Shushi (Azerbaijani: Şuşa, Armenian: Շուշի; translit. Shushi, Russian: Шуша translit. Shusha) is a town in Nagorno-Karabakh region of Azerbaijan, next to the rayon of the same name. Situated 1400-1800 meters above sea level on the picturesque Karabakh mountains ridge, Shusha was a popular mountainous-climatic recreation resort in Soviet Union.
Considered to be a historical capital of the Karabakh region, Shusha was one of the cultural centers of Russian Transcaucasia. It was home to many Azerbaijani intellectuals, poets, writers and especially, musicians (e.g, the ashugs, mugham singers, kobuz players). In 1977 it was declared reservation of Azerbaijan architecture and history. The city was known as the unofficial musical capital or conservatory of Transcaucasia.
The city was also a major center of Armenian cultural and economic life through the early years of World War I.Furthermore, it is of high religious and strategic importance to the Armenians, housing the Armenian Ghazanchetsots Cathedral, the church of Kanatch Zham and serving (along with Lachin district to the west) as a land link to Armenia.
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