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Fergana (187 thousand people)
Fergana. In history and culture of Central Asia Fergana always played considerable role - records about Davan (ancient name of Fergana) were already in first Chinese chronicles and in the Middle Ages it was one of the most important apanage in Transoxiana. However almost all of ancient settlements of Fergana nowadays are just archeological sites and large cities, which had formed by the end of 19 century were considerably young and Kokand - the capital was the youngest.
The foundation of Kokand connected with the name of the leader of Uzbek clan Ming - Abdurakhim, who in 1732 founded a capital of new independent state on marshland in the south-west of Fergana valley. Natural territory of Kokand Khanate - large flat plain, surrounded by high mountains except western part where one of two biggest rivers of Central Asia - Syrdarya flows out of the valley.
Stormy history of Kokand Khanate predetermined frequent reconstructions in Kokand. Suffice it to say that the last residence of the ruler - remained till today Khudoyar Khan's residence is the seventh palace in Kokand built during 150 years. Former capital of Fergana in the Middle Ages - Andijan in the middle of 19 century was smaller than Kokand and Namangan.
The city arose after the Mongol invasion during the reign of Duva-khan from Chagatai dynasty. Bobur, the founder of the Great Mogols dynasty in India, who was born in Andijan wrote about the city, '
there are seven cities in Fergana, five of which are situated on the southern bank of Seykhun (Syrdarya) and two on the northern. One of the cities on the southern bank is Andijan, which is in the middle. It is the capital of Fergana. There is abundance of bread and fruits. In Maveranahr, besides Samarkand and Kesh, there is no bigger city than Andijan.'
Regarding Namangan, the date of foundation is considered to be 1582, when Sheybani ruler Abdallah II resettled here, to the north of Fergana valley, numerous prisoners of war after successful campaign to Khorasan. In 1875 Russian troops conquered one by one all cities.
In Fergana valley and formed Fergana region of Turkestan and turned it to main cotton-producing base of Turkestan.