Description of Panjshir valley by Ibn Battuta

Ibn Battuta (1304-1369) informs us that there used to be a fine and populous city on the bank of river Panjshir in the Panjshir valley. It was destroyed by Genghis Khan of the Mongols, and it was still in ruins and uninhabited when Ibn Batutta was writing.

Panjshir was known as Panjhir پنجهیر in medieval times. Or Banjhir in Arabic (since there is no “پ” in that language). According to Ibn Batutta, Panj-hir means five mountains.

Ibn Battuta also mentions the presence of a mausoleum of a saint by name of Shaikh Said al-Makki in that ruined city. That saint was greatly venerated by Panjshiris. In the mountains of Panjshir were found rubies which were called “Balkhash” (بلخش) by the people.

History of Panjshir


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