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Title: Turkāyē : Turkic peoples in Syriac literature prior to the Seljüks
Author: Dickens, Mark Lester
Awarding Body: University of Cambridge
Current Institution: University of Cambridge
Date of Award: 2008
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This dissertation examines how Syriac literature portrays and perceives the Turkic peoples of Central Eurasia prior to the Seljük invasion of the Middle East. It spans approximately 500 years of history, from the mid-6th to the mid-11th centuries, and addresses over 100 extracts from 32 Syriac sources in which Turkic peoples are mentioned. Although several of the passages examined have been analysed in scholarly articles, many have never been addressed and few translated into English thus far. This dissertation presents a comprehensive survey of all pertinent references, gathering them together in chronological order, in order to build a composite picture of the subject. The findings make a significant contribution to our understanding of the interactions that took place over five centuries between Syriac Christianity and Turkic culture, both in the Central Eurasian homeland of the Turks and the Middle East. This dissertation explores why and how Syriac writers prior to the Seljük invasion were motivated to write about Turkic peoples. It examines the sources they used and addresses how these sources influenced their perception of the Turks. It further charts how these perceptions changed over the course of five centuries, including differences between East and West Syriac sources, as well as the ethnonyms used. Finally, it evaluates the contribution of Syriac literature to our knowledge of Turkic peoples. The Introduction provides basic background information on Turkic peoples. Chapters 1-3 cover Syriac sources from the pre-Islamic period (before 632), the Patriarchal and Umayyad Caliphates (632-750), and the early Chronicle of Michael the Great and the Anonymous Chronicle to 1234. Chapter 5 addresses Syriac sources from the later
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available