Aghsu

There is a place in the historical Shirvan area at a distance of 37 km from Shamakhy. When it was newly founded, it was called Yeni Shamakhy. Then it was renamed Agsu. Although at first sight there is nothing interesting here, the territory has a very ancient history. In fact, there are many places that make the district attractive in terms of tourism. Unfortunately, many are unaware of them. It is worth discovering Agsu.

Note

The distance between Baku and Agsu is 160 km. It forms the Shrivan Mountain Ridge from Goychay stretching as far as Pirsaatchay. Its mountainous part is 700-2,000 meters above sea level. Agsu District, which is located on the southern slopes of the Greater Caucasus Mountains, at the end of the Shirvan plain and at the foothills of the Hinqar Ridge, has a semi-desert, arid, shrubby, mountainous and forest landscape. It has dry winters and a moderate hot, semi-desert and arid climate. It was established as a district in 1943, and has been called a city since 1967.

Agsu roundabouts

The road to Agsu goes through a famous “pass”. The highest peak of this pass is 900 meters high, and it goes through the border between Shamakhy and Agsu districts, the Langabiz Ridge, forests and shrubs and stretches for 14 km. When you look around on a clear day, the beautiful view of the Shirvan valley astonishes you. Mountain restaurants located along the pass are the most favorable holiday destination for anyone who passes through this territory. Most of the customers who come here especially in summer pass through the district and are unaware that there is an even more extreme second “pass” here.

The second Agsu pass begins from the village of Muganli. The road which climbs the mountain in a zigzag reaches Ismayilli, or to be more precise, the entrance to the village of Basqal and joins the Ismayilli-Balakan highway. The highest point of this pass is about 1,500-1,600 meters high. On the mountain paths which barely resemble a road, you can only travel in big vehicles with powerful engines. The villages located on top could be regarded as part of paradise. Although they are close to the center, they are too far from the civilization. At the end of a long and difficult road that quietly stretches against the background of a perfect view after the village of Karcivan, you can gradually see more and more people. This area is perfect for a picnic and is often visited by people.

Agsu River

The district is located on both banks of the Agsu River and has the same name. Since the river begins in snowy mountains, its water is transparent and clean. It is believed that the river derives its name from the fact that it brings giant rocks from the mountains, which settle down on its bottom and create a white deposit. Two large rivers Girdman and Agsuchay, as well as their tributaries Agdarchay and Nazirchay flow through the territory of the district. The Lake Cavansir and the Yuxari Shirvan canal are also situated here.

Yeni Shamakhy – Ruined City

When modern Agsu was newly founded, it was called Yeni Shamakhy, which was founded at a distance of 4 km from its current location. After Nadir Shah razed Shamakhy to the ground in 1734, he ordered the surviving residents of the city to move here. Historical sources describe this event in the following way:
“Nadir Shah founded a new city called Agsu in a geographically favorable place at a distance of 4 agacliqs (37 km) from the city of Shamakhy in May 1735. Fences were built around the city in a short period of time. The ancient population of the city was moved here and Agsu became a center for Shirvan rulers.”
The remains of that ancient city are located 4-5 km south of Agsu. This city, which lived a bustling life in the 16th century, is now called “Ruined City”. The archaeological monument “Ruined City”, which is located on the territory of the village of Urguc, covers an area of 34 hectares.

History

Although Agsu, which was one of the centers of resistance to Iranian rule in Shirvan, was totally devastated by Nadir Shah’s troops in 1734, after his death in 1747, most of the population returned to Shamakhy again. During Aga Mohammad Shah Qajar’s military campaign in Azerbaijan in 1796, Iranian troops destroyed Agsu again. European travelers who visited Azerbaijan at the time recorded in their logs:

“Most of the houses in Yeni Shamakhy were small and unsafe. Most of the dwelling houses are reminiscent of huts built from mud. It is a small town. Its population is about 4,000-5,000.”

