During the late summer and the autumn 1847, a group of Sufi activists called the “Seven Khwajas” led an uprising in Southern Xinjiang.  After having taken over Kashghar, Yengisar, Yarkand and other major cities, they were expelled by the Manchu army in early December of the same year.  Noticing the unclear identification of these Naqshbandi leaders through scholarly literature (based mostly on Kuropatkin’s record), the author discusses the question of their identity.  While the historical background of the seventeenth- and eighteenth-centuries Khwajas that are here presented brings nothing very new to the question, the Qing archival sources that have been used by the author help to shed a new light on the so-called Seven Khwajas, regarding the name and pedigree of each one of them.  The reader interested in this topic will find another recent account in Laura J. Newby’s The Empire and the Khanate. A Political History of Qing Relations with Khoqand c. 1760-1860, Leiden: Brill, 2005: 223-6.

Alexandre Papas, National Centre for Scientific Research, Paris
CER: I-3.5.C-349