How Khiva got its name

Many years ago, between the Central Asian deserts of the Kizyl-kum and Kaza-kum, on the spot where Khiva now stands, there was a very small settlement, which had no name. Very kind and friendly people lived there, and because of their fresh clean water, hundreds of caravans carrying silk, cloth, gold and spices from the Orient passed through.

One day three strangers came to the settlement from Arabia, one whose name was Mohammed. They were very tired, hungry, and thirsty, and they wanted to drink the water from the well.

When they tried the water, Mohammed exclaimed, "Khiva!", which in Arabic means, "Oh, how tasty is the water!"

Afterwards, many settlers camped around this well. Soon it became a great city. The people of the city decided to name it Khiva, after the traveler's exclamation.

 
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