Evenks

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Evenki, Chinese, Russian

Animism, Russian Orthodoxy,
Tibetan Buddhism

Evens, Oroqens, Oroch

The Evenks (Ewenti or Eventi) (autonym: Эвэнкил Evenkil; Russian: Эвенки Evenki; Chinese: 鄂温克族 Èwēnkè Zú; formerly known as Tungus or Tunguz; Mongolian: Khamnigan Хамниган) are a Tungusic people of Northern Asia. In Russia, the Evenks are recognized as one of the Indigenous peoples of the Russian North, with a population of 35,527 (2002 Census). In China, the Evenki form one of the 56 ethnic groups officially recognized by the People's Republic of China, with a population of 30,505, as per 2000 Census. There is also a small Evenki group of Manchu-Tungus origin in Mongolia, referred to as Khamnigan. The Evenki people are related to Altaic people of Eurasia[citation needed].

Contents

Origin

The Evenki or Ewenki traced back to the Shiwei people who inhabited the Greater Khingan Range in the 5-9th centuries, but such connection is merely conjectural. Ewenki language forms the northern branch of the Manchu-Tungusic language group and is closely related to Even and Negidal in Siberia. By 1600 the Ewenkis or Evenkis of the Lena and Yenisey valleys were successful reindeer herders. By contrast the Solons and the Khamnigans (Ewenkis of Transbaikalia) had picked up horse breeding and the Mongolian deel from the Mongols. The Solons (ancestors of the Evenkis in China) nomadized along the Amur River. They were closely related to the Daur people. To the west the Khamnigan were another horse breeding Evenkis in the Transbaikalia area. Also in the Amur valley a body of Siberian Evenki-speaking people called Orochen by the Manchus.

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