In 1265, Nogay-Berke Khan’s troops invaded Shirvan and reached Agsu. Historical sources of that time describe Agsu as a developed, bustling and strategic city. But since it had an entrance gate, Agsu was repeatedly razed to the ground during invasions of the country. The rule of Tamerlane, Ottomans, Safavids and Nadir Shah, as well as internal feudal clashes caused great damage to the city. Bakikhanov says in his book “Gulistani-Iram” that Agsu, which suffered severely from the plague in the Transcaucasia in 1762, also faced a serious disaster during the epidemic of plague in Shirvan in 1798.

Place-name

The place-name Agsu is very common. The word “su”, which is used in the names of cities, villages and other place-names in Azerbaijan, is related to the name of the Turkic tribe SU. It is not clear whether the Su tribes remained in Agsu. According to another theory, Ag means clean drinking water. Some people link the place-name to Turkic Sak tribes and say that this place used to be called Agsak before.


Historical and architectural monuments

An antique cemetery, temple and settlement, the Cavansir settlement which belongs to the early Middle Ages and is located 3 km from the center, the Pir Baxtiyar sepulcher, the Bilal Afandi Mosque in the village of Padar (1864), the While Dome (1897) and the Red Dome (1909) in the village of Qaraqoyunlu, the archaeological monument and barrow Khan Yurdu in the village of Arabusagi and dozens of other historical-religious monuments are scattered in various villages of the district.

Sheikh Dursun (12th century)

It is located at a cemetery at the entry to the district 3 km from the center. It was built in 1382. It is shaped like an eight-pointed prism and is covered with a cone-shaped arch. It has only one door. A stone inscription on its wall indicates the date when it was built. There is an interesting story about this sepulcher.

Story

Bahram Shah, who did not have children for a long time, finally has a daughter. She is named Dursun. Dursun grows up and becomes a beautiful girl and falls in love with Cavansir Shah’s son Dasdamir. Although Rahim aga, the son of Qiyas bay, an old vizier of Cavansir Shah, also falls in love with the girl, he did not have much a chance before the shah’s son. For this reason, the father and the son resort to a trick and set the two rulers against each other. They even set the father against his son. The shah orders the execution of his treacherous son. However, the executioner helps Dasdamir to escape. Cavansir Shah who regrets his actions after the war decides to move out of here together with his family. On hearing about Dasdamir’s death, Dursun puts on a soldier’s clothes and an iron helmet and starts to fight together with the army of his beloved. While defending the shah in a battle, she is severely wounded and falls from the horse. She drops her iron helmet on the ground. Dasdamir is surprised that this brave man is a girl and asks her who she is. The girl tells him about everything. Regretting his decision, the ruler asks her about his son’s grave. At this moment, the executioner says that he is not dead and tells him where he is. Rejoicing at the fact that his son is alive, the shah orders that Dursun be buried in gardens located high up in the mountains. Dasdamir builds a dome on her grave. Since then, it has turned into a temple for those who believe in eternal love.

Mount Xazina

It is an archeological monument on the territory of the village of Padar. It is surrounded by rivers and plains. Its entrance is shaped like a crown. It is built from rock slabs. There is a tunnel that leads into the mountain. It is impossible to get in as the entrance is closed. No archeological work has been carried out on this territory yet. It is alleged that there used to be treasures inside. And there was a golden rooster that crowed when strangers approached this place.

Dilman village

Dilman is one of Agsu’s 16 mountain villages located on the border with Agsu and is scattered on the southern slopes of the Greater Caucasus Mountains. Beginning from here, there is more vegetation and greater heights here. The forests surrounding these villages are regarded as picnic paradise. There are several waterfalls inside the forest. The closest Dilman waterfall can be reached within 1.5-2 hours. There is no road here. You can go on horseback in 30-45 minutes. It is worth walking in the open air. From afar, this waterfall resembles milk flowing on a wall. It has created a natural pond in the place where it falls. In order to get into the pond, it is necessary to tread on slippery stones covered with water plants. There are several springs along the road. Although the only famous one is called the Georgian spring, no-one knows why it is called that.

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