Modern usage. The Tajiks are an Iranian people, speaking a variety of Persian, concentrated in the Oxus Basin, the Farḡāna valley (Tajikistan and parts of Uzbekistan) and on both banks of the upper Oxus, i.e., the Pamir mountains (Mountain Badaḵšān, in Tajikistan) and northeastern Afghanistan (Badaḵšān). Most Tajiks in the Pamirs (including about 34,000 in the Tašqorḡān district of the Xinjiang-Uighur Autonomous Region in southwestern China) are native speakers of several Eastern Iranian languages of the Pamir group (those in Tajikistan use Persian as an administrative and contact language, while those in China (speakers mainly of Sarikoli and Wakhi) generally do not know Persian, and use Uighur and Chinese in dealings with their neighbors. Emigrés from Tajikistan are to be found in Russia, Israel, Western Europe, and North America. The total population of Tajiks is estimated at about five million.

Since the Soviet “national delimitation” of Central Asia in 1924, Tajikistan has been considered the national home of the Tajiks: first as an autonomous republic within Uzbekistan, then from 1929 as a Soviet Union republic, and from 1991 as an independent state. The northern dialect of Tajik Persian (basically that of Bukhara) was adopted as the national titular and literary language (zabon-i tojik) and a Soviet-style literature, on Russian models, was developed (see “Tājiki”). However, the traditional cultural centers of Bukhara and Samarkand (Samarqand), with sizable Tajik populations, were allotted to Uzbekistan; this and the registration (whether voluntary or compulsory) of many Tajiks in Uzbekistan as Uzbeks under Soviet rule, have been sources of friction between the two republics. Soviet nationalities policy encouraged a controlled celebration of Tajik ethnic and cultural identity as Iranians, while restricting actual contact with the Tajiks of Afghanistan and Persians of Iran, and reducing access to literature in Perso-Arabic script by twice changing the writing system of Tajik: first to a Latin, and finally to a Cyrillic alphabet. Since independence, renewed teaching of Arabic script and a re-Persianization of the language (which had been heavily Russianized in content, and effectively banished from the public sphere) have reaffirmed Tajik national identity while facilitating contact with the rest if the Persian-speaking world (see Perry, “From Persian to Tajik to Persian”).

In Afghanistan, the Russian invasion and the subsequent civil war (1979-2001) sharpened ethnic divisions. Military successes of Tajik mojāhedin groups such as those of Panjšir—translated to an extent into political gains after the Northern Alliance joined U.S. forces to capture Kabul and defeat the Taliban government—have raised the profile of Tajiks there, as against the majority ethnos and traditional rulers, the Pashtuns.

Most Tajiks are traditionally Muslims: Sunni, of the Ḥanafi school, with an Ismaʿili minority, particularly in the Pamirs. Imami Shiʿite Persian residents in Tajik territory (originating mostly as captives taken from Marv and Khorasan) were not called Tajiks, but Irāni (Bacon, pp. 23-24; in literary Tajik, ‘eronī); the Jews of Bukhara and Samarkand however, speaking a Persian vernacular, have always been considered Tajiks. Northern Tajiks are often bilingual in Uzbek, and for centuries there has been a steady assimilation of Persian-speakers, via intermarriage and language change, to the sedentary Turkic-speaking (Uzbek) population. The twin bases of modern Tajik ethnicity are local and linguistic: one who is (or is descended from) an indigenous Central Asian native speaker of Persian (or a local Iranian language) is a Tajik, regardless of religious affiliation or domicile.

In Afghanistan, the principal other Persian-speaking groups are the Hazāra, descendants of Mongol tribesmen, in the center of the country; and the Fārsiwān (from fārsi-zabān ‘Persian-speaking,’ a name given to them by the Pashtuns), in the west. Neither can properly be called Tajiks.

Though nowadays accepted proudly as an autonym (self-designation), the name Tājik was in origin a heteronym, conferred on the Tajiks by others. It did not always have its current connotations, and the Tajiks of today were not always so called. There is some scholarly controversy, and even more popular misunderstanding, surrounding the name.

