Episode 248 – Life in Turkic Anatolia

We take a look around the parts of Anatolia which were controlled by Turkic peoples between 1080 and 1180 AD. We don’t have a huge amount of written sources to draw on but hopefully there’s enough information available to give you a better picture of what’s been happening there. We also discuss the two different groups of Turkic peoples in Anatolia – the settled and the nomads.

Period: 1070-1180

This beautiful drawing of Manuel Komnenos is by Diogo DaCunha. Check out more of his work on Instagram, at his website or on Vimeo.

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Categories: Uncategorized | 2 Comments

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2 thoughts on “Episode 248 – Life in Turkic Anatolia

  1. mehmet

    Nice summary, but I’ll have a few objections

    Firstly, after 1071 for centuries turks only controlled what you call “the plateau” and what we call “iç anadolu bölgesi”, in addition to eastern anatolia..

    –the plateau is an arid, god-forsaken place with very small population, even for today.. It started to pick up population only after 1923, when Atatürk moved the capital there..
    –the so-called “eastern anatolia” (ie, the places we call “doğu ve güneydoğu anadolu bölgesi”) is actually not part of historical anatolia. It is inhabited by syriacs armenians and georgians. No or very little greeks there..

    The reason I’m writing these is the constant theme of “greeks left behind” in western accounts. I dont think too many greeks were left behind. And I dont think Byzantines felt a great lost when they lost these regions..

    I have the impression that the really valuable parts are the coasts of anatolia and the balkan peninsula. A sentiment shared by many turks today.. And byzantines continued to hold these till 1204.

    Another objection is to your sentence “many byzantines converted for career purposes”. Possible, but one must not forget that sufi Islam of this period was quite attractive. Soon, people like Rumi, ibn Arabi an Konevi will make Iconium their home and propagate a deeply mystical islam from there. This “pull” factor can also explain the conversions..

    In any case, DNA studies show that vast majority of today’s turkish people descend from the native peoples of anatolia.. Central asian admixture in the gene makeup is less than %20.

  2. George

    I recall that in some of the later Turkic empires in Iran, you would have Turkic “tribal” chieftains, who, in addition to leading their tribe, also owned lands and villages in the countryside, and workshops and trade houses in the cities, where they often lived as well.

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