Talk:Hephthalite Empire/Archive 1

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How can a tribe that emerged in northern chinese province of Shanxi be Iranic? The only dispute that can take place here is that only between Turkic peoples and Mongolians.-QAZAQ

Pretty interesting while here Hephthalites are linked to Huns and at the Huns section, Huns are claimed to be Turkic origin. So, Hephthalites are Turkic origin or Indo-European? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs) 06:40, 27 June 2006

Hephthalites were composed of three ethnic units. One (Xiyon) is of undetermined ethnicity, one (Uar) was surely proto-mongolic, and their ruling (Haital) clans were indisputably Indo-European. 10:29, 3 September 2006 (UTC)

Also remember that this is pretty much the same area that Indo-European tribes like the Yue-Chi (Tocharians?), Massagetae, Sakas, and other tribes had dwelled only a few centuries before. It's entirely possible that some of their remnants later became the Hepthal ruling elite. And as the above editor mentioned, the Hepthalites had some elements in their coalition that included Turkic and Mongolian tribes. -- Thomas Lessman (talk) 20:33, 16 November 2007 (UTC)

Off course, if there is something indisputable, it is that ruling elite is always Indo-European! Read the article you nazipedians it says quite contrary, Indo-European bulk with possibly nomadic turkic ruling elements. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:22, 26 November 2009 (UTC)

I support the idea of Indo-european, but not the rulling party. its more likely that the rulling party is of Altaic origion, and the local population overwhelmingly speak Indo-europeans. although they are called the white Huns but only little relationship between these two people. The ruling party may speak a language highly related with Turk, but themselves are not of the Turk origin. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 11:01, 21 January 2011 (UTC)

This claim is not supported in scholastic literature. Besides that, we are speaking of more than 1400 years ago. The origin and language of the Ashina - the first tribe that bore the name "Turk" - is highly disputed. See Peter B. Golden, An Introduction to the History of the Turkic Peoples, p. 121-122: "On the basis of the available data, it is unclear whether the A-shih-na were originally speakers of a language other than Turkic. It is certainly a possibility that should not be excluded. Clearly, they were profoundly influenced by their Iranian and Tokharian neighbors. As Kljastornyji and Kivsic point out, itis hardly accidental that the first Chinese envoy sent to Bumin in 545 was a Sogdian. Significantly, Sogdian merchants also were active among the Northern T'ieh-le, trying to create a counterbalance to the Jou-Jan. Subsequently, Sogdians were present in the Eastern and Western Qaganal courts and played important political, cultural and economic roles." Or Carter Vaughn Findley, The Turks in World History, p. 19: "The founders of the Türk Empire, Istemi and Bumin, both had non-Turkish names [...] Far from leading to a pure national essence, the search for Turkic origins leads to a multiethnic and multilingual steppe milieu." And p. 39: "The linguistically non-Turkic name A-shih-na probably comes from of the Iranian languages of Central Asia and means blue." Tajik (talk) 13:29, 4 February 2011 (UTC)

Cleanup request[edit]

Statements with question marks in the article need to be resolved. -- Beland 09:48, 7 August 2005 (UTC)

I am no expert but I have spent the last 15 years researching the origins and effects of the Hephthalites (I have been too busy on this to look at their fate yet). But my time is limited, so I can only do a little at a time. Also it will be difficult because people editing with a little knowledge in between my edits can be worse than people editing with no knowledge. E.G. Linguistic affiliation has no baring on physical appearance -a nation can look more mongoloid than anything else and yet speak an indo-european toungue. E.G. Info gleamed from coinage can be a good guide, assuming the coin cataloguer really knows what he/she dealing with and isn't just in it for the business and can't tell the difference between Kushan, Kidarite, Hephthalite, Alchon, Nezak, Uar, and Hunas.

This gentlman makes a good attempt to surmise. but is not free from mistakes and generalizations. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs) 23:08, 24 August 2005


Should this be in Category:Huns? It is now, but I'm not sure that's correct, since the White Huns were not necessarily Huns per se. --Saforrest 15:18, 22 November 2005 (UTC)

Hephthalite may have been Hazaras ancestors[edit]

Hazara ethnic people of Afghanistan were unknown to the world before because of Pashton suppression on them in last 200 years. and they were completly kept in dark, and they are still unkown to the world.

Hazara people has a very rich distint culture from other people in Afghanistan. They are proud, talented, hardworker and trusthworthy. There are claims that they are descendents of Gengis khan army, i beleive that is completly wrong and baseless. When Gengis khan arrived in Bamiyan in 12 century, Bamiayn locals resisted fiercley. The people of Bamiyan were like central asian as like Hazara looks at that time.

There are claims Hephthalite were Tajiks. Tajiks people distint come to existince in 10 century. How could they have been rulers in at that time. The same area were controled by Kushans. Then persian sassanid moved in and destroyed kushan empire in 2AD century. Tajiks of Tajikistan and Afghanistan are those who come in central asia with persian empire expansion over centuries.

Hazara people sites

—Preceding unsigned comment added by Jaghouri (talkcontribs) 14:56, 3 August 2006

hazaras are a mongolian people who settled in afghanistan during the mongol invasions. they have no connection to the hephthalites.Khosrow II 14:28, 10 August 2006 (UTC)
Mr. Khosrow, Hazaras are commonly known to be monglolian. Thats was evil British proganda tool against Hazara people. British installed monarchy in Afghanistan and waged war through monarchy against other ethnic groups in Afghanistan. As a result Hazara who were making 67% of total Afghanistan population, lost 60% of their population and lost lots of their land. It is started about 150 years to this day Hazaras and Pashtuns are bitter enemy in Afghanitan.

Another thing you should remember when Gengis khan arrived in Bamyan, Hazaristan capital, mongol armies faced fierce resistance and Gengis Khan grandon killed there. Gengis Khan ordered the city to be completly destroyed. The residents of Bamyan had also asian looks like mongols at the time before mongol arrival. No other ethnic group inhabit there with asian look at the region except Hazara people.

visit this website to understand more about Ethnic groups sttruggle in Afghanistan in the last 250 years: http:// —Preceding unsigned comment added by Jaghouri (talkcontribs) 06:07, 19 August 2006

Its true, the Pashtun are actually the descendants of the Persians according to linguistics. Kaz 15:39, 3 September 2006 (UTC)
Some historian claims Pashtun are descendets of Lost Tribes of Isreal. It may be true when you consider them in their behaviour. Pashtun are very relegious, backward etc.—Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs) 06:27, 8 September 2006
What are you trying to say? Kaz 18:26, 11 September 2006 (UTC)

Search for Pashtuns origins on the net, you will find half historians claiming Pashtuns to be ancestors of lost tribes of Isrealets and other half of the historians claim Pashtuns to be of Aryan race. Have a throughly look at Pashtun life and culture in this day, it will give you an idea where really they come from. Iranians claim to be from Aryan race, It is hardly belevieble to accept Pashtuns and Persians as one race.

Hazaras are most likely descendant of Mongols (there is nothing wrong with as I know many Hazaras and they are the best people I have met). But Hephtalites were not Hazaras. Also Pashtuns are a separate Iranian group and not necessary persian (tajiks). They speak Eastern Iranian language. There are some recent evidences that support Hephtalites being Pashtun. --alidoostzadeh 07:47, 5 September 2006 (UTC)
Hazara Vocabulary and DNA is proto-mongolic, and so it is anachronistic to call them descendants of the Mongols. They are the descendants of the Kidarite dynasty (who themselves came from the proto-Mongolic Huá (滑) who came under the control of the Rouran) who had conquered the Xionites in the early IVth century.Kaz 19:36, 11 September 2006 (UTC)

Its nonsense to link Hazara with Hephthalite, there is no evidence here. what i read is Hazara people spoke Mongolian up until the 16th century. Hephthalite have other name known as "white huns" which is a pretty good indication that they are white people whose culture are identical with Huns( only apply to the rulling party) as we know the major part of Huns moved further west. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 11:16, 21 January 2011 (UTC)

Reportage vs Propaganda[edit]

I have noticed some hurt feelings starting to pop up over this article because of clearly nationalistic prides being hurt. Could we all please try to step out of ourselves and our nationalistic upbringings whatever thay may have been in order to look at the truth objectively. It is not good to get uppity and dispute things just because it goes against the official line adopted by whatever political party has most sway at any one particular time. This is what caused truth to suffer under the Nazis. Reporters have to be removed from politics, otherwise we simply become part of the propaganda machines.Kaz 16:42, 12 September 2006 (UTC)

Accuracy Dispute[edit]

The factual accuracy and neutrality are quite different issues. If there exists factual inaccuracy this should be proven first in the talk/discussion page, before putting the tag. Therefore, i'm removing the tag and replacing it with "POV-check" tag. E104421 15:42, 3 November 2006 (UTC)

Here is the exact quote from the source: The Language

There are numerous debates about Hephthalite language. Most scholars believe it is Iranian for the Pei Shih states that the language of the Hephthalites differs from those of the Juan-juan (Mongoloid) and of the "various Hu" (Turkic); however there are some think the Hephthalites spoke Mongol tongues like the Hsien-pi (3rd century) and the Juan-juan (5th century) and the Avars (6th-9th century). According to the Buddhist pilgrims Sung Yun and Hui Sheng, who visited them in 520, they had no script, and the Liang shu specifically states that they have no letters but use tally sticks. At the same time there is numismatic and epigraphic evidence to show that a debased form of the Greek alphabet was used by the Hephthalites. Since the Kushan was conquested by Hephthalites, it is possible they retained many aspects of Kushan culture, including the adoption of the Greek alphabet.

I hope this clarifies things, I taking the article back to its previous version.Khosrow II 15:57, 3 November 2006 (UTC)
I formatted the section to match the source. There should be no more dispute anymore.Khosrow II 16:00, 3 November 2006 (UTC)

  • You should give a reliable sources with its full adress, in order to make it verifiable. One more note, please write your comments more clearly, not in pov style. You erased other information given in the article and pushed your version. This is not the correct way of neutralizing the article. If you check the Britannica, what you'll see as follows:

Hephthalite from Encyclopædia Britannica

"also spelled Ephthalite, member of a people important in the history of India and Persia during the 5th and 6th centuries AD. According to Chinese chronicles they were originally a tribe living to the north of the Great Wall and were known as Hoa or Hoa-tun. Elsewhere they were called White Huns or Hunas. They had no cities or system of writing, lived in felt tents, and practiced polyandry.

In the 5th and 6th centuries the Hephthalites repeatedly invaded Persia and India. In the middle of the 6th century under the attacks of the Turks they ceased to exist as a separate people and were probably absorbed in the surrounding population. Nothing is known of their language."

