Erkin Ekrem

Hacettepe Üniversitesi, Edebiyat Fakültesi, Tarih Bölümü, Ankara/TÜRKİYE

Keywords: Yellow head Turks, Gok Turks, Tang Dynasty


There are many unresolved issues in Ancient Turkish History. Although there are inscriptions in Turkish on Gök Türk history, these do not help with some of the problems in Chinese sources. One of these problems is the “Huang-tou (Blonde) Turks” phrase in a work by Chang Chiu-ling (673-740), who was a vizier of T’ang Dynasty. This research uncovers that “Blonde Turks” means “Blonde (Gok) Turks” and the phrase is specifically meant for the family of Ilteris Kagan (682-692), the founder of the Second Gok Turk State. In ancient Turkish culture, yellow signifies “central” and “legitimate”. Investigation of “Blonde Turks”, ensued a period of power struggle in Gok Turk History. After the death of Ilteris Kağan, his brother Moch’uo Kağan (Kapgan Kağan, 692-716) seized power. Immediately after the death of Mo-ch’uo Kağan, Ilteris Kağan’s sons (Bilge Kağan ve Kül Tigin) took over via coup d’état. When Bilge Kağan passed away, Mo-ch’uo Kağan’s descendants rebelled against the domination and both parties came to an agreement. However, this balance of power did not last long.