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Tabriz

Tabriz, a town of Persia, upon the river Aji, which flows into Lake Urumiah, 40 miles E. of the town, and capital of the province of Azerbijan. There is an extensive citadel of brick, which shows marks of earthquakes. Tabriz has still a considerable transit trade, though its importance in this respect has been diminished by the construction of Russian railways. The line of Anglo-Indian telegraphs passes through the town. The ruins of the Blue Mosque (1450) are partly ornamented with blue tiles in arabesque. The chief industries are in leather and silk, and the gold and silver work of the town is of great excellence. The imports and exports are great, the former consisting mostly of cotton and woolen goods, wine, spirits, and sugar; and the latter of raw silk, carpets, shawls, drugs, spices, and dried fruits; and there is a good deal of smuggling. The town (anciently Tauris) was in 297 A.D. the capital of Tiridates II., King of Armenia, and was enlarged in 791 A.D by the wife of the Caliph Haroun Alrashid. It has often been besieged, and has suffered much from earthquakes.

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