Regards E104421 16:55, 3 November 2006 (UTC)

The article sources, which has a link, says the language is thought to be Iranian by most scholars. Also, Brittanica does not have a final say on any issue, and secondary sources are just as good. I conformed the section to the source listed.Khosrow II 17:04, 3 November 2006 (UTC)
Of course, but the language link is weak. You should not push iranian claim. You already erased other sourced arguments given there. E104421 17:15, 3 November 2006 (UTC)
I didnt know this was Iranian: [1] Stop your POV push. The information in there was sourced, yours is not.Khosrow II 18:03, 3 November 2006 (UTC)
  • Although i do not think that Khosrow II is kind enough to read or understand my comments, i'm writing for other wikipedians visiting this page. I never edited the article (no contribution to the text), but first commented about the factual accuracy here, then added the POV-check tag. After all, i observed the pov-push, reverts, accusations, deletion/removal of sentences in the article, i first commented and explained clearly in the talk/discussion page, then reverted the article (added the removed information back). The push is quite clearly seen from the bold text comment here, although the author of this statement claims the contrary (see just above: "I didnt know this was Iranian"). If this approach continues, i shall not relent this incivility. Regards E104421 18:53, 3 November 2006 (UTC)
Indeed, the origin of the Hephthalites is not known. The old theory that they spoke the Bactrian language has been disproved by the documents of Bactria, ancient writings from the Hephthalite period found in Afghanistan. The documents also attest the use of Turkish royal titles, such as Khaqan and Yabghu. However, this is not a proof for the "Turkic theory" either, because royal titles do not necessairly point to the ethnic origin of a people. Besides that, "Yabghu" is not a Turkish word but - most likely - a Tokharian word.
All in one, their origin is not known. What we know for sure is that they differed from their Mongolian and Turkic neighbours by their looks. Ancient Chinese chronicles clearly differenciate between Turkic/Mongol and Hephthalites, putting the Hephthalites in the same cluster as their Indo-European neighbours.
They were probably a large confederation of different Central Asian peoiples - nomadic and urban - at some times ruled by an Iranian-speaking elite and later by a Turkic-speaking elite.
Tājik 19:32, 3 November 2006 (UTC)
  • You haven't got a clue what's going on, do you? E104421 19:40, 3 November 2006 (UTC)

E104421, what? An anon edited the article making some claim and put in unsourced information and you backed him up. Then I reverted it to the old version while making it comform with the source, yet you still reverted. Anyone can look at the edit history, I have nothing to hide. The source listed clearly states that most scholars believe them to have spoken an Iranian language. It seems as though you are the one not reading what others are writing. The information I removed, was unsourced POV by an anon, who you obviously have some connection to. E104421 says that we are trying to push the Iranian POV, yet I clearly pointed out to him that the source of the information was not Iranian at all. E104421 false accusations and denials is clear evidence that he made a mistake and is not trying to cover it up.Khosrow II 20:24, 3 November 2006 (UTC)

@ E104421: I am referring to 2 articles of the Encyclopaedia Iranica: Hephthalites and Huns. The article of the Britannica is old, not really good, and in many parts not enough. Tājik 20:28, 3 November 2006 (UTC)
Also, it should be pointed out that E104421 is also revert warring on other Hun articles, one in which he broke 3RR.Khosrow II 20:34, 3 November 2006 (UTC)
Who is Tajik? A literary or encyclopedia critic? If he is, what are his evaluation criterias about Britannica. Actually, he is right about one point. Yes Britannica is an old referance source, the oldest and largest English-language general encyclopaedia. The Encyclopædia Britannica has been published since 1768. That is to say, Britannica is trying to illuminate you and likes you since 1768. I did not understand your fixing that Britannica is not really good. What are your evaluation criterias, or is this an evaluation or an only pleonasm? I wonder my empyreal and fine scholar tajik, which parts are not enough in Britannica. I request, please state these deficiencies and I will report these deficiencies to Britannica. Maybe Britannica editors will be enlightened about these subjects from the world's number one and magnificent source of information since 1996: encyclopedia(?) of iranica. --Karcha 23:34, 3 November 2006 (UTC)
I did not say that "Britannica is not good", but that the specific article "Hephthalites" in the Britannica is not good. Besides that, we have better and more authoritative sources available, most of all the Encyclopaedia Iranica and the Encyclopaedia of Islam, both being written and edited by more than 500 leading scholars worldwide.
When it comes to Islamic or Iranian history, these two works have priority and a special status - they are superior to Britannica or any other general encyclopaedia. The Encyclopaedia Britannica is not specialized on Iranian or Islamic history, has usually very short articles, sometimes written by no-names.
The Iranica article is written by professor A.D.H. Bivar, member of the Royal Asiatic Society (RAS), and has an authoritative status. The article of the Encyclopaedia of Islam, written by the same author, clearly says that the term Akhun is a later fabrication - the Iranica articles do not even mention it.
As for the origin of the Hephthalites, professor Bivar says
  • "... According to [Procopius'] testimony, the "Ephthalitai" were a tribe of Huns and were also called "White Huns." Procopius points out, however, that they did not mix with the other known Huns, that they differed from them in their looks and lifestyle, and that they lived away from the others further north from the Persians. Unlike the other Huns, he said, the Hephthalites were not nomads; they had a king and possessed a well-organized state equal to that of the Romans or Persians. ..."
So, all in one, a Turkic or Mongolian origin - as well as a Turkic name - seem to be extremely unlikely. They did not have Mongolian looks (thus not Turkic), they were not nomads (thus not Turkic), and they had a well-organized kingdom comparable to Persians and Romans (thus not Turkic).
Tājik 17:50, 5 November 2006 (UTC)

Encyclopedia of Islam[edit]

This source can be a credible source but not in historical arguments. It's a religious source, not a historical source. The informations which are sourced by this source must be remove...--Karcha 18:16, 4 November 2006 (UTC)
Encyclopaedia of Islam is not what you think it is, calm down. Encyclopaedia of Islam is an encyclopaedia regarding the history of post Islamic invasions of Asia.Khosrow II 18:19, 4 November 2006 (UTC)
Of course it discuss the history of post islamic era. However its evaluations are in islamic viewpoint and all religions are dogmatic not scientific. Therefore islamic encyclopedia is not a reliable source.--Karcha 18:36, 4 November 2006 (UTC)
Read the EI Wikipedia page.Khosrow II 18:40, 4 November 2006 (UTC)

Ak Hun[edit]

Ephtalite is known as 'White Huns' in English Literature (see Columbia Encyclopedia), and 'Ak' means 'White' in Turkish language. So Ak Hun is right term. Please give up this pan-iranist vandalism.--Karcha 02:55, 5 November 2006 (UTC)

See the Encyclopaedia of Islam: the term "Akhun" is evidently a later fabrication. IF the term WERE original Turkish, it would have been something like "Aqhünä" or something like that, but this is not the case. The modern Turkish language and its special phonology (which clearly distinguishes it from the old and original Turkic languages) emerged out of the hybrid population of Anatolia starting in the 14th century. It has nothing to do with the Hephthalites, and so, the modern Turkish word "Akhun" is a later fabrication and has no place in this article. Tājik 11:48, 5 November 2006 (UTC)

  • There is nothing wrong in writing the translations which is common in many Wiki articles. Furthermore, Columbia Encyclopedia is a reliable source. In addition, Encyclopedia Britannica also uses the name White Huns. I shall revert the article to add this information. As i already mentioned above, check Britannica, which is a reliable source. E104421 13:37, 5 November 2006 (UTC)
As Tajik pointed out, it was a later fabrication. Encyclopaedia of Islam is also a very reliable source.Khosrow II 15:59, 5 November 2006 (UTC)
It's not a later fabrication, what about "white huns"? Actually "white huns" is a later fabrication. Turks were living on these lands as stated in Britannica. See above the Britannica. Turkish name is more related than the English one. E104421 17:43, 5 November 2006 (UTC)
This is the ENGLISH Wikipedia. Take your "Ak hun" to the Turkish Wikipedia. THIS article is written in English and only presentes the HISTORICAL names as well as the modern English term. We can't just put all kinds of later fabrications and translations into the article, because certain Pan-Turkists feel insulted. The Hephthalites had NOTHING - absolutely NOTHING - to do with modern Turks. They were not called "Ak hun", and "Ak hun" was NOT their self-designation. ALL contemporary sources - Persian, Indian, and Roman - called them "Hephthalites" (or some other name comparable to that). "White Hun" is the English translation of a word mentioned by Procopius of Caesaria, and even he himself had to make clear that his "White Huns" were clearly different from the other "Huns". The word "Akhun" has no importance in this article. Tājik 17:54, 5 November 2006 (UTC)
If this is your rule for English Wikipedia, take your iranian pushes to iranian wikipedia. Sources other than English are also valid here. Furthermore, now we have to rename it as "White Huns" cause this is the most commonly used name. In all English reliable encyclopedias (Britannica, Columbia,...etc), it's written as "White Huns". We should change the name of the title to "White Huns" because this is English wikipedia. There is nothing wrong writing the other common names, this does not make them related with these people. You're considering to make the White Huns Iranian in this way, although there is nothing known about their language or ethnicity as stated in Britannica and Columbia. After your edits, this article is not neutral anymore. I'm adding the neutrality tag. I'll check the encyclopedia of islam also cause i'm not sure about the factual accuracy of the article after your edits and comments. Regards E104421 18:07, 5 November 2006 (UTC)
"Iranian pushes"?! Which "Iranian pushes" are you talking about?! Two authoritative sources - Encyclopaedia Iranica and Encyclopaedia of Islam (you need a PW and loggin for the second one; the CD version costs more than $1000) - have been presented, and NONE of them uses your "Ak Hun", the later one even makes clear that it is a fabricated word.
And it's funny that you Pan-Turkists now suddely turn to Columbia Encyclopaedia and Britannica. In case of Timur and Babur, you openly rejected these works because both of them state that Timur and Babur were Mongols and not Turks [2][3]. And now, you suddenly change your opinion and reject authoritative sources (EI and EIr) and want to force the version of Britannica.
Tājik 20:37, 5 November 2006 (UTC)
I'm saying Britannica and Encyclopedia Columbia, you persa-porsa wikipedians are saying islamic and iranic encyclopedias(?). I could not argue which ones more authoritative. Actually I don't have to try to explain to you. Because there is a huge cultural difference between you and me because I'm feeding up with scientific sources like britannica, columbia etc... however you are feeding up with dogmatic and nationalistic sources (like iranic and islamic encyclopedias(?). Therefore you don't understand me and my writings. Do You?--Karcha 21:01, 5 November 2006 (UTC)

Karcha, you obviously do not have any clue as to what Ecyclopaedia Iranica and Encyclopaedia of Islam are. I suggest next time you do research before making your ludicrous claims and speeches.Khosrow II 21:28, 5 November 2006 (UTC)

@ Karcha: only the fact that you do not know the Encyclopaedia of Islam or the Encyclopaedia Iranica proves that you are in absolutely no position to imporove this article. Calling the Encyclopaedia Iranica "nationalistic and dogmatic" shows that you have absolutely no idea what you are talking about ... and with that, you insult more than 400 leading scholars worldwide of which only a tiny minority are Iranians. It shows that you have no respect for those scholars, and that you are in here to falsefy history and push for a wrong and nationalistic POV. Btw, just for your information (since you seem to be an amateur): this is what leading scholars and professors say about the Encyclopaedia Iranica: "quotations from scholars worldwide".
In fact, this is the weakest element of Wikipedia: mostly uneducated amateurs who have no knoeledge of what they are talking about try to push for nationalistic POV. Wikipedia deffinitly needs more qualified admins.
Tājik 21:35, 5 November 2006 (UTC)
Hey, i'm bored these perso-nazis. They always say same things. Articles are not developing. They only read 2 books. Iranica and islamica. They do not know anything other than these. I wonder why do these sources always take iranians sides in all subjects, like AkHuns, Mewlana, Haci Bektash Veli, Azerbaijan,...etc. I'm warning admins. There are perso-nazi propagandas in several wikipedia articles...--Karcha 21:58, 5 November 2006 (UTC)
I'm not a registered user, but I do frequent Wikipedia and edit pages from time to time. In the case at hand, relative to the Hepthalites, it seems to me that Karcha is anti-Iranian (i.e., anti-Persian), and it appears he's simply bashing anything that might exalt the people of Iran and/or their Persian history. I'm starting to wonder if he's a fundamentalist sympathizer. -- Mike M.

Introduction Section[edit]

The concise scientific neutral information with references about White Huns or Hephthalites is compiled from Encyclopedias Britannica and Columbia for the introduction section.

"White Huns or Hephthalites, people of obscure origins, possibly of Tibetan or Turkish stock. They were called Ephthalites by the Greeks, and Hunas by the Indians. There is no definite evidence that they are related to the Huns Huns.

The White Huns were an agricultural people with a developed set of laws. They were first mentioned by the Chinese, who described them (A.D. 125) as living in Dzungaria. They displaced the Scythians and conquered Sogdiana and Khorasan before 425. They crossed (425) the Syr Darya (Jaxartes) River and invaded Persia. Held off at first by Bahram Gur, they later (483–85) succeeded in making Persia tributary. After a series of wars (503–13) they were driven out of Persia, permanently lost the offensive, and were finally (557) defeated by Khosru I. The White Huns also invaded India and succeeded in extending their domain to include the Ganges valley. They temporarily overthrew the Gupta empire but were eventually driven out of India in 528 by a Hindu coalition. Although in Persia they had little effect, in India the White Huns influenced society by altering the caste system and disrupting the hierarchy of the ruling families. Some of the White Huns remained in India as a distinct group."

