Geographic distribution of the Mongolic languages
A map of the places that Mongolic peoples live. The orange line shows the extent of the Mongol Empire in the late 13th century. The red areas are the places dominated by the Mongolic groups.

The Mongolic peoples are a collection of East Asian-originated ethnic groups in East, North, South Asia and Eastern Europe, who speak Mongolic languages. Their ancestors are referred to as Proto-Mongols. The largest contemporary Mongolic ethnic group is the Mongols.[1] Mongolic-speaking people, although distributed in a wide geographical area, show a high genetic affinity to each other,[2] and display continuity with ancient Northeast Asians.[3]

List of ethnic groups

Contemporary ethnic groups

TABLE OF THE CONTEMPORARY MONGOLIC PEOPLES
Ethnonym Population Primarily regions Religion
Mongols[note 1] 11,000,000 Mongolia, Inner Mongolia, other Mongolian autonomous divisions of China, Buryatia (Russia), Kalmykia (Russia), Agin-Buryat Okrug (Russia), Ust-Orda Buryat Okrug (Russia) Tibetan Buddhism, Tengrism (Mongolian shamanism)
Mughals 3,000,000 North India, Pakistan Sunni Islam
Dongxiangs 621,000 Dongxiang Autonomous County, Jishishan Bonan, Dongxiang and Salar Autonomous County Sunni Islam
Monguor 290,000 Qinghai, Gansu Tibetan Buddhism, Tengrism (shamanism)
Daurs 132,000 Morin Dawa Daur Autonomous Banner, Meilisi Daur District Tibetan Buddhism, Tengrism (shamanism)
Khatso >60,000? Tonghai County Tibetan Buddhism
Sogwo Arig 40,000? Qinghai Tibetan Buddhism, Bon
Sichuan Mongols 29,000 Muli Tibetan Autonomous County, Yanyuan County Tibetan Buddhism
Bonan 20,000 Jishishan Bonan, Dongxiang and Salar Autonomous County Sunni Islam, Tibetan Buddhism
Hamnigans 10,000? Zabaykalsky Krai, Northeastern Mongolia, Hulunbuir Tibetan Buddhism, shamanism
Yugurs 6,000

Sunan Yugur Autonomous County

Tibetan Buddhism, Tengrism
Moghols 2,000 Herat Province Sunni Islam
Kangjia 2,000 Huangnan Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture Sunni Islam

In addition, Mongolized Soyots live in Buryatia. Their population is 3600 people. A number of orientalists (Nanzatov, Baldaev and others) traditionally consider modern Soyots as a sub-ethnos within the Buryat people.[4][5]

Ethnic groups of Mongolian origin

A large Mongolian component took part in the ethnic formation of the Hazaras.[6] The high frequency of haplogroup C2-M217 is consistent with the purported Mongolian origin of many of the Hazaras.[7] Modern Hazaras speak the Hazaragi, one of the dialects of the Dari/Persian language.

The Mughals, descendants of the Barlas and other Mongol tribes, currently speak Urdu.[8]

Historical ethnic groups

Main article: Proto-Mongols

General characteristics

Languages

Main article: Mongolic languages

Languages of the Mongolic peoples belong to the Mongolic language family.[9] The Mongolic languages are a language family spoken in Eastern Europe (Kalmykia), Central Asia, North Asia and East Asia. The best-known member of this language family, Mongolian, is the primary language of most of the residents of Mongolia and the Mongol residents of Inner Mongolia and Buryatia, with an estimated 5.7+ million speakers.[10]

The Mongolic ethnicities possibly related to the Turkic and Tungusic peoples,[11] whose languages together would include in the hypothetical Altaic language family.[12]

Religions

The Mongolic peoples are predominantly followers of Tibetan Buddhism. In 1576 the Gelug Tibetan school which was founded by the half-Mongol Je Tsongkhapa became the state religion of Mongolia. Some groups such as Dongxiangs and Bonan people adopted Sunni Islam, as did Moghols in Afghanistan and Mughals in India. Among a part of the population, the ethnic religion, namely Tengrism (Mongolian shamanism) is preserved. A small number of Christians emerged under the influence of the Russian Church and Western missionaries.[13]

