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Bohtan Principality circa 1835.

Bohtan (also Buhtan, Bokhti) was a medieval Kurdish principality in the Ottoman Empire centered on the town of Jazirah ibn 'Omar (modern Cizre also known as Cizîra Botan (Jazira Botan)) in southeastern Anatolia. Bohtanis were an ancient and prominent branch of the Kurds that claimed descent from the Islamic General and Sahaba Khalid ibn al-Walid. Some minor branches followed Yazidism but Sunni Islam predominated in the 14th century.[1]


The Bokhtis are mentioned by Herodotus as inhabiting eastern Anatolia and forming thirteenth Achaemenid district (together with Armenia).

In the early 8th century Bukhtis and Bajnawi Kurds ruled the area surrounding Sinjar and Jazira mountains known under name Zozan by Arab geographers. Yaqoot Hamawi describes their residing area to be from Ikhlat to Salmas which included many strongholds belonging to Bokhtis; he also mentioned town of Jardhakil as their capital.

The emirate lost its independence and was directly governed by the Ottomans in 1847 following the massacres of Badr Khan.


The main branches of Bukhtis were Brasbi, Dasni and Sindi. According to Sharafkhan Bidlisi in his time few Bukhtis followed Yazidi faith, furthermore he states that previously Bukhtis were among the Kurdish groups who had a large Yazidi branch.[2]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Nelida Fuccaro, The other Kurds: Yazidis in colonial Iraq, 256 pp., Palgrave Macmillan, 1999. (see p.10)
  2. ^ Keo - Religion Archived February 22, 2007, at the Wayback Machine

External links[edit]