Encyclopædia Britannica, Ninth Edition/Elizabethpol

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From volume VIII of the work.
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ELIZABETHPOL, Yelizavetpol, or Gansha, the chief town of a government in the province of Tiflis, in Russian Transcaucasia, is situated 1449 feet above the sea-level, on an affluent of the Kur, 90 miles south-east of Tiflis, in 40° 40′ 42″ N. lat. and 46° 21′ 19″ E. long. It was at one time a place of considerable importance, but on account of having been frequently stormed and pillaged is now in a somewhat dilapidated condition. The streets are narrow, and most of the houses low-roofed and without windows, but it has several elegant mosques and other public buildings. It is divided into four quarters, two of which are inhabited by Armenians and two by Tatars. The inhabitants are engaged chiefly in horticulture, agriculture, and the rearing of silkworms and cattle. Gandzak, Kanga, or Kendzhe, as the town was formerly called, first appears in history in 1088, when it was under the rule of the Turkish emir Vuzan, and was included in the Armenian province of Artza’kh. Its extent at that time is attested by the twenty-two ancient cemeteries which still exist. The present town was founded by Shah Abbas, four miles from the site of the older city, which is now marked by the Green Mosque. It continued in Mahometan possession till 1804, when it was stormed by the Russians under Prince Tsitsianoff, and received its present name in honour of Elizabeth, daughter of Alexander I. In 1826 it was the scene of a great victory over the Persians. The population in 1873 was 15,439.