Historical antecedents. The most plausible and generally accepted origin of the word is Middle Persian tāzīk ‘Arab’ (cf. New Persian tāzi), or an Iranian (Sogdian or Parthian) cognate word. The Muslim armies that invaded Transoxiana early in the eighth century, conquering the Sogdian principalities and clashing with the Qarluq Turks (see Bregel, Atlas, Maps 8–10) consisted not only of Arabs but also of Persian converts from Fārs and the central Zagros region (Bartol’d [Barthold], “Tadžiki,” pp. 455-57). Hence the Turks of Central Asia adopted a variant of the Iranian word, täžik, to designate their Muslim adversaries in general. By the eleventh century (Yusof Ḵāṣṣ-ḥājeb, Qutadḡu bilig, lines 280, 282, 3265) the Qarakhanid Turks applied this term more specifically to the Persian Muslims in the Oxus basin and Khorasan, who were variously the Turks’ rivals, models, overlords (under the Samanid Dynasty), and subjects (from Ghaznavid times on). Persian writers of the Ghaznavid, Seljuq and Atābak periods (ca. 1000–1260) adopted the term and extended its use to cover Persians in the rest of Iran, now under Turkish rule, as early as the poet ʿOnṣori, ca. 1025 (Dabirsiāqi, pp. 3377, 3408). Iranians soon accepted it as an ethnonym, as is shown by a Persian court official’s referring to mā tāzikān “we Tajiks” (Bayhaqi, ed. Fayyāz, p. 594). The distinction between Turk and Tajik became stereotyped to express the symbiosis and rivalry of the (ideally) nomadic military executive and the urban civil bureaucracy (Niẓām al-Molk: tāzik, pp. 146, 178-79; Fragner, “Tādjīk. 2” in EI2 10, p. 63).

In Il-khanid and Timurid Persian literature, and into the Safavid period, the term was routinely used in the context of a Turkish or Turco-Mongol ruling elite to distinguish Persians in general (as state functionaries, merchants, urban artisans, and rural peasants) from Turks and Mongols. Examples may be seen in Rašid-al-Din (1310; Tāriḵ-e ḡāzāni, ed. Jahn): bitikčiān-e tāzik ‘Persian secretaries,’ p. 282; raʿiyat-e tāzik ‘the Persian peasantry,’ p. 296; Sayf-e Haravi (ca. 1320): tāžik, of an individual, pp. 101-102; ʿAwfi (1333; Lobāb, ed. Nafisi): tāzik, p. 562, the plural tāžikān, p. 101; Mirḵʷānd (d. 1498); nesbat ba-mardom-e tāzik ‘toward the Tajik people,’ Tehran, Vol. 5, p. 137 (see also Fragner in EI2; and for hundreds of citations of all forms of the word in Persian literature, see Dabirsiāqi, pp. 3374-3403).

The written form tājik (frequent from the late thirteenth century, and usual from the sixteenth) appears first in poetry (if the mss. can be trusted): Rumi employs it in a trilingual macaronic quatrain (see Schaeder, p. 26; Dabirsiāqi, p. 3419); Saʿdi uses both the noun tājik (see Dehḵodā, s.v. Tājik, p. 5394) and the adjective tājikāna (idem, s.v. Tājikāna, p. 5395; Dabirsiāqi, p. 3395); and Šāh Neʿmat-Allāh Wali of Kerman (d. 1431) has [tork-o] tājik (Browne, Lit. Hist. Persia III, p. 466). Chroniclers, whether writing for Mongol or Turkish rulers or not, frequently used variations of the catchphrase tork-o tāzik/tājik, rhyming with dur-o nazdik ‘far and near,’ to mean simply ‘all and sundry’: e.g., Ebn Esfandiār (613/ 1216; tr. Browne), p. 251; Rašid-al-Din, op. cit., pp. 78, 86, 161, 173, 175; Ḵold-e barin (1073/ 1662), p. 581; Nāmi (1789), writing for the Zands, an Iranian dynasty (eight occurrences—see index, p. 398).

