Short of accurate description in words, the ethnic features of the Ouigour people were recorded in the abundant fresco data left over from ancient times. Mme. Gomali (pronunciation), a German Turkologist, collected and studied paintings of Ouigour. She pointed out that in those paintings, “The westerners…had eyes as big as those of the bulls, but the Uighur nobles had full moon-shaped faces, slightly hooked noses, and almond-shaped eyes Just like average Mongols” She added, “Perhaps the Han people were no different ethnically from the Turki Uighur people, so we can only differentiate them from their dresses or remarks in the paintings•”èª¿ Two other Turkologists, Le Coq (pronunciation) and Jehnov (pronunciation) held basically the same viewå.If we look really carefully at the images of the Ouigour people in the fresco, it is still possible to tell them from the Han people from the Central Plains. Compared with the Han people, the Ouigour people had bigger and broader faces and higher and narrower noses. These are features of the North Asian Mongoloid race, while the Han people from the Central Plains generally had features of the Far East Mongoloid
- Collapse of the Khanate
In 788 AD (the 4th year of Zhenyuan reign), the Khan of Ouigour sent a letter to Dezong Emperor of the Tang Dynasty, asking for approval for changing their name from Ouigour (or Huihe) to Uighur (or Hui-hu, “hu” being a type of eagle), as the new name represented a lively eagle.
After mid-8th century, the Uighur Khanate and Tubo Kingdom fought for decades in today’s eastern Xinjiang. By the 820s, both were exhausted and began to fall apart. Towards the end of the Uighur Khanate, the in-fight within the ruling class for the post of khan sped up the collapse of the khanate.
In 839 AD (the 4th year of Kaicheng reign), the steppe to the north of the desert was “full of corpses of sheep and horses as a result of years of famine and plague, which was made worse by severe snow” The Uighur people “wandered about on the desert and dropped dead on the grassland”_. In the same year, the infight aggravated once again. The Prime Minister of Uighur Jelov got help from the Satow cavalry from south of the desert, and Zhangxin Khan was forced to commit suicide. The next year (840 AD), General Julomoh, who was stationed north of the capital of the khanate, roped in with the Qirqiz division, which was all along covetous of the dominance of the steppe. Their combined forces, totaling 100,000 cavalries La ciudad prohibida, palacio imperial en pekin, marched south and attacked the capital of Uighur. They “murdered the Khan, killed Jelov, and burnt the Kharis tent; the Khanate collapsed”_. The beautiful capital of Uighur and Kedun and Gongzhu (Princess) Cities were all “destroyed to the last bit” The Uighur Khanate fell apart. However, the unexpected attack from Qirqiz did not completely wipe out or conquer the ruling classes of the Uighur Khanate. Most of the Kharis brothers and cousins, ministers and governors, “lords and nobles” were still there, controlling a great number of tribes. Soon afterwards, a new khan was produced from the “Thirteen Divisions Close to the Kharis Tent’’ï¼where most of the ruling class concentrated. Uighur, therefore, was still a people with their khans.