Joo-Yup Lee. The Turkic peoples in world history (2023)

Joo-Yup Lee. The Turkic peoples in world history (2023)
Title:The Turkic peoples in world history: a concise history
Author:Joo-Yup Lee
Series:Themes in world history
Place:New York, NY
Publisher:Routledge, Taylor & Francis Group
Pages:XVIII, 206
ISBN:9781032188379, 9781032170015, 9781003256496
File:PDF, 5.55 MB
Download:Click here

Joo-Yup Lee. The Turkic peoples in world history: a concise history. Series: Themes in world history. New York, NY: Routledge, Taylor & Francis Group, 2023, XVIII+206 p. ISBN 9781032188379


The Turkic Peoples in World History is a thorough and rare introduction to the Turkic world and its role in world history, providing a concise history of the Turkic peoples as well as a critical discussion of their identities and origins.

The “Turks” stepped on to the stage of history by establishing the Türk Qaghanate, the first trans-Eurasian empire in history, in 552 CE. In the following millennium, they went on to create empires that had a profound impact on world history such as the Uyghur, Khazar, and Ottoman empires. They also participated in building the Mongol empire, and these Turko Mongol empires are credited with shaping the destinies of pre-modern China, the Middle East, and Europe. By treating the history of the Turkic peoples as a process of amalgamation and integration, rather than simply categorizing the Turkic peoples chronologically or geographically, this book offers new insights into Turkic history.

This volume is a comprehensive guide for students and scholars in the fields of world history, Central Asian history, and Middle Eastern studies who are seeking to understand the historical roles of Turkic peoples and their origins.


List of Illustrations … XIII
Acknowledgments … XIV
Notes on Transliteration and Style … XVII

Introduction … 1
Why Study the Turkic Peoples? Why Do They Matter? … 1
Who Were the Turks? How Should We Define a Turk? … 3
Natural and Historical Setting … 6

1. The Earliest, Nomad Turkic Peoples of the Mongolian Steppe: Tiele, Türks, and Uyghurs … 12
The Tiele: The Earliest Turkic People … 12
Who Were the Earliest Turkic People in History? … 12
The Dingling/Tiele during the Xiongnu Period … 13
The Gaoche/Tiele and the Xianbei, Rouran, and Tabgach Empires … 14
The First Tiele State: The Gaoche State in Jungharia … 16
The Tiele and the Türks … 16
The Xueyantuo Qaghanate … 19
The Tiele and the Fall of the Second Türk Qaghanate … 19
The Türks: The Founders of the First Turkic Empire … 21
Who Were the Ashina Türks? … 21
The Formation of the First Turkic Empire … 25
The Split of the Türk Qaghanate into the Eastern and Western Türk States … 28
The Fall of the Western Türks and the Rise of the Türgesh Qaghanate … 28
The Rise and Fall of the Second Türk Qaghanate … 29
The Uyghurs: The Founders of the Tiele Empire … 34
The Non-Türk Identity of the Uyghurs … 35
The Pre-Imperial Uyghurs … 36
The Rise of the Uyghur Empire … 36
The Uyghur Cities in the Steppe … 37
Bögü Qaghan and His Conversion to Manichaeism … 39
The Decline and Fall of the Uyghur Qaghanate … 39
The Uyghur Successor States in the Turfan Oasis and the Gansu Corridor … 40
The Uyghurs in the Mongol Empire … 41

2. The Various Turkic Peoples of South Siberia, Central Asia, and the Qipchag Steppe: Qirghiz, Khazars, Bulghars, Qarakhanid Türks, and Qipchaqs … 48
The Qirghiz: A Turkic or Turkicized People of South Siberia … 48
The Origins of the Qirghiz … 48
The Pre-“Imperial” Qirghiz … 51
The Qirghiz “Empire”: Breaking with the Orkhon Traditions … 52
The Qirghiz and the Mongols … 53
The Qirghiz during the Post-Mongol Period … 54
The Khazars: The Jewish Successors of the Türks … 56
The Origins of the Khazars … 56
The Formation and Consolidation of the Khazar Qaghanate … 57
Pax Khazarica or Khazar Peace … 58
The Collapse of the Khazar Empire … 58
Conversion to Judaism … 58
The Bulghars: An Oghur Turkic People … 65
The Origins of the Bulghars … 65
The Bulghar States: Great Bulgharia, Danubian Bulgharia, and Volga Bulgharia … 66
The Qarakhanid Türks: The First Muslim Turks of Central Asia … 68
The Origins of the Qarakhanids … 69
The Qarakhanid Conversion to Islam and Conquest of Transoxiana … 70
The Eastern and Western Qarakhanid Qaghanates … 71
Seljuk and Qara Khitai Vassalage … 74
The Demise of the Qarakhanids … 74
The Qipchaqs: The Turkic People of the Qipchag Steppe … 75
The Origins of the Qipchags … 76
The Birth of the “Qipchaq” Steppe … 77
The Qipchags in Eurasian History … 78
Qipchags in the Mongol Empire … 78