"also spelled Ephthalite, member of a people important in the history of India and Persia dring the 5th and 6th centuries AD. According to Chinese chronicles they were originally a tribe living to the north of the Great Wall and were known as Hoa or Hoa-tun. Elsewhere they were called White Huns or Hunas. They had no cities or system of writing, lived in felt tents, and practiced polyandry.

In the 5th and 6th centuries the Hephthalites repeatedly invaded Persia and India. In the middle of the 6th century under the attacks of the Turks they ceased to exist as a separate people and were probably absorbed in the surrounding population. Nothing is known of their language."

I think that's a really good introduction section based on reliable sources and also easily verifiable. I hope you to stop the revert wars and try to contribute in a neutral way. There is no good in pushing pov forks and edit wars. Regards to all. E104421 13:35, 6 November 2006 (UTC)
One more note, the former ambiguous unsourced introduction is moved to a more relevent place, the etymology section. RegardsE104421 15:15, 6 November 2006 (UTC)
I support this new introduction section. And not only me but also scientific resources like Encyclopædia Britannica and Columbia Encyclopedia support this new section. Yes, there maybe different sources which say different things especially when these sources are "nationalistic and dogmatic". However, in this case we have to choose one: Scientific or dogmatic-nationalistic. I'm choosing scientific and support this new section. As from now we can develop article in a scientific way...--Karcha 15:18, 6 November 2006 (UTC)
Superior sources - most of all the Encyclopaedia Iranica (written by Professor Bivar) - have been presented, and thus, the new introduction cannot be accepted. The belief that the Hephthalites were "Turks" or "Tibetians" is at least 50 years old, and has been disproved since then many times - especially after the discovery of the Bactrian documents.
I know that - especially for Turkish nationalists - it'S very hard to accept authoritative sources such as the Encyclopaedia Iranica. And they even depant themselvs by calling leading scholars, such as Mary Boyce or Richard Nelson Frye "dogmatic Iranian nationalists" ... But this does not change facts.
As for the "polyandry" mentioned even in Britannica, it is a clear reference to a NON-Turkic origin (most likely of Eastern Iranian origin), because polyandry was part of the Non-Persian Iranian culture in what is now eastern Afghanistan (see Frye, Dr. Richard N., "The Heritage of Central Asia", pp. 174-9)
Tājik 17:03, 6 November 2006 (UTC)
My dear perso-reverter tajik. Actually i could not understand what are you trying to do. Your Bactrian documents link is not related with white huns, there is nothing about white huns in that article or document. So, what are you trying to do as giving irrelated links? I am reading them and i suggest you to read them too before putting this. Also, if you think the belief that the Hephthalites were "Turks" or "Tibetians" is at least 50 years old, you have to report that to Britannica and Columbia Encyclopedias.--Karcha 17:30, 6 November 2006 (UTC)
My dear uneducated Turkish ultra-nationalist "Karcha" who believes that the American orinetalist Richard Nelson Frye is a "Persian dogmatic nationalist":
The link to the Bactrian documents was ment to educate you that there are ancient documents found in what is now Afghanistan dealing with the Hephthalite period, since I know that you have almost no knowledge about the Hephthalites.
The Britannica article is a very short article, not even written by a scholar. It contradicts almost all scholarly sources (from Enoki and Frye, to Bivar, Gökalp, or Minorsky) and gives no references to secondary literature.
Let me quote Prof. Schottky in Encyclopaedia Iranica:
  • "... Altheim (III, 1961, p. 7) viewed the Hephthalites as the original tribe of the Huns, from which the European Huns had split off. In addition, he also assumed a Turkish origin for all these tribes (Altheim, I, 1959, pp. 45 ff.). However, this far too simplistic perspective has been succeeded by a more discriminating view based on Robert Göbl's research. A prominent characteristic, which they shared with all other Central Asian power constellations, was their ethnic mixture, among which the elite was said to be Iranian, or at least expressed itself as such through its coinage (Göbl, 1978, p. 107). It is noteworthy that the tribes in question deliberately called themselves "Huns" in order to frighten their enemies (Frye, pp. 345-46). ..."
Tājik 17:48, 6 November 2006 (UTC)
  • The introduction section is well-edited from internationally recognized reference sources Britannica and Columbia Encyclopedias. The information about them already given above. These references reflect the works of the mainstream of academicians. There are also other sources such as Turkish Encyclopedia and Iranian Encyclopedia. However, to prevent neutrality questions, it's always better and safer to use the world-wide known sources like Britannica and Columbia. The article now has a good starting point, the introduction section. Instead of reverting and edit warring, please try to contribute neutrally and positively to the other parts, of course, based on reliable sources. Regards to all. E104421 19:41, 6 November 2006 (UTC)
I have added Classic Encyclopedia, another scientific and worldwide recognized (except for tajik khosrow) sources. If these are not enough i can find more "scientific" resource. Actually this is not difficult. Because there is only one true in these non-dogmatic and non-nationalistic sources. Ok, you will again shout as iranica, islamica, iranica, islamica... Actually it's no matter. You are my neighbours, if you are happy with those dogmatic sources i'm happy too...--Karcha 20:25, 6 November 2006 (UTC)
You do not even know the meaning of "scientific" ... Countless leading scholars worldwide accept the Encyclopaedia of Islam and Encyclopaedia Iranica as authoritative sources whzen it comes to Iranian and Islamic history. Britannica is a general encyclopaedia and is NOT specialized on Islamic or Iranian history. I know that it is very hard for Turkish extremists to accept this simple fact.
Iranica and the EI are the sources ... whoever wants to disprove these 2 scholarly works needs to present REALLY GOOD literiture (for example special scholarly works on the shitory of the Hephthalites). You have not presented ONE SINGLE scholarly work specialized on Hephthalite history. All you did was quoting general encyclopaedias that are NOT written by scholars.
You are even purposely ignoring scholarly works, such as the "The Heritage of Central Asia" by Prof. Richard Frye (Harvard University professor) or "On the history of the Hephthalites" by Japanese professor Enoki (THE expert on Hephthalite history).
Tājik 21:04, 6 November 2006 (UTC)
You will never amaze me. I wonder one thing. White Huns were destroyed in the years of 557. As i know that period is pre-islamic period. In this case, what is the relationship between islam and Ak Huns? I wonder. Please Illuminate us my best-reverter tajik...--Karcha 21:31, 6 November 2006 (UTC)
"Encyclopaedia of Islam is an encyclopaedia regarding the history of post Islamic invasions of Asia" (above by Khosrow). Ok White Hun is irrelevant subject for this encyclopedia(?). Because, White Huns were in "pre-islamic" period. Also, you are right i have not presented a single scholar work, however i have presented general views, not a person's view. Encyclopedias are prepared by experts and scholars already, not by me or you. A commission which consists of scholars prepares these. Please learn and read sources other than dogmatic and nationalistic ones.--Karcha 21:47, 6 November 2006 (UTC)
You see ... this is the problem with you. You have absolutely no idea of what you are talking about. If you had even a little bit knowledge of history, you would know that the Hephthalite EMPIRE was destroyed by the Sassanids. The Hephthalite PEOPLE escapted to the Hindu Kush mountains and created small, but independent local dyansties which existed up to the 9th ncetory before they were overwhlemed by the Arab-Muslim forces. Where do you think does the Arabic name "Heytal" come from?!
Tststststs .... Tājik 22:15, 6 November 2006 (UTC)
My best reverter tajik, if you spend more time to learn you do not need to ask these. I had given referance but you did not read as i know. I will write here for you to learn:

Their original name was Hoa or Hoa-tun; subsequently they styled themselves Ye-tha-i-li-to after the name of their royal family, or more briefly Ye-tha. Before the 5th century A.D. they began to move westwards, for about 420 we find them in Transoxiana, and for the next 130 years they were a menace to Persia, which they continually and successfully invaded, though they never held it as a conquest. The Sassanid king, Bahram V., fought several campaigns with them and succeeded in keeping them at bay, but they defeated and killed Peroz (Firuz), A.D. 484. His son Kavadh I. (Kobad), being driven out of Persia, took refuge with the Ephthalites, and recovered his throne with the assistance of their khan, whose daughter he had married, but subsequently he engaged in prolonged hostilities with them. The Persians were not quit of the Ephthalites until 557 when Chosroes Anushirwan destroyed their power with the assistance of the Turks, who now make their first appearance in western Asia. (Classic Encyclopedia)--Karcha 22:32, 6 November 2006 (UTC)

Hoa>Hun (Maybe you do not understand)--Karcha 22:46, 6 November 2006 (UTC)
And I wonder one thing too: How Much celcius degree is Water boiling in encyclopedia iranica and islamica? Or I have to change the question like this: How much celcius degree do iranians want?:) What is tststststs tajik? is it persian? i didn't understand what do you mean?--Karcha 22:53, 6 November 2006 (UTC)
Since you have recently fallen in love with the Encyclopaedia Britannica 1911 (which you wrongly call "Classic Encyclopaedia"), I would like to know your honest opinion on the following article of that encyclopaedia:
  • "... MIRZA MAHOMMED BEN SHAH ROK ULUGH BEG 0394-1440, Persian astronomer, son of the shah Rok and grandson of Timur, succeeded his father as prince of Samarkand in 1 447 ..." [4]
I am sure you have no problems with that, right?! But, hey, I am not blaming you ... after all, you do not seem to be very educated. I mean, you believe that Rumi was Turk *lol*
Tājik 23:09, 6 November 2006 (UTC)
Irrelevancy, unconnectedness, competition to be preminent in sth trifling, out of subject.--Karcha 23:25, 6 November 2006 (UTC)
Why out of subject?! You insult the Encyclopaedia Iranica and 500 of the most respected scholar of Oriental studies only because you do not like the truth, and here you complain about "irrelevant toppics"?! Let me show you another quote from your favourite source, what you call "Classic Encyclopaedia":
  • "... The Turks are imitative rather than original, and, in all their branches, have assimilated to some extent the nearest civilization whenever they have settled down. Up to the 7th century their only culture consisted of some scraps of Chinese and Indian civilization. Subsequently both the eastern and western states which they founded adopted Perso-Arabic civilization and Mahommedanism. The Osmanlis have also been affected by Byzantine and west European influences. ..." [5]
And you want to tell us something about "Turkish civilization"?! *lol
Tājik 23:33, 6 November 2006 (UTC)
Also i think you do not know reading english texts, because Classic Encyclopedia is different than britannica, if you read carefully you see "based on the 11th edition of EB". It's initial referance is 11th Britannica, it's improving. you see? I have to ask: what is your 10 years old iranic encyclopedia's initial referance? You'll learn...--Karcha 23:39, 6 November 2006 (UTC)
Ok, Take this;

"About Disputed ethnic origin of persians"

The papyri from Tebtunis record several sites in the Fayum, which appear to have been founded as ethnic communities in the third century BCE. These include the "Village of the Syrians" (Syrôn kômê), "Village of the Arabs" (Arabôn kômê) and Samareia, which contained a sizable Jewish population and was probably named after the city in Palestine.

Although ethnic designations like Boeotian, Macedonian, Syrian, Arab and Jew probably refer to geographic origin, "Persian" proves problematic. Its precise origin or significance is disputed. In the early Ptolemaic period it seems to describe people with Greek names functioning in a Greek context; although they enjoy a privileged status, they are counted separately from Greeks in tax lists. In late Ptolemaic and Roman contracts, "Persian of the epigonê" refers to the legal status of a debtor who had waived certain personal rights in order to secure the collection of a debt.

Persians 6 June 12 BCE

In this Demotic contract, summarized in Greek at the bottom, Pakemis son of Pakemis, acknowledges the loan of the dowry of his wife Tameische (Greek, Tameischis), daughter of Sokonopis, and promises to repay it. Here "Persian" does not seem to indicate descent, but describes a man with the status of a debtor. In this example, the subject has an Egyptian personal name, but "Persian of the epigonê" is just as frequently used to describe people with Greek names.

