The Roots of Turkish History (İngilizce)
15 Nisan 1983
Prof. Vecihe Hatiboğlu, a Turkish grammarian, was born in Istanbul, in 1916. She graduated from the Turkish Language and Literature Department of the Faculty of Letters, Ankara University in 1940, became Assistant Professor in 1955 and Professor in 1961. Prof. Hatiboğlu at one time chaired the Grammar Department of the Turkish Language Society. Among her publications, which date from 1956, are “Initial Sounds of Turkish Words” (1961), “The New Turkish Spelling Guide” (1965), “Dictionary of Grammar Terminology” (1969), all in Turkish.
The Roots of Turkish History
Prof. Vecihe Hatiboğlu
At the congress which was attended by Atatürk, Prof. Landsberger said there were many kings of the Gut tribe but the names of only five are known because most of the stone tablets were broken and illegible. According to recent investigations the beginning of Turkish history dates from the time of the Sumerians. The origin of the Sumer language has been a subject for philologists from various countries who failed to find any similarities between any languages except Turkish.
The Sumer civilisation inhabited South Mesopotamia and later the Gud tribe followed by the Kas spread into North Mesopotamia. The most illuminating evidence about the beginning of Turkish history is found on the cuneiform tablets from the Kas tribe. Prof. Fritz Hommel discovered at the beginning of the 20th century that the languages of these two tribes had the same roots (1).
Then Atatürk established the Faculty of Letters (Dil ve Tarih-Coğrafya Fakültesi) in 1936, and the leading western authority on the Sumerians, Prof. B. Landsberger was appointed a professor.
Prof. Landsberger, aware of Atatürk’s interest, in his lecture at the History Congress in 1937 said, “I am not talking about the Sumerians, but in 2500 BC, the Kut and Gut tribes dominated in Mesopotamia, in Akkadian, these appear as Kutium or Gutium. If we omit the suffix we get ‘Kut’ or ‘Gut’. I believe that this is the tribe which has the closest relationship and similarity with Turks. (see, The Documents of the History Congress, 1937, Turkish Historical Society” (TTK) Publication, p.105).
At the congress which was attended by Atatürk, Prof. Landsberger said there were many kings of the Gut tribe but the names of only five are known because most of the stone tablets were broken and illegible. These five kings were:
1- Yarlagan, 2- Tirigan, 3-Sharlak or Charlak, 4- El-ulumush, 5- Inim-bakash.
“After 2500 BC, the Kut tribe defeated the Samii kings of the Akkadians and ruled Mesopotamia for 125 years” (Ibid, p.106).
With Atatürk’s death, the subject was shelved. Forty years later studies on the etymology of the word, ‘Oghuz’ revealed that the Persians and Arabians had called the ‘Oghuz’ tribe ‘Guz’ and that the ‘Kas’ tribe had ruled in Mesopotamia for over 560 years up to 1700 BC. In articles on March 11th and September 26, 1978 in the dailies “Cumhuriyet” and “Milliyet” respectively, these details were published. It was concluded the Kas tribe was, in fact, the Guz tribe and should be regarded as the ‘Oghuz’ Turks, as the word Oghuz came from the word ‘Guz’. Thus, the Kas-Guz-Oghuz problem was solved.
Historians and philologists can be answered thus:
The Turkish history started with the Sumerians who lived in about 3500 BC.
Turkish tribes, after living for some time in Northern Asia under the name ‘Subar’ (Sabirs or Subirs) (2), because of the cold conditions migrated from Siberia via the Caspian Sea and North Iran to South Mesopotamia. There they established the cities of ‘Ur’ and ‘Uruk’ both of which are Turkish names. The Suvars, Yakuts, Karagas and Chuvash Turks living in North Asia today closely resemble the Sumerians.
Of course, these languages changed over the centuries, as Sumerian mixed with other languages. The Turkish language and dialects have over the centuries retained the origins of their words and grammatical roots, and today, 2700 years later, still appear in the Turkish language.
Accepting that Sumerian and Kas languages are the same, it is necessary to define the ‘Gud’ language. The Guds adapted themselves to the Sumerians and dominated the Samii tribe for 125 years.
Thus, the relation between the Guz (or Kas) tribe and the Guts (or Kut) can now be seen, because the Gut reigned in Mesopotamia in 2500 B.C. and the Guz tribe reigned in the same region for 5 or 7 centuries after them.
Although Prof. Landsberger did not agree, now new research has proved that the Elam, Subars, Kas and Sumerian tribes were Turkish.
The identity and relation between the names of Gud (Kut) and Guz (Kas) are clear. Their word structure is also similar. According to Akkad sources, (another tribe living in the same region) there is “sound substitution” between Akadian and the language of these two tribes. This is common: e.g. Arabic words “hidmet, fadıl” are “hizmet, fazıl” in Turkish. All nations adapt the sounds of foreign words to their own language.
All sources agree that there is a structural resemblance between the Gud and Guz language. Both are agglutinative.
The Gud tribe which Prof. Landsberger talked about lived continuously in Mesopotamia and the Guz tribe came 500 years later. In fact, they were one and the same tribe.
Just as today there are “Kirghiz”, “Uzbek”, “Yakut” and “Chuvash” tribes, so there were the Gud (Kas or Guz), and Subars (Subaries or Subirler). In the past Turks lived continuously for many years in this area. The Sumerians reigned in 3500 BC, Guds (Kuts) in 2500 BC and Kases (Guzs) in 1700 BC. The historian Strabon mentioned the Kas tribe in Syria under the name Kos and the prophet Mohammed also mentioned Turks in that region, and the Huza tribe keepers of the key of Mekka before Mohammed were Turks, as proved by Emir Kuzay. (see Islam Ansiklopedisi, Huza – The Encyclopedia of Islam, Huza tribe) (3).
“The Sumer civilisation inhabited South Mesopotamia and later the Gud tribe followed by the Kas spread into North Mesopotamia. The most illuminating evidence about the beginning of Turkish history is found on the cuneiform tablets from the Kas tribe.”
(1) Hommel, Fritz, (Ethnologie und Geographie des Alten Orients, München 1925-26) and (Zweihundert Sümerotürkische Wörtvergleichungen als runlage zu einem neuen Kapital der Sprachwissenschaft, München, 1915).
(2) Kashgarli Mahmoud in his work “Divan-ü Lügat it Türk” indicates this word as “Suvar“.
(3) Turks living in Huzistan (Huz-Kuz-Güz) and Kirman wanted Arabs to leave their territories (see, Türkiyat Mecmuası, 1969, volume XV, p.22. A Turcology magazine) Mahommed said Oghuz Turks-Guz Turks would dominate the region for a very long time and the reason for these words was the relation between Turks and the Samii and the old Guz tribes. Also Huza and Kuza tribes, famous for the spread of Islam, may have connections with the Huz and Kas tribes. It is interesting that the Huz people were the warriors of the Arab armies and settled in the countries such as Spain where they went to fight wars. Later, the Abbasids did the same, and took Turks in their armies as warriors.