3. The Oghuz Turkic Peoples of West Asia and the Middle East: Seljuks, Ottomans, and Other Turkmen Groups … 84
The Oghuz: A Turkic People of the Perso-Islamic World … 84
The Origins of the Oghuz … 84
The Oghuz Tribal Union or the Oghuz Yabghu State … 85
The Seljuks: The Founders of a Sunni Muslim Turkic Empire … 90
The Origins of the Seljuks … 90
The Seljuk Empire … 91
The Seljuk Sultanate of Rum … 93
The Ottomans: The Founders of a World Empire … 94
The Origins and Formation of the Ottomans … 94
The Ottoman Empire … 97
The Turkmen Groups of Iran … 101
The Qara Qoyunlu … 101
The Aq Qoyunlu … 101
The Safavids: a Turko-Persian Empire … 102
The Afsharid Turkmen Empire … 104
The Qajars: The Last Turkmen State of Iran … 105

4. The Turko-Mongols (or “Mongol Turks’) of the Qipchaq Steppe and Central Asia … 109
The Chaghatays: The Turko-Mongols (or “Mongol Turks”) of Central Asia … 109
The Origins of the Chaghatays and Their Identity … 109
The Timurid Empire … 114
The Mughal Empire … 119
The Moghul Khanate … 124
The Uzbeks: The Turko-Mongols (or “Mongol Turks”) from the Qipchaq Steppe … 126
The Origins and Formation of the Uzbeks … 127
The Shibanid Uzbek States of Central Asia … 129
The Uzbek Dynasties in Transoxiana (Ma wara’ al-nahr) … 129
The Khanate of Khoqand: The Uzbek State in Ferghana … 134
The Khanate of Khiva: The Uzbek Dynasties in Khorezm … 137
The Qazags: The Eastern Wing of the Jochid Ulus … 140
The Origins and Formation of the Qazags … 140
The Qazaq Khanate … 142
The Crimean Tatars: The Western Wing of the Jochid Ulus … 149
The Origins and Formation of the Crimean Tatars … 149
The Crimean Khanate … 151

Epilogue … 163

Appendix I: The Turkic Language Family … 170

Appendix II: The Ancestries of The Turkic Peoples … 172

Chronology … 175

Bibliography … 181
Index … 193


Joo-Yup Lee is an intermittent lecturer at the University of Toronto, where he received his Ph.D. in Central Eurasian Studies (2012). He has published several books and articles, including Qazaqlïq, or Ambitious Brigandage, and the Formation of the Qazaqs (2016), which won the 2017 CESS Book Award. He also wrote entries on Turkic peoples for the Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Asia and the Encyclopaedia of Islam, THREE.

Critics’ Reviews

Lee’s book is anoutstanding contribution, an important introduction to the Turkic-speaking world and its role in world history. It is a very convenient, readable introduction to a highly complicated area of study (the Central Asian and Middle Eastern Turkic world). Halford Mackinder (1861-1947), one of the founders of modern geographical studies, termed Central Asia “the pivot” of Eurasia, a role it is again playing in modern affairs. For those seeking background knowledge of the Central Asian/Central Eurasia states, Lee’s book offers a very solid introduction. This is an excellent introduction to the history of the Turkic peoples.

Dr. Peter B. Golden, Professor Emeritus of History, Turkish and Middle Eastern Studies, Rutgers University (and Honorary Member of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences)

Lee’s book is an excellent piece of scholarship which gives a well-proportioned introduction to the theme. The author yields an in-depth narrative which is readable nonetheless. The book is useful for both undergraduate and graduate students.

István Vásáry m.p. Emeritus Professor, Eötvös Loránd University, Budapest

The movement of Turkic peoples into western Eurasia represents one of the major world historical events during more than half a millennium that stretched between the ninth and sixteenth centuries. It culminated with the establishment of the Ottoman Empire by Oghuz Turks. Joo-Yup Lee’s book The Turkic Peoples in World History offers readers a lucid guide to the complex process of Turkic migration, settlement and empire-building. Dr. Lee is the author of the widely praised work, Qazaqliq or Ambitious Brigandageand the Formation of the Qazaqs: State and Identity in Post-Mongol Central Eurasia, as well important scholarly articles on the history and identity of Turks and Mongols. His work is informed by an ability to utilize sources in half a dozen languages of the Eurasian region as well as by a specialized knowledge of the genetic relationships of Central Asian peoples. His new book is, quite simply, the best new introduction to the broad geographical and historical expanse of Turkic history.

Stephen Frederic Dale, author of The Garden of the Eight Paradises, Babur and the Culture of Empire in Central Asia, Afghanistan and India (1483-1530) and The Muslim Empires of the Ottomans, Safavids and Mughals

This survey is an excellent addition to the study of world history. Joo-Yup Lee provides a concise study with depth and substance that demonstrates the importance of the Turkic peoples in world history, while lucidly connecting the past with the present that both student and specialist will appreciate.

Timothy May, Professor of Central Eurasian History, University of North Georgia

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