P.Tebt. II 386 ( Read and Learn... --Karcha 23:43, 6 November 2006 (UTC)

So now, you suddenly leave Britannica and Columbia and look for some other sources, huh?! What happened?! Changed your mind again?! Typical Pan-Turkist hypocrite:
  • "... The Persians, Kurds, and speakers of other Indo-European languages in Iran are descendants of the Aryan tribes that began migrating from Central Asia into what is now Iran in the 2nd millennium BC. ..." Encyclopaedia Britannica
  • "... Iran’s central position has made it a crossroads of migration; the population is not homogeneous, although it has a Persian core that includes over half of the people. Azerbaijanis constitute almost a quarter of the population. The migrant ethnic groups of the mountains and highlands, including the Kurds, Lurs, Qashqai, and Bakhtiari, are of the least mixed descent of the original Iranians ..." Columbia Encyclopaedia
  • "... The Medes were an Aryan (Indo-Iranian) people who entered the Iranian plateau around 1500 along with the Persians, Parthians, Bactrians, and Arachosians, while other Aryan tribes went on to conquer northern India. ..." Columbia Encyclopaedia
Tājik 00:39, 7 November 2006 (UTC)
Here are two very important aticles on Hephtalites. [6]. The article by Tremblay although in French has done an etymological analysis of all the Hephtalite names. Richard Frye considers them mainly Iranian by with perhaps some Altaic elements. I think all ideas should first be subjected to scholarly evaluation (is it written by scholars or psuedo-historians) then mentioned in the article. --alidoostzadeh 01:00, 7 November 2006 (UTC)
No, i didn't leave them and i always look for some other sources. Not only one or two sources.Karcha 01:04, 7 November 2006 (UTC)
  • The sources provided by Tajik as Britannica and Columbia Encyclopedia does not provide information on White Huns from the official sites. The one declared as Columbia Encyclopedia redirects to The other one from Britannica is not related with White Huns. The users Tajik and Khosrow II are trying to defocus the discussion from its main point. They are also accusing everyone who counter their pov-arguments as ultra-nationalists or uneducated hypocrites. Civility is a rule for the conduct of edits, comments, and talk page discussions on all Wikipedias. The aim is to provide comprehensive information based on reliable sources. Furthermore, Wikipedia is not a place for original research and content forking. Regards to all. E104421 09:35, 7 November 2006 (UTC)
By now, we all know that you are unable to read and to understand. Just click on the links and you'll see that it says: "The Columbia Encyclopedia, Sixth Edition. 2001-05." If you can't stand the truth, then it's YOUR problem, not that of the readers. And by the way: the Encyclopaedia Iranica and Encyclopaedia of Islam are authoritative (since your education seems to be below standard US high school level, you may need to look up the word in a dictionary) scholarly sources, written by world-renowned scholars (in this case the famous orientalist Prof. Bivar!). If you revert this source again, I WILL report you to an admin! Tājik 00:30, 8 November 2006 (UTC)
  • No, you're misunderstood. Why don't you give the links of the official sites? Please, stop mixing the statements and deleting some words from them, you're misleading people. The introduction section is well-sourced, if you are to add something more you're welcome. You can report to anyone, i already gave the sources and their contents here, then edited the introduction section based on these the world wide known encyclopedias. Furthermore, while editing i placed the previous content of the introduction section to etymology cause it's direcly related with this section, so nothing's lost from the version prior to my edit. Check the beginning of this talk section, the sources are from official sites and the directly from the pages related with "White Huns" which is also presented above. Please remember that wikipedia is not a place for original research. There are always controversial issues, but here we should reflect the one which is built on consensus. As i said before, there are other encyclopedias as you mentioned Iranian Encyclopedia but also Turkish Encyclopedia, even Turkish translation of Britannica (which calls "white Huns" as "Akhuns"). However, I prefered the international English (Columbia and Britannica) ones, cause i think only in this way we can provide neutrality. The other ones would increase the neutrality question as happened here. Please, stop changing the content of the article (removing some words, sentences, while keeping the others) to favor yours. If you read the content of sources i just provided above, you'll se the version of my introduction section is edited from Britannica and Columbia. I observed that you're always trying to remove the tibetan and turkic connection in favor of persian one. If someone contributes with arguments and references contrary to yours, you immediately put "disputed" tag and start attacking these editors as "uneducated hypocrites", "ones unable to read and to understand", or "ultra-nationalists". Please also report these personal attacks, too. You always think only yours is accurate and neutral. In this way, you cannot help cause you'll always increase the questions of neutrality and factual accuracy automatically. One more note, please try to be civil and assume good will. I want to cooperate instead of argueing you all the time, cause you're preventing the progress of the article. E104421 11:00, 8 November 2006 (UTC)
What the hell are you talking about?! IS the "official link" to the online version of Columbia Encyclopaedia. This is the SAME link YOU yourself have used in the article!
Besides that, you have edited the intro ONLY based on Columbia. WHERE does Britannica say that the Hephthalites were "Turks or Tibetians"?!
And could you please explain why you pruposely revert the references to R. Frye and K. Enoki (these two are the LEADING scholars on this issue - NOT Britannica, and NOT Columbia!).
Your push for "Akhun" is pure POV. None of the sources above - not even your own Britannica and Columbia - mention the word "Ak Hun" ... this is your personal POV. You are in NO position to invent or translate words. "Ak Hun" has NO historical value and is not mentioned in ANY reliable source.
You have deleted scholarly sources (EI, EIr, R. Frye, K. Enoki, and A.D.H. Bivar) for the third time. This is clearly nationalistic-motivated vandalism.
And your stubborn claim that "Britannica is superior to EI or EIr" proves that you have absolutely NO idea of oriental studies or of the Hephthalites. You are the typical nationalist who is pushing for a nationalistic POV, having absolutely no idea of scholarly sources.
Tājik 22:49, 8 November 2006 (UTC)
So the battle lines are drawn once again, Turk va Tajik dobare jang mikonand. Any attempt to establish my bona-fides will no doubt be in vain, but I would like to point out that I am English, and have no Turkic or Persian axe to grind in this dispute, and that I have disagreed with Tājik in the past over related issues (see Talk:Babur if you don't believe me). However, in this instance Tajik is right. The question of precisely what ethnicity the Hephthalites were is unlikely ever to be definitively resolved (it beats me why anyone should care, but for some people even the most distant link helps massage the nationalist ego). The question of what language they spoke is equally obscure because this period saw so many migrations by iranian, turkic and mongolic nomadic peoples. David Christian suggests that "there were probably many Turkic-speakers within the Hepthalite and Hunnic confederations." A History of Russia, Inner Asia and Mongolia (Oxford) 1998 p248 This is the crucial point - these terms should be seen not so much as tribal names or linguistic identities, let alone proto-nationalities, but as political confederations of many different nomadic groups. Just to underline this, he further writes (p252), when talking about the earliest Central Asian conquests that we can identify as "Turkic" (The Gok Turk Ishtemi's campaigns in Western Transoxiana in AD 555-69) "In 557 he concluded an alliance with the Sassanian Emperor, Khosrow II, who married his daughter. in 562, the two armies attacked the Hephthalite Empire. Turk armies took Chach (Tashkent) in 564, and the Hephthalites were finally crushed in 565 near Nesef (Karshi)." So, whoever the Hephtalites were, the Turks and Iranians formed an alliance to defeat them - it would be nice to see similar cooperation in a less bloodthirsty cause on wikipedia. They would, in any case, merely have been the ruling elite in the region, as we know that the majority of the inhabitants of Transoxiana remained Persian-speaking until the 14th-15th centuries, and their numbers remained great thereafter (and are significant to this day). So, we don't know for certain, and should avoid making anachronistic projections of modern-day identities (and hatreds) into the past. This leaves us with the simple question of academic and common english usage, and her Tajik has provided you with ample evidence that the term "Hephthalite" has much more currency than "White Huns". When cites the Encyclopaedia of Islam in particular you should pay attention, as it is the leading authority on the entire Islamic world, and covers the pre-Islamic period as well. Even if "White Huns" were in widespread use it would not justify using the term "Akhun" as this is a clear modern nationalist attempt to appropriate an ancient people as "ancestors", when there is no historical justification for this. Tajik has not advocated using a Persian title for the Hephthalites, he is simply standing up for common English usage. This is entirely correct. You can call them whatever you like on Turkish wikipedia. Sikandarji 23:59, 8 November 2006 (UTC)
Please visit here: [7]. The french article is the only article that has etymologically analyzed all the Hephtalite names. It is from Professor. Xavier Tremblay who is very famous and the article was written in 2003. --alidoostzadeh 06:11, 9 November 2006 (UTC)
  • Akhun term is a Turkish translation, there is no relation with nationalism. I mentioned this cause i'd like to them to compare iranian and turkish sources. For this reason, i offered them to skip both turkish encyclopedia and iranian one. I recommend you to read my comments carefully. Furthermore, there is no debate about the title of the article. I also added the information that nothing has known about their language. So, there is no claim of whether they are related to persians or turkic nations. I already keep them all in the etymology section regarding the origin of Hephthalites. On the other hand, i find the sentence "You can call them whatever you like on Turkish wikipedia " totally simplistic POV, cause we should try to improve the quality of both wikipedias. The information given should be based on neutral and reliable sources. So, if based on these sources, i do not think that there would be a problem. Furthemore, i'm not the one pushing anything from turkish wikipedia. I collected the information directly from Columbia and Britannica, there is no nationalism in it, if you think so, comment on this to the editors of these encyclopedias. No encyclopedia can be favored to the other one. Keeping the iranian and removing the Britannica and Columbia is not a resonable approach. E104421 09:02, 9 November 2006 (UTC)
In fact it is a perfectly reasonable approach - you seem to have a very erroneous idea of what the Encyclopaedia Iranica is - it is not produced in Iran, or (largely) by Iranian scholars. It is an international project based at Columbia University for which the finest Orientalists the world over have been writing. I've had occasion to quibble at the content of some of the articles, but not on "nationalist" or "Pan-Iranian" grounds. The Encyclopaedia of Islam is an even better source, not least because it is complete (the Iranica hasn't really got beyond the letter "I" yet). These sources trump the Britannica every time, as they specifically concentrate on the Islamic and Iranian worlds, from the beginning of human history to the present, and their articles are written by trained orientalists (those on early-modern & 19th century Central Asia in the Iranica for instance are written by Yuri Bregel, the leading specialist in the subject). Obviously it would be good to improve Turkish Wikipedia as well, but I've been around here for too long not to know that the non-English sites spend most of their time pushing the POV of whichever nationality whose language the article is in. Finding the audience too small and wishing to propagate their ideas further, the nationalists (and worse) then descend on English wikipedia, the one truly international version of the Encyclopaedia, and neutrality goes out of the window. There is no point in having a Turkish translation - articles become absurdly cumbersome if translations of the title or term into every conceivable language are provided at the beginning. Only those which are relevant are included, and that is where nationalist claims come in. This is why we should stick to the English terms. Finally, some material from the source provided by alidoostzadeh above:

I have copied out the relevant passages here – as you will see there is still no absolute certainty on this point, but the trend in scholarship is towards assigning the Hephtahlites an Iranian origin and language. Tremblay also makes the useful point that the term “Hun” has been used for all sorts of completely unrelated nomadic confederations.

Enoki, Kazuo, Memoirs of the Research Department of the Tokyo Bunko, 1959, No. 18, "On the Nationality of the Ephthalites" p56

“Let me recapitulate the foregoing. The grounds upon which the Ephthalites are assigned an Iranian tribe are : (1) that their original home was on the east frontier of Tokharestan; and (2) that their culture contained some Iranian elements. Naturally, the Ephthalites were sometimes regarded as another branch of the Kao-ch’e tribe by their contemporaries, and their manners and customs are represented as identical with those of the T’u-chueh, and it is a fact that they had several cultural elements in common with those of the nomadic Turkish tribes. Nevertheless, such similarity of manners and customs is an inevitable phenomenon arising from similarity of their environments. The Ephthalites could not be assigned as a Turkish tribe on account of this. The Ephthalites were considered by some scholars as an iranized tribe, but I would like to go further and acknowledge them as an Iranian tribe. Though my grounds, as stated above, are rather scarce, it is expected that the historical and linguistic materials concerning the Ephthalites are to be increased in the future and most of the newly-discovered materials seem the more to confirm my Iranian-tribe theory.”