By mid-Safavid times the usage tājik for ‘Persian(s) of Iran’ may be considered a literary affectation, an expression of the traditional rivalry between Men of the Sword and Men of the Pen. Pietro della Valle, writing from Isfahan in 1617, cites only Pārsi and ʿAjami as autonyms for the indigenous Persians, and Tāt and raʿiat ‘peasant(ry), subject(s)’ as pejorative heteronyms used by the Qezelbāš (Qizilbāš) Torkmān elite. Perhaps by about 1400, reference to actual Tajiks was directed mostly at Persian-speakers in Afghanistan and Central Asia; the Castilian Clavijo, on his way to Samarkand as envoy to Timur in 1404, notes on reaching Andḵuy in northwestern Afghanistan that they had now left the land of “Media,” and the inhabitants here, who spoke a variety of Persian differing in some words from that of Persia, were called “tangiquis” (Clavijo 1943, p. 139; 1999, p. 237). This usage (by Uzbek writers) is also noted later, in the 17th century (Schaeder, p. 9). Exceptionally, about the year 1900 some non-standard Persian dialects of sedentary rural communities of Fārs were reportedly called tājiki in contradistinction to both the standard Persian of the town (fārsi) and the non-Persian speech of the nomadic Lors (Mann, XXVIII); and Dabirsiāqi (p. 3410) claims that the Qašqāʾi still apply the term tājik to all Persian-speakers, and the Lors to non-Lors.

When the Russians subdued Samarkand and Bukhara in 1868, the Persian-speakers of those cities, still a large majority, were called—and called themselves—Tajiks, as did those in the khanate of Ḵoqand and the Farḡāna valley. Non-Persian Iranians of some mountain regions, e.g., Rōšān and Šuḡnān, called themselves Tajiks, but others generally referred to themselves by local names such as Darvāzi and Kulābi, or—in the case of speakers of Yaḡnābi—as ḡalča (Barthold, “Tādjīk,” EI¹ 4, p. 599). After 1924 all these populations were loosely called ḡalča or “Mountain Tajiks” by outsiders; and a few years later, when the Soviets added Ḵojand and defined the whole region as Tajikistan, the scope of the ethnonym was officially extended and established as a natsional’nost’.

In Badaḵšān and Panjšir of Afghanistan, Tājik was a heteronym bestowed by the local Uzbeks, and adopted by the ruling Pashtuns and the local Persian-speakers themselves in comparatively recent times. In journalistic usage it is increasingly applied to speakers of Persian (or Dari, the official term coined by a Pashtun nationalist government) in Kabul and throughout the north of Afghanistan, with the exception of the Hazāras.

Competing and overlapping terms. In its pre-modern application, Tājik was neither specifically linguistic nor territorial (unlike ʿAjam or Fors, the earlier Arabic collective terms for the Persians). A Persian historian of the Mongol period refers to Irāniān geopolitically, in the sense of ‘the Il-khanid army’ vs. laškar-e Meṣr ‘the army of Egypt,’ i.e. the Mamluks, in this context defending Damascus (Tāriḵ-e gozida, ed. Navāʾi, p. 605). The Persian language was invariably loḡat-e pārsi/ fārsi (e.g., Rašid al-Din, op. cit., p. 171). The term Tāt (now applied only to non-Persian Iranian communities of northwestern Iran and Azerbaijan) was formerly a heteronym applied more widely to sedentary Iranians (including, and mainly, Persians) by Turks (Schaeder, pp. 1-16; Dabirsiāqi, pp. 3403-4, 3406-7, 3415-19).

The term sart, or sārt is attested from the eleventh century in the sense ‘merchant, trader’; it is apparently derived from Indic (cf. Sanskrit sārthavāha ‘caravan-leader, merchant’) by way of Iranian (probably Parthian sartvā) and Uighur (sartbāu). In Mongol usage, as sartaul and sartaqtai, it referred generally to Iranian Muslims; sārt had thus become an ethnonym, a synonym for tāzik (Barthold, “Sart,” EI¹ 4, pp. 175-76). Conversely, “Tajik” came to mean ‘[Persian] merchant’ in the wider Turkic world: on the occasion of the Russian conquest of Kazan in 1552, the city was surrounded by a “ditch of the Tajiks” (tezičkii/ tešičkii rov), “Tajik” here being glossed as ‘merchants’ (Barthold, “Tādjīk,” EI1 4, p. 598b; Schaeder, p. 31). As Turkic settlement in the Oxus basin expanded, sārt seems to have evolved from an ethnonym into an “econym” (similar to earlier use of tāt; Schaeder, p. 9, note 4), designating the sedentary, agrarian population of the oases, whether speakers of Persian or Turkic, as distinct from the nomadic, tribally-organized Turks (Bābor-nāma, 26ff., 236; tr. Beveridge, pp. 6-7, 149; Schaeder, pp. 31-32, 34; Bregel, “Turko-Mongol influences,” pp. 62-63). As Stalin’s official ethnolinguisitc frontiers were fixed, Persian-speaking Sarts became Tajiks, and Turkic-speaking Sarts became Uzbeks.

