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0240 Notes on Marco Polo : vol.1
Notes on Marco Polo : vol.1 / Page 240 (Color Image)

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doi: 10.20676/00000246
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224   126. CATAI

to the West by a few years. But the founder of the Qara-Hitai Empire had become a legendary figure, and what we have in the Liao shih may well be a romanced biography, with more or less fictitious reign names (nien-hao) and a fanciful chronology. For instance, it is clearly impossible that Yeh-lü Ta-shih, who was still in northern China in 1124, should have taken the Imperial title in Russian Turkestan in the second month of that very year (Liao shih, 30, 3a; Br. I, 216). Yeh-lü Ta-shih was already dead in 1144, but his name Ta-shih remained in China as a designation of his successors, and is even said in the Chin shih (121, 3 a) to have been so used by the non-Chinese nations of Central Asia. As late as 1161-1163, Ch'i-tan who had rebelled in Manchuria wished to go and join « Ta-shih of the Western Liao » (cf. Dian shih hsin pien, 17, 4a).

A few names which stand out in the Chinese account of Yeh-iü Ta-shih are however, quite

genuine. One is that of his capital, written ik Ati,   a Hu-ssü-wo-êrh-to in Liao shih, 30,

3a, and it   ,fsk 4.77 Ku-ssû-ê-lu-to in Chin shih, 121, 2b (the first form is badly altered in

GILES, Biogr. Dict. No. 2452, and in TCHANG, Synchronismes chinois, 367). In the Mongol period, the same name occurs as jk ä] A .. 2 Hu-ssü-wo-lu-to in Yeh-lii Ch'u-ts'ai's Hsi-yu lu (Br, I,

18) and as Ç DJ   W,   Ku-tsê-wo-êrh-to in YS, 120, 7a. These transcriptions represent an
original « Quz-ordo » or « yuz-ordo ». « Ordo » is of course the « Mongol » pronunciation of Turk. ordu, « camp », « royal camp ». The vocabulary which constitutes ch. 116 of the Liao shih correctly

explains ordo, but says (9a) that )*~ ,Eg hu-ssû, also written ))   hu-ssû, means « strong » (Ç). 11
yu-li). This has been taken to be the Ch'i-tan word corresponding to the Manchu husun, « strength », since the Ch'i-tan, « as is known, belonged to the same Tungusic stock as the Manchus» (Br, I, 18). It may be added that the Jucen word for strength was already at that time *husun (cf. GRUBE, Die Sprache and Schrift der Juden, 27, 93) or *husu (as in the unpublished vocabulary

belonging to the Ecole Française d'Extrême-Orient).   But this has no bearing on the linguistic
appurtenance of the Ch'i-tan, because the same word for « strength » exists in Turk. küd (also Uiy. küsün in MULLER, Uigurica, Iv, 541; küsin in BANG and VON GABAIN, Analyt. Index, SPA W, 1931, 485) and Mong. kiMün, and above all because « Quz-ordo » is not a Ch'i-tan name. If the vocabulary of the Liao shih explains the name as being Ch'i-tan, it is because Hu-ssù alone, with the second spelling, occurs elsewhere as a Ch'i-tan name (cf. Liao shih, 116, 17b). But the name Quz-ordo, or rather « Quz-ordu » existed at least half a century before the arrival of the Qara-Hïtai, and is already given in 1076 by Kâsyari (BROCKELMANN, 248). It was the Turkish name of Balasâyûn (this is perhaps a Sogdian name), the capital of the Qarakhanids on the Cu River. MARQUART has said more than once (the last time in Ungar. Jahrbücher, Ix, 97-98) that the Chinese transcriptions represented yuz-ordu, for *Oyuz-ordu, «the camp of the Oyuz ». It is true that the Turkish Oyuz tribes have often been simply called 2 uz (yuzz) in Mohammedan sources, and also that the alternative name of Baläsâyùn in Juwaini (I, 433; II, 878), long misread

yû-bàliq (Oh, I, 442; Br, I, 226-227), is in fact 3JL yuz-bâlïq, «yuz City ».   But, although the
history of the name O, uz and of its application is still obscure (see « Iuguristan ») and although Kàsyari gives as tribal names both the forms Oyuz and yuzz (BROCKELMANN, 243, 246), the fact that he only gives Quz-ordu for the alternative name of Balâsâyûn and Quz-ulus for the region of Balàsâyûn does not favour an equation of the name with Oyuz or yuz, uzz. « Quz » remains, however, unexplained (cf. BARTHOLD, in Izv. Ak. Nauk, 1931, 396).