||This article relies largely or entirely upon a single source. (April 2011)|
|Dictionary of the Khazars|
|Original title||Хазарски речник;
|Publisher||Alfred A. Knopf (English translation)|
|Media type||Print (Hardback & Paperback)|
Dictionary of the Khazars: A Lexicon Novel (Serbian: Хазарски речник / Hazarski rečnik) is the first novel by Serbian writer Milorad Pavić, published in 1984. Originally written in Serbian, the novel has been translated into many languages. It was first published in English by Knopf, New York in 1988.
There is no easily discerned plot in the conventional sense, but the central question of the book (the mass religious conversion of the Khazar people) is based on an historical event generally dated to the last decades of the 8th century or the early 9th century when the Khazar royalty and nobility converted to Judaism, and part of the general population followed.
However, most of the characters and events described in the novel are entirely fictional, as is the culture ascribed to the Khazars in the book, which bears little resemblance to any literary or archeological evidence.
The novel takes the form of three cross-referenced mini-encyclopedias, each compiled from the sources of one of the Abrahamic religions (Christianity, Islam, and Judaism). In his introduction to the work, Pavic wrote:
The book comes in two different editions, one "Male" and one "Female", which differ in only a critical passage in a single paragraph.
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