Pecheneg Khanates

Pecheneg Khanates and neighboring territories, c.1030
Pecheneg Khanates and neighboring territories, c.1030
Common languagesPecheneg
• Established
• Disestablished
Preceded by
Succeeded by
Khazar Khaganate
History of the Turkic peoples
History of the Turkic peoples
Pre-14th century
Turkic Khaganate 552–744
  Western Turkic
  Eastern Turkic
Khazar Khaganate 618–1048
Xueyantuo 628–646
Great Bulgaria 632–668
  Danube Bulgaria
  Volga Bulgaria
Kangar union 659–750
Turk Shahi 665–850
Türgesh Khaganate 699–766
Uyghur Khaganate 744–840
Karluk Yabgu State 756–940
Kara-Khanid Khanate 840–1212
  Western Kara-Khanid
  Eastern Kara-Khanid
Ganzhou Uyghur Kingdom 848–1036
Qocho 856–1335
Pecheneg Khanates
Kimek confederation
Oghuz Yabgu State
Ghaznavid Empire 963–1186
Seljuk Empire 1037–1194
  Sultanate of Rum
Kerait khanate 11th century–13th century
Khwarazmian Empire 1077–1231
Naiman Khanate –1204
Qarlughid Kingdom 1224–1266
Delhi Sultanate 1206–1526
  Mamluk dynasty
  Khalji dynasty
  Tughlaq dynasty
Golden Horde | [1][2][3] 1240s–1502
Mamluk Sultanate (Cairo) 1250–1517
  Bahri dynasty
Bengal Sultanate 1352–1487
  Ilyas Shahi dynasty

The Pechenegs or Patzinaks[4] were a semi-nomadic Turkic people from Central Asia speaking the Pecheneg language which belonged to the Oghuz branch of the Turkic language family.[5]


The Pechenegs were mentioned as Bjnak, Bjanak or Bajanak in medieval Arabic and Persian texts, as Be-ča-nag in Classical Tibetan documents, as Pačanak-i in works written in Georgian.[6] Anna Komnene and other Byzantine authors referred to them as Patzinakoi or Patzinakitai.[6] In medieval Latin texts, the Pechenegs were referred to as Pizenaci, Bisseni or Bessi.[6] East Slavic peoples use the terms Pečenegi or Pečenezi, while the Poles mention them as Pieczyngowie or Piecinigi.[6] The Hungarian word for Pecheneg is besenyő; the Romanian term is "Pecenegi"[6] The ethnonym may have derived from the Old Turkic word for "brother-in-law” (baja, baja-naq or bajinaq), implying that it initially referred to an "in-law related clan or tribe".[6][7]. Pechenegs are mentioned as one of 24 ancient tribes of Oghuzes by 14th century statesman and historian of Ilkhanate-ruled Iran Rashid-al-Din Hamadani in his work Jāmiʿ al-Tawārīkh ("Compendium of Chronicles") with the meaning of the ethnonym as "the one who shows eagerness". 17th century Khan of Khanate of Khiva and historian Abu al-Ghazi Bahadur mentions the pechenegs as bechene among 24 ancient tribes of Turkmens (or Oghuzes) in his book Shajare-i Tarakime (“Genealogy of the Turkmen") and provides for its meaning as "the one who makes".

Three of the eight Pecheneg "provinces" or clans were collectively known as Kangars.[8] According to Constantine VII Porphyrogenitus, the Kangars received this denomination because "they are more valiant and noble than the rest" of the people "and that is what the title Kangar signifies".[8][9] For no Turkic word with similar meaning is known, Ármin Vámbéry connected the ethnonym to the Kirghiz words kangir ("agile"), kangirmak ("to go out riding") and kani-kara ("black-blooded"), while Carlile Aylmer Macartney associated it with the Chagatai word gang ("chariot").[10] Omeljan Pritsak proposed that the name had initially been a composite term (Kängär As) deriving from the Tocharian word for stone (kank) and the Iranian ethnonym As.[11] If the latter assumption is valid, the Kangars' ethnonym suggests that Iranian elements contributed to the formation of the Pecheneg people.[12]