Eastern Turki Goes Digital

I am proud to announce the first ever Eastern Turki-English-Eastern Turki online glossary.*

An old friend and colleague, Niko Kontovas, who is a linguist, polyglot, and Turkic language specialist, turned my digital version of the Raquette glossary of Eastern Turki into a searchable database.

At this stage, the site is only a few days old, and it is very much in beta. Currently, the dataset only includes the Raquette glossary, so it’s really just a searchable dictionary of colloquial Turkic from turn-of-the-century Kashgaria. In the future, however, we intend to include a tool for submitting new entries, which should make it easy to add data from the Eastern Turki and Chaghatay glossaries produced by de Courteille and others over a century ago. Given the extent of the textual record, and the increasing availability of digital copies of written materials, it will be possible in future to add a great deal of data to the corpus.

This has been a dream of mine for some time: to make the historical languages of Central Asia easier to access, easier to learn, easier to use for study and scholarship. I’ve struggled at times with finding the appropriate tools, and I’m very grateful to Niko for putting his skills to use and making the database happen. We will maintain and expand this as long as possible.

* With the exception of the entries in this database.

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