Book Series Berliner Turfantexte, vol. 48

Old Uigur Administrative Orders from Turfan

Dai Matsui (ed)

  • Pages: 294 p.
  • Size:210 x 297 mm
  • Illustrations:60 b/w, 28 col., 17 tables b/w.
  • Language(s):English
  • Publication Year:2023

  • ISBN: 978-2-503-60489-3
  • Paperback
  • Available


Matsui, Dai. Japanese scholar, born 17.12.1969 in Osaka. His research focuses on the history of the Central Asia under the Turkic Uigur kingdom and the Mongol empire, as well as on philological edition of the Old Uigur and Middle Mongolian texts retrieved from Central Asia. Presently he is a professor at the Graduate School of Humanities of Osaka University.


This volume historically investigates the Old Uigur administrative orders of compulsory requisitions (including those in tax receipt format) among the Berlin, London, St. Petersburg, Kyoto, Istanbul, and Chinese collections, 107 in total. These documents are concerned with taxation, tribute, and compulsory labor service systems of the West Uigur kingdom in the Turfan region from the 9th to the 14th centuries. The majority of the documents belong to the 13th and 14th centuries, and therefore the historical analysis in this volume concentrates mainly on the Turfan Uigur society under the rule of the Mongol empire. The findings of the present volume will merit a further comparative analysis of the Eurasian-wide synchronicity of the taxation and labor service systems under Mongol rule and can be positioned in the historical development of the Turfan region and Central Asia through comparison with chronologically and linguistically diverse textual materials unearthed from the Turfan basin and surrounding Central Asia.

The 107 Old Uigur documents are classified into nine groups and edited with fully annotated English translations.

The facsimiles of 71 documents are provided in 58 figures on 36 plates. They have been thus far unpublished or not readily available on the Internet databases, as well as significant from the viewpoint of historical analysis.