National Geographic : 1968 Jan
encountered a strange people. They claimed descent from Dionysus, the Greek god of wine. Their form of government resembled that of the Greeks. Possibly they did have Greek origins. The Persians had sometimes exiled Greeks from Asia Minor to the eastern part of the empire. Descendants of these people, legends say, are the pagan Kafirs, who still live in the mountains between Afghanistan and West Pakistan. Helen and I set out to find them. CRIHLnu ML (cLuw ) MIYUru nVrruMc Tl n1LRr nYv rr - , - ,rNiur n.-.> . Fabled city of Tamerlane, Samarkand thrusts the wreckage of its vanished glory above the Soviet horizon. Archway of the crumbling Bibi Khanum Mosque, reportedly built by a Chinese wife of the 14th-century conqueror Tamerlane, carries the in scription, "Only the sky compares in beauty." Bundled-up cherub concentrates on a cup of ice cream, an expensive treat in faraway Samarkand. Faces a blend of East and West, Turkoman and Uzbek workmen gather in a Samarkand teahouse for the noon meal. Massive portrait of Lenin watches over the customers. Russians call the city's first known conqueror "Alexander Makedonsky." The Macedonians occupied Maracanda-today's Samarkand-after finally capturing Bessus north of the Oxus River. It took Alexander two years to sub due the surrounding regions of Sogdiana and Bactria.