6. 84 million (est. )
|Regions with significant populations|
|Predominately Sunni Islam. Turkmenistan ( Türkmenistan; also known as Turkmenia) is a Turkic country in Central Asia. For a topic outline on this subject see List of basic Iran topics. Afghanistan /æfˈgænɪstæn/ officially the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan ( Pashto: د افغانستان اسلامي جمهوریت, Pakistan () officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, is a country located in South Asia, Southwest Asia, Middle East and Russia (Россия Rossiya) or the Russian Federation ( Rossiyskaya Federatsiya) is a transcontinental Country extending Turkmen ( Latin script: türkmen Cyrillic: түркмен ISO 639 -1 tk ISO 639-2 tuk is the name of the national language of Turkmenistan Sunni Islam is the largest denomination of Islam. Sunni Islam is also referred to as Ahl as-Sunnah wa’l-Jamā‘h (Arabic For other meanings including people named 'Islam' see Islam (disambiguation.|
|Related ethnic groups|
The Turkmen (Türkmen or Түркмен, plural Türkmenler or Түркменлер) are a Turkic people found primarily in the Central Asian states of Turkmenistan and Afghanistan and in northeastern Iran. The Turkish people (Türk Halkı also known as " Turks " ( Türkler) are defined mainly as being speakers of Turkish as a First language The Turkic peoples are Eurasian peoples residing in northern central and western Eurasia who speak languages belonging to the Turkic language family Central Asia is a region of Asia from the Caspian Sea in the west to central China in the east and from southern Russia in the north to northern Pakistan in the south Turkmenistan ( Türkmenistan; also known as Turkmenia) is a Turkic country in Central Asia. Afghanistan /æfˈgænɪstæn/ officially the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan ( Pashto: د افغانستان اسلامي جمهوریت, For a topic outline on this subject see List of basic Iran topics. They speak the Turkmen language which is classified as part of the Western Oghuz branch of Turkic languages family together with Turkish, Azerbaijani, Gagauz and Turkoman spoken in Iraq. Turkmen ( Latin script: türkmen Cyrillic: түркмен ISO 639 -1 tk ISO 639-2 tuk is the name of the national language of Turkmenistan The Turkic languages constitute a Language family of some thirty languages spoken by Turkic peoples across a vast area from Eastern Europe and the The Turkish people (Türk Halkı also known as " Turks " ( Türkler) are defined mainly as being speakers of Turkish as a First language The Iraqi Turkmen (also spelled Turkomen, Turcoman, and Turkman) ( Turkish: Irak Türkmenleri) are a distinct Turkic For a topic outline on this subject see List of basic Iraq topics. 
Türkic tribes of not Türkic dynastic mythological system were designated "Turkmens" (for example, Uigurs, Karluks, Kalaches and a number of other tribes were designated Turkmens), only later this word gained a meaning of a specific ethnonym. The Uyghur (also spelled Uygur, Uighur, Uigur, Uyghur: ئۇيغۇر) are a Turkic people of Central Asia. The Karluks (obs Qarluqs, Qarluks, Karluqs, Arab/Persian Halluh,, customary phonetic Gelolu, Gelu, Khololo The etymology derives from Türk plus the Sogdian affix of similarity -myn ,-men, and means "resembling a Türk", "co-Türk" . Modern scholars agree that the element -man/-men acts as an intensifier and have translated the word as "pure Turk" or "most