Almost fifty years later, Xavier Tremblay has been able to conduct the sort of detailed analysis of Hephthalite materials which Enoki was hoping for, conducting a detailed study of those personal names which have come down to us:

Xavier Tremblay, Pour une histore de la Sérinde. Le manichéisme parmi les peoples et religions d’Asie Centrale d’apré les sources primaire, Vienna, 2001, Appendix D «Notes Sur L'Origine Des Hephtalites” , pp. 183-88

«Malgré tous les auteurs qui, depuis KLAPROTH jusqu’ ALTHEIM in SuC, p113 sq et HAUSSIG, Die Geschichte Zentralasiens und der Seidenstrasse in vorislamischer Zeit, Darmstadt, 1983 (cf. n.7), ont vu dans les Hephthalites des Turcs, l’explication de leurs noms par le turc ne s’impose jamais, est parfois impossible et n’est appuyée par aucun fait historique (aucune trace de la religion turque ancienne), celle par l’iranien est toujours possible, parfois évidente, surtout dans les noms longs comme Mihirakula, Toramana ou γοβοζοκο qui sont bien plus probants qu’ αλ- en Αλχαννο. Or l’iranien des noms des Hephtalites n’est pas du bactrien et n’est donc pas imputable à leur installation en Bactriane […] Une telle accumulation de probabilités suffit à conclure que, jusqu’à preuve du contraire, les Hepthalites étaient des Iraniens orientaux, mais non des Sogdiens.»

And for those unfortunates who do not understand the language of love, here is a rough translation:

“Despite all those authors who, from KLAPROTH to ALTHEIM in SuC, p113 sq and HAUSSIG, Die Geschichte Zentralasiens und der Seidenstrasse in vorislamischer Zeit, Darmstadt, 1983 (cf. note 7), have seen in the Hepthalites the Turks, the explanation of their names through Turkic is never necessary, is sometimes impossible and is not driven by any historical fact (there is no trace of the ancient Turkic religion), that from Iranian is always possible, sometimes obvious, especially in the long names such as Mihirakula, Toramana or γοβοζοκο which are much more evidential than αλ- in Αλχαννο. Furthermore the Iranian of Hephthalite names is not Bactrian and is thus not attributable to their settlement in Bactria […] Such an accumulation of probabilities suffices to conclude that, until there is proof to the contrary, the Hephthalites were eastern Iranians, but not Sogdians.” Sikandarji 09:43, 9 November 2006 (UTC)

  • First of all, these do not reflect that there is a consensus on the origins of Ephthalites. There is no definite evidence about their language and culture. Secondly, Enoki Kazuo's statement dated 1959 "I would like to go further and acknowledge them as an Iranian tribe" reflects his guess or opinion. This does not prove the iranian origin or disregards others. As far as i see from the material presented by Sikandarji, the origins of Ephthalites is a topic of ongoing research. So, maybe the best solution is to prepare a new section in the article related with recent research data. However, there is an official wikipedia policy, namely, no original research. Please keep this in mind. I personally agree with presenting all the sourced data on neutral grounds, but at the same time strongly disagree with favoring one of them to the others. Regards to all. E104421 10:23, 9 November 2006 (UTC)
OMG ... no further comments needed. It's totally hopeless, because User:E104421 does NOT WANT to understand. Tājik 10:33, 9 November 2006 (UTC)
  • I started reading Enoki Kazuo's article. He also comments that nothing definite has been recorded about the origin of the Ephthalites, and more reasearh is need to identify their origins. So, this is a topic of ongoing research. I'll come back to the issue after reading the material presented Sikandarji and alidoostzadeh. Regards E104421 10:47, 9 November 2006 (UTC)

OK User:E104421 - I'm sorry I described you as a "nationalist", but Tajik does have a point when he says that the Iranica and the Encyclopaedia of Islam are more reliable than the Britannica on Oriental topics, particularly if you're using an old version of the latter. I suggest you have a look here and make up your own mind about the Iranica - it has its faults, but it is not a vehicle for pan-Iranianism and some of its articles are of exceptionally high quality. Have a look at these in particular:

I work on the history of Central Asia, and I can assure you that a roll-call of Richard Frye, C.E. Bosworth, Berthold Spuler, Robert McChesney and Yuri Bregel read like a "Who's who in Central Asian History" - it's really very impressive. The Encyclopaedia of Islam, published by Brill, is not available online but should need no introduction - there is a Turkish translation of the first edition (Islam Ansiklopedisi, I think), the second, which was completed in 2005, is even better. It is the single most authoritative source on the entire Islamic world, and deserves to be taken seriously. Finally, I agree with you that there is no consensus over the origins of the Hephthalites, although as we see above scholarship is moving towards a theory of their Iranian origin, based on the scant available sources. Enoki's article is old: it is interesting because he writes that he hopes further research will be done and new sources uncovered, and that is precisely what Tremblay has done. As this is published (and in this case available online as a reference) this does not count as "original research" and can therefore be referred to in the article. Sikandarji 10:55, 9 November 2006 (UTC)

Frye, citing Enoki's '59 article and another from '69, writes that the Hephthalites "were probably a mixed horde", tying in with my citation from Christian above. Thinking of these people as tribes belonging to a discrete nationality is not very helpful. Some may have spoken Turkic (Christian) - most of their names were iranian (Tremblay). Sikandarji 10:59, 9 November 2006 (UTC)

@ E104421: it is YOU who is pushing for a POV. While MY edit of the intro clearly says that the Hephthalites "were a people of obscure origin", giving NO credits to any nationality, it is YOU who is reverting to a previous POV version labeling them as "Turks" or "Tibetians".
Please stop your hypocracy.
Tājik 11:10, 9 November 2006 (UTC)
  • Hey, you should stop accusing the ones countering your arguements. The introduction section is the version of Columbia and Britannica. Now, i'm proposing a compromise as i did before. Let's stop this edit/revert war. We can carry all the issues we dispute to other sections, but one by one, citing all of them but favoring anyone, neutrally, giving an emphasis on "nothing definite has been recorded about the origin of the Ephthalites, and more reasearh is need to identify their origins". Now, lets state the proposals first here. Any comments? Regards to all E104421 11:24, 9 November 2006 (UTC)
Why don't you guys take this issue into mediation? Sikandarji is correct, Iranica and the Encyclopaedia of Islam are reliable sources. --Mardavich 11:34, 9 November 2006 (UTC)
As I said before, it's totally hopeless to have discussions with you because you are neither ready nor able to understand. You stubbornly revert to a previous and wrong version, and you take advantage of Sikandarji's small mistake to include his (good) additional information into an old and wrong version.
I have not deleted Sikandarji's edit, but simply moved them from the intro (which is supposed to be an INTRO!) into trhe "Origin" section. Besides that, I have corrected YOUR mistakes by including the links to YOUR sources (you do not give proper references but simply write "Encyclopaedia Britannica" or "Columbia Encyclopaedia" - this is by far not enough; you should at least try to give a link to the source!). I have also corrected and reverted your poor attempt to alter and falsefy Encyclopaedia Iranica information! While the Iranica says:
  • "... The Bactrian documents also attest several Turkish royal titles, though these could also be explained by later Turkish infiltration south of the Oxus. ..." (based on this sentese, I had included the following paragraph into the article: "The useage of Turkic royal titles (auch as Khaqan) is attested in ancient writings found in Afghanistan. While it indicates an important influence of Turco-Mongol peoples on the Hephthalites, it does not prove a Turkic or Mongolian origin of the tribe."
... you have changed this sentense into your own nationalistic POV:
  • "... The usage of Turkic royal titles (auch as Khaqan) is attested in ancient writings found in Afghanistan which indicates an important influence of Turco-Mongol peoples on the Hephthalites. ..."
Your edits cannot be considered "good faith" anymore ... it's clearly nationalistic-motivated vandalism.
You are the only person in here who is rejecting authoritative sources - as provided by Sikandarji and Ali - and who keeps pushing for POV ("Ak Hun", presenting old and disproved theories as "mainstream", putting Brittanica over EI and EIr, etc etc etc)
And, btw, you do NOT agree with Sikandarji and his correct statement that neither the Huns not the Hephthalites were a homogenious nation. I had stated the same argument a week ago [8], but back then, you did not agree to that [9]. Now suddenly you pretend to support this view ... this is hypocracy!
Tājik 19:59, 9 November 2006 (UTC)
Thanks to Sikandarji for providing translations of that French article because my french is too weak. I would add that 50-60 years ago probably the trend was for Tibetian, Mongolian and Turkish. But today the Iranian evidence is much stronger. Masu'di the historian mentions that the Hephtalites were related to Soghdians. This show an ancient connection with Eastern Soghdians. Also Procopius describes them as caucasian. I think the article by Tremblay is probably the most up to date research on the origin of Hephtalites and it has been cited in several important books. Also I have asked a linguist versed in Turkic languages (Nicholas Sim Williams) and the words Tarxan and Khaghan are not Turkish, but loan words from another language. Although I do not think the Hephtalites used this title and either way the Iranian Soghdians used the title of Tarxan (in Shahnameh). The actual names of Hephtalites like MithraKula and Tauromana and Akhshnwaz and Faghanish do sound Iranic.--alidoostzadeh 00:54, 10 November 2006 (UTC)

Actually, Procopius referred to the Hepthalites as Asian, but "not ugly". I infer his meaning, in classic Graeco-Roman arrogance, to imply that they were not what the West would typically think of as Asian, i.e. Mongoloid, Chinese, etc (i.e., they were not Greek or Roman, so to him they were ugly barbarians). This does not prohibit the possibility of an Indo-Iranian ethnic origin, since the Indo-Iranians, and the later Persians, did not in appearance share a Mongoloid or Chinese ethnic connection. By saying that the Hepthalites were Asian but "not ugly", he in fact might have been describing a people of Indo-Iranian origin (they were Asian, but not "far" Asian). Let me say for the record that I DO NOT AGREE WITH HIS REFERENCE TO ASIAN PEOPLE AS UGLY, so please do not attack me for making an observation about his statement. Thank you Myrddin_Wyllt7 (talk) 17:04, 7 April 2008 (UTC)

The Iranica[edit]

  • To Tājik, stop accusing people as nationalists or vandals, it's very obvious from the contribution histories that who is who. Do you have any other sources than iran based/funded iranica? It is edited by Ehsan Yarshater and chaired by Mahmoud Khayami. They are mainly favoring the articles reflecting iranian pov and ignoring the ones contrary to their pov. The Britannica and Columbia Encyclopedia are not only provide updated materials but also neutral ones. The neutrality of Iranica is obviously disputed. E104421 11:31, 11 November 2006 (UTC)
Ehsan Yarshater does not write Iranica. And his viewpoint is not reflected. 90% of scholars writing for Iranica are non-Iranians. It is also published by Columbia University and it is more specific source than say Britannica or Columbia when it comes to the mid-east and central asia. Either way the origin of Hephtalite even if not unanimously yet agreed upon by all scholars, in the past few decades, eastern Iranian has been the main concensus.--alidoostzadeh 14:54, 11 November 2006 (UTC)

E104421 If you've actually looked at the full list of authors, consulting editors, associate editors and editors on the Iranica website, it should be clear to you that not only is it not iranian-controlled, but that it calls upon some of the world's finest oriental scholars - being a physicist I don't imagine you know who any of them are, so perhaps you should be prepared to accept the judgment of someone who does. Instead you see a couple of Iranian names and go off on a conspiratorial rant about it being "iran based/funded" and "reflecting iranian pov". This does not speak well for your neutrality or good faith. The article on the early history of Central Asia to which I provided a link (have you bothered to read it? Thought not) is by Richard Nelson Frye, Professor Emeritus at Harvard - does this sound like an Iranian name to you? The encyclopaedia is run from Columbia University. Its neutrality is not disputed in the least. Sikandarji 17:33, 11 November 2006 (UTC)

