A settlement existed at the site as early as bc , and the town was captured by Alexander the Great about bc. Thereafter it was the capital of the Greek satrapy of Bactria. Thereafter it lay in ruins until, after its capture by Timur , it was rebuilt early in the 15th century. Balkh was incorporated into Afghanistan in The modern village of Balkh is situated amid extensive ruins, chief among them the outer walls of ancient Bactra, which are more than 7 miles 11 km in circumference. Article Media.
Taliban storms base in northwestern Afghanistan | FDD's Long War Journal
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It was historically an ancient centre of Buddhism , Islam , and Zoroastrianism and one of the major cities of Khorasan , since the latter's earliest history. It was mostly known as the centre and capital of Bactria or Tokharistan. Marco Polo described Balkh as a "noble and great city". Bennett published speculation that Shambalha was Shams-i-Balkh , a Bactrian sun temple. The name of the province or country also appears in the Old Persian inscriptions B.