Nikolai Katanov in China: Unpublished Travel Diaries
Authors: Yulia A. Martynova, Dmitry E. Martynov
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The article summarizes the results of Xinjiang expedition by N.F. Katanov, conducted in 1889–1892 by order of the Russian Academy of Sciences. The core materials and undifferentiated diaries remained unpublished and are deposited in the National Archives of the Republic of Tatarstan.
N.F. Katanov’s data in the National Archives of the Republic of Tatarstan (Fund 969) includes 551 files, covering the period of 1878 – 1919. We are talking about three documents:
- Fund 969, Inv. 1, d. 10: Journey to Siberia, Dzungaria and East Turkestan, committed in 1890 (241 pages);
- F. 969, Inv. 1, d. 11: Trip to the Seven Rivers and Tarbagatai, 1891 (558 p.)
- F. 969, Inv. 1, d. 76: Travel to Central Asia, Western China (Turfan) and Mongolia (487 p.).
N.F. Katanov travelled across the territory of Qing China several times. In 1890 he visited eight Chinese centers – Hotan, Kashgar, Aksu, Kuchar, Karakash, Baya, Lo-gucheng and Turpan, the language and folklore of the Turkic peoples of Eastern Turkestan were of his primarily concern. Then he visited mainly Seven Rivers (Zhetysu), settled in Chuguchak, starting from May 13 to November 7, 1891, and in Chuguchak (where he settled from May 13 to November 7). Since November 8, 1891 to March 7, 1892, he visited Xinjiang, where he lived mainly in Hami. Then he went to Kulja, and returned to the Russian Empire in May 1892, staying within the China territory 18 months in total.