The Kalmouks are the Mongolian descendants of originating in the Chinese Turkestan, in Central Asia, which were driven back towards the west by the Chinese Emperor at the 17th century. They were established then in the area of the delta of the the Volga in the neighborhoods of Astrakhan. The majority of Kalmouks are Buddhist. There exists a République of Kalmoukie within the Fédération of Russia. Kalmouks are named Éleuthes in the old texts.
At the 18th century, some of them undertook a migration towards their ancestral territories. The small number which reached China is today called Oyirad (term which indicates the alliance of the Western Mongols). Those which remained in the area of the Caspian Sea indicated then under the name of Kalmyks (literally those which remained ). Kalmouks, subjected to the Tsar S then with the Soviet mode, were slowly sédentarisés while retaining their culture and their language.
At the beginning of the 20th century, many Kalmouks engaged in the army of the white Russians had to flee Russia after the revolution of 1917.
A few tens of thousands of them have French nationality today. Jean Djorkaeff, father of Youri Djorkaeff, is of origin kalmouke. Others gained the the United States. Lastly, a minority kalmouk converted with the Islam lives today with the Kirghizstan.
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