Etymology and sociolinguistics. The phonetic forms and socio-historical motivations of the words cited above as deriving or meaning “Tajik” require some discussion. First, it should be understood that the Persian words (a) tāzi ‘Arabian, Arabic, Arab’ and (b) tāzik, tāžik, tājik ‘Persian, Iranian, Tajik,’ though originating as doublets (or cognates) of the same word, are completely separate in form and meaning throughout New Persian (and Islamic Turkic and Indic) literature.

The derivation from tāzīk ‘tribesman of Ṭayyiʾ, Ṭāʾī, Arab’ was first proposed almost a century before Schaeder (p. 17, note 5) and has been widely accepted among scholars. The Middle Persian word tāzīk/ tāzīg is found in the Dēnkard in reference to the lineage of the hated usurper Z˜aḥḥ≥āk, thus unequivocally ‘Arab’ (see Shahbazi, p. 216). An analogy to the derivation from Ṭayyiʾ, or its shortened form Ṭayy, or the adjective ṭāʾī, is to be seen in rāzīk (New Persian rāzi) ‘citizen of Ray’ (for arguments tracing these to forms such as tāyčīk and *rāyčīk, see Schaeder, pp. 27; Sundermann, p. 166).

The Ṭayyiʾ bedouin of northern central Najd, famous in Arab and later Islamic lore for the generosity of the fabled Ḥātem, were (on the evidence of Greek and Persian loanwords: Rabin, p. 201) in contact with Byzantium and Sasanian Iran from an early date. They came into prominence on the eve of Islam, when Ḵosrow II Parviz (r. 590-628, with interruptions) abolished the Arab Lakhmid dynasty and appointed a Ṭayyiʾ chieftain as his governor of Ḥira, in effect march-warden of the Euphrates. It is not surprising, therefore, that their name was generalized in Syriac and Aramaic, from perhaps the fourth century, in the form Ṭayyāye (Segal, pp. 100-3) and Middle Persian, Armenian, Georgian (apparently directly from Middle Persian or Parthian: see Andronikashvili, p. 568), and Sanskrit (see below)—to denote Arabs as a whole. The Ṭayyiʾ remained active in the Islamic conquests, and were still prestigious and in intimate contact with Iranians as recently as the 1950s, when the Kurdish villagers of Arpachi, northeast of Mosul, “claimed to be Arabs, belonging to the tribe of Ṭayy, their nearest neighbours across the Tigris” (MacKenzie, p. 419).

Examples of the complex semantic process of generalization and re-specialization: “Arab > (Arab) Muslim > Muslim > (Muslim) Persian/ Turk, etc.” are found in Armenian, where tačik ‘Arab’ came to mean ‘Turk’ from Seljuk times on (Schaeder, p. 18); and in English, an analogy to the second part of the process can be seen in the expression ‘to turn Turk,’ applied to a Christian convert to Islam (in the context of confrontation with the Ottoman empire). That this kind of transference was actually taking place in the minds of the local (Iranian) population in the year 728 is demonstrated in Ṭabari’s account of the Dehqāns of Bukhara reporting to the Arab governor Ašras on the success of the Muslim mission: “qad ṣāra al-nās kulluhum ʿaraban” (‘All the people have become Arabs’: II, 1508, 13; Trans., Vol. 25, p. 47; quoted in Schaeder, p. 23).

Orthographically, we find the middle consonant as z in late Middle Persian, Qarakhanid Turkish (Yusof Ḵāṣṣ-ḥājeb, täžik and täjik, loc. cit.), recapitulating forms in the eighth-century Orkhon inscriptions, Old Chinese, and Tibetan (Schaeder, p. 19), and in New Persian until the late thirteenth century. From the fourteenth century the spelling tāžik also appears (see examples above); this may well reflect the pronunciation of previous centuries, when manuscripts did not consistently distinguish between written z and ž. From Timurid times (fifteenth century) the form is usually tājik, which has not been satisfactorily accounted for; perhaps it reflects a vernacular Čaḡatāy pronunciation, as continued in modern Uzbek, which substitutes j for Persian ž.