Mongolian shamanism, more broadly called the Mongolian folk religion, or occasionally Tengerism, as refers to the animistic and shamanic indigenous religion that has been practiced in Mongolia and its surrounding areas (including Buryatia and Inner Mongolia), as well as among Daur and other peoples, at least since the age of recorded history. In the earliest known stages, it was intricately tied to all other aspects of social life and to the tribal organization of Mongolian society. Along the way, it has become influenced by and mingled with Buddhism.[14] Tengrism was transformed into a monotheistic religion only at the imperial level within aristocratic circles.[15]

Culture

Further information: Culture of Mongolia

The Culture of Mongolia has been heavily influenced by the Mongol nomadic way of life and shows similarities to other East Asian and Central Asian cultures. The various Mongolic ethnic groups share a highly similar culture and traditions, but have specific differences in clothing styles and cuisine. Although Mongolian traditional clothing (deel) has changed little since the days of the empire, there have been some changes in styles which distinguish modern Mongolian dress from historic costume. Each tribe or clan has its own deel design distinguished by cut, color, and trimming. Mongolian cuisine is primarily based on meat and dairy, with some regional variations. The most important public festivals are the Naadam. A Naadam involves horse racing, wrestling, and archery competitions. For families, the most important festival is Tsagaan Sar (Lunar New Year), which is roughly equivalent to the Chinese New Year and usually falls into January or February. Mongolia has a very old musical tradition. Key traditional elements are throat-singing, the Morin Khuur (horse head fiddle) and other string instruments, and several types of songs. Mongolian melodies are typically characterized by pentatonic harmonies and long end notes.

Origin

The ethnogenesis of Mongolic peoples is largely linked with the expansion of Ancient Northeast Asians. They subsequently came into contact with other groups, notably Sinitic peoples to their South and Western Steppe Herders to their far West. The Mongolians pastoralist lifestyle, may in part be derived from the Western Steppe Herders, but without much geneflow between these two groups, suggesting cultural transmission.[16][17]

Genetics

Mongols and other Mongolic-speaking groups, show high genetic affinity to each other, followed by genetic proximity to Central and East/Southeast Asian peoples. The analysis of 175 Mongolic samples, representing 6 ethnic groups, incorporating results of the 1000 Genomes Project panel, revealed genetic homogeneity between different Mongolic groups, and that Northeast, East, and Southeast Asian populations are closer to each other than to other Eurasian populations.[2]

Maternal lineages

Mongolic peoples maternal lineages are primarily shared with East Asians (54%) and Southeast Asians (28%), while around 14% are shared with Europeans and other West Eurasian populations. The remaining 4% are distributed throughout Eurasia and not associated with a specific group.[18]

A study based on mtDNA noted that ancient populations in Mongolia had a mixed West and East Eurasian origin, while modern Mongolians are characterized by substantially less West Eurasian maternal ancestry. It is suggested that many West Eurasian mtDNA haplogroups in modern Mongolians are believed to have arrived around 2,500-5,000 years ago, or the Mongolian Bronze Age. A smaller number arrived in the early Iron Age.[19] Research by Rogers, et al. provides evidence that some West Eurasian maternal lineages had made it to Mongolia east of the Altai mountains prior to the Bronze Age.[20][21] During the medieval period, a continuous increase in East Asian mitochondrial lineages was detected, which these authors attribute to Genghis Khan's Pax Mongolica.[22]

Paternal lineages

Analyses on the paternal genetic diversity of Mongolians revealed a mean frequency of 63% Haplogroup C-M217, 14% Haplogroup O-M175, 11% Haplogroup N-M231, 6% Haplogroup R, 3% Haplogroup Q-M242, and 3% Haplogroup D-M174.[23]

