International Centre for Circassian Studies (ICCS)



 Circassian Library

of seminal books


The library of the International Centre for Circassian Studies (ICCS) shall include online books that pertain principally to Circassian culture, folklore, and literature. Seminal books (mainly in Circassian) shall be digitized (principally in the DjVu format, which preserves the original form and format of the book. If you don't have it already, you need to download the DjVu software to be able to view the books) and made available on line.

Currently available books:

In the Circassian language

Maf’edz (Mafedzev), S. (Kh.), АДЫГЭ ХАБЗЭ. Adige Xabze [Circassian Customs and Traditions], Nalchik: El’-Fa, 1994. [In Kabardian]

Adige Xabze.djvu Adige Xabze.djvu
Size : 9066 Kb
Type : djvu

Sherjes (Шэрджэс), A. and Heqwn (Хьэкъун), M., АДЫГЭХЭМРЭ АХЭМ Я ХАБЗЭХЭМРЭ. Adigexemre Axem ya Xabzexemre [The Circassians and Their Customs and Traditions], Maikop: RIPO, 2000.


This is a seminal and detailed book on the Circassians and their customs and traditions. It contains many maps, pictures, and illustrations. It is a must read for all those interested in the intricate details of one of the most elaborate world etiquettes. 352 pages.

300 dpi file.djvu 300 dpi file.djvu
Size : 8000 Kb
Type : djvu

Qermoqwe (Къэрмокъуэ), H., НАРТХЭР: ПАСЭРЕЙ ЛIЫХЪУЖЬХЭМ Я ХЪЫБАР. Nartxer: Paserey L’ix’wzchxem ya X’ibarxer [The Narts: Tales of the Heroes of Yore], Nalchik: Elbrus Book Press, 2001. [ЩIалэгъуалэм папщIэ зытхыжар: Къэрмокъуэ Хьэмидщ]

This is a very fine book that all readers of Circassian should include in their libraries. There are useful notes and explanations that broaden the perspective offered by the (mere) tales.
Nartxer.djvu Nartxer.djvu
Size : 4336 Kb
Type : djvu

Heqwn (Хьэкъун), B. Yu.,
АДЫГЭ КЪЭКIЫГЪЭЦIЭХЭР. Adige qech’ighets’exer [Dictionary of Circassian Flora], Nalchik: Elbrus Book Press, 1992 (second edition).
Adige Qech'ighets'exer.djvu Adige Qech'ighets'exer.djvu
Size : 3137 Kb
Type : djvu

Shorten (Шортэн; Shortanov), A. T., КЪЭЗЭНОКЪУЭ ЖЭБАГЪЫ. Qezenoqwe Zhebaghi [Zhebaghi Qezenoqwe], Nalchik: Elbrus Book Press, 1984.

    The legendary Zhebaghi Qezenoqwe (1684-1750), the quintessential fighter for justice in Circassian folklore, played a pivotal role in modernizing the code and removing outdated customs and practices, though he is sometimes erroneously accredited with originating it. He was an accomplished statesman by the standards of the time, being responsible for formulating Kabardian policies with respect to the Crimean Khans and their overlords, the Ottomans. One of his notable achievements was his counsel to Prince Aslenbek Qeitiqwe and manoeuvres to avert a war with Khan Saadat-Gery who attacked Kabarda in 1720 to avenge the destruction of the Tatar army in 1708 at Qenzhalischhe. Stories of Zhebaghi’s wisdom and sagacity are still very much alive in national memory. In one anecdote, he was asked about the difference between truth and falsehood. He enigmatically replied that only four fingers separated them. He lifted up his hand and placed four fingers between his eye and ear, and said, ‘Everything your eye sees is true, and all that you hear is false, for no one tells the truth the way he sees it.’

