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Many historians consider the Huns the first Turkic people mentioned in history. References in Chinese sources to peoples called the Xiong-Nu (Hsiung-nu) go back to 1200 BC. Their Xiong () rulers, first mentioned as a family in 1766 BC in the story of Chunwei and the fall of the Xia dynasty, may be the ancestors of the later, better-known (to western scholars) Huns, though not all scholars agree. Korean legend takes the stand that an alliance of northern Altaic tribes under a "Huan" ruler from 7193 BC pre-dated the establishment of China.

A group called the European Huns and led by Attila the Hun is considered, with little certainty, to be the western extension of the royal Xiong family centered around Karaganda. Establishment of the first Hun state is one of the first well-documented appearances of the culture of horseback migration in history. These tribespeople achieved superiority over their rivals (most of them highly cultured) by their splendid state of readiness and amazing mobility. According to traditional Hungarian history, the Huns, Sabirs, Magyars, and Avars were all part of the same people.

Attila's European Huns, like the eastern Xiong's 'Nu' ( i.e. slaves) formed from groups of unrelated tributary peoples. In the European case Alans, Slavs and especially Gothic tribes all united under the Hun family military elite. Subsequently the term "Huns" became one of the derogatory terms for Germans (see, for example, "Kraut"). Allied Forces during World War I and World War II commonly used the name, but this usage has declined recently.

The earliest reference in Chinese sources to a people called the Xiong-Nu (Hsiung-nu) goes back to early 12th century BC, in writings about the campaign by King Wuding (武丁 wu3 ding1) of the Shang Dynasty against the Gui Fang 鬼方 (gui3 fang1) tribe, which is regarded as a name of one of the Huns' vassal Nu () tribes. Some vague archeological sources support this account, but await verification. Bronze incriptions and oracle turtle-back bones from polytheistic worship prove the historical existence of the campaign but the Gui Fang did not necessarily equate to the core Hun clan per se.

Many scholars identify the Xiong Nu Xiong with the Huns because of similar descriptions of their appearance and living habits. (more input here....) Other scholars, confusing the Xiong with their Nu serf and vassal tribes, find differences. Still others argue that any common appearance and habits also appear among various other tribes residing on the Mongolian steppes, rather than identifying characteristics specific to the Xiong and the Huns. Nevertheless, all agree that the two peoples shared aspects that are more than a coincidence.

With the exception of the 43-118 AD "North-South" feud, the Hun dynasty survived as a fairly tightly-knit political power until the 4th C. when the NU() tribes decisively threw off the yoke of the Xiong dynasty. Whether increasing squabbling amongst the Xiong dynasty caused their subjects to lose faith in them, or some other cause occurred, Hun unity came to an end. The rock was shattered and clans claiming the Hun name (Hunnoi, Chionites, Choni, Xiong etc.) dispersed as nothing more than piratical raiding bands. They appear south in Persia (the Xiyon camel tribes -- Chionites -- in AD 320, also known as Red Huns), while a portion remained east in China (the Xiong deer people), and finally in one last brilliant flare west in Russia (the Hun horse tribes in AD 360).

The Hua managed to succeed to the Hun heritage in a campaign which spread from Bactria to Europe. After the failure of Xiong's Zhou county the influence of the Hua dragon tribe started to expand. The influence of the northern deer-people retreated north up the Yenisei as the Hua chased a western portion of the Hunnoi (Alchon/Alchoni often called "White Huns" and confused with Hephthalites) into what is present-day Uzbekistan in the late 4th century, while the easternmost branch would later found the Xiong's last eastern dynasty Xia (407-431). The colors of the European Persian, Bactrian and Chinese Hun tribes may have something to do with their flank designations. Though apparently fleeing China from the Hua in the mid-4th century, later the Huns' Alchon component are recorded as in union with them (Varkun) against the western-most branch.

By 460 the Hua had begun to take over Central Eurasia. The Yuezhi's Hephthal family had become their ruling clan in Xinjiang by 507 and sometime during his rule (507-531) the Hua, now a unit with the Choni, left under Sarosios's father to conquer the Hunnic dregs in the West, leaving their Hephthalite brethren to fend off Juan Juan advances alone and relocate their seat of power with the Indian branch.

After this the Huns as a power unit disappear from history, though certain nations and noble families of Turanian origin continued to carry variations of the name into the present.

