ГIалгIай Ghalghai, pronounced ) are a native ethnic group of the North Caucasus, mostly inhabiting the
Russian republic of Ingushetia.
They refer to themselves as Ghalghai
from Ingush ghal
"inhabitants"). The Ingush are predominantly Sufi Muslim
and speak the
. Despite popular
misconceptions, Ingush is not mutually intelligible
, though they are closely related.
The Ingush and Chechen peoples are collectively known as the
Ingush people are Muslims
of the Sufi tariqas Naqshbandi
- 10,000-8,000 BC Migration of the linguistic
ancestors of the Ingush people to the slopes of the Caucasus from
the Fertile Crescent. Agriculture,
irrigation, and the domestication of animals.
- 6000-4000 BC Neolithic era. Pottery is known
to the region. Old settlements near Ali-Yurt and Magas, discovered
in the modern times, revealed tools made out of stone: stone axes,
polished stones, stone knives, stones with holes drilled in them,
clay dishes etc. Settlements made out of clay bricks discovered in
the plains. In the mountains there were discovered settlements made
out of stone surrounded by walls some of them dated back 8000
- 4000-3000 BC Invention of the wheel (3000 BC),
horseback riding, metal works (copper, gold, silver, iron) dishes,
armor, daggers, knives, arrow tips. The artifacts were found near
Naser-Kort, Muzhichi, Yi-E-Borz (now Surkhakhi), Abi-Goo (now
is the legendary ancestor of the
, including the Ingush and
, who are closely related
linguistically. The endonym Ghalghay
has been spelled
Gargarei , Gelgai,
name is Glivi / Gligvi.
The Ingush trace their descent from the Biblical Togarmah
' Caucas line.
came under Russian rule in 1810, but during World War II they were falsely accused of
collaborating with the Nazis and the
entire population was deported to Kazakhstan and Siberia with an
estimated loss of a quarter to half of the population.
rehabilitate in the 1950s,
after the death of Stalin, and allowed to
return home in 1957, though by that time northern Ingush lands had
been ceded to North
Ossetia. In 1992 the remaining Ingush were expelled
from their capital, Vladikavkaz.
The Ingush possess a varied culture of traditions, legends, epics,
tales, songs, proverbs, and sayings. Music, songs and dance are
particularly highly regarded. Popular musical instruments include
(a kind of balalaika
), kekhat ponder
, generally played by girls), mirz ponder
(a three-stringed violin), zurna
(a type of
- Nichols, J. and Vagapov, A. D. (2004). Chechen-English and
English-Chechen Dictionary, p. 4. RoutledgeCurzon. ISBN
- Arutiunov, Sergei. (1996). "Ethnicity and Conflict in the Caucasus".
Slavic Research Center