[Book is courtesy of circassianlibrary.org]

Qezenoqwe Zhebaghi.djvu Qezenoqwe Zhebaghi.djvu
Size : 2968 Kb
Type : djvu



Jedghef (Джэдгъэф), A., ЖЭМЫХЪУЭ СУЛЪТIАН И ГУШЫIЭХЭР. Zhemix’we Sulht’an yi Gwshi’exer. Yumoristika Sultana Zhemukhova [The Humouristics of Sulht’an Zhemix’we (Jaimoukha)], Nalchik: Poligrafservis i T, 2004. [The book is in both Kabardian (Circassian) and Russian]

Humouristics of Sulht'an Zhemix'we.pdf Humouristics of Sulht'an Zhemix'we.pdf
Size : 7403 Kb
Type : pdf

In other languages

Jaimoukha (Zhemix’we), A. M.,  Circassian Customs and Traditions: A Brief Introduction, International Centre for Circassian Studies, 2009.

Circassian Customs and Traditions.pdf Circassian Customs and Traditions.pdf
Size : 1199 Kb
Type : pdf
Circassian Customs and Traditions.doc Circassian Customs and Traditions.doc
Size : 1028 Kb
Type : doc

Jaimoukha (Zhemix’we), A. M., 
Circassian Proverbs and Sayings, Amman: Sanjalay Press, 2009.
Circassian Proverbs and Sayings.pdf Circassian Proverbs and Sayings.pdf
Size : 1253 Kb
Type : pdf


Leskov, A. M. and Lapushnian, V. L. (eds), Art Treasures of Ancient Kuban, Moscow: Ministry of Culture of the USSR, Adighe Museum of Local History, etc., 1987. Online. Available HTTP: <http://iccs.synthasite.com/circassian-library.php> (accessed 21 June 2009). [In English and Russian. This is a seminal work on the archaeological history of ancient Circassia. Good historical introduction by Leskov]

Art Treasures of Ancient Kuban.pdf Art Treasures of Ancient Kuban.pdf
Size : 11337 Kb
Type : pdf

È. G., Oruzhie narodov Kavkaza [Weapons of the Peoples of the Caucasus], St Petersburg: Atlant, 2004. Online. Available HTTP: <http://www.nartalbum.com/picture/upload/file/CaucasiaWeapon.pdf> (accessed 12 May 2009). [This is a valuable work that lists Caucasian weapon artisans, including Circassian masters. It also has an account on historical Circassia and beautiful illustrations]
Caucasian Weapons, Astvatsaturyan.pdf Caucasian Weapons, Astvatsaturyan.pdf
Size : 6977 Kb
Type : pdf

Beytuganov (Beitighwen), S. N., Kabarda: Istoriya i familii [Kabarda: History and Families], Nalchik: Elbrus Book Press, 2007. Online. Available HTTP: <http://www.smikbr.ru/2007/elbrus/rus/beituganov%20s-1.pdf> (accessed 12 May 2009).

Kabarda, Beitighwen.pdf Kabarda, Beitighwen.pdf
Size : 3217 Kb
Type : pdf


’Waschhemaxwe [Mount Elbrus]

This is the most prestigious and influential literary journal in the Kabardino-Balkarian Republic, published (until 1991) by the Union of the Writers of the Kabardino-Balkarian ASSR. The first issue of the monthly came out in 1958. The Journal also deals with historical and artistic matters. Since 1991, it has been published by the Union of the Circassian Writers of the Kabardino-Balkarian Republic once every two months. Less than 3,000 copies of each edition of the Journal are published. The Journal is available for downloading (in pdf format). Online. Available HTTP: <http://jurnals.smikbr.ru/downloads.php?cat_id=3>.


Адыгэ тхакIуэхэм я журнал. Минрэ щийбгъурэ тхущIрэ ирэ гъэм лъандэрэ къыдокI, мазитI къэсу зэ. Къэбэрдей-Балъкъэр Республикэм и Адыгэ ТхакIуэхэм я Союзым къыдегъэкI. Журнал щIагъуэм и ужьрей выпускхэм онлайну уеджэ хъунущ. [<http://jurnals.smikbr.ru/downloads.php?cat_id=3>]

'Waschhemaxwe, 1-2, 2008.pdf 'Waschhemaxwe, 1-2, 2008.pdf
Size : 3096 Kb
Type : pdf
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