926 which killed 34 people, injured 72, and destroyed 4,850 houses.
Since Uzbekistan's independence in 1991, Namangan has gained a reputation for Islamic revivalism, with many mosques and schools funded by charity organizations from Middle Eastern countries, including the conservative Wahhabi sect from Saudi Arabia. This has also translated into political opposition against the secular government of Uzbekistan. Some women have discarded traditional colorful scarves for large white veils or even the black paranja.
By road Namangan is 290 kilometres (180 mi) east of Tashkent, about 65 kilometres (40 mi) west of Andijan, and about 40 kilometres (25 mi) east of Chust. It is located 1561 feet (476 meters) above sea level. The Qoradaryo and Naryn Rivers join together to form the Syr Darya just outside the southern edge of the city.
There are three higher education institutions in Namangan city - Namangan State University, Namangan Engineering Pedagogical Institute, and Namangan Engineering Technological Institute. Namangan State University is the largest, oldest and highest ranked of the three within the country.
The Mullo Kyrgyz Madrasseh was built in 1910 by a local cotton magnate. The Mosque of Ota Valikhan Tur, built in 1915, is one of the largest in Central Asia, now home to local branch of the Wahabi sect. The Namangan Natural History Museum houses local archaeological finds. The Hadja Amin Kabri Architectural Complex has an ornate terra-cotta facade dating from the 18th to 19th century. About 25 kilometres (16 mi) west of Namangan are the Akhsykent ruins, a 1st century settlement on the Syr-Darya River. Formerly capital of Fergana Valley, it was destroyed by the Mongols, rebuilt by the Timurids and abandoned in 1620 after an earthquake.
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