Turk-like of the Turks" . Among Muslim chroniclers such as Ibn Kathir was attribution of the etymology from the mass conversion of 200,000 households in AH 349 (971 CE), causing them to be named Turk Iman, which is a combination of "Turk" and "Iman" إيمان (faith, belief), meaning "believing Turks", and the term later dropping the hard to pronounce hamza . Ismail ibn Kathir (ابن كثير (1301&ndash1373 was an Islamic scholar and renowned commentator on the Qur'an. 971 was a year in the 10th century. Events By Place Europe Kenneth II of Scotland succeeds Culen
Historically, all of the Western or Oghuz Turks have been called Türkmen or derisive Turkoman, however today the terms are usually restricted to two Turk groups: the Turkmen people of Turkmenistan and adjacent parts of Central Asia, and the Turkomans of Iraq and Syria, which are similar but not identical ethnic groups. The Oghuz (variously known as Ghuzz, Guozz, Kuz, Oguz, Oğuz, Okuz, Oufoi, Ouz, Ouzoi, Turkmenistan ( Türkmenistan; also known as Turkmenia) is a Turkic country in Central Asia. Central Asia is a region of Asia from the Caspian Sea in the west to central China in the east and from southern Russia in the north to northern Pakistan in the south The Iraqi Turkmen (also spelled Turkomen, Turcoman, and Turkman) ( Turkish: Irak Türkmenleri) are a distinct Turkic
During the Ottoman period these nomads were known by the names of Türkmen and Yörük or Yürük (Türkic "Nomad", other phonetic variations include Iirk, Iyierk, Hiirk, Hirkan, Hircanae, Hyrkan, Hyrcanae, the last four known from the Greek annals) . The Yörük, also Yürük or Yuruk (yörük Bulgarian юрук, plural юруци) are a Turkish people ultimately of These names were generally used to describe their nomadic way of life, rather than their ethnic origin. However, these terms were often used interchangeably by foreigners. At the same time, various other exoethnonym words were used for these nomads, such as 'Konar-göçer', 'Göçebe', 'Göçer-yörük', 'Göçerler', and 'Göçer-evliler'. The most common one among these was 'Konar-göçer' - nomadic Turcoman Turks. All of these words are found in Ottoman archival documents and carry only the meaning of 'nomad'.
The modern Turkmen people descend, at least in part, from the Oghuz Turks of Transoxiana, the western portion of Turkestan, a region that largely corresponds to much of Central Asia as far east as Xinjiang. The Oghuz (variously known as Ghuzz, Guozz, Kuz, Oguz, Oğuz, Okuz, Oufoi, Ouz, Ouzoi, Transoxiana (sometimes spelled Transoxania "河中“Chinese / Ma Wara'un-Nahr ( Arabic: ما وراء النهر / Farārood (فرارود Turkestan (literally meaning "Land of the Turks" is a region in Central Asia, which today is largely inhabited by Turkic peoples. Xinjiang ( Uyghur: شىنجاڭ Shinjang;; Postal map spelling: Sinkiang; Turkish: Sincan, Sincan Uygur Özerk Oghuz tribes had moved westward from the Altay mountains in 7th century CE through the Siberian steppes and settled in this region, and also penetrated as far west as the Volga basin and Balkans. The Altai Mountains (Алтай Altay; Алтай 阿尔泰山脉 are a Mountain range in central Asia, where Russia, Siberia (Сиби́рь Sibir) is the name given to the vast region constituting almost all of Northern Asia and for the most part currently serving These early Turkmens are believed to have mixed with native Sogdian peoples and lived as pastoral nomads until the Russian conquest .
