Shusha, Azerbaijan

Shusha is a city in Nagorno-Karabakh. It is founded by Panakh-Ali-Khan in 1751 as a fortress for protection of Karabakh Khanate. Initially the city was called Panakhabad after its founder and further was named Shusha after the nearby Shushikent settlement. The city became famous after its heroic fight against the invasion of Iranian armies in 1795. Until 1823 Shusha remained the capital of Karabakh Khanate. Since1923 it has been a regional center of Nagorno-Karabakh Autonomous region within the structure of Azerbaijan Soviet Socialist Republic.

During the Karabakh war (started in 1991) a lot of Shusha buildings were destroyed including, unfortunately, well-known historical architectural complexes.

Shusha is also called “a temple” and the cradle of Azerbaijani music, the cradle of music and poetry, “a music conservatory of the Caucasus”. It is there that the most ancient and original kind of Azerbaijani musical art called “mugamy” was born.