The Turquoise Mountain (Persian: Fîrûzkûh فیروزکوه), or Firozkoh, is the lost capital of the Ghorid dynasty, in the Ghor Province of central Afghansitan. It was reputedly one of the greatest cities of its age, but was destroyed by Ögedei Khan, son of Genghis Khan, in the early 1220s and lost to history. It has been proposed that the magnificent Minaret of Jam, in Shahrak District, Ghor Province, is the only standing remains of the city. It is also believed that the ancient city was the home of a Jewish trading community, documented by inscriptions on tombstones found in the 1950s. The scholar Walter Fischel published an article reviewing the finds and establishing the connections of the Firozkoh community with other Jewish communities in early Medieval Afghanistan.
With the War in Afghanistan in 2001, the Taliban's hold on ancient places was broken, leaving the Ghor Province open to pillagers. Therefore, after the invasion, hundreds of diggers flocked to the Minaret to uncover lost gold. There remains very little of the present city when visited by Rory Stewart in 2002 (as much of it has been dug through), and many of the treasures that were in the city have now been sold in markets in Herat, Kabul and Teheran.
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