A study based on ancient DNA and Y-DNA found that ancient populations in the region of modern-day Mongolia had a mixed West and East Eurasian origin during the Xiongnu period. Male-mediated West Eurasian ancestry increased by the establishment of Türkic and Uyghur rule in Mongolia, which was accompanied by an increase in the West Eurasian haplogroups R and J.[24] There was a male-mediated rise in East Asian ancestry in the late medieval Mongolian period, paralleling the increase of haplogroup C2b.[25]

Autosomal DNA
Genetic variation of Eurasian populations showing different frequency of West- and East-Eurasian components.[26]

Autosomal genetic data on geographically different Mongolic populations found that they are best modeled as a mixture of Ancient Northeast Asian-like (ANA) and East Asian-like (Yellow River farmers) ancestry sources, with only minor Western Eurasian genetic contributions. Mongolic-speaking groups were found to share a common genetic heritage, and also showed high affinity to ancient and medieval Mongolian samples, suggesting genetic continuity with the Slab Grave Culture.[3] Western derived ancestry makes up roughly 5.6—11.6%, primarily from Western Steppe Herders (WSH).[27][note 2]

Estimated ancestry components among selected modern populations per Changmai et al (2022). The Yellow component represents "East and Southeast Asian" (ESEA) ancestries.[29]

Mongolic peoples display genetic continuity to the Devil’s Gate Cave specimen (7,000 BCE) and the Amur13K specimen (13,000 BCE). The Neolithic Northeast Asian ancestry, is shared with other "putative Altaic-speaking peoples" specifically Turkic, and Tungusic-speaking peoples, together with shared "IBD fragments" in haplotype variation, supporting a Northeast Asian origin of these three groups. Turkic and Western Mongolic populations display the relatively highest amounts of West Eurasian admixture, inline with historical contacts between Ancient Northeast Asians and West Eurasian populations of the Eurasian Steppes, and evidence from linguistic borrowings. In comparison, Eastern, Central and Southern Mongolic peoples as well as Tungusic peoples had considerable less West Eurasian ancestry but higher Yellow River farmers ancestry. Sinitic peoples largely lacked any West Eurasian-derived ancestry and displayed primarily affinity with historical Yellow River farmers.[30][31]

Notes

  1. ^ Such subgroups of the Mongols as the Buryats and the Kalmyks are recognized in Russia as distinct ethnolinguistic groups (see 2010 Census and other).
  2. ^ "The gene flow from Western Eurasian was preliminarily detected in Mongol population of TreeMix-based phylogenetic tree; the ancestral source was finally identified in qpAdm, ranging from 5.6 to 11.6% in those Mongolian subgroups; ALDER and GLOBETROTTER supported that the west-east admixture event was recently estimated in the period ranging from Tang Dynasty to Yuan Dynasty. ... We further performed haplotype-based GLOBETROTTER to obtain a high-resolution characterization of the admixture landscaped of three Mongolian subgroups. All targets showed robust signals of west-east admixture (Supplementary Table S11)."[28]

