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Original Articles Home > Acta Via Serica > Archives > Original Articles
Title Daily Life of the People of Kashgaria at the End of the 19th Century: Evidence of Russian Traveler M.V. Pevtsov
Author Shahin Mustafayev
Volume Vol. 7 No. 1
Pages pp. 1~28 (all 28 pages)
Publication Date June, 2022
Keyword Kashgaria, Eastern Turkestan, China, Central Asia, Inner Asia, Pevtsov, everyday life, 'Great Game', Yakub Bek Kashgaria, Eastern Turkestan, China, Central Asia, Inner Asia, Pevtsov, everyday life, 'Great Game', Yakub Bek
Abstract The province of the People’s Republic of China, the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region has historically been known under various names – Eastern Turkestan, Chinese Turkestan, Kashgaria, etc. In the early 19th century this region was one of the least explored in Western scholarship and for the influence over which the so-called 'Great Game', geopolitical rivalry between Great Britain and the Russian Empire, gradually unfolded. This rivalry was one of the significant factors stimulating increased interest in an in-depth and comprehensive study of the geography, nature, and population of Kashgaria. Accordingly, in the second half of the 19th to early 20th centuries, several expeditions were organized that pursued serious academic goals alongside military, diplomatic, and commercial purposes. One of these expeditions, organized by the Imperial Russian Geographical Society, was the so-called 'Tibetan expedition' led by a talented scientist and military figure M.V. Pevtsov in 1889-90. The expedition followed the routes of Eastern Turkestan, the northern outskirts of the Tibetan Plateau, and Dzungaria studying this vast region’s geography, topography, nature, climate, and population. The results of this investigation were presented by M.V. Pevtsov in a detailed and comprehensive report published in St. Petersburg in 1895. c\n important part of this narrative is the so-called "Ethnographic Essay of Kashgaria," which reflects the author's observations and thoughts on this region’s ethnic composition, religious beliefs, language, customs, and rituals. This article offers insights and analysis of the content of Pevtsov’s report, which provides valuable information about the daily life of the population of Kashgaria at the end of the 19th century to an English-speaking audience.