The Bulgars (also Bulghars, Bulgari, Bolgars, Bolghars, Bolgari, Proto-Bulgarians) were Turkic semi-nomadic warrior tribes that flourished in the Pontic–Caspian steppe and the Volga region during the 7th century. They became known as nomadic equestrians in the Volga-Ural region, but some researchers say that their ethnic roots can be traced to Central Asia. During their westward migration across the Eurasian steppe, the Bulgar tribes absorbed other ethnic groups and cultural influences in a process of ethnogenesis, including Indo-European, Finno-Ugric and Hunnic tribes. Modern genetic research on Central Asian Turkic people and ethnic groups related to the Bulgars points to an affiliation with Western Eurasian populations. The Bulgars spoke a Turkic language, i.e. Bulgar language of Oghuric branch. They preserved the military titles, organization and customs of Eurasian steppes, as well as pagan shamanism and belief in the sky deity Tangra.
- Waldman, Mason 2006, p. 106. sfn error: no target: CITEREFWaldman,_Mason2006 (help)
- Gi︠u︡zelev, Vasil (1979). The Proto-Bulgarians: Pre-history of Asparouhian Bulgaria text. pp. 15, 33, 38.
- Hyun Jin Kim (2013). The Huns, Rome and the Birth of Europe. Cambridge University Press. pp. 58–59, 150–155, 168, 204, 243. ISBN 9781107009066.
- Golden 1992, p. 253, 256: "[Pontic Bulgars] With their Avar and Türk political heritage, they assumed political leadership over an array of Turkic groups, Iranians and Finno-Ugric peoples, under the overlordship of the Khazars, whose vassals they remained." ... "The Bulgars, whose Oguric ancestors ..." sfn error: no target: CITEREFGolden1992 (help)
- McKitterick, Rosamond (1995). The New Cambridge Medieval History. Cambridge University Press. p. 229. ISBN 9780521362924.
The exact ethnic origins of the Danubian Bulgars is controversial. It is in any case most probable that they had enveloped groupings of diverse origins during their migration westwards across the Eurasian steppes, and they undoubtedly spoke a form of Turkic as their main language. The Bulgars long retained many of the customs, military tactics, titles and emblems of a nomadic people of the steppes.
- Sophoulis 2011, pp. 65–66, 68–69: "The warriors who founded the Bulgar state in the Lower Danube region were culturally related to the nomads of Eurasia. Indeed, their language was Turkic, and more specifically Oğuric, as is apparent from the isolated words and phrases preserved in a number of inventory inscriptions." ... "It is generally believed that during their migration to the Balkans, the Bulgars brought with them or swept along several other groups of Eurasian nomads whose exact ethnic and linguistic affinities are impossible to determine... Sarmato-Alanian origin... Slav or Slavicized sedentary populations." sfn error: no target: CITEREFSophoulis2011 (help)
- Brook 2006, p. 13: "Thus, the Bulgars were actually a tribal confederation of multiple Hunnic, Turkic, and Iranian groups mixed together." sfn error: no target: CITEREFBrook2006 (help)
- "Bulgaria: Arrival of the Bulgars". Encyclopædia Britannica Online. Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc. Retrieved 3 June 2015.
The name Bulgaria comes from the Bulgars, a people who are still a matter of academic dispute with respect to their origin (Turkic or Indo-European) as well as to their influence on the ethnic mixture and the language of present-day Bulgaria.[permanent dead link]
- "Bulgar". Encyclopædia Britannica Online. Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc. Retrieved 3 June 2015.
Although many scholars, including linguists, had posited that the Bulgars were derived from a Turkic tribe of Central Asia (perhaps with Iranian elements), modern genetic research points to an affiliation with western Eurasian populations.
- Cenghiz, Ilhan (2015). "Y-DNA Haplogroups in Turkic People". yhaplogroups.wordpress.com.
- Suslova; et al. (October 2012). "HLA gene and haplotype frequencies in Russians, Bashkirs and Tatars, living in the Chelyabinsk Region (Russian South Urals)". International Journal of Immunogenetics. Blackwell Publishing Ltd. 39 (5): 375–392. doi:10.1111/j.1744-313X.2012.01117.x. PMID 22520580. S2CID 20804610.
- Waldman, Mason 2006, p. 106–107. sfn error: no target: CITEREFWaldman,_Mason2006 (help)
- Waldman, Mason 2006, p. 108–109. sfn error: no target: CITEREFWaldman,_Mason2006 (help)
- Waldman, Mason 2006, p. 109. sfn error: no target: CITEREFWaldman,_Mason2006 (help)