For more information on the formation of the eastern Huns' 'NU'() empire see also: Wu Hu

Table of contents [showhide]

1 List of Important Hun Rulers (Tengrikut/Tangriqut/Shanyu/TarKhaan)

1.1 1st Dynasty
1.2 2nd dynasty (Name unknown)
1.3 3rd dynasty
1.4 4th (The Split) dynasty
1.5 North South Feud
1.6 5th dynasty (Name missing)
1.7 6th dynasty (Name missing)
1.8 7th dynasty (name missing)
1.9 8th dynasty (name missing)
1.10 9th dynasty (Bei Han 北漢)
1.11 10th Dynasty
1.12 11th Dynasty Later Zhao
1.13 12th Dynasty (Name ?Kama?)
1.14 Onogur Dynasty

List of Important Hun Rulers (Tengrikut/Tangriqut/Shanyu/TarKhaan)

(needs correction)

1st Dynasty

 c. 1800-1766BC            Chungvi/Chunwei/Sunni mythology places
 ? - 270? BCE              Kia?
 270 - 240?                Tangriqut?
 240 - 209                 頭曼(Tumen/Tu-Man Tengriqut)
 209 - 174                 Mo-Tun/MAO-TUN/Batur Tengriqut/(冒顿)
 174 - 161                 Ki-Ok/Kokkhan/(老上)
 161 - 126                 Chun-Chin/Kunkhan/(車臣) 
 126 - 114                 I-Tsin-Xien/El'chishye/伊稚邪
 114 - 105                 Wu-Wey/Uvey/烏維 
 105 - 102/1               Wu-Shi-Lu-Ir/Uyshilar/烏師盧
 102/1 - 101/0             Zhou-Li-Hu/Kulighu/(口句)黎湖

2nd dynasty (Name unknown)

 101/0 - 96                Chu-Di-Hu/Qutighu/且提侯
 96                        Possible unknown ruler
 96 - 85                   Hu-Lu-Ku/Hulugu/狐鹿姑

3rd dynasty

 85 - 68                   Huandi/Chuangdi/壺衍提
 68 - 60                   Hsu-Lu and Chuan-Chou/Shuluy Qanghuy/虛閭權渠 
 60 - 58                   Uyanquti/握衍(月句) 
 58 - 31                   Ho-Han-Yeh/Khukhenye I/呼韓邪 opposed by... 
    Bosiuytang-Zhuki (West)        58 - 56 and... 
    Huge (Northwest)               58 - 57 and... 
    Cheli (Southwest)              58 - 56 and... 
    Uji (Northwest)                58 - 57 then.. 
    Zhunzhen (West)                56 - 54 and... 
    Zhizhi-Guduhu (East)           55 - 47 
 31 - 20                   Fu-Chu-Ley-Ju-Di/Pozhulonuti/復株累若提 
 20 - 12                   Su-Xie-Ju-Di/Shuzhunoti/搜諧若提
 12 - 8                    Che-Ya-Ju-Di/Qiyanoti/車牙若提 opposed by... 
    Ulunoti/烏累若提      11 - 10
 8 BCE - 13 CE             Wu-Zhou-Liu-Ju-Di/Uchilonoti/烏珠留若提

4th (The Split) dynasty

 13 - 18                   Wu-Ley-Ju-Di/Ulunoti/烏累若提 (restored)
 18 - 46   HuTuIrShiTaoGaoJuDi/GhuduarshiDavganoti/呼都而尸道皋若提 opposed by...
    Xiuybudan                      18 - 19 then... 
    Udatqu                         21 - 46 
 46                        Wu-Ta-Ti-Ho 烏達提侯 
 46 - 48                   Pu-Nu/Panu/蒲奴

North South Feud

From 48CE, the Hsiung-Nu began a North-South feud which lasted until 98CE

Rulers of the Northern (or "Western") Xiong-Nu:

 48 - 83                   Pu-Nu/Panu/蒲奴 
 83 - 84                   Sanmolo Otzi/San-Mu-Lu-Tzi 
 84 - 89                   Ulugh/Yu-Liu 
 89 - 91/3?                Yu-Chou-Chien 

91CE The Xionu/Xiuno/Hunnoi first appeared in the west near the Caspian Sea as a result of 班超 PanChao's campaign.

 91-93                     El'tekin 
 93-98                     Panghu(?Finghay?) 
 98-118                    Finghay (united North & South) opposed WanSiJuTi

Rulers of the Southern (or Eastern) Xiong-Nu:

 48-56/55                  Hu-Han-Sie-Di/Khukhenye II/呼韓邪 (第二) 
 55/56-56/57               Chiu-Fu-Yu-Di/Chupunoti/丘浮尤提 
 56/57-59                  I-Fa-Yu-Di/Ilgha Uluti/伊伐於慮提 
 59-63                     XienTungShiChouTi/ShtongsiSuyghuti/醢僮尸逐侯提 
 63                        Kuchi Qilindi/丘除車林提 
 63-85                     HuYehShihChouHuTi/GhushiShisu Quti/湖邪尸逐侯提 
 85-88                     I-Tu-Yi-Lu/Iltu Uluti/伊屠於閭提 
 88-93                     Xiu-Lan-Shi-Hu-Di/Shulan Shisu Quti/休蘭尸逐侯提 
 93-94                     An-Gao/Arqu/安國 
 94-98                     TindushsuQuti/TingTuShiJuHuTi/亭獨尸逐侯提  deposed by... 
 98-118                    Finghey (Panghu?) opposed by...
    Wanchi Shisu Quti/Wan-Si-Ju-Ti/萬氏尸逐侯提 from 98CE

Hereafter, the Western/Northern tangriquts are no-more & the Eastern Tangriquts take over the whole empire. Wanchi Shisu Quti inherited Finghey's united empire in 118 but it was never what it used to be.

