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Buzkashi - The Thrilling, Ancient Sport of the Mughal Subcontinent

March 1, 1401
Franz Roubaud (1856–1928)
Art and Calligraphy
Shahrukh Mirza 1405–1447




Buzkashi is a traditional Central Asian sport that has captured the hearts of many enthusiasts around the world. The game involves horse riding and is played by two teams, each trying to grab a goat carcass from the ground and carry it towards a goal while riding on horseback. The origins of Buzkashi can be traced back to the time of Genghis Khan and the Mongol Empire. It is believed that the game was originally played by nomadic tribes in the region, who would use it as a way to train their warriors for battle. Over time, Buzkashi became a popular sport in Central Asia, with different variations emerging in different regions. Today, Buzkashi is mainly played in Afghanistan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, and some parts of Pakistan. It is considered the national sport of Afghanistan and is deeply ingrained in the country's culture and tradition. The game is often played during national holidays and celebrations and is considered a symbol of bravery and strength. Buzkashi can be played by teams of any size, but usually, two teams of up to ten players each compete against each other. The game begins with the placing of a goat carcass, which has had its head and hooves removed, in the center of a field. The players then try to pick up the carcass while riding their horses and carry it towards the opposing team's goal. The game is often played in a rugged terrain, which makes it more challenging and exciting. It requires a high level of horse riding skills and physical strength. The players use whips to fend off their opponents and protect the goat carcass from being taken away. The game can be very dangerous, with players occasionally suffering serious injuries. Despite its danger, Buzkashi has a passionate following in Central Asia and beyond. It has gained popularity in other parts of the world as well, with international tournaments being organized to showcase the skills of the players. The sport has even been recognized by the International Olympic Committee as a potential Olympic sport. In conclusion, Buzkashi is a unique and thrilling sport that has a rich history and cultural significance in Central Asia. It requires a high level of skill, strength, and bravery, and it is admired by many for its challenges and excitement. Whether you are a spectator or a player, Buzkashi is a sport that is sure to leave a lasting impression.

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Ismail Mazari

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Very good information.


The Mughal Images immediately took a much greater interest in realistic portraiture than was typical of Persian miniatures. Animals and plants were the main subject of many miniatures for albums and were more realistically depicted. To upload your images click here.

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