Ganzhou Uyghur Kingdom

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Ganzhou Uyghur Kingdom

Location of Ganzhou Uyghur Kingdom
CapitalGan Prefecture (Zhangye)
Common languagesOld Uyghur language
Middle Chinese
• Established
• Disestablished
Preceded by
Succeeded by
Uyghur Khaganate
Dingnan Jiedushi
Today part ofChina

The Ganzhou Uyghur Kingdom (traditional Chinese: 甘州回鶻; simplified Chinese: 甘州回鹘; pinyin: Gānzhōu Huíhú), also referred to as the Hexi Uyghurs, was established in 894 around Gan Prefecture in modern Zhangye.[1][2] The kingdom lasted from 894 to 1036; during that time, many of Ganzhou's residents converted to Buddhism.[3]

The Hexi Corridor, located within modern Gansu, was traditionally a Chinese inroad into Central Asia. From the 9th to 11th centuries this area was shared between the Ganzhou Uyghurs and the Guiyi Circuit. By the early 11th century both the Uyghurs and Guiyi Circuit were conquered by the Tangut people of the Western Xia dynasty.[4]

The Ganzhou Uyghur rulers were descended from the House of Yaglakar.


There was a pre-existing community of Uyghurs at Gan Prefecture by 840 at the very latest.

Around the years 881 and 882, Gan Prefecture slipped from the control of the Guiyi Circuit.

In 894 the Uyghurs established the Ganzhou Uyghur Kingdom in Gan Prefecture.

In 910 the Ganzhou Uyghurs attacked the Kingdom of Jinshan (Guiyi).

In 911 the Ganzhou Uyghurs attacked the Kingdom of Jinshan and forced them into an alliance as a lesser partner.

In 916 a Ganzhou Uyghur princess was married to Cao Yijin, governor of the Guiyi Circuit.

In 920 Huaijian Khagan became sickly.

In 924 Huaijian Khagan died and his sons Diyin and Renmei fought over the throne with Diyin coming out on top.

In 925 Cao Yijin led an attack on the Ganzhou Uyghurs and defeated them.

In 926 Diyin died and Aduoyu succeeded him as Shunhua Khagan. Shunhua Khagan married Cao Yijin's daughter.

In 930 Cao Yijin visited the Ganzhou Uyghur court in Gan Prefecture.

In 933 Shunhua Khagan died and Jingqiong succeeded him.

In 961 the Ganzhou Uyghurs accepted the Song dynasty as suzerains.[5]

In 975 Jingqiong died and Yeluohe Mili'e succeeded him.

In 983 Jingqiong died and Lusheng succeeded him.

In 1003 Lusheng died and Zhongshun Baode Khagan succeeded him. The Tanguts attacked the Ganzhou Uyghurs but were defeated.

In 1008 the Ganzhou Uyghurs and Tanguts engaged in combat and the Uyghurs emerged victorious. The Liao dynasty attacked the Ganzhou Uyghurs and defeated them.

In 1009 the Ganzhou Uyghurs captured Liang Prefecture.

In 1010 the Liao dynasty attacked the Ganzhou Uyghurs and defeated them.

In 1016 Zhongshun Baode Khagan died and Huaining Shunhua Khagan succeeded him.

In 1023 Huaining Shunhua Khagan died and Guizhong Baoshun Khagan succeeded him.

In 1026 the Ganzhou Uyghurs were defeated in battle by the Liao dynasty.

In 1028 the Ganhzhou Uyghurs were defeated by the Tanguts. Guizhong Baoshun Khagan died and Baoguo Khagan succeeded him.

In 1036 the Ganzhou Uyghur Kingdom was annexed by the Tanguts. After the destruction of their realm, the Ganzhou Uyghurs migrated west and settled between Dunhuang and the Qaidam Basin, where they came be known as the Yellow Head Uyghurs. They practiced Buddhism and lived as pastoral nomads. Their descendants are today known as the Yugurs.

Modern era[edit]

The modern day descendants of the Ganzhou Uyghurs are known as the Yugur.[6]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Golden 2011, p. 47.
  2. ^ Millward 2007, p. 46.
  3. ^ Bosworth 2000, p. 70.
  4. ^ Bell, Connor Joseph (2008). The Uyghur Transformation in Medieval Inner Asia: From Nomadic Turkic Tradition to Cultured Mongol Administrators. ProQuest. pp. 65–69. ISBN 9780549807957. Retrieved 21 December. Check date values in: |accessdate= (help)
  5. ^
  6. ^ Manichaeism and Nestorian Christianity, H. J. Klimkeit, History of Civilizations of Central Asia, Vol.4, Part 2, 70


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