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0105 Ancient Khotan : vol.1
Ancient Khotan : vol.1 / Page 105 (Grayscale High Resolution Image)

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doi: 10.20676/00000182
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In that very year, or at the latest in 791 A. D., the Protectorate of Pei-t`ing was taken by the Tibetans, and from that time onwards, as a passage of the Tzû chih t`ung chien quoted by M. Chavannes tells us, nothing more is heard of An-hsi or the ` Four Garrisons '49. With this event Eastern Turkestan disappears from the horizon of the Annalists of the Tang dynasty, and obscurity falls over its history for more than a century.

At first the whole of the Tarim Basin appears to have passed under the predominance of the Tibetans, who for a time even became dangerous neighbours to their old allies, the Arabs, in the region of the Upper Oxus. But between 86o and 873 A. D. their supremacy was broken by the Uigurs, who established a powerful kingdom comprising the region once ruled from Pei-t`ing and extending westward as far as Ak-su 50. Khotan apparently regained independence. The rest of the territories once comprised in the ` Four Garrisons ' are found subject to Turkish princes of the Karluk tribe, ordinarily residing at Balasaghûn near Lake Issik-Kul, when early in the tenth century some scanty information about this region again becomes available from Muhammadan sources. Between the years 926 and 941 A.D. occasional missions from these princes to the Chinese court are mentioned in the Annals of the Liao 51.

Very soon after the last date must be placed the conversion to Islam of the ruler who held the territories from the Issik-Kul to Kashgar, and who under the name of Satok Boghra Khan is celebrated in popular tradition as the pious establisher of Muhammadanism throughout Eastern Turkestan 52. To the effective link with the West thus established and the prominent part taken by Satok Boghra Khan's successors in the disruption of the Samanide dominions in Central Asia we owe the steadily increasing flow of data which Muhammadan records henceforth supply about Kashgar and the adjoining regions. But the period to which they refer lies beyond the scope of our present inquiry.


After our brief survey of the history of Eastern Turkestan generally during the second period of Chinese ascendancy, we may now turn to the data which are furnished about Kashgar by the records of this period.

In the first place it will be well to review the general information derived from the notice of the Annals on Su-lé 1. ` Sou-le est appelé aussi Kiu-cha 2. I1 a cinq mille li de tour ; il est â plus de neuf mille li de la capitale ; il s'y trouve beaucoup de déserts sablonneux et peu de terrain cultivable. Les habitants aiment la tromperie. Quand un enfant est né, eux

49 See below, Appendix A. From M. Grenard's remarks, Journal asiat., 1900, Jan.-Févr., p. 24, it appears that the Turkish tribe of the Karluk helped the Tibetans to occupy the region of Turfan and to defeat the Uigurs, the allies of the Chinese.

S0 The period from the final destruction of Chinese supremacy in Eastern Turkestan to the appearance of the Muhammadanized Turkish rulers of Balàsaghün and Kàshgar as claimants for the inheritance of the Samanide empire, has been treated with lucidity and care in M. F. Grenard's paper,

La légende de Satok Boghra Khan et l'histoire,' Journal asiaf.,

Jan.-Févr., 1 goo, pp. 24 sqq. Regarding the Uigur kingdom established, with its capital Kara-khôja, near Turfan, see ibid., pp. 28 sq.


Si See Grenard, loc. cit., pp. 36 sq.

52 Regarding the historical data about this conversion, which appears to have been largely brought about by political motives, and certainly led to far-reaching political consequences, see Grenard, Journal asiat., 1goo, Jan.—Févr., pp. 38 sqq. ; for the legendary account, as preserved in the popular Turki Tadhkira of Satok Boghra Khan, compare ibid., pp. 7 sqq.

1 See Chavannes, Turcs °ccid., p. 12 r.

2 The first syllable of the name f   i ` is to be read

Chia, the whole (pronounced Chia-sha) being a transcription of the earliest form underlying the modern name Kàshgar;. see above, p. 48.


Tibetan occupation of the Tarim Basin.


established at Kashgar.

Kashgar described in the Tang Annals.