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Cumans or Kumans (both: ko͞oˈmänz), nomadic East Turkic people, identified with the Kipchaks (or the western branch of the Kipchaks) and known in Russian as Polovtsi. Coming from NW Asian Russia, they conquered S Russia and Walachia in the 11th cent., and for almost two centuries warred intermittently with the Byzantine Empire, Hungary, and Kiev. They founded a nomadic state in the steppes along the Black Sea, and were active in commerce with Central Asia and Venice. In the early 12th cent. the main Cuman forces were defeated by the Eastern Slavs. The Mongols decisively defeated the Cumans c.1245. Some were sold as slaves, and many took refuge in Bulgaria and also in Hungary, where they were gradually assimilated into the Hungarian culture. Others joined the khanate of the Golden Horde (also called the Western Kipchaks), which was organized on the former Cuman territory in Russia.
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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



a medieval Turkic people known in Asia as Kipchaks, in Europe as Cuman, and in Rus’ as Polovtsy.

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
Over time, persecuted, and isolated from the rest of the Muslim and Tatar world, they lost the Qipchaq Tatar language, and then later, under the anti-religious USSR government, they began to lose their faith too.
Lee explores the formation of new group identities in post-Mongol Central Eurasia resulting from the custom of political vagabondage that was widespread among the Turko-Mongolian peoples of Central Asia and the Qipchaq Steppe.
Mongol invasions swept away the Kyivan Rus' state in the mid-thirteenth century, and a large portion of the East Slavic population thereby fell under the suzerainty of the Qipchaq khanate or "Golden Horde." By the fourteenth century, Moscow had emerged as a new power centre.
Muscovite ideas and practices turned out to be eclectic, drawing from the earlier traditions of Rus', the influence of Qipchaq overlords, and eventually an intensive but selective adaptation and reinterpretation of Byzantine models (see for example Ostrowski 1998; Uspenskii 1998).
Mongol rulers in Iran sped the adoption of Islam, as did Mongol rulers in the Qipchaq steppes (the so-called Golden Horde) and in the many important oasis towns on trade and pilgrimage routes.
The major political events and processes traced on the maps were often bound up with developments beyond the physical frontiers of the Qara-Qum and Kopet Dagh, the Dasht-i Qipchaq and the Altay, the Kunlun, Karakorams, and Hindu Kush.
En conclusion, Ostrowski attribue le caractere contradictoire des sources traitant de la Moscovie entre 1304 et 1589 au fait que "the ecclesiastical and secular establishments were affected by two different outside influences -- Byzantium and the Qipchaq Khanate, respectively" (p.
For the earlier period, Qipchaq or western steppe may be more appropriate.
The Mamluk period (1250-1517) is dealt with in two chapters, reflecting the traditional breakdown of the Sultanate into Qipchaq (or Turkish) and Circassian periods.
Progressive and archaic forms, Western (Oghuz or Qipchaq) and Eastern forms, occur indiscriminately, often in close proximity to one another.
Paradoxically, these slaves, mostly Qipchaq Turks from what.
On the basis of various texts which provide a damma over the ba, Heidemann decided that the correct form would be al-Burli (or al-Burlu, using the Turkish nisba form), adding that it refers to a Qipchaq tribe (about whose exact identity he had no additional information), the same tribe from which Baybars himself originated.