The region along the northern border of Afghanistan near the Oxus River was called Bactria in ancient times. It is recorded in the "Journey to the West in the Great Tang Dynasty" by Chinese's great monk Xuan Zang as the land of Tokhara, and was called Tokharistan when the region came under Islamic control.
The archaeological site was discovered in 1964 and in 1965 French archeologists began excavating the site which was then called Ai Khanoum, meaning "moon lady." But it is not a name of antiquity. Perhaps the name comes from one of the Greco-Bactria cities which prospered around 300 BC.
The Ai Khanoum archaeological site is located at the confluence of the Amu Darya River (the Oxus River in Greek writing) and the Kokcha River. The historical remains of the city spans 2 kilometers from east to west between the two rivers. It was a city with Greek influence and the first of its kind to be excavated in Central Asia. From the excavation of this archeological site, not only did the deep permeation of Hellenistic culture become evident, but also the high level of civilization during this period began to attract attention.

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