E104421, there is absolutely no reason to reply to you. You have - once again - proven that you have NO IDEA what you are talking about.
Tājik 21:06, 11 November 2006 (UTC)
  • To Sikandarji, please, take a look at here iranica. I stated what's written there. There it's written that the encyclopedia is edited by Ehsan Yarshater and chaired by Mahmoud Khayami (iranian industrialist). That's it. It probable that the editor and the board chair have important administrative effects on the encyclopedia. E104421 23:07, 11 November 2006 (UTC)
E104421 - you stated part of what is written there, and then drew entirely unjustified conclusions from it. That page also says that the Iranica is sponsored by the National Endowment for the Humanities and based at Columbia. I say once again - read the articles that have been cited, go to the Iranica web-page and click on all the photographs of contributing scholars which give their credentials and home institutions, and then tell me if these people are likely to be in the pay or under the influence of some notional conspiracy you appear to have imagined around the figure of Mahmoud Khayami. It's an Encyclopaedia covering largely Iranian topics - of course there will be Iranians involved. What I object to is your automatic assumption that because of this all the contributing scholars are complicit in some sort of pan-Iranian conspiracy. Sikandarji 01:47, 12 November 2006 (UTC)
  • To Sikandarji Alright, then, why the Columbia Encyclopedia (2005) and iranica (based at columbia) differ? both from the same origin. Note, i did not say anything about the authors but the editor and board chair. Rewriting "It's probable that the editor and the board chair have important administrative effects on the encyclopedia". That's it. You're not reading carefully as before then drawing totally misleading conclusion that "all the contributing scholars are complicit in some sort of pan-Iranian conspiracy". This is your interpretation/conclusion from my statement written above. Maybe cause of the language barrier i could not stated well but yours is quite irrelevant to my sentence. Regards. E104421 14:22, 12 November 2006 (UTC)
They differ because one is a general work of reference which is based on outdated scholarship and was not written by a specialist (the columbia article doesn't even have an author - the chances are that it has just been repeated verbatim from an earlier edition of the Encyclopaedia), whilst the Iranica is a specialised work with articles written by experts. If you actually take the trouble to read Frye's article (which you clearly haven't done yet) you will see that there is no comparison between them. The specific article on the Hephthalites in the Iranica (by Professor A.H.D. Bivar of the School of Oriental and African Studies, London), is also far more detailed than that little Columbia snippet. And in any case, there is no real contradiction. Both Iranica articles talk of the Hephthalites as being a mixed horde, and say that whilst there is evidence that some of them spoke Turkic and used Turkic titles, recent scholarship tends towards assigning them an Iranian origin. That is all - they are quite clear that this is obscure. What you have tried to do is take a brief statement from a much less detailed and well-authored source and privilege it over all other evidence, whilst making entirely unwarranted allegations about the neutrality of the Iranica (you made similar allegations about the Encyclopaedia of Islam to begin with, but then gave up when that bird wouldn't fly). What exactly is it you're complaining about? Your Columbia reference is still there, your little passage about their possible Turkic or Tibetan origin is still there, it is simply that evidence and references to more reputable scholarly sources have been added, giving alternative views on what is a very obscure topic. What's your grievance? Are you saying you'd like to see all this excluded?Sikandarji 17:24, 12 November 2006 (UTC)
  • To Sikandarji I'm not complaining. First, check my statements here, i never criticized encyclopedia of islam but iranica. Secondly, there is nothing wrong in asking the creditabiliy of the sources. What you do not understand is, i have right to declare my opinion. Third point is, your version of the article is quite ok for my, if you check the edit summary/history, you'll see, during the edit/revert war, i supported your version. However, you're in a mood to understand every word i say in an opposite way. One more note, in my opinion, this kind of approach is not suitable for an academician, cause if someone ask you something, it's better to help or motivate, not to critisize in an aggressive manner. Regards E104421 18:10, 12 November 2006 (UTC)
I owe you an apology - it was Karcha who criticised the Encyclopaedia of Islam, not you. Of course you're entitled to express an opinion, but you must appreciate that people will take your opinions a little more seriously if you show that you've actually read the source you're objecting to, and can state what you consider to be biased/incorrect about it, and what you actually object to on the current page. This you have not done. I'm sorry if I've offended you, but I've had to repeat the same points about the Iranica, its authorship and neutrality to you several times without your giving any indication that you've understood me. I think I can be forgiven for getting a little tetchy.Sikandarji 18:18, 12 November 2006 (UTC)
  • Alright, then. I shall read the documents you provided as i already said before. The iranica web site does not work well and i'm having a difficulty in connection. Gimme some time. Kind regards E104421 18:31, 12 November 2006 (UTC)

Sikandarji's compromise version[edit]

  • I reverted the article to the Sikandarji's last version (15:12, 9 November 2006 Sikandarji). I'm planning to do minor edits on this compromise version (spelling corrections, simple formatting, fixing layout errors, adding links, and wikifications). Any comments or proposals? E104421 17:48, 3 December 2006 (UTC)
Your revert was wrong, because you purposely deleated large paragraphs that were written by User:Sikandarji. This was Sikandarji's compromise version, which you have just reverted. I had moved Sikandarjis edits to the "Origins" section: [10]
Tājik 17:55, 3 December 2006 (UTC)
  • No, you are mixing the versions. The Sikandarji's last version is dated 15:12, 9 November 2006 [[11]]. I just reverted to that version [12]. You are misleading people! Accusing everyone all the time. You changed the Sikandarji's version to your pov version [13]. This is clearly seen from the edit history. E104421 18:14, 3 December 2006 (UTC)
Wrong, you are misleading people, because Sikandarji made a small mistake when he reverted to that version. Why don't you just ask him?! Till then, I will revert to the last correct version before you - once again - started a edit-war based on your own POV. Tājik 18:27, 3 December 2006 (UTC)
  • I provided the evidences from the edit history. Everyone can check them. You are misleading people. E104421 18:34, 3 December 2006 (UTC)
Do whatever you want. I have contacted Sikandarji, and he will tell you that your edits are wrong. Till then, do whatever you want. It will be reverted anyway ... Tājik 18:36, 3 December 2006 (UTC)
  • Sikandarji should come and revert to his last version. Is it ok? E104421 18:39, 3 December 2006 (UTC)
Yes, because this was his last edit (17:12, 9 November 2006 Sikandarji), as anyone can see in the history. I simply moved a large paragraph from the intro into the "Origins" section: [14] I also replaced the term "White Huns" with "Hephthalites", because that's the name of the article. After that, it was you who started an edit-war because of nothing. And now you are doing the same. Tājik 18:42, 3 December 2006 (UTC)
  • I invited Sikandarji to edit/revert to his compromise version. After he completes his version, let's discuss the further changes here, before editing the controversial issues. Is this ok? E104421 18:49, 3 December 2006 (UTC)
Agreed. Let's keep the current version with it's "neutrality" tags. Tājik 18:54, 3 December 2006 (UTC)
  • Sikandarji should come and edit/revert the article to his compromise version. We'll keep the tags. E104421 19:03, 3 December 2006 (UTC)
    • Tajik edited/reverted the article to his favorite version. This is not a compromise version now, cause there are major changes. Tajik had invited Sikandarji to compromise, and Sikardarji had edited the article with all his good faith, provided sources, and also commented on the talk/discussion pages to answer the questions and objections. His compromise efforts are clearly seen from his edit summaries as "OK, how's this? Can somebody shrink the text in the footnotes? I'm not sure how". However, all his efforts went out of the window when Tajik started editing and pushing his favorite version as Sikandarji's compromise version. This is misleading. One can see this clearly from the edit summary/history. Lets compare all the Sikandarji's versions with Tajik's here: Sikandarji's first version and Tajik's so-called compromise version, Sikandarji's second version and Tajik's so-called compromise version, and Sikandarji's third (last) version and Tajik's so-called compromise version. They are quite different than Tajik's claims above. Tajik is accusing everyone as nationalists or vandals if they criticise his edits. However, what these people are trying to do is to contribute. For example, lets compare my reverts with Sikandarji's version:my first revert to Sikandarji and my last revert to Sikandarji. It's clearly seen from the comparison of these edits that what Tajik is trying to do is not seem to be compromise. Tajik is trying to mislead people by pushing his favorite as the compromise version. I cannot consider this as good will and civility. What i can safely say is we took Sikandarji's time for nothing. At the end, the article turned out to be a totally disputed one again. Sorry, Sikandarji, you see, this not my fault. Regards. E104421 11:23, 4 December 2006 (UTC)
I do not assume any good faith from you anymore, because you are not interested in constructive discussions. What you are doing in here is simply copying an old and disputed text from the Hephthalites article,. and you claim that it is "well-sourced". No, it is NOT! This version - which is your favourite version, because it only supports your favourite "Turkic origin" theory and does not mention any other theories - was already disputed in the other article. Now you have copied the entire text into this article, hoping to fool the readers. User:Sikandarji had already told you that the version you are pushing for is old and not supported by the majoprity of scholars nowadays. You claim to support Sikandarji's opinion, while - in fact - you do not. We have presented you sources from better and more reliable ones than Britannica, and Sikandarji, too, told you that works such as EI and EIr are better and more accurate than Britannica.
What you are doing in here is not a compromise and it is not good faith - it's creating a POV article. Because you do not like this article, and because you do not like the opinion of the majority of scholars, you have created a parallel-article in White Huns (see here) which only contains your own POV.
Tājik 18:36, 4 December 2006 (UTC)
  • I told you several times, if we are to compromise, we should calm down. You never let others to contribute. What to do? I'm still waiting for Sikandarji to come and edit/revert the article. E104421 18:55, 4 December 2006 (UTC)

Citizentium vs Wikipedia[edit]

This is precisely for this kind of topics that Citizendium would be useful. I am a specialist of Central Asia and your discussions are quite strange, proving only the strength of nationalism. I don't want to be rude, but studying such remote and obscure periods demands training, and knowledge of many languages, and discussions with colleagues. I have for instance recently discovered that the Tongdian, a Chinese encyclopedy published in 801, described the arrival of the Ephtalites in Central Asia. Nobody, even Enoki, noticed that. it changes many things as it proves that the Ephtalites were not a new wave of invaders, but came with the other 'hunnic' tribes of the IVth c. But you have to know Chinese for this. And Russian to read many works of archaeology, and Middle-Iranian languages to see that, since N. Sims-Williams has discovered the Bactrian language, all the previous etymologies of 'ephtalite' are false. It is and can be only the work of professional historians. Why should I bother to edit the pages, to be modified in a few days ? ~~Marchand Sogdien~~

Actually the name of Hephtalites are from Indian and Shahnameh sources. They are not Bactrian although Bactrian is related language. See tremblay's article. --alidoostzadeh 03:41, 14 December 2006 (UTC)
I agree with Ali. The Encyclopaedia of Islam states that N. Sims.Williams' researches partly support the old claims of Enoki, that the Hephthalites indeed used Bactrian. However, they also reveal that Bactrian was not the native tongue of the Hephthalites - though still pointing to the theoriy that their native tongue was an East Iranian language, infiltrated with many Turkic and/or Mongolian words. Tājik 10:32, 14 December 2006 (UTC)
Hi Marchand, welcome to Wikipedia, and please do share your expertise with us, don't let the nationalist bickering scare you off. My experience is that real expertise usually prevails, if it's brought forward the right way. And especially on this page here, I can promise you that the worst edit-warriors will be firmly shown the door if necessary. Fut.Perf. 11:24, 14 December 2006 (UTC)
I agree. He Marchand should stay. That's the only way to stop the nonsense of E104421. Tājik 16:00, 14 December 2006 (UTC)
Tajik, this is exactly the kind of bickering that we do not need. Please cut it. Fut.Perf. 22:26, 14 December 2006 (UTC)
Welcome for my part as well. We definitely need experts! In fact, he is right. Study of such obscure periods of human civilization is not given and requires a lot of training that many do not possess. So stay! Agree with FPAS, if edit-wars are getting in the way of real expertise prevailing, then it should be dealt with.Baristarim 13:38, 15 December 2006 (UTC)

Sorry to say that everyone here was wrong. What marchand sogdien was talking about is original research and impermissible on Wikipedia (don't know about Citizendium). The interpretation of a primary source like the one he's talking about needs a peer review, especially when it is claimed that "no expert has discovered this before". So marchand's desire to publish it on wikipedia on the basis of his own expertise couldn't be realized here. If he is a professional historian as he says, then he should start by publishing his findings and conclusions in a peer-reviewed journal or book, and only then can/should wikipedians cite them here. -- 13:04, 22 May 2007 (UTC)


guote from art: Elsewhere they were called White Huns or (Sveta) Hunas. However, there is no definite evidence that they are related to the .

