German Traveler Johann Schiltberger About Armenia

In his memoirs, German traveler Johann Schiltberger talks about Karabakh as a part of Armenia under the rule Shah Rukh, son of Tamerlane (Timur).

Johann Schiltberger served as a squire for the knight Lienhart Richartinger, with whom he participated in the battle against the Turks at Nicopolis in 1396. In the Battle of Nicopolis, Schiltberger was taken prisoner.

Schiltberger would go into the service of Tamerlane in 1402 after the latter had defeated the troops of Sultan Bayezid. Subsequently, he went into service of Shah Rukh.

Schiltberger eventually managed to escape from slavery in Mingrelia along with four other Christians and returned to Germany in 1427. During the years of his wanderings, he visited Greece, Asia Minor, Persia, Georgia, the Golden Horde, the Urals, Siberia, Crimea, Armenia, and Central Asia.

After his release, Schiltberger wrote his memoirs, which were first published in Mainz in 1475. The descriptions of his travels and adventures would become very successful. New editions of this work were published in Munich in 1814 and in London in 1879 under the title: “The Bondage and Travels of Johann Schiltberger”.

62. – Of Armenia

“I have also been a great deal in Armenia. After Tämerlin died, I came to his son, who has two kingdoms in Armenia. He was named Scharoch; he liked to be in Armenia, because there is a very beautiful plain. He remained there in the winter with his people, because there was good pasturage. A great river runs through the plain; it is called the Chur, and it is also called the Tygris; and near this river, in this same country, is the best silk. The Infidels call the plain, in the Infidel tongue, Karawag.

The Infidels possess it all, and yet it stands in Ermenia. There are also Armenians in the villages, but they must pay tribute to the Infidels. I always lived with the Armenians, because they are very friendly to the Germans, and because I was German they treated me very kindly; and they also taught me their Pater Noster and their language, and they call the Germans, Nymitsch. In Armenia are three kingdoms; one is called Tiffliss, the other is called Syos, the third is called Ersingen; the Armenians call it Isingkan, and that is Lesser Armenia. They also possessed Babylon for a long time; but they now have it no longer. The son of Tämerlin had Tyfflis and Ersing at the time that I was there. Sifs belonged to the king-sultan, and was won, counting from Christ’s birth, twelve hundred and seventy-seven years; then did the sultan of Alkenier conquer it.”

“The Bondage and Travels of Johann Schiltberger, a Native of Bavaria, in Europe, Asia, and Africa, 1394-1427”. Source: geoclub.info. Translate by Art-A-Tsolum




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