The Black Chamber

The Black Chamber

According legend, The Black House was the court building. The decisions of  the court were carried out by the Khan at the time along with three judges. The Khan always entered the building from the west and the others entered through their own special doors.  However, there is another thought about the  function of the building. It has been proposed that it may served as madressee or a khanaka. These were a kind of hotel for the wandering dervishes.  hospices of this sort were very common in Mulsim towns of the East. The chamber was turned into a smokehouse, for a portion of the 18th and 19th century, because of thisn the walls inside turned black. There is a more romantic version of the origin of the name  is surrounded about the Legend of the Fireproof Princess. The story goes, that in the days of the terrible raid of Aksak-Timur that the family of Khan Bulgar Abdullah and himself took refuge in this haven. When the invaders breached the city walls and found that the Khan was inside they stacked wood around the building and set it on fire. As the fire raged it was believed that everyone inside had been consumed, when the fire abated and the smoke cleared, it could be seen that the roof had miraculously survived.  On the peak of this roof Aksak saw a young woman of unearthly beauty in white robes. In amazement the daughter of the Khan had survived. It was at this instant that the cruel Emir understood the significance and immediately offered her his hand and heart. After this event, the versions of the legend differ. Whether the princess rejected the hand of her father’s enemy and paid for it with her life, or was sent to the brothers Altynbek and Galimbek, founders of Kazan, or she did accept the offer is not known. Either way, the chamber walls for centuries remained black.




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