The word is similar to 1svita and 2sviata. The first mean 1a 'east/morning' or (exactly the same spelling and sound) 1b'assmbly of people at court usually with attributes of richness', the second word mean '2a) world 2b) very long distance or very long time'. Svętavid is a 4 faced symbol on pillar. Possibly the first phoneme may be written as 'st' as the symbol similar to f in form solar cross. (Rounded swastika). Numerous occurrences of it(ligatured st) in saganet documents. For example is written astronomican or aristimetrican. Do You Who live in 'White Hun' areas have any connotation of the word? possible cognates or semantic analogies, or any clue?

Nasz 01:55, 23 February 2007 (UTC)

also question adressing fragment: According to Chinese chronicles they were originally a tribe living to the north of the Great Wall and were known as Hoa or Hoa-tun.

What is Your expert opinion on alternate reding Hoa-tun as Honatu or in with mixed u<>o<>a sound changes? Please elaborate a bit. Other sources sugest/suspect exonym.

Also voicer ph <> v in Heph.thalites and friction on th ?

Nasz 02:31, 23 February 2007 (UTC)

Hephthalites are Iranian Huns[edit]

Caucasian Avars (Avar-Hun's) according to genetic analyses (mtDNA) are very near relations of Iranian Peoples. And caucasian-avarian language had more iranian words.--Warhunne 15:00, 1 May 2007 (UTC)

About "Akhun"[edit]

Who is "Akhun"? ALCHONNO is not turkic "akhun". In Ando-Tsez languages (part of Caucasian-Avarian language) haldu, haldiyu or aldiyo = white--Warhunne 15:06, 1 May 2007 (UTC)

Direct Quotation[edit]

I'd like to give some direct quotations from the sources used in the text:

From A.D.H.Bivar's article on HEPHTHALITES:

I) Procopius claims that the Hephthalites live in a prosperous territory, are the only Huns with fair complexions, do not live as nomads, acknowledge a single king, observe a well-regulated constitution, and behave justly towards neighboring states. He also describes the burial of their nobles in tumuli, accompanied by the boon-companions who had been their retainers in their lifetimes; this practice contrasts with evidence of cremation among the Chionites in Ammianus (19.2.1: post incensum corporis . . .) and with remains found by excavators for the European Huns and remains in some deposits ascribed to the Chionites in Central Asia. It is therefore assumed that the Hephthalites constituted a second Hunnish wave who entered Bactria early in the fifth century C.E., and who seem to have driven the Kidarites into Gandhara.

II) The newly-discovered Bactrian documents studied by Sims-Williams (1997, 2001) throw interesting light on Afghanistan during the Kushano-Sasanian and Hephthalite periods, containing references to a tax collected specially as tribute for the Hephthalites (Sims-Williams, 1997, No. 16). Under them, a surprisingly orderly administration is shown to have been carried on, thereby substantiating the report of Procopius above. These documents make clear that the Middle Iranian Bactrian language written in Greek script was not the native idiom of the Hephthalites, as some have claimed, but the traditional language of administration in this region from Kushan times and possibly earlier. There is, as mentioned above, some evidence of the use of Turkish language under the Hephthalites. The name Mihirakula possibly represents a Sanskritization of a Turkish designation mihr-qul "slave of Mithra," a familiar theophoric formation. The Bactrian documents also attest several Turkish royal titles, though these could also be explained by later Turkish infiltration south of the Oxus.

I hope the quotations help. Regards E104421 17:12, 16 October 2007 (UTC)

Hepthalite Borders[edit]

I got the Hepthalite borders from the first map on its article, as well as information gathered from other sources. Basically the info I used stated that the Sassanids had been defeated and were under Hepthalite domination, and much of northern India was also overrun by Hepthalites (at least until 520 AD.) Are these borders accurate, or is there better information available? -- Thomas Lessman (talk) 19:00, 16 November 2007 (UTC)

  • Thank you for your comment. The map is possibly inaccurate. Gérard Chaliand's book "Les Emp'res nomades de la Mongolie au Danube, Librairie Académique Perrin, 1995", includes several maps, one of them shows White Huns and Juan-Juan territories around 480-490, which includes Aral and Baikal lakes. The map should be updated and the dates should be provided in the image caption. Regards. E104421 (talk) 14:07, 22 November 2007 (UTC)

I appreciate the information, but I need more than that. I don't have access to that book. Do you have a map that depicts the correct borders? Thomas Lessman (talk) 01:09, 23 November 2007 (UTC)

Free encyclopedia[edit]

Come on guys, who can u use sources from free encyclopedias?? -- 20:45, 4 December 2007 (UTC)


"Hoa" and "Hoa-tun" are non-standard romanisations, and do not appear to correlate with any ethnic names in Chinese. Verification needed. --PalaceGuard008 (Talk) 02:31, 7 March 2008 (UTC)

I don't know where the word Hoa-tun comes from but I do know that Hoa is a mispelling of Hua I have put the correct character in parenthesis for clarification and hope the original author will come back and do the same for Hoa-tun. (talk) 14:18, 6 April 2008 (UTC)


I believe they did have a writing system, and that fragments of it have been found at Dunhuang and Turfan. Looking for the cite. Alexwoods (talk) 14:59, 2 April 2008 (UTC)

Hepta- Yeta- 7-[edit]

Why isn't anyone talking about the apparent "existence" of seven in their name in both Greek and Turkish. Their name means "people who have seven cities" or "people from seven cities": Yeti-il-li. AverageTurkishJoe (talk) 11:22, 14 April 2008 (UTC)

"Haital means "big" or "powerful" in the dialect of Bukhara,[22] but might also mean "seven" at least there is one mention of 7AverageTurkishJoe (talk) 03:38, 16 April 2008 (UTC)

Mistake in Map[edit]

Hello All,

The map featured in this piece has a place on the black sea labeled "Albania." Albania is actually on the Adriatic Sea, next to Italy, about a fifteen hundred miles away. Makes me wonder how reliable the other information on the map is! Jatrimar (talk) 22:50, 15 June 2008 (UTC)

See the article Caucasian Albania. Hope this helps. Thomas Lessman (talk) 23:04, 15 June 2008 (UTC)


"After that, they [the Hephthalites] crossed the Syr Darya (Jaxartes) River and invaded Persia. In Persia, they were initially held off by Bahram Gur but later around AD 483–85, they succeeded in making Persia a tributary state."

Whoever (re)wrote that is off his rocker, which would be particularly true if he was one of those jokers who goes around rewriting every instance of "Iran(ian)" to "Persia(n)", but is in this case is a copyvio (with accompanying corruption) of the Columbia encyclopedia. The Hephthalites did not suddenly take wing upon crossing the Jaxartes and fly all the way to the diametrically opposite corner of the subcontinent. They invaded Sassanid-held territory over up in the north-east, but they did not even come close to the Sassanid homeland, and they certainly did not make "Persia" (whatever that might entail) a tributary state.

What the Hephthalites did do was seize and held the king and commanders for ransom, which is (presumably) what the Columbia hoped to say with "tributary", but which in the article makes the Sassanid homeland a vassal of the Hephthalites. Actually (and just like when it happens here on WP), the unscientific use of "Persia" should have tipped off every smart person that that Columbia article is anno 1935 crock. And one copyvio doesn't seem to have stopped anyone from more verbatim pasting (and not just from the Columbia either).

Their "origin" section (as also the previous talk here) is a farce. Other than to negate "unknown", the opinions do not contradict each other, even if they may superficially appear to do so. And this "origin" section that does not unambiguously state "unknown" is false.

The "etymology" section is not -- it seems -- about etymology. Besides the fact that I can't understand what many of the sentences are saying, "Hepthalite" is from Greek, and none of those notions presented in the section even mentions Greek. "Etymology of names" is out of context.

The "Hephthalites in South Asia" section is contextually wierd. Not only is there no other "Hephthalites in ..." section, it also suggests that "South Asia" can be distinguished from Central Asia or Iran with a ruler (note also: the article's images -- which are correct -- say quite something else). But as far as this article need be concerned, the Hephthalites are folk that Bahram Gur held off, and who took away a piece of the Sassanid pie only a little while later, who subsequently held onto that piece for three centuries, during which time they absorbed local culture and traditions, and who from their new home subsequently extended their domain in all directions, and who finally vanished after being chewed up by Sassanids and Caliphate. The chronology of events does not warrant a distinction (if at all one existed) between different "kinds" of Hephthalites.

Come on people! You can surely do better than this. -- Fullstop (talk) 06:13, 30 August 2008 (UTC)

Kushano-Hephthalite redirect[edit]

We're talking two different (but related) political entities here. The Hephthalites were from the early 400s to late-mid 500s, and their successors, the Kushano-Hephthalites, from the late-mid 500s to 870 AD. While I can accept them possibly being integrated into one article (albiet a rather long article!), it is NOT right that the original Kushano-Hephthalite article was deleted in favor of this redirect, leading to the total loss of all information in the Kushano-Hephthalite article, without any discussion. Please restore the Kushano-Hephthalite article, at least until it's information can be integrated into this Hephthalite article. At the very least, there needs to be a discussion before such information is deleted. Sincerely, Thomas Lessman (talk) 18:06, 30 August 2008 (UTC)

  • There was only one political entity that warrants the term "Hephthalite" in its name. And the political "successors" of the Hephthalites was an alliance of the Sassanids with a Turco-Mongolian tribe that ended Hephthalite rule soon after 577. This alliance partitioned the Hephthalite dominions at the Oxus, with the north going to Sinjibu and the south to the Sassanids. The Hephthalite nation disappears after that point.
  • The only (perhaps) Hephthalite-related (i.e. ethnically-related) groups that subsequently held political power are the Indian Hunas (identified on their coins as the "kings of Zabul" and hence also known as the Zabulites), and another group from around Badghis near Herat (who -- also for numismatic reasons -- are known as the Napki or Nezak princes). Neither of them are so assuredly related to the Hephthalites as you seem to be so certain of. And both vanished by the 7th century. And even if an ethnic relationship were certain, this would not imply a political relationship, leave alone a political continuation as a "successor" state. There are also other groups (e.g. the Ghilzai, Khalaj etc) who have been suggested to be descended from the Hephthalites, but these are not known to have held any power.
  • As for the notion that there is at all such a thing as "Kushano-Hephthalites" political entity: Such a thing is unknown to the Cambridge History of Iran, to the Encyclopedia Iranica, and to the journal repositories I have access to. Even gbooks/gscholar know nothing of a political entity by that name. Which is not to say that the term "Kushano-Hephthalite" could not exist at all -- the resurgence of Kushan-like multiculturalism during Hunnish rule can quite legitimately be referred to as Kushano-Hephthalite culture. This stands in contrast to both the cultural mores of intervening Sassanian rule of the region, as well as to the unattested culture of the Hunnish before they absorbed/adopted local (i.e. Kushano-Bactrian) language and practices. And then there is also the fact that the primary sources (from which all knowledge of Hunnish-Sassanid conflicts derives) anachronistically used the word "Kushan" when they meant "Hunnish".
  • As for integrating the information from there into this or any other article... First, you do not have to restore an article to copy material from a previous version. Secondly, there is very little that is salvageable since that article uses unscientific terminology, is self-contradictory and anachronistic, coatracks disparate concepts, and is littered with {{fact}} tags. But even if it were about the Zabulites (but Zabul is Ghazna, and not Kabul as the article suggests), there is no reason why even all of its 1520 bytes can't end up (properly rephrased of course) in either the Hunas article or this one or both. There are already allusions to them in both articles anyway. And even if this article were to have everything there was to know about the Hephthalites, an increase of 1520 bytes could not make the article "rather long".
Anyway, nobody here gives a hoot about accuracy or writing any real content anyway, so I'm wasting my breath, and you might as well do as you please. -- Fullstop (talk) 02:31, 2 September 2008 (UTC)

I actually do care about accuracy and readability, Fullstop. And I agree with you that the articles are need serious improvements. You're also right about the inaccuracy of "Kushano-Hephthalite" as an article. You seem to have a good understanding of the elements involved (Hephthalites, Hunas, Zabul, Nezaks, etc). I got frustrated trying to "fix" the article due to the many errors and grammatical problems. I bet you could improve the article quite a bit, if you are interested in doing so.