References

Citations

  1. ^ Ochir 2008; Zhukovskaia 2007, p. 354; Nimaev 2011.
  2. ^ a b Bai; et al. 2018.
  3. ^ a b Wang; et al. 2021.
  4. ^ Nanzatov, B. Z. (2003). "Племенной состав бурят в XIX веке" [Buryat tribe composition in the 19th century]. Народы и культуры Сибири. Взаимодействие как фактор формирования и модернизации (in Russian). Irkutsk. pp. 15–27.((cite book)): CS1 maint: location missing publisher (link)
  5. ^ Балдаев С. П. (1970). Родословные легенды и предания бурят. Ч. 1 (in Russian). Улан-Удэ. p. 166.((cite book)): CS1 maint: location missing publisher (link)
  6. ^ Bacon 1951.
  7. ^ Жабагин М. К. (2017). Анализ связи полиморфизма Y-хромосомы и родоплеменной структуры в казахской популяции. Moscow. p. 71. In Russian: "...за счет высокой частоты гаплогруппы С2-М217, что согласуется с монгольским происхождением хазарейцев."
  8. ^ Сабитов Ж. М., Баймуханов Н. Б. (2015). "Y-STR гаплотипы узбеков, уйгуров, таджиков, пуштунов, хазарейцев, моголов из базы данных Family Tree DNA". The Russian Journal of Genetic Genealogy (in Russian) (2): 22–23.
  9. ^ Janhunen 2003.
  10. ^ Svantesson et al. 2005.
  11. ^ Pettazzoni 1956.
  12. ^ Starostin, George (2016-04-05). "Altaic Languages". Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Linguistics. Oxford University Press. doi:10.1093/acrefore/9780199384655.013.35. ISBN 978-0-19-938465-5.
  13. ^ Heissig 1980.
  14. ^ Pettazzoni 1956; Humphrey & Onon 1996; Shimamura 2004, pp. 649–51; Schlehe 2004, pp. 283–96; Balogh 2010, pp. 229–38; Bumochir 2014, pp. 473–91; Quijada, Graber & Stephen 2015, pp. 258–72.
  15. ^ Bira 2011, p. 14.
  16. ^ "Population dynamics and the rise of empires in Inner Asia: Genome-wide analysis spanning 6,000 years in the eastern Eurasian Steppe gives insights to the formation of Mongolia's empires". ScienceDaily. Retrieved 2023-06-04.
  17. ^ Yang, Xiaomin; Sarengaowa; He, Guanglin; Guo, Jianxin; Zhu, Kongyang; Ma, Hao; Zhao, Jing; Yang, Meiqing; Chen, Jing; Zhang, Xianpeng; Tao, Le; Liu, Yilan; Zhang, Xiu-Fang; Wang, Chuan-Chao (2021). "Genomic Insights Into the Genetic Structure and Natural Selection of Mongolians". Frontiers in Genetics. 12: 735786. doi:10.3389/fgene.2021.735786. ISSN 1664-8021. PMC 8693022. PMID 34956310.
  18. ^ Cheng, Baoweng; Tang, Wenru; He, Li; Dong, Yongli; Lu, Jing; Lei, Yunping; Yu, Haijing; Zhang, Jiali; Xiao, Chunjie (October 2008). "Genetic imprint of the Mongol: signal from phylogeographic analysis of mitochondrial DNA". Journal of Human Genetics. 53 (10): 905–913. doi:10.1007/s10038-008-0325-8. ISSN 1435-232X. PMID 18769869. S2CID 6841794.
  19. ^ Cardinali; et al. 2022"Finally, a very few haplogroups originated in more recent times (<3 kya) and could be linked to historical events." [...] "A post-glacial expansion in eastern Asia was already proved for another mtDNA post-glacial marker, haplogroup U5b (Achilli et al., 2005). A later expansion can be probably connected to the climatic amelioration of the early Holocene that was accompanied by the development of farming and pastoralism and more sedentary communities. A mixed ancestry between Yamnaya and European farmers was recently identified by analyzing ancient Bronze Age Mongolians (Jeong et al., 2020; Wang C. C. et al., 2021). [...] The lack of Mongolia-specific sub-branches might also suggest that the WEu lineages arrived in the Eastern Steppe in more recent times. Certainly, the ages of some WEu lineages between 5 and 3 kya could be linked to Bronze Age migrations across the Eurasian steppes that probably involved also the Afanasievo first (ca. 3300–2500 BCE) and later the Sintashta culture (ca. 2100–1800 