Magtymguly (city)

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Garrygala (circa 1924-2004)
Kara Kala (Кара Кала)
Karakalinsk (Каракалинск)
Alexandrov (1890?-circa 1924)
Ganlygala (Middle Ages-1890?)
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Location in Turkmenistan
Coordinates: 38°26′N56°18′E / 38.433°N 56.300°E / 38.433; 56.300 Coordinates: 38°26′N56°18′E / 38.433°N 56.300°E / 38.433; 56.300
Country Flag of Turkmenistan.svg  Turkmenistan
Province Balkan Province
 (1989 census) [1]

Magtymguly (formerly Garrygala, Kara-Kala, Russian : Кара-Кала) is a city (Turkmen: şäher) in far south-western Turkmenistan in Balkan Province. It lies west of Aydere and is the administrative capital of Magtymguly District. In 1972 it had a population of 5700 inhabitants, rising to 8412 in 1989. [2] It is located in the foothills of the Kopet Dag mountain range, and it lies on the Sumbar River, a tributary of the Atrek River.

The ruins of a vast fortress on the river bank are located in Magtymguly. The fortress was used as a base by the Armenian Kings Tigranes I to Tigranes VI. A small museum devoted to the poet Magtymguly Pyragy is located in Magtymguly.


Atanyyazow explains that Turkmen originally called the fortress, which he asserts was built here by Shah of Persia Mohammad, "Ganlygala" ("bloody fortress", from gan "blood" and gala "fortress") because of the amount of blood shed in fighting over it. At the end of the 19th century, under Russian influence the settlement was called Aleksandrov, but in the Soviet period it was renamed Garrygala in Turkmen (Russian : Кара Кала). [3] Following Turkmenistan's independence, on 4 June 2004, by Presidential Decree No. 4066, Garrygala city and district were renamed in honor of Magtymguly Pyragy. [4]

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  1. Population census 1989 Archived 2012-02-04 at WebCite , Demoscope Weekly, No. 359-360, 1-18 January 2009 (search for Туркменская ССР) (in Russian)
  2. "Turkmenistan Presidential Decree No. 4066 of 4 June 2004" (PDF) (in Turkmen). 4 June 2004.
  3. Atanyýazow, Soltanşa (1980). Түркменистаның Географик Атларының Дүшүндиришли Сөзлүги [Explanatory Dictionary of Geographic Names in Turkmenistan]. Ashgabat: Ылым. p. 98.
  4. "TÜRKMENISTANYŇ PREZIDENTINIŇ PERMANY No. PP-4066 Balkan welaýatynyň Garrygala etrabynyň adyny üýtgetmek hakynda" (PDF). Parliament of Turkmenistan. 4 June 2004.