I'm actually working on some maps right now that could be modified easily enough to include in this article (to replace the existing maps, which are inaccurate according to existing info. Seriously Fullstop, if you can improve the article, you have my support! Respectfully, Thomas Lessman (talk) 19:37, 9 September 2008 (UTC)

Thanks for the vote of confidence, but I'm not sure thats a good thing. :) What follows is some stuff that is going through my head...
All the Hunnish articles are a mess, and it begins with each one trying to establish "origins" and/or asserting a relationship to other groups.
Typical example (all links go to distinct articles): The Hunas article (different from the Hunni article!) states the Hunas are "also known as the Indo-Hephthalites or Alchon". So, it seems, some source projects the Hunas as a subgroup of the Hephthalites and the Alchon are a subgroup of the Hephthalites. Then, the Alchon article (which redirects to 'Chionites'!) says "Epthalites may have been a prominent tribe or clan of the Chionites". But, if the Hephthalites "may be" a subgroup of the Chionites, and the Alchon (aka Chionites) are per Hunas article a subgroup of the Hephthalites, the Hephthalites are a subgroup of themselves. Strange, eh? Then, the Kidarites article (different from Kidarite Kingdom article!) asserts Kidarites == Chionites == Hunni (!), and that a subgroup of the Kidarites that are the "southern Xionites" were the first "Hunas" (!) to bother India.
As messed up as all this sounds, the Kidarite article's use of Hunas/Hunni(/Chionites?) is (IMO) fundamentally correct. These are simply different names for the same concept, i.e. "Hunnish", but for which we have more than one article (in one view the Chionites are the ancestors of the later groups, so they are effectively equivalent to Hunas/Hunni). But it is not altogether kosher for the Kidarite article to assert that "Kidarite" is also equivalent to Hunas/Hunni/Chionites, or that the Hephthalites were a subgroup of the Kidarites. At least one primary source says the Kidarites went to war with the Alchon, and on their coins they use the name "Kushan".
But all these assertions are really wrong either. Primary sources and epigraphy are very muddled in their terminology, and the whole Hunnish shebang is all very blurry and contradictory. There are holes in the chronology that are big enough to drive whole dynasties through, and (I guess) distinguishing the phases is all rather arbitrary when there are multiple geographic regions under discussion (like remnant Hephthalites around Zabul, or remnant Kidarites around Gandhara).
All authoritative tertiary sources (to use WP parlance) note the ambiguities, and these are the only ones that should be in use on these topics. (The secondary sources, being secondary sources, use the terminology of the sources that they are studying, which renders their direct use in Hunnish articles problematic. Direct use of primary sources should be out of the question).
Given WP's "open" nature, and the nationalistic ping-pong that has gone on here and elsewhere, it will be impossible to streamline multiple articles while imposing some modicum of source (and hence terminological) discipline.
Do we follow...
  • the one scheme which calls for several discrete Hunnish waves ([Chionite,] Kidarite, Alchon, Hephthalite, Napki/Nezak)?
  • Or the other scheme which treats everything as a slice of "Hephthalite" pie?
  • Or do we take a middle road and build a coherent system like #2, but use "Hunnish" as an umbrella term and use precision (Kidarites, Alchon, Hephthalite, Napki/Nezak) whenever this is unambiguously possible?
Whichever one chooses, it would mean streamlining all the affected topics. But keeping them coherent and as separate articles would be an editorial nightmare.
What do you think? -- Fullstop (talk) 01:32, 11 September 2008 (UTC)
Maybe the best solution would be to have a separate article on Sassanid-era/pre-Islamic Central Asia outlining the various theories and supporting scholarship, and have all the related articles refer to that one. I don't think this (or any of the other existing) articles is broad enough in scope to give more than a fragmentary picture of the issues involved, unless you presuppose that all the other groups of the era were in fact subsumed under the Hephthalites. —benadhem (talk) 05:51, 11 September 2008 (UTC)
Yep, a separate article on "Hunnish kingdoms" (or whatever we call that article you mention) seems like the best bet.
And no, I don't subscribe to the notion that all the other groups were subsumed by the Hephthalites. I also don't agree with the use of the term "Hephthalite" as a catch-all for every Hunnish tribe. The problem however is that, following Altheim, many sources do see it that way. Thus the messiness in many articles that use the term (cf e.g. "known as simply Huna among the Indians" in this article, "Indo-Hephthalite" in Hunas, edit warring at White Huns, and--like Uar--a number of other articles linking to this one)
There are (I think) only two options:
  1. turn "Hephthalite" into a disambig for a1) Hephthalite kingdom, a2) Hunnish kingdoms. This could force some editors to decide which one they mean.
  2. redirect all the articles (Kidarites, Alchon, Hephthalite etc) to a unified "Hunnish kingdoms", where a unified history can be presented, and where the (numismatically attested) individual kingdoms can then have subsections.
I'm inclined to the second option for several reasons:
  • Most editors linking to "Hephthalite" are not (and will not be) aware of which "Hephthalite" is meant in the sources they are using. A disambig doesn't really solve that problem. It also does not solve the similar problem, i.e. that of using "Chionite" as a synonym of "Hunnish".
  • a unified history avoids overlaps; for example, Grumbat wouldn't end up being called a Chionite and a Kidarite and a Hephthalite.
  • There would be no more speculative silliness about "origin" or the relationship to the other groups. They are all "Hunnish" in that they either identify themselves as that, or were so identified by others. What more is there to say?
  • It would fix the conflation between the Alchon and Chionites, the former currently being a redirect to the latter.
  • It would fix the "Red Hun", "White Hun" problem.
  • I don't think that there is a great deal (beyond a unified "Hunnish" history) that is actually known about the individual groups. A paragraph or so and a list of kings per coinage. That is not much.
  • Maintaining terminological discipline at multiple articles is going impossible (particularly in light of Wikipedia's approach that articles don't need to be coherent).
I'm open to suggestions as to how the mess can be resolved. Yes, a separate article on "Hunnish kingdoms" (or whatever we call it) seems like the right first step. But whats the next step going to be? -- Fullstop (talk) 18:47, 11 September 2008 (UTC)

Recent edit[edit]

I've tried a little clean up in the intro. But there is still much work to do. Tājik (talk) 22:22, 22 September 2008 (UTC)

Once again, I have reverted unjustified deletions by anon IPs. Tajik (talk) 15:15, 14 March 2009 (UTC)


On what three stars? What for imaginations? This three stars as a flag are taken from false panturkist the brochures published in Turkey! The Panturkists come here and spoil the Ridiculous editings. They wish to alter by any all in Turkic chauvinistic spirit. Scientists when write all about Hepthalites, on the first place put the Iranians as the basic version. And in general everywhere it is told, that they were mainly IRANIANS! All turkish books and textbooks are lie and panturkist propagation. In them there are no references to resources. These pseudo-scientists do not know the Iranian and Chinese languages and in general know nothing. They are visionaries. Take any solid literature about the Hepthalites and solid monographies, there everywhere it is told, that they were mainly Iranians. Probably with a small impurity Protomongols. What else Tibetans and Turks? What for a nonsense? By what right you, Turks, climb here with fantastic "Three Stars of Hephthalithes"? Whence you have taken this bosh? From your "fuehrer" Alparslan Turkesh that-whether? ALL THAT YOU HERE WRITE THERE IS A SHAMELESS LIE, PANTURKIST IMAGINATION. Hey, MARDOM-E ARYAYI, chera to jevab namikoni? Dar tamam-e ketabha "Hepthalithes" mardom-e Aryayi, mardom-e Iran, Tajikistan ve Afganistan hastand. Azeri/qirqiz/qazaq/ozbek haqiqaten Hunhaye sefid hastand? Haqiqaten hunhaye Aryayi hastand? Doruq-e panturkist!

Sveta Huna?[edit]

Can someone explain what Sveta Huna actually means and where it is attested in Indian literature and tradition? They did not make any difference between Huns and Huns (Hephtalithes). Vihirmihira was the first one who used the term Hun and Hephtalithe scattered in one sentence. Indians knew Hephtalites just as Huns, not as Sveta Huns (White Huns) which some claim here. Hephtalithes had a large Turkish population among themself. I do not say they were predominantly Turks but Turks played an important role among them and possibly made half of them. Such Hephtalithe tribes that were of Turkish origine were the Chionites and Khalaj Turks and many other Turkish tribes that ruled later India and Pakistan. Read Turks in Transoxiana by Richard N. And who the hell are Gangkovsky, Ahmad Dani and the rest of the self-claimed scholars who still serve the old backward school? G. claim one time Hephtalithes as Turks and another time as Iranians. He has no relation to the Hephtalithes as other scholars have-- (talk) 19:48, 1 August 2009 (UTC)

One point more, the traditions about the Hephtalithes we have from chinese and indian chroniclers are in conflict with eachother. While some of them tell us the Hephtalithes were settlers and living all the regions south- and north of Oxus and even much further in the region of modern Armenia and Azerbaidjan and have a writing system and follow some beliefes, other tell us they live in tents, have no common kings and rulers, do not follow any regional belief and have no a written system.-- (talk) 19:57, 1 August 2009 (UTC)

On the reading of 嚈噠[edit]

I think someone got a little lazy in analyzing the Korean reading of those characters to support the "Hephthal-" name used in Greek. Final -t's became -l's for the readings of all Chinese characters in Korean, so 엽달 (Yeoptal) for 嚈噠 would reflect an earlier name of something like "Yiptat" in Old Chinese. This is confirmed by the Cantonese reading of yip3 daat6 and the Japanese reading of you-tatu (which in old kana usage would've been yafu-tatu which would reflect the -p in the first character). —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:22, 6 September 2009 (UTC)

Napki Malka[edit]

There are quite a few years that the correct reading of npky MLK' (as in the caption of the Bilon coin) has been corrected to Nezak Shah (ncky MLK')... why is this sooooooooooo outdated? --Khodadad (talk) 08:16, 20 December 2009 (UTC)

Enoki Kazuo[edit]

I deleted his assumption based on nothing from introduction section, put it under another section of this article. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Torebay (talkcontribs) 19:17, 20 February 2010 (UTC)

You're not allowed to delete sourced material that you don't like. --Kurdo777 (talk) 07:58, 23 February 2010 (UTC)
I did not delete it, I just said that it should be put under another section because it is not

proven which language they spoke. Torebay (talk) 16:16, 23 February 2010 (UTC)

Confuses Hephthalites with the rest of the "Huns"[edit]

This article is supposed to be about the Hephthalites, yet it starts with remarks on the names of Khingila and Mihirakula who are NOT Hephthalites, rather the kings of another Iranian Hunnic group (according to Goebl 1967 and Alram 2004/2009) called the Alchon/Alkhans. They are all related groups, but have seperate identities. This needs to be totally cleaned out...--Khodadad (talk) 04:29, 26 April 2010 (UTC)


I have reverted source-falsifications by an IP. Tajik (talk) 20:53, 27 April 2010 (UTC)

As a Chinese I have something to say[edit]

The Ephthalites are neither Iranian speakers nor Turkish speakers, but more likely to communicate in a Mongolic language. In the Chinese book 《梁书》, our ancestor has described the (Hua)"滑国者,其言语待河南人译而后通" meaning the language of Hua could be translated by the ”河南人“ which in that time refers to the Xian bei(鲜卑) people of Tuyuhun kingdom(吐谷浑). the Xian bei language were considered to be the ancestor of Mongolic language. This theory was first mentioned by ”Edwin George Pulleyblank" in his book <The Consonantal System of Old Chinese>(上古汉语的辅音系统). Hope this helps. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Prinscky (talkcontribs) 05:20, 29 July 2011 (UTC)


The link "Hephthalite History and Coins of the Kashmir Smast Kingdom- Waleed Ziad" at the bottom of the page leads to a site that is either under construction or largely removed. Only the main pages are still available.Peterk2 (talk) 14:32, 23 August 2012 (UTC)