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Regions with significant populations
 Mongolia 10,000 (2010)[1]
Tibetan Buddhism, Sunni Islam, Shamanism
Related ethnic groups
Mongols, especially Oirats

The Khoton people are an ethnic group in Mongolia. Most live in Uvs Province, especially in Tarialan, Naranbulag and Ulaangom. While the Khotons spoke a Turkic language until the 18th century, most now speak the Dörbet dialect of the Oirat people. Khotons often avoid mainstream Mongolian written culture.[2][incomplete short citation]

There were officially about 6,100 Khotons in 1989.[2][incomplete short citation]

History and culture[edit]

The Khotons are reputed to be descended from members of Uighur and Kazakh tribes.

Khoton or Khotong was originally a Turkic language term for a Central Asian Muslim community.[2][incomplete short citation] In Inner Mongolia (China) it designates members of the Hui people, or Chinese language-speaking Muslims.

The Khotons settled in Mongolia after 1753, when their leader, the Dörbet Prince Tseren Ubashi, surrendered to the Qing Dynasty and the Khotons were deported from Central Asia by the Dzungar Oirats.[2][incomplete short citation]

Unlike most Mongolians, Khotons follow a syncretic religion retaining some aspects of Islam, and traditionally avoid intermarriage with other ethnic groups.[2][incomplete short citation]


The Khotons of Western Mongolia, 1979.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Монгол улсын ястангуудын тоо, байршилд гарч буй өөрчлөлтyyдийн асуудалд" М.Баянтөр, Г.Нямдаваа, З.Баярмаа pp.57-70
  2. ^ a b c d e Encyclopaedia of Mongolia and the Mongol Empire, c. 2004