An early Sanskrit inscription using the form tājika ‘Arab,’ in reference to one Madhumati (Moḥammad), an Arab provincial governor in the ninth and tenth centuries (Epigraphia Indica, XXXII, pp. 47, 52 line 20), is explained by the fact that the phoneme z is alien to Sanskrit (and the prakrits), and is replaced by j; cf. later Bengali ujbak ‘Uzbek; ruffian’ (generalized, coincidentally, to cover all Central Asian Turk soldiers). In other contexts, Sanskrit tājika (also tāyika) means ‘Persian(s),’ and in later Indo-Muslim usage, tājik is of course the Turco-Persian word for ‘Iranian, Persian’. In the Akbar-nāma it figures contrastively in an explanation of the popular etymology of the term torkmān: “The Turkomāns did not exist in old times, but when their progeny came to Persia [Èrān] and propagated there, their features came to resemble the Tajiks. But as they were not Tajiks, the latter called them Turkomāns, i.e., ‘Turk-like’ [tork-mān]” (Akbar-nāma, tr. Beveridge, p. 172).

An intriguing Sogdian occurrence of the adjective tājīgāne (arguably to be pronounced as tāžīgāne) in a Manichaean hymnal from Turfan, of about the year 1000, may supply the missing link between Middle Persian tāzīg ‘Arab’ and Turkic/New Persian tāzik, tāžik ‘Persian’. The word resonates with Saʿdi’s later tājikāna cited above, with prior Sogdian attestations in documents from Mt. Mugh of the early eighth century (tāzīkānak, and its base tāzīk, both meaning indisputably ‘Arab’), and with slightly later occurrences of tāžīgāne, which “may still have meant ‘Arab’ or ‘Moslem’ in a more general sense,” since a “Persian general” (pārsīk) is mentioned in the same context (Sundermann, pp. 167-68). Problems with the Sogdian reflex of that vexatious middle consonant lead Sundermann to revise Schaeder’s interpretation and argue for a Parthian origin of Sogdian ž in this case (idem, p. 169: pointing out [p. 171] that the Ṭayyiʾ were established as allies of the Parthian Arsacid dynasty before they served the Sasanians). He argues finally that the tāžīg referred to here are Iranians, distinguished from the Sogdians as being speakers of New Persian (tāžīk, ‘the Muslim language’ for Sogdians—which Persians at that time called dari—as distinct from parsīk, which is Middle Persian), but that they are of course fellow Manichaeans, not Muslims. The Muslim Turks who were soon to rule the region (some of whose kinsmen were Manichaeans, too) thus took their designation of the local Persian population from the Sogdians. This definition of Tājik, if correct, would correspond quite closely to the modern one, in which language and location are fundamental, and religion is incidental. However, it would realign the modern Tajik view of the Sogdians as their ancestors, casting them rather as ‘the Other’ who bestowed the ethnonym Tājik in its definitive sense.

Alternative explanations. A few other etymologies and ethnologies of the Tajiks, most of which have been discounted by the scholars cited above, are worth mentioning briefly, since they are quite resilient and still likely to be encountered in both scholarly and popular literature.

Schaeder confesses that he once entertained, then reluctantly rejected, the idea that tājik might derive from a vernacular Turkic tāt ‘Tat, Persian’ + the diminutive –jik; in this he had been anticipated by Berezin in 1853, Vambéry in 1899, and Markwart in 1931. This etymology is also favored by Mahyār Navvābi, who equates the suffix with the Turco-Persian –či (p. 309). Markwart additionally sought to derive the word from MP tāḵtan/tāč- ‘to run, charge’ (Schaeder, pp. 19-21, who rejects this derivation on phonological grounds; cf. C. E. Bosworth, “Tādjīk. 1,” EI² 10, p. 62b). Wojciech Skalmowski in the 1990s independently suggested the same connection, adding more fancifully: “The most obvious explanation” why Arabic in early New Persian was called tāzī is that the word “represents a possible alternative form of NP tāza ‘recent, new’ (both from the root tak-: tāca- ‘to run’; thus lit. ‘current’) and refers to the ‘new’ official language which has replaced the old one, i.e., the Middle Persian of the Sasanians” (Studies, p. 259).

