Tashkent (Toshkent, Тошкент, تاشكېنت, ; Ташкент, ) is the capital and largest city of Uzbekistan, as well as the most populated city in ex-Soviet Central Asia (though the larger urban centers of Urumqi in China and Kabul in Afghanistan lie well within the geographic region of Central Asia) with a population in 2018 of 2,485,900. It is located in the north-east of the country close to the Kazakhstan border.
Tashkent was influenced by the Sogdian and Turkic cultures in its early history, before Islam in the 8th century AD. After its destruction by Genghis Khan in 1219, the city was rebuilt and profited from the Silk Road. From 18th to 19th century, the city became an independent city-state, before being re-conquered by the Khanate of Kokand. In 1865, it fell to the Russian Empire, and became the capital of Russian Turkestan. In Soviet times, Tashkent witnessed major growth and demographic changes due to forced deportations from throughout the Soviet Union.
Today, as the capital of an independent Uzbekistan, Tashkent retains a multi-ethnic population, with ethnic Uzbeks as the majority. In 2009, the city celebrated its 2,200 years of written history.
During its long history, Tashkent has had various changes in names and political and religious affiliations.