BCE). Finally, by searching the available database of ancient mitogenomes for WEu lineages identified in our modern Mongolians, we identified 13 different sub-lineages among remains excavated in Mongolia and dated after the Bronze Age. They might testify for small population movements from the west less than 3,000 ya that can be probably related to commercial routes. Actually, the migration path from western Eurasia to Mongolia marked by some of these mitochondrial sub-lineages (H5a1, J1b2, T2g, U2e1b, U4b1a1a1, and U4b1a4) occurred about 2,500 ya, thus temporally and geographically overlapping with the Silk Route, while other sub-haplogroups, such as J1b1b1 and U2e1a1, seem to have arrived in Mongolia later."
  20. ^ Rogers, Leland L.; Honeychurch, William; Amartuvshin, Chunag; Kaestle, Frederika A. (2020). "U5A1 Mitochondrial DNA Haplotype Identified in Eneolithic Skeleton from Shatar Chuluu, Mongolia". Human Biology. doi:10.1353/hub.2017.0079. ISSN 1534-6617.
  21. ^ Rogers, Leland Liu; Kaestle, Frederika Ann (April 2022). "Analysis of mitochondrial DNA haplogroup frequencies in the population of the slab burial mortuary culture of Mongolia (ca. 1100–300 BCE )". American Journal of Biological Anthropology. 177 (4): 644–657. doi:10.1002/ajpa.24478. S2CID 246508594. The K hg may represent an ancient addition from early western foragers that had intermixed with early agriculturalists (Spengler, 2015), similar with the probable origins of the C hg found in the ancient Ukraine (Nikitin et al., 2012). The J1c8a haplotype might be from a regional polymorphism that is linked to migrating populations after the expansion of agriculturalism from the Middle East, perhaps associated with the development of caprine pastoralism that reached southeast Kazakhstan by at least 2800 BCE (Hermes et al 2020)."
  22. ^ Cardinali; et al. 2022"Finally, rather than finding long-distance traces of the Mongol Empire expansion to the west, we identified continuous and recent (female-mediated) connections with neighboring Eastern Asian populations. The geographically restricted sharing of haplotypes from typical EAs mtDNA lineages might represent an outcome of Genghis Khan’s so-called Pax Mongolica still detectable in present-day Mongolians."
  23. ^ Yamamoto, Toshimichi; Senda, Tomoki; Horiba, Daiki; Sakuma, Masayoshi; Kawaguchi, Yuuka; Kano, Yuuichi (2013-01-01). "Y-chromosome lineage in five regional Mongolian populations". Forensic Science International: Genetics Supplement Series. Progress in Forensic Genetics 15. 4 (1): e260–e261. doi:10.1016/j.fsigss.2013.10.133. ISSN 1875-1768.
  24. ^ Jeong 2020.
  25. ^ Jeong, Choongwon; Wang, Ke; Wilkin, Shevan; Taylor, William Timothy Treal; Miller, Bryan K.; Bemmann, Jan H.; Stahl, Raphaela; Chiovelli, Chelsea; Knolle, Florian; Ulziibayar, Sodnom; Khatanbaatar, Dorjpurev; Erdenebaatar, Diimaajav; Erdenebat, Ulambayar; Ochir, Ayudai; Ankhsanaa, Ganbold; Vanchigdash, Chuluunkhuu; Ochir, Battuga; Munkhbayar, Chuluunbat; Tumen, Dashzeveg; Kovalev, Alexey; Kradin, Nikolay; Bazarov, Bilikto A.; Miyagashev, Denis A.; Konovalov, Prokopiy B.; Zhambaltarova, Elena; Miller, Alicia Ventresca; Haak, Wolfgang; Schiffels, Stephan; Krause, Johannes; Boivin, Nicole; Erdene, Myagmar; Hendy, Jessica; Warinner, Christina (12 November 2020). "A Dynamic 6,000-Year Genetic History of Eurasia's Eastern Steppe". Cell. 183 (4): 890–904.e29. doi:10.1016/j.cell.2020.10.015. ISSN 0092-8674. PMC 7664836. PMID 33157037.See Figure S2. "We also observed that this East Asian-related ancestry was brought into the Late Medieval populations more by male than female ancestors. ... Overall, Mongol period individuals characterized by a remarkable decrease in Western Eurasian ancestry compared to the preceding 1,600 years. They are best modeled as a mixture of ANA-like and East Asian-like ancestry sources, with only minor Western genetic ancestry. In addition, nearly a third of historic Mongol males (12/38) have Y haplogroup C2b, which is also widespread among modern Mongolians (Figure S3; Table S6); C2b is the presumed patrilineage of Genghis Khan (Zerjal et al., 2003)."
