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Hungarian Map Illustrating Pan-Turanism

Rare ethnographic map of Eurasia, promoting the concept of "Pan-Turanism," providing a graphic depiction of the purported ancestral connections between the Hungarian and Japanese peoples, devised by the Japan Turanian Association in 1933 and later published in Budapest during World War II.

The map illustrates the then popular, but fanciful, theory that the Japanese and Hungarian peoples, as well as certain other societies, are ancestrally related. It is perhaps the most visually impressive product of the movement of Pan-Turanism, which flourished in the period between the World Wars and attempted to forge connections between European Finno-Urgic peoples (namely Hungarians and Finns) and Japan, which was then thought to be Asia's most advanced society.

In addition to being an interesting ethnographic project, in Japan the Pan-Turanian movement had strong, controversial political undertones, as it was seen as providing historical and moral justification for the country's imperialistic expansion into Continental Asia, which provided support for its membership in the Axis alliance (which included Hungary and Finland).

Printed in both Japanese and English, the map was created in 1933 by Kitagawa Shikazo, a leading Japanese Turanian activist. However, Shikazo's work remained in manuscript until it was printed in 1943, in Budapest, on the orders of the Hungarian Turanian Society.

The map covers all of Eurasia, with color-coding to express the territories of five divisions of ethnic groups, and their various subdivisions, that the Turanian movement claimed were ancestrally related:

  • Finno-Urgians (13 subdivisions, including Hungarians (Magyars), Finns, and Estonians)
  • Samoyeds (3 subdivisions)
  • Turko-Tatars (28 subdivisions)
  • Mongolians (16 subdivisions)
  • Tunguses (20 subdivisions, including the Japanese).

While the ethic divisions presented are predicated upon highly advanced and accurate ethnographic mapping, the conclusions the Turanians drew from the depiction were often creative, if not wildly fanciful.


Turanism or Pan-Turanianism is a nationalist cultural and political movement born in the 19th century, to counter the effects of pan-nationalist ideologies like Pan-Germanism and Pan-Slavism. It proclaimed the need for close cooperation or alliance between culturally, linguistically or ethnically related peoples of Inner Asian origin from Turkic peoples.

This political ideology originated in the work of the Finnish nationalist and linguist Matthias Alexander Castrén, who championed the ideology of Pan-Turanism - the belief in the racial unity and future greatness of the Ural-Altaic peoples. Castrén concluded that the Finns originated in Central Asia (in the Altai Mountains), and far from being a small, isolated people, they were part of a larger polity that included such peoples as the Magyars, Turks, Mongols, etc. It implies not merely the unity of all Turkic peoples (as in Pan-Turkism), but also the alliance of a wider Turanid race, also known as the controversial Uralo-Altaic race, believed to include all peoples speaking "Turanian languages".

Like the term Aryan, Turanian is used chiefly as a linguistic term, equivalent to Ural-Altaic linguistic group. Although Turanism is a political movement for the union of all Uralo-Altaic peoples, there are different opinions about inclusiveness. In the opinion of the famous Turanist Ziya Gökalp, Turanism is for Turkic peoples only, as the other Turanian peoples (Finns, Hungarians, Japanese) are too different culturally. So he narrowed Turanism into Pan-Turkism. The idea of the necessity of "Turanian brotherhood/collaboration" was borrowed from the "Slavic brotherhood/collaboration" idea of Panslavism.

According to the description given by Lothrop Stoddard at the time of the First World War:

Right across northern Europe and Asia, from the Baltic to the Pacific and from the Mediterranean to the Arctic Ocean, there stretches a vast band of peoples to whom ethnologists have assigned the name of "Uralo-Altaic race", but who are more generally termed "Turanians". This group embraces the most widely scattered folk-the Ottoman Turks of Constantinople and Anatolia, the Turcomans of Central Asia and Persia, the Tatars of South Russia and Transcaucasia, the Magyars of Hungary, the Finns of Finland and the Baltic provinces, the aboriginal tribes of Siberia and even the distant Mongols and Manchus. Diverse though they are in culture, tradition, and even physical appearance, these peoples nevertheless possess certain well-marked traits in common. Their languages are all similar, and, what is of even more import, their physical and mental make-up displays undoubted affinities.


The map is very rare. OCLC locates 5 examples: Harvard; British Library; University of Southern Maine; Oxford;  National Diet Library (Japan).

This is the third example we have offered for sale.