Some Notes on the Torguts and Their Dialect in Western Mongolia
(45th Meeting of the PIAC, Budapest 2002)
Torgut is a well-known ethnonym from the Oirat history. Today Torguts live in Western Mongolia, at the Volga in Kalmykia and in Xingjian, representing three close Oirat dialects. The present paper deals with the Torguts living in Bulgan sum of Khowd province in Mongolia, and gives an outline about their dialect and present situation on the basis of material collected by the Hungaro-Mongolian Joint Expedition for Ethnograpical and Linguistic Research during its fieldwork in 2001. Besides, I try find the place of the Torgut dialect among the other Oirat dialects, touching the question: are the so-called Oirat dialects of Western Mongolia separate dialects or not? Although usually they are considered as separate dialects, there are no significant differences between them. The literature dealing with Western Mongolian Oirat dialects describes them independently from each other, mostly comparing them to Khalkha, but in order to make a valid survey on the Oirat dialects, they should be compared with each other.