  26. ^ Li, Hui; Cho, Kelly; Kidd, J.; Kidd, K. (2009). "Genetic landscape of Eurasia and "admixture" in Uyghurs". American Journal of Human Genetics. 85 (6): 934–937. doi:10.1016/j.ajhg.2009.10.024. PMC 2790568. PMID 20004770. S2CID 37591388.
  27. ^ Yang, Xiaomin; Sarengaowa; He, Guanglin; Guo, Jianxin; Zhu, Kongyang; Ma, Hao; Zhao, Jing; Yang, Meiqing; Chen, Jing; Zhang, Xianpeng; Tao, Le; Liu, Yilan; Zhang, Xiu-Fang; Wang, Chuan-Chao (2021). "Genomic Insights Into the Genetic Structure and Natural Selection of Mongolians". Frontiers in Genetics. 12: 735786. doi:10.3389/fgene.2021.735786. ISSN 1664-8021. PMC 8693022. PMID 34956310.
  28. ^ Yang; et al. 2021.
  29. ^ Changmai, Piya; Pinhasi, Ron; Pietrusewsky, Michael; Stark, Miriam T.; Ikehara-Quebral, Rona Michi; Reich, David; Flegontov, Pavel (2022-12-29). "Ancient DNA from Protohistoric Period Cambodia indicates that South Asians admixed with local populations as early as 1st–3rd centuries CE". Scientific Reports. 12 (1): 22507. Bibcode:2022NatSR..1222507C. doi:10.1038/s41598-022-26799-3. ISSN 2045-2322. PMC 9800559. PMID 36581666.
  30. ^ He, Guang‐Lin; Wang, Meng‐Ge; Zou, Xing; Yeh, Hui‐Yuan; Liu, Chang‐Hui; Liu, Chao; Chen, Gang; Wang, Chuan‐Chao (January 2023). "Extensive ethnolinguistic diversity at the crossroads of North China and South Siberia reflects multiple sources of genetic diversity". Journal of Systematics and Evolution. 61 (1): 230–250. doi:10.1111/jse.12827. ISSN 1674-4918. S2CID 245849003.
  31. ^ Sikora, Martin; Pitulko, Vladimir V.; Sousa, Vitor C.; Allentoft, Morten E.; Vinner, Lasse; Rasmussen, Simon; Margaryan, Ashot; de Barros Damgaard, Peter; de la Fuente, Constanza; Renaud, Gabriel; Yang, Melinda A.; Fu, Qiaomei; Dupanloup, Isabelle; Giampoudakis, Konstantinos; Nogués-Bravo, David (2019). "The population history of northeastern Siberia since the Pleistocene". Nature. 570 (7760): 182–188. Bibcode:2019Natur.570..182S. doi:10.1038/s41586-019-1279-z. ISSN 1476-4687. PMID 31168093. S2CID 174809069. Most modern Siberian speakers of Neosiberian languages genetically fall on an East- West cline between Europeans and Early East Asians. Taking Even speakers as representatives, the Neosiberian turnover from the south, which largely replaced Ancient Paleosiberian ancestry, can be associated with the northward spread of Tungusic and probably also Turkic and Mongolic. However, the expansions of Tungusic as well as Turkic and Mongolic are too recent to be associable with the earliest waves of Neosiberian ancestry, dated later than ~11 kya, but discernible in the Baikal region from at least 6 kya onwards. Therefore, this phase of the Neosiberian population turnover must initially have transmitted other languages or language families into Siberia, including possibly Uralic and Yukaghir.

Sources

General

Genetic researches

Linguistics

  • Janhunen, Juha, ed. (2003). The Mongolic languages. Routledge Language Family Series. London; New York: Routledge. ISBN 978-0-7007-1133-8.
  • Svantesson, Jan-Olof; Tsendina, Anna; Karlsson, Anastasia; Franzén, Vivan (2005). The Phonology of Mongolian. New York: Oxford University Press.

Religious studies

Ethnic groups