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Asena is the name of one of the ten sons, whom mythical female wolf gave birth to, in old Turkic mythology. It is associated with a Göktürk ethnogenic myth "full of shamanic
Tengriism is a Central Asian religion that incorporates elements of shamanism, animism, totemism and ancestor worship. Despite still being active in some minorities, it was, in old times, the major belief of Turkic peoples , Bulgars, Hungarians and Mongols...

 symbolism". But Ziya Gökalp
Ziya Gökalp
Ziya Gökalp was a Turkish sociologist, writer, poet, and political activist. In 1908, after the Young Turk revolution, he adopted the pen name Gökalp , which he retained for the rest of his life...

 mentioned to Asena in his article titled "Türk devletinin tekâmülü" (Küçük Mecmua magazine: that was published in 1922 in Diyarbakır
Diyarbakır is one of the largest cities in southeastern Turkey...

) as follows: According to Chinese people
Chinese people
The term Chinese people may refer to any of the following:*People with Han Chinese ethnicity ....

, Asena means wolf.
In Turkey
Turkey , known officially as the Republic of Turkey , is a Eurasian country located in Western Asia and in East Thrace in Southeastern Europe...

 many people believe that Asena should be the name of female wolf.

The Grey Wolf Legend

The legend runs as follows. After a battle, only an injured young boy survives. A she-wolf finds the injured child and nurses him back to health. He subsequently impregnates the wolf which then gives birth to ten half-wolf, half-human boys. One of these, Ashina, becomes their leader and founds the Ashina
Ashina was a tribe and the ruling dynasty of the ancient Turks who rose to prominence in the mid-6th century when their leader, Bumin Khan, revolted against the Rouran...

 clan that ruled the Göktürks and other Turkic nomadic empire
Nomadic empire
Nomadic empires, sometimes also called Steppe Empires, Central or Inner Asian Empires, are the empires erected by the bow-wielding, horse-riding, nomadic peoples in the Eurasian steppe, from Classical Antiquity to the Early Modern era .The nomadic or semi-nomadic Cimmerians, Avars, Magyars,...


In 1930s when Turkish
Turkish nationalism
Turkish nationalism is a political ideology that promotes and glorifies the Turkish people, as either a national, ethnic or linguistic group and puts the interests of the state over other influences, including religious ones.-Pan-Turkism:...

 ethnic nationalism
Ethnic nationalism
Ethnic nationalism is a form of nationalism wherein the "nation" is defined in terms of ethnicity. Whatever specific ethnicity is involved, ethnic nationalism always includes some element of descent from previous generations and the implied claim of ethnic essentialism, i.e...

 held its sway in Turkey, Bozkurt, Asena and Ergenekon
Ergenekon is the name of the place where Nekuz and Qiyan and their wives escaped to, and who were the original Mongols in Jāmiʿ al-tawārīkh written by Rashid-al-Din Hamadani at the beginning of the 14th century...

 were selected deliberately. Mustafa Kemal
Mustafa Kemal Atatürk
Mustafa Kemal Atatürk was an Ottoman and Turkish army officer, revolutionary statesman, writer, and the first President of Turkey. He is credited with being the founder of the Republic of Turkey....

 (Atatürk) used the motif of this legend. For example, on February 13, 1931, in the speech at Türkocağı in Malatya
Malatya ) is a city in southeastern Turkey and the capital of its eponymous province.-Overview:The city site has been occupied for thousands of years. The Assyrians called the city Meliddu. Following Roman expansion into the east, the city was renamed in Latin as Melitene...

, he said Turkish nation who will use railways [demiryolları], will have been honorable by showing the achievement of the first craftmanship and blacksmith
A blacksmith is a person who creates objects from wrought iron or steel by forging the metal; that is, by using tools to hammer, bend, and cut...

y [demircilik] of its origin.

See also

  • Ashina (clan)
  • Wusun
    The Wūsūn were a nomadic steppe people who, according to the Chinese histories, originally lived in western Gansu in northwest China west of the Yuezhi people...

  • Turanism
    Turanism, or Pan-Turanism, is a political movement for the union of all Turanian peoples. It implies not merely the unity of all Turkic peoples , but also the unification of a wider Turanid "race", also known as the controversial Uralo-Altaic "race," believed to include all peoples speaking...

  • Pan-Turkism
    Pan-Turkism is a nationalist movement that emerged in 1880s among the Turkic intellectuals of the Russian Empire, with the aim of cultural and political unification of all Turkic peoples.-Name:...

  • Romulus and Remus
    Romulus and Remus
    Romulus and Remus are Rome's twin founders in its traditional foundation myth, although the former is sometimes said to be the sole founder...

    , a similar legend concerning the foundation of Rome