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It reads: Our investigations cannot go into problems pertaining to the history of ideas, but we must call the reader's attention to the matter of the Khazar kingdom's state religion.
It was the Jewish faith which became the official religion of the ruling strata of society.
His book on 4 has several chapters on the Khazars, as during most of that period the Hungarians were ruled by them.
Yet their conversion to Judaism is discussed in a single paragraph, with obvious embarrassment.
The general picture that emerges from these fragmentary pieces of information is that of a migration of Khazar tribes and communities into those regions of Eastern Europe - mainly Russia and Poland - where, at the dawn of the Modern Age, the greatest concentrations of Jews were found.
This has lead several historians to conjecture that a substantial part, and perhaps the majority of eastern Jews - and hence of world Jewry - might be of Khazar, and not of Semitic Origin.
The wars of the Arabs and the Khazars, which lasted more than a hundred years, though little known, have thus considerable historical importance.
The Franks of Charles Martel on the field of Tours turned the tide of Arab invasion. scarcely be doubted that but for the existence of the Khazars in the region north of the Caucasus, Byzantium, the bulwark of European civilization in the east, would have found itself outflanked by the Arabs, and the history of Christendom and Islam might well have been very different from what we know.3 It is perhaps not surprising, given these circumstances, that in 732 - after a resounding Khazar victory over the Arabs - the future Emperor Constantine V married a Khazar princess.
The Byzantine Emperor and historian, Constantine Porphyrogenitus (913-959), must have been well aware of this when he recorded in his treatise on court protocol1 that letters addressed to the Pope in Rome, and similarly those to the Emperor of the West, had a gold seal worth two solidi attached to them, whereas messages to the King of the Khazars displayed a seal worth three solidi.
This was not flattery, but "In the period with which we are concerned," wrote Bury, "it is probable that the Khan of the Khazars was of little less importance in view of the imperial foreign policy than Charles the Great and his successors." 2 The country of the Khazars, a people of Turkish stock, occupied a strategic key position at the vital gateway between the Black Sea and the Caspian, where the great eastern powers of the period confronted each other.
There seems to be a considerable amount of evidence attesting to the continued presence in Europe of descendants of the Khazars.