Kurdistan

/kerr"deuh stan'/; Pers. /koohrdd'di stahn"/, n.
1. a mountain and plateau region in SE Turkey, NW Iran, and N Iraq: inhabited largely by Kurds. 74,000 sq. mi. (191,660 sq. km).
2. any of several types of rugs woven by the Kurds of Turkey or Iran.

* * *

Mountainous region of Turkey, Iran, Iraq, and Syria, inhabited predominantly by Kurds.

It covers about 74,000 sq mi (191,660 sq km), and its chief towns are Diyarbakır, Bitlis, and Van in Turkey, Mosul and Karkūk in Iraq, and Kermānshāh in Iran. Since early times the region has been the home of the Kurds, a people whose ethnic origins are uncertain. The Treaty of Sèvres, signed in 1920, provided for the recognition of a Kurdish state, but the agreement was never ratified.

* * *

Arabic  Kurdistān , Persian  Kordestān  

      broadly defined geographic region traditionally inhabited mainly by Kurds. It consists of an extensive plateau and mountain area, spread over large parts of what are now eastern Turkey, northern Iraq, and western Iran and smaller parts of northern Syria and Armenia. Two of these countries officially recognize internal entities by this name: Iran's northwestern province of Kordestān and Iraq's Kurdish autonomous region.

      The Kurdistan (“Land of the Kurds”) designation refers to an area of Kurdish settlement that roughly includes the mountain systems of the Zagros (Zagros Mountains) and the eastern extension of the Taurus (Taurus Mountains). Since ancient times the area has been the home of the Kurds, a people whose ethnic origins are uncertain. For 600 years after the Arab conquest and their conversion to Islam, the Kurds played a recognizable and considerable part in the troubled history of western Asia—but as tribes, individuals, or turbulent groups rather than as a people.

      Among the petty Kurdish dynasties that arose during this period the most important were the Shaddādids, ruling a predominantly Armenian population in the Ānī (Ani) and Ganja districts of Transcaucasia (951–1174); the Marwānids of Diyarbakir (990–1096); and the Ḥasanwayhids of Dīnavar in the Kermānshāh region (959–1015). Less is written of the Kurds under the Mongols (Mongol) and Turkmen, but they again became prominent in the wars between the Ottoman Empire and the Ṣafavid Dynasty. Several Kurdish principalities developed and survived into the first half of the 19th century, notably those of Bohtān, Hakari, Bahdinan, Soran, and Baban in Turkey and of Mukri and Ardelan in Persia. But Kurdistan, though it played a considerable part in the history of western Asia, never enjoyed political unity.

      With the dissolution of the Ottoman Empire after World War I (1914–18), and particularly with the encouragement of U.S. President Woodrow Wilson (Wilson, Woodrow)—one of whose Fourteen Points stipulated that the non-Turkish nationalities of the Ottoman Empire should be “assured of an absolute unmolested opportunity of autonomous development”—Kurdish nationalists looked to the eventual establishment of a Kurdistani state.

      The Treaty of Sèvres (Sèvres, Treaty of), signed in 1920 by representatives of the Allies and of the Ottoman sultan, provided for the recognition of the three Arab states of Hejaz, Syria, and Iraq and of Armenia and, to the south of it, Kurdistan, which the Kurds of the Mosul vilāyet (province), then under British occupation, would have the right to join. Owing to the military revival of Turkey under Kemal Atatürk (Atatürk, Kemal), this treaty was never ratified. It was superseded in 1923 by the Treaty of Lausanne (Lausanne, Treaty of), which confirmed the provision for the Arab states but omitted mention of Armenia and Kurdistan. Mosul was excluded from the settlement, and the question of its future was referred to the League of Nations (Nations, League of), which in 1925 awarded it to Iraq. This decision was made effective by the Treaty of Ankara, signed in 1926 by Turkey, Iraq, and Great Britain.

* * *


Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • KURDISTAN — KURDISTAN, region in the Middle East, divided among three countries: turkey , iraq , and iran . The majority of the Muslim population of Kurdistan lives in Turkey, another part in Iran, and the smallest part in Iraq. In contrast, the Jews of… …   Encyclopedia of Judaism

  • Kurdistan TV — Senderlogo Allgemeine Informationen …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Kurdistan TV — is a Kurdish satellite television station located in Iraqi Kurdistan which belongs to the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP). Its European offices are based in the Netherlands and Germany. It broadcasts programs mainly in Kurdish language (although …   Wikipedia

  • Kurdistân — région d Asie occid. habitée par les Kurdes, sans réalité administrative, sauf en Iran où la prov. du Kurdistân (24 998 km²; 1 million d hab.) a pour ch. l. Sanandadj …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Kurdistán — Región de Asia donde se asienta el pueblo kurdo, repartida entre los Estados de Turquía, Irán, Iraq, Siria, Armenia y Azerbaiyán. Es mayoritario y preferible su uso con artículo antepuesto: «Turquía obtuvo la soberanía de buena parte del… …   Diccionario panhispánico de dudas

  • Kurdistan — Kurdistan, das Land der Kurden, heißt nach der Hauptmasse seiner Bewohner ein nicht genau begrenztes Gebiet in Vorderasien, welches den südlichen Abhang des armenischen Hochlandes u. nordwestlichen Abhang des Zagrosgebirges, im Westen etwa bis… …   Pierer's Universal-Lexikon

  • Kurdistan — Kurdistan, das Land der Kurden, eine ausgedehnte, nicht genau zu begrenzende Landschaft in der asiatischen Türkei (s. Karte »Kleinasien«) und in Persien, die jedoch nicht allein von Kurden, sondern auch von Armeniern, Türken und andern Völkern… …   Meyers Großes Konversations-Lexikon

  • Kurdistan — Kurdistan, Kurdenland, auf der südl. und südöstl. Seite des armenischen Gebirges, auf der nordwestl. des Zagros, erstreckt sich vom Euphrat bis Tigris u. dessen Zuflüssen und wird von etwa 600000 räuberischen, trotzigen, kaum zu bändigenden… …   Herders Conversations-Lexikon

  • Kurdistan — Kȕrdistan m DEFINICIJA geogr. kraj u Z Aziji u porječju gornjeg Tigrisa, oko 10 mil. stan. pretežno Kurda …   Hrvatski jezični portal

  • Kurdistan — [kʉr′di stan΄, kʉr′distän΄] region in SW Asia inhabited chiefly by Kurds, occupying SE Turkey, N Iraq, & NW Iran …   English World dictionary

  • Kurdistan — 37°00′N 43°00′E / 37, 43 …   Wikipédia en Français

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.