|Native to||Cuman–Kipchak Confederation, Kingdom of Hungary, Golden Horde|
|Region||Cumania, later Kunság|
|Extinct||Literary form, 1770, with the death of István Varró|
Cuman or Kuman (also called Kipchak, Qypchaq or Polovtsian, self referred to as Tatar (tatar til) in Codex Cumanicus) was a West Kipchak Turkic language spoken by the Cumans (Polovtsy, Folban, Vallany, Kun) and Kipchaks; the language was similar to today's various languages of the West Kipchak branch. Cuman is documented in medieval works, including the Codex Cumanicus, and in early modern manuscripts, like the notebook of Benedictine monk Johannes ex Grafing. It was a literary language in Central and Eastern Europe that left a rich literary inheritance. The language became the main language (lingua franca) of the Golden Horde.
The Cumans were nomadic people who lived on the steppes of Eastern Europe, north of the Black Sea, before the Golden Horde. Many Turkic peoples including the Crimean Tatars, Karachays, Kumyks, Crimean Karaites, Krymchaks and Balkars, Manavs are descended from the Cumans. Today, the speakers of these various languages belonging to the Kipchak branch speak variations closely related to the Cuman language.
The literary Cuman language became extinct in the early 18th century in the region of Cumania in Hungary, which was its last stronghold. Tradition holds that the last speaker of the Cuman language in Hungary was István Varró, a resident of Karcag (Hungary) who died in 1770. The Cuman language in Crimea, however, managed to survive. The Cuman language is considered the direct ancestor of the current language of the Crimean Tatars with possible incorporations of the other languages, like Crimean Gothic.
By a preponderance Cumanian population of the Crimea acquired the name "Tatars", the Islamic religion and Turkic language, and the process of consolidating the multi-ethnic conglomerate of the Peninsula began, which has led to the emergence of the Crimean Tatar people.
The Cuman-Kipchaks had an important role in the history of Anatolia, Kazakhstan, Ukraine, Russia, Georgia, Hungary, Romania (see, for example, the Besarab dynasty), Moldavia, Bessarabia and Bulgaria.
From the book known as the Codex Cumanicus, a Cuman Kipchak Turkic Pater Noster (transcribed in the Common Turkic Alphabet):
Atamız kim köktesiñ. Alğışlı bolsun seniñ atıñ, kelsin seniñ xanlığıñ, bolsun seniñ tilemekiñ – neçik kim kökte, alay [da] yerde. Kündeki ötmegimizni bizge bugün bergil. Dağı yazuqlarımıznı bizge boşatqıl – neçik biz boşatırbız bizge yaman etkenlerge. Dağı yekniñ sınamaqına bizni quurmağıl. Basa barça yamandan bizni qutxarğıl. Amen!