Signs of advanced settlements have been found throughout Turkmenistan including the Djeitun settlement where neolithic buildings have been excavated and dated to the 7th millennium BCE. While the ancient history of early Turkmenistan is largely shrouded in mystery its past since the arrival of Indo-European Iranian tribes around 2000 BC The Neolithic (from Greek νεολιθικός — neolithikos from νέος neos, "new" + λίθος lithos  By 2000 BCE, various Ancient Iranian peoples began to settle throughout the region as indicated by the finds at the Bactria-Margiana Archaeological Complex. Ancient Iranian peoples who settled Greater Iran in the 2nd millennium BC first appear in Assyrian records in the 9th century BC. The Bactria-Margiana Archaeological Complex (or BMAC, also known as the Oxus civilization) is the modern archaeological designation for a Bronze Age Notable early tribes included the nomadic Massagatae and Scythians. The Massageteans ( Massagetai; Massagetae or Massagetaeans were an Iranian people of antiquity known primarily from the writings of Herodotus The Scythians or Scyths (Σκύθες Σκύθοι were an Iranian speaking people of horse-riding Nomadic pastoralists who dominated the Pontic The Achaemenid Empire annexed the area by the 4th century BCE and then lost control of the region following the invasion of Alexander the Great, whose Hellenistic influence had an impact upon the area and some remnants have survived in the form of a planned city which was discovered following excavations at Antiocheia (Merv). The Achaemenid Empire or Achaemenid Persian Empire ( haχɒmaneʃijɒn (558–330 BC was the first of the Persian Empires to rule over significant portions of Alexander the Great ( or, Mégas Aléxandros; July 20 356 BC June 10 or June 11 323 BC also known as Alexander III of Macedon (el Ἀλέξανδρος Γ' Merv ( Russian: Мерв from Persian: مرو Marv, sometimes transliterated Marw or Mary; cf The Parni invaded the region as the Parthian Empire was established until it too fractured as a result of tribal invasions stemming from the north. Ephthalites, Huns, and Göktürks came in a long parade of invasions. The Hephthalites or White Huns were a Central Asian Nomadic confederation whose precise origins and composition remain obscure The Huns were an early confederation of Central Asian equestrian nomads or semi-nomads with a Turkic core of aristocracy Göktürks ( Turkish: Gök Türkler) were a Turkic people of ancient Central Asia. Finally, the Sassanid Empire based in Persia ruled the area prior to the coming of the Muslim Arabs during the Umayyad Caliphate by 716 CE. The Sassanid Empire or Sassanian Dynasty or Sassanian Dynasty (ساسانیان) is the name used for the third Iranian dynasty and the second Persian empire The Persian Empire was a series of Iranian empires that ruled over the Iranian plateau, the original Persian homeland and beyond in Western Asia A Muslim (مسلم pronounced Muslim, not Muzlim) is an adherent of the Religion The araB gene Promoter is a bacterial promoter activated by e L-arabinose binding The majority of the inhabitants were converted to Islam as the region grew in prominence. For other meanings including people named 'Islam' see Islam (disambiguation. Next came the Oghuz Turks, who imparted their language upon the local population. The Oghuz (variously known as Ghuzz, Guozz, Kuz, Oguz, Oğuz, Okuz, Oufoi, Ouz, Ouzoi, A tribe of the Oghuz, the Seljuks, established a Turko-Iranian culture that culminated in the Khwarezmid Empire by the 12th century. The Great Seljuq Empire was a Medieval Sunni Muslim empire established by the Qynyq branch of Oghuz Turks that once controlled The Khwarezmian Empire, more commonly known as the empire of the Khwarezm Shahs ( Khwārezmšhāḥīān, "Kings of Khwarezmia " Mongol hordes led by Genghis Khan conquered the area between 1219 to 1221 and devastated many of the cities which led to a rapid decline of the remaining Iranian urban population. Genghis Khan ( or;, Chinggis Khaan, ʧiŋgɪs χaːŋ Činggis Qaɣan; 1162–1227 born (meaning "ironworker" was the Mongol founder
