Nuraly (1704-1790) was the Khan of Small Zhuz, the elder son of Abulkhair Khan. He stood for Russian-Kazakh relations. In 1748 Nuraly Khan became Khan of Small Zhuz. But the strengthening of the tsar colonial policy complicated the internal political situation in his Zhuz. This was the struggle against the Orenburg administration.

Nuraly Khan provided safe movement of trading caravans on his territory. He received permission of the imperial government to use pastures in Zhajyk-Volga Rivers. In 1755 he promoted the suppression of the Bashkir revolt.

In 1756 the imperial decree prohibited to drive cattle to the right coast of Ural Mountains during the winter time. Under these terms a popular movement started in Small Zhuz which later grew into a liberation war. Fortresses and other military constructions built on Ural River aimed at protection of the Russian population against invasion of nomads became the centers for colonization of the Kazakh land. In relation to certain conditions and purposes the tsar authorities did not take into account the position of Nuraly Khan which under pressure of his tribesmen rarely expressed his discontent caused by colonization.

In 1771 Nuraly Khan prevented resettlement of Yaitsk Kalmyk people to Zhungar. During the Peasant War of 1773-1775 Nuraly Khan supported relations with Y. Pugachev but he did not support the rebellions.

The tsar government sent its retaliatory groups to the places of uprising. Having seen the crisis of Nuraly Khan's authority the tsar government decided to start negotiations with foremen of revolted tribes. In 1785 following the results of kurultay the address to the tsar administration was adopted. The rebellions put forward demands: to return the territory between Zhaik and Edil, to stop invasions of Ural Kazaks to the Kazakh steppes and dismiss Nuraly Khan. In 1786 Nuraly Khan escaped to Orenburg and the same year he was dismissed by the rescript of Ekaterina II and was sent to Ufa where he died in 1790.

The Russian government decided to use the existing situation for abolishment of Khan authority in Kazakh steppes. But the new administration system was unviable. In 1790 an authoritative sultan Yessim, son of Semeke became Khan. The tsar administration did not acknowledge this election and nominated brother of Nuraly Khan Yeraly as Khan. In 1791 the tsar government sent its troops and Yeraly became the Khan of Small Zhuz.


Source: Kazakhstan, National Encyclopedia, Volume 4.

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