Tashkend (anc. Shash), a city of Turkistan, formerly included within the boundaries of Khokan, but now under Russian rule, situated in lat. 43° N., Ion. 68° 40' E., near the junction of two small affluents of the Sir Darya or Jaxartes, 150 m. N. W. of the city of Khokan; pop. estimated at 80,000, mostly Mussulmans.
It stands in a fertile plain covered with numerous gardens, amid what is described as literally a forest of fruit trees, is enclosed by a high wall of unburned bricks 16 m. in circuit, and is entered by 12 gates. A great part of the town consists of houses surrounded by gardens and vineyards, the walls of which are so close together that only narrow lanes are left between. The houses are principally built of mud, and are about 11,000 in number. The former residence of the khan consists of a castle defended by walls and ditches; and there are more than 300 mosques, 15 bazaars, and numerous colleges and old temples. The principal manufactures are silk and cotton goods, iron, and gunpowder. Commercially, Tashkent is perhaps the most important city in Russian Turkistan. The chief lines of communication from northern Asia concentrate there, and by means of caravans an extensive trade is carried on with all the neighboring countries, including British India. The attempt of the. Russian government, however, to establish a great fair at Tashkend, similar to that held at Nizhni Novgorod, has proved a failure. - Tashkend has been celebrated in central Asia from the earliest times for its wealth and as a commercial emporium.
It was assaulted and captured by a Russian force under Gen. Tcherniayeff, in the war with Khokan, in June, 1865, and now with the surrounding territory constitutes a separate administrative district of Russian Turkistan.