The Turkmen largely survived the Mongol period due to their semi-nomadic life-style and became traders along the Caspian, which led to contacts with Eastern Europe. Consumers Against Supermarket Privacy Invasion and Numbering ( CASPIAN) is a USA Grass-roots Consumer group dedicated to fighting Supermarket "loyalty" Eastern Europe is a general term that refers to the Geopolitical region encompassing the easternmost part of the European continent. Following the decline of the Mongols, Tamerlane conquered the area and his Timurid Empire would rule, until it too fractured, as the Safavids, Uzbeks, and Khanate of Khiva all contested the area. Timur also written Emir Timur or Amir Temur ( Chagatai: تیمور - Tēmōr " Iron " (1336 – 19 February 1405 among The Timurids, self-designated Gurkānī ( were a Persianate Central Asian Sunni Muslim dynasty The Safavids ( صفوی) were an Iranian ref>Helen Chapin Metz The Uzbeks (Self designation sg O‘zbek, pl O‘zbeklar) are a Turkic people of Central Asia. The Khanate of Khiva (Xiva Xonligi was the name of a Central Asian state that existed in the historical region of Khwarezm from 1515 to 1920 except Persian occupation by The expanding Russian Empire took notice of Turkmenistan's extensive cotton industry, during the reign of Peter the Great, and invaded the area. The Russian Empire ( Pre-reform Russian: Pоссійская Имперія Modern Russian: Российская Империя translit: Rossiyskaya Turkmenistan is largely Desert country with nomadic Cattle raising intensive Agriculture in irrigated oases and huge gas and oil Following the decisive Battle of Geok-Tepe in January 1881, Turkmenistan became a part of the Russian Empire. Geok-Tepe (or Geok Depe) is a former Fortress of the Turkmens, in Turkmenistan, in the oasis of Akhal-tekke, on the Transcaspian After the Russian Revolution, Soviet control was established by 1921 as Turkmenistan was transformed from a medieval Islamic region to a largely secularized republic within a totalitarian state. See also Russian Revolution (1905 The Russian Revolution of 1916 refers to a series of popular revolutions in Russia, and the events surrounding them A soviet (сове́т, "council" originally was a workers' local council in late Imperial Russia. Totalitarianism (or totalitarian rule) is a concept used to describe Political systems where a State regulates nearly every aspect of public and private By 1991, with the fall of the Soviet Union, Turkmenistan achieved independence as well, but remained dominated by a one-party system of government led by the authoritarian regime of President Saparmurat Niyazov until his death in December 2006. The Soviet Union 's collapse into independent nations began early in 1985 Authoritarianism describes a Form of government characterized by an emphasis on the Authority of the State in a republic or union Saparmyrat Ataýewiç Nyýazow (θɑːpɑːrmɯːrɑːt niːjɑːðɒv ( 19 February, 1940, Gypjak, Turkmen SSR, Soviet Union
Turkmen (Latin: Türkmen, Cyrillic: Түркмен) is the name of the language of the titular nation of Turkmenistan. Turkmen ( Latin script: türkmen Cyrillic: түркмен ISO 639 -1 tk ISO 639-2 tuk is the name of the national language of Turkmenistan Turkmenistan ( Türkmenistan; also known as Turkmenia) is a Turkic country in Central Asia. It is spoken by over 3,600,000 people in Turkmenistan, and by roughly 3,000,000 people in other countries, including Iran, Afghanistan, and Russia. Turkmenistan ( Türkmenistan; also known as Turkmenia) is a Turkic country in Central Asia. For a topic outline on this subject see List of basic Iran topics. Afghanistan /æfˈgænɪstæn/ officially the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan ( Pashto: د افغانستان اسلامي جمهوریت,  Up to 50% of native speakers in Turkmenistan also claim a good knowledge of Russian, a legacy of the Russian Empire and Soviet Union. Russian ( transliteration:,) is the most geographically widespread language of Eurasia, the most widely spoken of the Slavic languages The Russian Empire ( Pre-reform Russian: Pоссійская Имперія Modern Russian: Российская Империя translit: Rossiyskaya The Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR was a constitutionally Socialist state that existed in Eurasia from 1922 to 1991
Turkmen is not a literary language in Iran and Afghanistan, where many Turkmen tend towards bilingualism, usually conversant in the local dialects of Persian. Variations of the Perso-Arabic script are, however, used in Iran. The Perso-Arabic script is a Writing system that is based on the Arabic alphabet.
