Siberian Bukharans

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The Siberian Bukharans (self-designation: Bukharlyk, Sart) were an ethnographic and sociocultural group in Siberia. Their origins were from the Khanate of Bukhara and they constituted a significant part of the Siberian Tatars.

Ethnically they consisted of Uzbeks, Tajiks, Uyghurs and in lesser degree Kazakhs and Karakalpaks. The main languages were Chagatai and Farsi. They were merchants from the Khanate of Bukhara and started to settle in the area in the 17th century after the Russian conquest of Siberia.

Their name as an ethnic group — Bukharan could be found in the documents until the early 1930s. Now that name is used to refer to people from the city of Bukhara.

Also, the term "Bukharan" was formerly used in Russia to refer to any caravan merchant from Central Asia, since the Russians did not have a clear understanding of the geography and peoples further south.


The Siberian Bukharans maintained their own identity and were quite numerous. They numbered 23,700 in 1926. Their main bases of settlement were Tobolsk, Tara and Tyumen.

In the Tobolsk Governorate there were several Bukharan towns in different uyezds. In Tarsk uyezd of the Tobolsk Governorate Bukharan Town (Russian: Бухарская волость), where the population was primarily Bukharans, existed until the early 20th century.

In Tyumen there is a raion that is officially named Bukharan Settlement (Russian: Бухарская слобода). There are some settlements in the Omsk Oblast which were founded by Bukharans.


  • Wixman, Ronald. The Peoples of the USSR (Armonk: Sharpe, 1984) p. 32