Reunited Xiongnu

 118-124                   Wanchi Shisu Quti/Wan-Si-Ju-Ti/萬氏尸逐侯提
 124-127/128               Wu-Chi-Hu-Shi-Jo/Uzhqushsu Quti/烏稽侯尸逐提 
 127/128-140/142           Chu-Chi-Ju-Shi-Ju-Ju-Chin/Kutino Shisu Quti/去特若尸逐就 
 140 - 143                 Chu-Xiu 

Some sources indicate that in 140 AD, after Kutino Shisu Quti committed suicide, Tengriqut was not elected and the Hun throne remained vacant till 143 AD.

5th dynasty (Name missing)

 143-147                   Hu-Lan-Ju-Shi-Ju-Ju-Chin/Ghoranno Shisu Quti/呼蘭若尸逐就 

6th dynasty (Name missing)

 147-172/177               I-Ling-Shi-Chou-Chin/Illin Shisu Quti/伊陵若尸逐就 
 172-177/178               Utno Shisu Quti/屠特若尸逐就

7th dynasty (name missing)

 177/178-179               Hu-Ching/Ghuzhin/呼徵 

8th dynasty (name missing)

 179-188                   Chiang-Chu/Qanquy/羌渠 
 188-195                   Di-Chi-Shi-Chou-Hu/Qizi Shisu Quti/特至尸逐侯 
 195-215/6                 Hu-Chou-Chuan/Ghochuqan/呼廚泉 
 215-290                   Xiongnu partitioned into 5 local tribes 
 290                       Xiongnu reunified

9th dynasty (Bei Han 北漢)

 Liu Yuan-Hai (刘元海) or Liu Yuan (劉淵)..290 Beihan Emperor 304-309 d.310 
 309-310                   Liu He (刘和) 
 310-318                   Liu Tsung (劉聰) 
 318                       Liu Ts'an (劉粲) 

10th Dynasty

Bei Han is known from 319 as "Former Zhao". During this dynasty Xiyonites/Chionites or Red Huns start to bother Persia. The sovereignty of Han and Former Zhao was collectively known as the Han Zhao.

 318-329                   Liu Yao (劉曜) opposed by....

11th Dynasty Later Zhao

 319-333                   Kao Tsu (高祖) 
 333-334                   Hai-Yang Wang (海陽王) 
 334-349                   T'ai Tsu (太祖) 
 349                       Shih Shih (石世) 
 349                       Shih Tsun (石遵) 
 349-350                   Shih Chien (石鑒) 
 350                       Shih Chih (石祗) 
 350-352                   Ran Min (冉閔) or Shih Min (石閔)

12th Dynasty (Name ?Kama?)

The Hua & Xiong divided the Huns and drove most of the remaining Huns westwards out of China during their expansion. Kama was a legendary ancestor-King, mentioned in Eastern Hunnic sources, particularly among those who formed the Altyn Oba Horde. There is no one among the Hsiung rulers whose name sounds much like "Kama Tarkhan", but if he existed, he might have been the otherwise unnamed chief who took the Huns westward, into the Ukrainian steppes. He may have been the ruler of Alchoni who pushed the Kidarite Huns into India. His realm may therefore have spread from the Ukraine to Bactria. Any last remnants of the Huns east of the Hua in China managed to raise their heads again from 407 - 431 as the Hun Xia dynasty before coming under the Juan Juan. They (the Deer) later absorbed a Turkic (Blue Wolf) influence and later emerged as the Mongols. Interestingly some Hunnic vocabulary documented by the Chinese still occurs in Japanese while Hungarian allegedly has some words in common with Xia.

 352-?                     Kama Tarkhan
 fl. ?-370                 Balamber 
 fl. 370's-380s            Alypbi 
 c. 390 ?-c. 411           Uldin (Khan of the Western Huns) 
 ? -412                    Donatus (Khan of the Eastern <Black Sea> Huns) 
 c. 411                    Charaton 
 ? - ?                     Octar 
 fl. 432                   Ruga 
 c. 437-c. 444             Bleda with... 
 c. 437-453                Attila (Idil) 
 453-c. 455                Ellac 
 fl. c. 457                Tuldila 
 ?-469                     Dengizich with... 
 ?- < 469                  Hernach 
 fl. late 5thC.            Tingiz with... 
 fl. late 5thC.            Belkermak 
 fl. late 490s             Djurash 
 fl. early 500s            Tatra 
 ?                         Boyan Chelbir
 fl. early500s - mid500s   Sandilkh (Khan of the Utrigurs) 

Division into Utrigur, east Don, and Kutrigur, west Don, hordes

 fl. 560s                 Zabergan (Khan of the Kutrigurs) 
 c. 565-c. 600             Bayan 1 (of the Avars)

Onogur Dynasty

Chaotic conditions followed the rise of Avar power in Europe, and the time of the Huns came to a close. Whether the Onoghur were truely a Hun, Bolgar, or proto-Magyar rather than Avar reign remains a matter of debate. However it is from their name that the name Hungary derives, allowing some space for their inclusion in the list of Hun Dynasties.