The Turkmen were mainly a nomadic people for most of their history and they were not settled in cities and towns until the advent of the Soviet system of government, which severely restricted freedom of movement and collectivized nomadic herdsmen by the 1930s. Many pre-Soviet cultural traits have survived in Turkmen society however and have recently undergone a kind of revival.
Turkmen lifestyle was heavily invested in horsemanship and as a prominent horse culture, Turkmen horse-breeding was an ages old tradition. In spite of changes prompted by the Soviet period, a tribe in southern Turkmenistan has remained very well known for their horses, the Akhal-Teke desert horse - and the horse breeding tradition has returned to its previous prominence in recent years. 
Many tribal customs still survive among modern Turkmen. Unique to Turkmen culture is kalim which is a groom's "dowry", that can be quite expensive and often results in the widely practiced tradition of bridal kidnapping. A dowry (also known as trousseau or tocher) is the money goods or estate that a woman brings to her soon to be husband in marriage  In something of a modern parallel, President Saparmurat Niyazov introduced a state enforced "kalim", wherein all foreigners are required to pay a sum of no less than $50,000 to marry a Turkmen woman.
Other customs include the consultation of tribal elders, whose advice is often eagerly sought and respected. Many Turkmen still live in extended families where various generations can be found under the same roof, especially in rural areas. 
The music of the nomadic and rural Turkmen people reflects rich oral traditions, where epics such as Koroglu are usually sung by itinerant bards. The Epic of Köroğlu ( Turkish Köroğlu destanı) is a Legend prominent in the Oral traditions of the Turkic peoples. These itinerant singers are called bakshy; they also act as healers and magicians and sing either a cappella or with instruments such as the two-stringed lute called dutar. The bakshy are traditional Turkmen musicians Historically they have been traveling singers and Shamans, acting as healers and spiritual figures and also Lute can refer generally to any plucked string instrument with a neck (either Fretted or unfretted and a deep round back or more specifically to an instrument from The dutar ( Persian: دو تار, Uzbek: dutor (also dotar or doutar) is a traditional long-necked two-stringed Lute
Since Turkmenistan's independence in 1991, a cultural revival has taken place with the return of a moderate form of Islam and celebration of Novruz (an Iranian/Turkic tradition) or New Year's Day. For other meanings including people named 'Islam' see Islam (disambiguation. Nowrūz ( /noruz/ ↔, (English New Day various local pronunciations and spellings) is the traditional Iranian New year Holiday celebrated For a topic outline on this subject see List of basic Iran topics.
Turkmen can be divided into various social classes including the urban intelligentsia and workers whose role in society is different from that of the rural peasantry. Secularism and atheism remain prominent for many Turkmen intellectuals who favor moderate social changes and often view extreme religiousity and cultural revival with some measure of distrust. Atheism 
Self-proclaimed President for Life Saparmurat Niyazov was largely responsible for many of the changes that have taken place in modern Turkmen society. Saparmyrat Ataýewiç Nyýazow (θɑːpɑːrmɯːrɑːt niːjɑːðɒv ( 19 February, 1940, Gypjak, Turkmen SSR, Soviet Union Mimicking the Turkish reformist policies of Atatürk in Turkey, Niyazov made nationalism an important element in Turkmenistan, while contacts with Turkmen in neighboring Iran and Afghanistan have increased. Mustafa Kemal Atatürk (19 May 1881 &ndash 10 November 1938 was an army officer revolutionary Statesman Turkey (Türkiye known officially as the Republic of Turkey ( is a Eurasian Country that stretches Significant changes to the names of the cities as well as calendar reform were introduced by President Niyazov as well. The calendar reform resulted in renaming months and days of the week from Persian or European-derived words into purely Turkmen ones, some of them eponymously related to the president or his family. On August 10 2002 the government of Turkmenistan adopted a law to rename all the months and most of the days of week Family denotes a group of People affiliated by consanguinity affinity or co-residence The policy was reversed in 2008. 
