Ablet Semet

Keywords: Old Turkic, Old Uyghur, Middle Chinese, Translation, Turkic Islamic Literature


This article presents an investigation into the words "idi oqsuz" and "bulun." While the origins and meaning of the former have been studied for many years already, we have almost no information as to the origins of the latter. To begin with, it is clarified that in the composition of the word "idi oqsuz", which occurs only twice, in the Tonyuquq and Bilge Qaghan inscriptions when describing the same event, we have an emphatic construction indicating absence, and similar words found in works translated from Chinese into Old Uyghur are cited in support of this. Following this, the original meaning of the word "oq" - the root word of the construction "idi oqsuz" - is explained in light of historical works, documents and examples from Turkic languages. Finally the purpose and sense in which the word "idi oqsuz" was invoked in the two inscriptions is explicated with reference to accounts connected to the earliest historical works.After a brief introduction to various readings of the second word analyzed in the article, and studies conducted on it up till now, an attempt is made to give a clearer account is of the word's actual meaning and origins by analyzing the source of the word (which means "prisoner of war"), and its traces in the earliest historical sources, and even in religious works, in which it occurs