Large numbers of mulberry trees are planted for rearing silkworms, especially in Kutais, Erivan, Elisavetpol (Nukha) and Baku (Shemakha); the groves occupy nearly 150,000 acres, and the winding of the silk gives employment to large numbers of the population.
He reached Persia by way of Moscow, Kazan and Astrakhan, landing at Nizabad in Daghestan after a voyage in the Caspian; from Shemakha in Shirvan he made an expedition to the Baku peninsula, being perhaps the first modern scientist to visit these fields of "eternal fire."
SHEMAKHA, a town of Russian Transcaucasia, in the government of Baku, 70 m.
Shemakha was the capital of the khanate of Shirvan, and was known to the Roman geographer Ptolemy as Kamachia.
In 1742 Shemakha was taken and destroyed by Nadir Shah of Persia, who, to punish the inhabitants for their creed (Sunnite Mahommedanism), built a new town under the same name about 16 m.
The new Shemakha was at different times a residence of the khan of Shirvan, but it was finally abandoned, and the old town rebuilt.
In 1795 they captured Shemakha as well as Baku; but the conquest was once more abandoned, and Shirvan was not finally annexed to Russia until 1805.
The government is divided into six districts, the chief towns of which are Baku (the capital of the government), Geok-chai (pop. 2247 in 1897), Kuba (15,346), Lenkoran (8768), Salyany (10,168), in district of Jevat, and Shemakha (20,008).
The town of Shemakha, near the eastern end of the system, was the scene of volcanic outbreaks as late as 1859, 1872 and 1902; while in the adjacent peninsula of Apsheron mud volcanoes exist in large numbers.
Here he was enabled, through the assistance of a friend of his father, to raise a small force with which to take possession of Baku on the Caspian, and thence to march upon Shemakha in Shirvan, a town abandoned to him without a struggle.