The five traditional carpet designs that form motifs in the country's state emblem and flag represent the five major tribes or houses. The coat of arms of Turkmenistan was created after Turkmenistan gained independence from the Soviet Union in 1991. The flag of Turkmenistan was adopted on January 24, 2001. It is often described as the most detailed National flag in the world These Turkmen tribes in traditional order are Teke (Tekke), Yomut (Yomud), Arsary (Ersary), Chowdur (Choudur), and Saryk (Saryq). The Yomut carpet is a type of Carpet traditionally handwoven by the Yomut, one of the major tribes of Turkmenistan. The Salyr (Salor), a tribe that declined as a result of military defeat before the modern period, are not represented, nor are several smaller tribes or subtribes.
|Major Ethnic Groups of Iran|
Turkmen in Iran and Afghanistan remain very conservative in comparison to their brethren in Turkmenistan. The Mazandarani people are an Iranian people living primarily in south-eastern Caspian Sea coast layout and formatting it should ensure no clashes with the top of the infobox Lors (also Lurs Persianلر are a branch of Iranian people living mostly in south-western Iran. Lors (also Lurs Persianلر are a branch of Iranian people living mostly in south-western Iran. The Baloch ( بلوچ; alternative transliterations Baluch Balouch Bloach Balooch Balush Balosh Baloosh Baloush) are an Iranian people inhabiting The Azerbaijanis are an Ethnic group mainly in the Republic of Azerbaijan and northwestern Iran. Qashqai (qaʃqaːʔiː also spelled Ghashghai, Qashqay and Qashqa'i) are a Turkic people living in Iran. Iranian Arabs (عربان ايرانی are the Arabic -speaking peoples of Iran. Iranian Arabs (عربان ايرانی are the Arabic -speaking peoples of Iran. Pashtuns ( Pashto: پښتون Paṣtūn, Paxtūn, also rendered as Pushtuns, Pakhtuns, Pukhtuns) also called Talysh (also Talishi, Taleshi or Talyshi) are an Iranian people who speak the Talysh language, one of the Northwestern Iranian Islam plays a much more prominent role in Iran and Afghanistan where Turkmen follow many traditional Islamic practices that many Turkmen in Turkmenistan have abandoned as a result of decades of Soviet rule. In addition, many Turkmen in Iran and Afghanistan have remained at least semi-nomadic and traditionally work in agriculture/animal husbandry and the production of carpets.  
The Turkmen people of Central Asia live in:
As of 2005, there remain approximately 60,000 Turkmen refugees in Pakistan, largely in the North-West Frontier Province and Balochistan. Pakistan () officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, is a country located in South Asia, Southwest Asia, Middle East and The North-West Frontier Province (NWFP ( Urdu: śimāl maġribī sarhadī sūba) is the smallest of the four main provinces of Pakistan. Balochistan, or Baluchistan, Pashto, ( Balochi, Hazara, Brahui, Sindhi, Urdu: بلوچستان A few hundred Turkmen and Kyrgyz refugee families living in Pakistan were given asylum in Turkey in the 1980s.
There are also scattered communities of Turkmens in Russian province of Stavropol and elsewhere in the Caucasus, descending from the tribes who emigrated from Turkmenistan in 18th century and call themselves "Trukhmens". Stavropol (Ста́врополь is a city located in south-western Russia and is the administrative center of Stavropol Krai. The Caucasus ( also referred to as North Caucasus) is a geopolitical region located between Europe Asia & Middle East Turkmenistan ( Türkmenistan; also known as Turkmenia) is a Turkic country in Central Asia. The Trukhmens are an ethnic group of Turkmens that mostly live in Stavropol Krai of Russia.
Age structure: 0-14 years: 35. 7% (male 909,113; female 860,128),15-64 years: 60. 2% (male 1,462,198; female 1,516,836),65 years and over: 4. 1% (male 78,119; female 125,687) (2005 est. )
Population growth rate is 1. 82% (2005 est. )