West Tibetan kingdoms

Haakbus

Ad Honorem
Aug 2013
3,681
United States
#1
Not much information seems to be available about the Tibetic-speaking kingdoms of western Tibet (including those in modern-day Pakistan and India) so I put together a list.

Major powers
Baltistan (Sbal ti Yul)
Guge (Gu ge)
Ladakh (La dwags)

Minor kingdoms and groups
Purik (Pu rig)
Changpa nomads (Byang pa)
Lahul (Gar zha)
Nubra (Ldum ra)
Mustang (Smon thang/Smos thang)
Purang (Spu-hrang/Spu hrangs/Spu-hreng)
Rutog (Ru thog)
Spiti (Spyi ti)
Zanskar (Zangs dkar)

Baltistan began to arise as a power in the early 1500s under the Maqpon (Dmag dpon) dynasty which lasted as a fully independent empire into the mid 1600s after which it was a tributary of Indic empires until 1842 when the Sikh empire conquered it.

Guge had two dynasties, one based in Tholing (Mtho lding) from around the middle of the tenth century to the middle of the thirteenth. The second dynasty was based in Tsaparang (Rtsa pa Rang) from around the late fourteenth century to 1630, when Guge was conquered by Ladakh. It was later taken from Ladakh by the Dalai Lamas in the 1680s.

Ladakh also had two dynasties, the first being of the same origin as the first Guge dynasty and lasted from around the middle of the tenth century to circa 1460 after which they were usurped by one of their vassals who founded the Namgyal (Rnam rgyal) dynasty which became a tributary of the Balti empire until its conquest by the Sikh empire in 1834.
 
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Haakbus

Ad Honorem
Aug 2013
3,681
United States
#3
After a lot of research I was able to make this rough map of the different polities and groups. Since it's so mountainous most of the kingdoms were restricted to narrow valleys. I didn't fill in the territories of Guge, Purang, and Mustang because those regions are more open and I'm not sure where they extended to.

West Tibetan kingdoms.png
 
Jul 2014
1,571
world
#4
Not much information seems to be available about the Tibetic-speaking kingdoms of western Tibet (including those in modern-day Pakistan and India) so I put together a list.

Major powers
Baltistan (Sbal ti Yul)
Guge (Gu ge)
Ladakh (La dwags)

Minor kingdoms and groups
Purik (Pu rig)
Changpa nomads (Byang pa)
Lahul (Gar zha)
Nubra (Ldum ra)
Mustang (Smon thang/Smos thang)
Purang (Spu-hrang/Spu hrangs/Spu-hreng)
Rutog (Ru thog)
Spiti (Spyi ti)
Zanskar (Zangs dkar)

Baltistan began to arise as a power in the early 1500s under the Maqpon (Dmag dpon) dynasty which lasted as a fully independent empire into the mid 1600s after which it was a tributary of Indic empires until 1842 when the Sikh empire conquered it.

Guge had two dynasties, one based in Tholing (Mtho lding) from around the middle of the tenth century to the middle of the thirteenth. The second dynasty was based in Tsaparang (Rtsa pa Rang) from around the late fourteenth century to 1630, when Guge was conquered by Ladakh. It was later taken from Ladakh by the Dalai Lamas in the 1680s.

Ladakh also had two dynasties, the first being of the same origin as the first Guge dynasty and lasted from around the middle of the tenth century to circa 1460 after which they were usurped by one of their vassals who founded the Namgyal (Rnam rgyal) dynasty which became a tributary of the Balti empire until its conquest by the Sikh empire in 1834.
Guge was founded by the grandson of the Last emperor of Tibetan Empire. Guge kingdom patronised Buddhism and fought against the Karakhanid when they demanded conversion to Islam.

Atisha was invited by the Guge who laid the foundations of Buddhist resurgence in Tibet where it was all but gone.

Guge kingdom is the reason why Tibetans are Buddhist. When all of central and south Asia was becoming muslim Tibetans became Buddhists. We own this to the Guge kingdom.



Few corrections though . Ladakh was the most powerful of all western Tibetan kingdoms after Guges disintegration.It was never the vasal of the Baltistan though they invaded each other regularly.

Ladakh was never under the Mughal rule.

It was Ladakh who destroyed Guge (Tsaparang) for the final time when it massacred almost everybody there.
 

Haakbus

Ad Honorem
Aug 2013
3,681
United States
#5
Guge was founded by the grandson of the Last emperor of Tibetan Empire. Guge kingdom patronised Buddhism and fought against the Karakhanid when they demanded conversion to Islam.

Atisha was invited by the Guge who laid the foundations of Buddhist resurgence in Tibet where it was all but gone.

Guge kingdom is the reason why Tibetans are Buddhist. When all of central and south Asia was becoming muslim Tibetans became Buddhists. We own this to the Guge kingdom.



Few corrections though . Ladakh was the most powerful of all western Tibetan kingdoms after Guges disintegration.It was never the vasal of the Baltistan though they invaded each other regularly.

Ladakh was never under the Mughal rule.

It was Ladakh who destroyed Guge (Tsaparang) for the final time when it massacred almost everybody there.
Yeah I'm not an expert on this area of history so I may have made some mistakes.

However, regarding Ladakh, the wikipedia articles seem to be quite clear:
Ali Sher Khan Anchan - Wikipedia

Maybe it was a short-lived vassalship to Baltistan?
 
Jul 2014
1,571
world
#6
Yeah I'm not an expert on this area of history so I may have made some mistakes.

However, regarding Ladakh, the wikipedia articles seem to be quite clear:
Ali Sher Khan Anchan - Wikipedia

Maybe it was a short-lived vassalship to Baltistan?
Ladakh was attacked yes but not conquered. Even according to the Balti legends Ladakhs Namgyal dynasty took back what was lost quite soon. Princesses were given in marriage by both the Buddhist and Ladakhi kings. That was normal.

The main enemy of the Ladakh were not the muslims at that time but central Tibetans. The Kagyu sect of central TIbet had lost in power struggle against the Gelugs and many of the Kagyu sect fled to Bhutan, Kham and Ladakh where they were protected. Ladakh was and is still a Kagyu stronghold.
 

Haakbus

Ad Honorem
Aug 2013
3,681
United States
#7
Ladakh was attacked yes but not conquered. Even according to the Balti legends Ladakhs Namgyal dynasty took back what was lost quite soon. Princesses were given in marriage by both the Buddhist and Ladakhi kings. That was normal.

The main enemy of the Ladakh were not the muslims at that time but central Tibetans. The Kagyu sect of central TIbet had lost in power struggle against the Gelugs and many of the Kagyu sect fled to Bhutan, Kham and Ladakh where they were protected. Ladakh was and is still a Kagyu stronghold.
Ah okay. So probably this tribute and similar events were one-off things.
 
Jul 2014
1,571
world
#8
One minor correction. I meant to say that Buddhist Ladakhi and Muslim Balti both intermarried without any problems. Ladakh had many muslim princess from Baltistan and vice versa.
 
Jul 2014
1,571
world
#10
Royal marriages between Ladakh and Baltistan were common. Namgyal and Maqpon were very close. Very few wars.

Nyigmagon dynasty and Namgyal dynasty are the two dynasties of Ladakh. After Guge kingdom was divided among the three princes, Ladakh became a capital of one prince and his dynasty rule till early 1400s. Namgyal ruled till 1800s.
 

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