Engelbert Kaempfer, who visited Iran in the 1680s, reports what sounds like a conflation of classical erudition and folk etymology: that the Qezelbāš call the Persians disparagingly tājik or tāzik, “or by vulgar abbreviation Tat, i.e., ‘little Arabs’ [Arabiculas] or ‘Arab brats’ [Arabum filiolos]” (Amoenitatum exoticarum…, 1712, Fasc. 1, Rel. 5, p. 71; cited in Schaeder, pp. 30-31; our translation). Kaempfer’s derivation and gloss of tāt (reminiscent, if in reverse, of the diminutive tāt-čik proposed by some scholars) recalls a recurrent definition of “Tajik” in some early Persian dictionaries as ‘child of Arabs, reared among Persians’ (see Dehḵodā, s.vv. tājik and tāzik; Dabirsiāqi, pp. 3404-07, as also for other dictionary definitions). A connection with tāzi ‘Arab’ had perhaps been preserved, though distorted (at least among the Turks).

The modern meaning of “Tajik” has been distorted in Tajik-language and Russian academic usage (both Soviet and post-Soviet) by the propaganda of the complementary agendas of Soviet nationalities policy and Tajik nationalism, so that the tail often wags the dog. In most scholarly writing on Persian literature and cultural history (of Iran and India as well as Central Asia) the adjective is usually construed as “Perso-Tajik” or “Tajik-Persian” poetry, historiography, etc., in an atopical and anachronistic application of the national ethnonym to the entire Persianate world: e.g., persidsko-tadžikskaia leksikografiia v Indii ‘Perso-Tajik lexicography in India’. This development was due largely to an understandable attempt by influential Tajik writers such as Ṣadr-al-Din ʿAyni and Bobojon Ghafurov, co-opted into the Soviet enterprise, to use Moscow’s own divide-and-rule nationalities policy against Moscow and Tashkent, in order to forestall assimilation of the Tajiks into Stalin’s Greater Russia or (a more immediate threat) Turkic Uzbekistan.

Tajik nationalism (enhanced since independence) has also rejected the derivation of tājik from tāzik ‘Arab,’ on grounds of outraged amour-propre, and proposes instead an etymology of the form: tāj ‘crown’ + adjectival –i + substantivizer –k = tāj-i-k ‘crowned one’ (Aynī, p. 16; Yaʿqub-šāh, p. 33). This laudatory folk etymology was evidently familiar in the nineteenth century (it was accepted by W. Justi: Grundriss I, p. 402), and has been endorsed officially by the inclusion of a representation of a crown on the flag of Tajikistan. Apart from its morphological implausibility (tāji? ‘crown-related, coronal’ is attested only as a poetical pseudonym [see Dehḵodā]; -k is not suffixed in any capacity to relative ‑i), the proposal is untenable on semantic and sociolinguistic grounds: *tāj-i(k) is an obscure and unlikely invention (as an autonym, let alone a heteronym), given the existence of well-formed compounds such as tājdār ‘crowned, sovereign’ and tājvar ‘crowned, regal (one)’.

The efforts of such as ʿAyni and Ḡafurov to raise the linguistic and cultural consciousness of Tajiks under the ambivalent Soviet nationalities policy were nevertheless a factor in stemming the historical process of assimilation (via bilingualism to Turcophone status, and thence to Uzbek “nationality”; cf. Schaeder, p. 16); the nominal Tajik population of the Republic rose from 871,532 in 1924 (Barthold, in EI¹ 4, p. 599a) to 3,186,000 in 1989. The process that replaced it, i.e., assimilation via bilingualism to monolingualism in Russian, has similarly been blocked in Tajikistan by the Language Law and other Iranophile cultural policies since independence.


Mzia K. Andronikashvili, Očerki po iransko-gruzinskim iazykovym vzaimootnošeniiam/ Studies in Iranian-Georgian Linguistic Contacts [Russian and English], Tbilisi, 1966.

S. Aynī, “Ma”noi kalimai tojik” (1942), abridged reprinting (insert) in Adabiyot va ṣanʿat, Dushanbe, 13 September 1992.

Elizabeth E. Bacon, Central Asians under Russian Rule. A Study in Culture Change. 2nd Printing, Ithaca, N.Y., 1980.

V. V. Bartol’d, “Tadžiki. Istoricheskii ocherk” [The Tajiks: a historical sketch] in Sočinenie II, 1, Moscow, 1963, pp. 451-68.

