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Old January 2nd, 2018, 04:40 PM   #31

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I wud say, the CA Turks, as well the Sinitic peoples, wud hv a better idea about who the original Asiatic Huns were.

Kazakhs, according to a Kazakh forumer friend in another forum, called them Hunnu, which wud actually be pronounced more like Hungnu, if we go by the tendency of NEA folks like Japanese, Koreans & northern Chinese to pronounce their 'n' sound when it's in the middle or end of a word. That wud make them close to the people called by Chinese as the Xiongnu, which is also actually pronounced more like Hungnu.
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Old January 2nd, 2018, 04:56 PM   #32

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Interestingly there's a letter where Genghis Khan compares himself to the "Chanyu of ancient times." That's an obvious reference to the ancient Xiongnu emperors (who had the title shanyu). The letter would've been written by a translator so I don't know if that bit was added by the translator or dictated by Genghis himself. If Genghis actually said it then the Mongols were aware of their ancient history even back then.
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Old January 2nd, 2018, 05:06 PM   #33

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^
And if one takes into account the wide variation of accent & dialect among the people of that region, one wud be tempted to think of the name Chanyu or Shanyu as just another variant of Xiongnu, and therefore also of Hungnu.
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Old January 2nd, 2018, 05:18 PM   #34

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I never thought of that, but it makes sense.
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Old January 2nd, 2018, 05:31 PM   #35

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^
I mean, it cud easily hv been, at least in the initial period, a case of a clan or tribe deriving their name from the name or title of a former chief or paramount leader. Examples of this kind of thing abound in history.

For instance, the Seljuk tribe (from Seljuk) & the Ottomans (from Othman). Some scholars think that the name German derived from Arminius, the man who led them to victory over their Roman overlords at Teutoberg Forest.

And the Kamboja of the Himalayas are believed by many to be progeny of an ancient king named Kambujiya (Greek: Cambyses), whose name kept springing up every now & again among the Achaemenids, who some say believed that they were also offspring of that first Kambujiya.
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Old January 3rd, 2018, 03:40 PM   #36

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Quote:
Originally Posted by stevapalooza View Post
Interestingly there's a letter where Genghis Khan compares himself to the "Chanyu of ancient times." That's an obvious reference to the ancient Xiongnu emperors (who had the title shanyu). The letter would've been written by a translator so I don't know if that bit was added by the translator or dictated by Genghis himself. If Genghis actually said it then the Mongols were aware of their ancient history even back then.
Well, lest we forget, the man's name was Temüjin, and "Chinggis Khan" was his chosen title, meaning "Oceanic [universal] Ruler." His rival, Jamuqa, had anointed himself Gür Khan, which meant "Universal Ruler," and was a title which had first been used by the Khitan warlord Yelü Dashi in 1131 or 1132. Another of Temüjin's rivals, Küchlüg, also resurrected the title of Gür Khan when he seized power in Kara Khitai. What set Temüjin apart was the "oceanic" aspect of his title (also bestowed by the Mongols upon the Dalai Lama, or "Ocean Lama" of the Dgelugspa sect of Tibetan Buddhism), which has everything to do with the Mongols' founding myth of their progenitors, the Blue Wolf and White Fallow Doe, crossing the 'ocean' (Teŋgis) to reach a safe new land where they gave birth to the first Mongols.

So while "Chinggis Khan" was a uniquely Mongol title, there was a very-much living legacy of such vaunted khans in Central Eurasia at the time of Temüjin's rise. Not hugely different from the various European adaptations of "Caesar" or "Imperator" for their imperial titles.

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And if one takes into account the wide variation of accent & dialect among the people of that region, one wud be tempted to think of the name Chanyu or Shanyu as just another variant of Xiongnu, and therefore also of Hungnu.
It may be useful to quote Christopher Beckwith regarding the title of "Chanyu":
Quote:
[Tumen's] Hsuing-nu title is written in Chinese 單于, traditionally read NMan shànyú or chányú (Pul. 48). Neither modern reading has much to do with the Old Chinese pronunciation of the characters, which must have been something like *Dar-ɣa (earlier) or *Dan-ɣa (later). The former suggests the well-known medieval Turkic and Mongolic title of Daruɣači, for a high-ranking official with various functions. It might well go back to the Hsiung-nu, though the latter could of course have borrowed the title themselves.
—Christopher Beckwith, Empires of the Silk Road (Princeton University Press, 2009), p. 387, endnote 7.

Last edited by Wolfpaw; January 3rd, 2018 at 05:08 PM.
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Old January 3rd, 2018, 03:52 PM   #37

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wolfpaw View Post
It may be useful to quote Christopher Beckwith regarding the title of "Chanyu":
Yay!!! There ya go. My primordial historian's instinct brilliantly proven. Yet again.

Now, what did I tell ya, Stev ...
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Old January 3rd, 2018, 03:55 PM   #38

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Thanks for that bit, Wolfpaw.
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Old January 3rd, 2018, 07:21 PM   #39

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Originally Posted by Wolfpaw View Post
Well, lest we forget, the man's name was Temüjin, and "Chinggis Khan" was his chosen title, meaning "Oceanic [universal] Ruler." His rival, Jamuqa, had anointed himself Gür Khan, which meant "Universal Ruler," and was a title which had first been used by the Khitan warlord Yelü Dashi in 1131 or 1132. Another of Temüjin's rivals, Küchlüg, also resurrected the title of Gür Khan when he seized power in Kara Khitai. What set Temüjin apart was the "oceanic" aspect of his title (also bestowed by the Mongols upon the Dalai Lama, or "Ocean Lama" of the Dgelugspa sect of Tibetan Buddhism), which has everything to do with the Mongols' founding myth of their progenitors, the Blue Wolf and White Fallow Doe, crossing the 'ocean' (Teŋgis) to reach a safe new land where they gave birth to the first Mongols.

So while "Chinggis Khan" was a uniquely Mongol title, there was a very-much living legacy of such vaunted khans in Central Eurasia at the time of Temüjin's rise. Not hugely different from the various European adaptations of "Caesar" or "Imperator" for their imperial titles.
Okay, about the name Chinggis. Although Oceanic, in the sense of Universal (from Tenkiz, Turkic for Ocean) has seemed to be the mostly widely accepted interpretation, going by the argument of Pelliot, there is also quite a case for another one.

This one proposed by De Rachewiltz, who prefers the alternative meanings Strong, Mighty or Firm (from Ching, Mongolian for Hard, Strong). Which, rather interestingly, are also the meanings most often associated with the word 'Turk' in Turkic language.

Anyways, the moniker Chinggis was conferred on Temujin by his shaman Teb Tengri. But unlike Gur Khan, the title usually used by Temujin's predecessors, like Jamuqa for instance, Chinggis Khan was a completely new title, so possibly signaling an exciting new era.

Last edited by Dreamhunter; January 3rd, 2018 at 07:25 PM.
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Old January 3rd, 2018, 07:28 PM   #40

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The title Chinggis Khan was suggested by the shaman Tebtengri wasnt it? It might've had a religious meaning that we no longer understand.
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