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The Republic of Dagestan, Dakhadaevskiy region

The Republic of Dagestan, Dakhadaevskiy region

Kala-koreish is the most ancient settlement of Daghestan. It is situated near the famous aul of gold-smiths Kubatchi, which is in Dakhadaevskiy region of the republic. For several centuries in a row fortress Kala-koreish was the administrative center of Kaytag utsmiystvo – one of the feuds on the territory of modern Daghestan. It is considered that the dissemination of Islam throughout the North Caucasus started from here. The village was founded by Arabs who came to this mountainous land as conquerors. It happened approximately in VII-VIII centuries. The settlement was named after one of the Arabic tribes – kureishits, which the Prophet Muhammad descended from. The head of the invaders was ruler Amirgamza; it is he who is considered to found the dynasty of Kaytag utsmiys, and to start the construction of the fortress.

Kala-koreish is situated in a convenient place from the military strategy point of view – on a crest of a high mountain which is surrounded by five galloping rivers from three sides. The settlement was enclosed with a high fortress wall. Thus, the village has become unassailable for conquerors. In those times in three directions from the fortress the so-called “utsmiys” roads were laid. They were oriented for wheeled traffic and they were strengthened with retaining walls, which in some parts reached the height of 6-8 meters. Nowadays Kala-koreish represents a labyrinth of ancient constructions coming down in terraces from the top of a mountain; there is also a reconstructed museum and a burial of Kaytag utsmiys.

The location of the village was so lucky for mountainous Daghestan, that the village quickly grew into a town and became an important center of trade. We can judge the richness and strength of the town by remaining till now ruins and buildings. Thoroughly thought system of defense and also natural mountainous fortress protected the town from all sides. 

  A beautiful and sad legend is connected with the fortress Kara-koreish. They tell that enemies decided to sneak into the village when all the local men were praying in the mosque. But they met a young girl on a horse with a dog, coming down to a spring. On a narrow path the courageous fighter was holding back the enemy. The dog started to bark loudly and local people ran to that place. They sent away the uninvited guests, but the girl was already dead by that moment – she saved her fellow tribesmen at the cost of her life. And now at the entrance to the fortress one can see a little burial mound (it is believed that it’s the exact place where the girl was buried) and a little tree planted in the memory of the brave defender. According to the tradition each guest has to tie a handkerchief or a piece of fabric on the tree in the sign of respect.  

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