Надписи на средневековых палашах и саблях енисейских кыргызов

Translated title of the contribution: Inscriptions on medieval broadswords and sabers of the Yenisei kyrgyz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


To date, more than 50 medieval swords, broadswords and sabers belonging to the culture of the Yenisei Kyrgyz have been recorded on the territory of the Minusinsk Basin and Tuva. Among them, a group of four items with Arabic inscriptions on the blades stands out, of which only three are available for study. The first find discovered at the end of the 19th century was lost, and the information about it is very scarce. The second find is stored in the Minusinsk regional museum of local history: it is half of a broadsword from which a woodworking tool (saw) was made at a later time. On one side of the broadsword there is an inscription made by chisel. This inscription is an imitation of Arabic inscriptions. In the same museum, there is a saber, on one side of which there is also an inscription and an image of a hexagonal star surrounded by two wavy lines. They are not visible due to metal corrosion. It is possible that the inscriptions are made in “Naskh” handwriting. The fourth sword was discovered during excavations of the Kyrgyz burial ground Eilig-Khem III. In the literature, it is known as the “sword of Bagyr”. On both sides of the blade, the inscription is clearly visible, which is one of the suras of the Quran. The article discusses a possible East European origin of these expensive weapons and ways of its penetration into Southern Siberia as a military trophy or import from Zhetysu (Semirechye) region. The Yenisei Kyrgyz, who cremated their warriors upon funeral pyres together with their weapons, these weapons served as an additional indicator of their social status.

Translated title of the contributionInscriptions on medieval broadswords and sabers of the Yenisei kyrgyz
Original languageRussian
Pages (from-to)233-242
Number of pages10
JournalStratum Plus
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2019


  • Broadsword
  • Middle Ages
  • Military culture
  • Saber
  • Social status
  • Southern Siberia
  • Yenisei Kyrgyz
  • social status
  • military culture
  • saber
  • broadsword



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