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Mathura (măˈthŏrä, mŭˈtrə) [key] or Muttra mŭˈtrə, city (1991 pop. 235,922), Uttar Pradesh state, N central India, on the Yamuna River. An agricultural market town and district administrative center, it is best known as a Hindu pilgrimage site, the reputed birthplace of the god Krishna. The region, which may have been inhabited since the 7th cent. B.C., is rich in archaeological remains. Muslim rulers (16th–18th cent.) destroyed many Hindu temples in the city and erected mosques.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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