These Tajiks (as they are usually called) form the underlying population of Persia, Baluchistan, Afghanistan and Badakshan, and their language (in the central districts of Asia) is found to contain words of Aryan or Sanskrit derivation which are not known in Persian.
Badakshan proper is peopled by Tajiks, Turks and Arabs, who speak the Persian and Turki languages, and profess the orthodox doctrines of the Mahommedan law adopted by the Sunnite sect; while the mountainous districts are inhabited by Tajiks, professing the Shiite creed and speaking distinct dialects in different districts.
Pop. (woo), 42,855, mostly Sarts, with Tajiks and Jews.
The population, about 35,000, consists chiefly of Moslem Tajiks, and the closely-related Galchas, and its chief town is Kala-i-khumb on the Panj, at an altitude of 4370 ft.
The great bulk of the population in the country is composed of Iranian Tajiks, who differ but very little from Sarts.
Every house possesses its staircase, its well, and cisterns for irrigation; and on the whole the Aryan Tajiks of this northern section of the Oxus valley seem to be well provided with most of the comforts, if not the luxuries, of life.
As the Durani) claims to be of Turkish origin; the Hazaras, the Chahar-Aimak, Tajiks, Uzbegs, Kafirs and others are more or less subject races.
In the time of Darius Hystaspes (zoo B.C.) we find the region now called Afghanistan embraced in the Achaemenian satrapies, and various parts of it occupied by Sarangians (in Seistan), Arians (in Herat), Sattagydians (supposed in highlands of upper Helmund and the plateau of Ghazni), Dadicae (suggested to be Tajiks), Aparytae (mountaineers, perhaps of Safed Koh, where lay the Paryetae of Ptolemy), Gandarii (in Lower Kabul basin) and Paktyes, on or near the Indus.
And the population about 60,000-five-sixths Tajiks, the rest Kara-kirghiz.
The population consists of Iranians (Tajiks, Kurds, Baluchis), Mongols, Tatars and Arabs, and is estimated at about a million.
The inhabitants are mostly Sarts and Tajiks, trading in cattle, horses and hides.
It is curious that the same survival of Christian ceremonial should be found amongst the Sarikoli, a Shiah people of Aryan descent akin to the Tajiks of Badakshan, as may be traced amongst the Kirghiz.
The other races are Tajiks, Kashgarians, Kipchaks, Jews and Gypsies.