Yuri Bregel, “Turko-Mongol influences in Central Asia,” in Turko-Persia in Historical Perspective, ed. R. L. Canfield, Cambridge, 1991, pp. 53-77.

Idem, An Historical Atlas of Central Asia, Leiden, 2003.

Ruy González de Clavijo, Embajada a Tamorlán, ed. F. L. Estrada, Madrid, 1943, 1999.

Moḥammad Dabirsiāqi, “Tāt o Tājik o Tāzik,” Nāmvāra-ye doktor Maḥmud Afšār, 6, Tehran 1991, pp. 3374-421.

History of al-Ṭabarī, XXV tr. Khalid Yahya Blankinship, Albany, N.Y., 1989.

D. N. MacKenzie, “Bājalānī,” BSOAS 18/3, 1956, pp. 418-35; repr. in (and here cited from) Iranica Diversa/David Neil MacKenzie, 2 vols., ed. Carlo G. Cereti and Ludwig Paul, Rome, Vol. II, pp. 409-26.

Yaḥyā Mahyār-e Nawwābi, “Tājik va Tāzik,” in M. Bāgerzāda, ed., Arj-nāma-ye Iraj [Persian festschrift for Iraj Afšār], Vol. 1, Tehran, 1998, pp. 307-10.

Oskar Mann, Die Tâjîk-Mundarten der Provinz Fars. Kürdisch-persische Forschungen, Vol. 1, Berlin, 1909.

Mirzā Šokurzāda, ed., Tājikān dar masir-e tāriḵ, Tehran, 1994 (The first part of the book, pp. 3-323 contains articles on the etymology of the word tājik, including those by ʿAyni, Bartol’d [in Persian translation], and Dabirsiāqi cited above).

Moḥammad Ṣādeq Nāmi Eṣfahāni, Tāriḵ-e Giti-gošāy, ed. S. Nafisi, Tehran, 1938.

Niẓām al-Molk, Siar al-moluk, ed. Hubert Darke, Tehran, 1962.

J. R. Perry, “From Persian to Tajik to Persian: Culture, politics and law reshape a Central Asian language,” NSL.8. Linguistic Studies in the Non-Slavic Languages of the Commonwealth of Independent States and the Baltic Republics, ed. Howard I. Aronson, Chicago Linguistics Society, 1996, pp. 279-305.

Chaim Rabin, Ancient West-Arabian, London, 1951.

Sayf b. Moḥammad b. Yaʿqub al-Haravi, Tāriḵnāma-ye Harāt, ed. M. Z. al-Ṣeddiqi and Ḵān Bahādor Ḵalifa Moḥammad Asad-Allāh, Tehran, 1974.

Hans Heinrich Schaeder, “Türkische Namen der Iranier,” Die Welt des Islams, Sonderband: Festschrift Friedrich Giese, Berlin, 1941, pp. 1-34.

J. B. Segal, “Arabs in Syriac literature before the rise of Islam,” Jerusalem Studies in Arabic and Islam 4, 1984, pp. 89-124.

Shahpur Shahbazi, “The Khwadāy-Nāmag,” Acta Iranica 30: Yarshater Festschrift (1990), pp. 208-29.

W. Skalmowski, “Old Persian parθava-,” Immigration and Emigration within the Ancient Near East. Festschrift E. Lipinski, eds. K. van Lerberghe and A. Schoors, Leuven 1999, pp. 305-12; repr. in (and here cited from) W. Skalmowski, Studies in Iranian Linguistics and Philology, Cracow (is correct), 2004., pp. 255-61.

W. Sundermann, “An early attestation of the name of the Tajiks,” MedioIranica, ed. W. Skalmowski and A. van Tongerloo, Louvain, 1993, pp. 163-73.

Moḥammad Yusof Vāleh Eṣfahāni, Ḵold-e barin, ed. Mir Hāšem Moḥaddes, Tehran, 1993.

Yusof Ḵāṣṣ-ḥājeb, Kutadgu Bilig [Qutadḡu bilig], ed. Reṣid Rahmeti Arat, Istanbul, 1947.

Yusof-šāh Yaʿqub-šāh, Tājikān: pirāmun-e etnugeniz [The Tajiks: the question of ethnogenesis], Dushanbe, 1992.

(John Perry)

Originally Published: July 20, 2009

Last Updated: July 20, 2009