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The Turkish population of Southern Azerbaijan (Hen

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Janissary


Joined: 02 Dec 2016
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    Posted: 19 Jul 2018 at 23:06
Turki, who form the entire population of Garmarud and Khalkhal in Azerbaijan, Khamseh, and of Lower Tarum, together with other sections of Kazvin province roughly west of a line drawn from Manjil to Siadehan and northwest of the Siadehan-Hamadan road. Southeast of this road and southwest of a line from Siadehan to Robat Karim, including Kharaqan, there is an admixture of Farsi, but Turki predominates. The town of Save is, however, wholly Farsi, although villages within a few miles of it are Turki. About one-third of the population of Kazvin and a smaller part of the population of Tehran are Turki. In the strip between the base of the Elburz and a line drawn from Siadehan to Robat Karim, i.e. intermediate between the Farsi and Turki areas, and in Veramin and Khar southeast of Tehran, Turkis are found mixed with Farsis in many villages. The Farsis, the original inhabitants, are more numerous. The Turki element is usually descended from tribes which have come and settled among them.
The Turki peoples are the descendants of hordes from Central Asia, particularly of the Ghuzz tribes, who invaded Iran during the Seljuk period in the eleventh and twelfth centuries. The Seljuks were followed by the Mongols and the rule of the Mongol Il Khans of Iran, who had their capitals at Maragheh, Tabriz, and Sultaniyeh1 near Zanjan.
According to a strong local tradition the ancestors of the Khalej and Baiat Turks in the Saveh district came to these regions with the armies of the Mongol conqueror Tamerlane (Timur) at the end of the fourteenth century.
Two theories, however, exist as to the origin of the present Turki population: that they are descended from these Turks and Mongols; and that they are the offspring of the original inhabitants on whom the invaders imposed their language.
Apart from the dissimilarity in language the great difference in mental and physical characteristics between Turkis and Farsis suggests that there must at least be a considerable admixture of different blood in the former. These regions were devastated and depopulated by the invasions and probably the surviving remnants of the original population intermarried and were absorbed with their conquerors.
Turki landowners and peasantry alike are of good physique, with broader faces and heavier build than the Farsi.
Turki is the only language of the northern Turki districts and no Farsi spoken or understood except by the upper class and a small proportion of the population of Zenjan. Farther south, where the population becomes mixed, some Farsi is also understood, but it is more usual to find a Farsi with a knowledge of Turki than vice versa. The Turki of these parts differs considerably from Ottoman Turkish, and there is also some variation between the Turki of Azerbaijan and the Turki of the districts around Saveh.

1 At Sultaniyeh are ruins of the mausoleum of Khudabanda, the Il Khan, who founded this city in A.D. 1305.


Henry Field, Contributions to the Anthropology of Iran // Anthropological Series of the Field Museum of Natural History. Vol. 29. ― Chicago: Field Museum Press, 1939, pp. 165―166.


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