CASTAGNÉ, Joseph-Antoine. Gaillac 27.11.1875 — Montpellier 19.1.1958. French Traveller, long time in Russian Central Asia (Uzbekistan). Studied in Toulouse. From 1902 teacher of French in Orenburg near Kazakh Steppe, soon started a collection of antiquities. From 1912 in Tashkent actively participated in the intellectual life of the town. Accepted Russian citizenship. After 1918 difficulties with the new regime, nevertheless 1919 member of Commission for preservation of historical monuments (active in Samarkand). In 1920 returned to France and began analyzing Russian and Afghan Press for French Foreign Ministry. After retiring moved to Montpellier.Legion d’honneur 1925. He was interested in ethnography and medieval history of Central Asia and knew Persian. His work on historical geography is specially praised by Gorshenina.
Publications: Early articles in Russian extending from hydrograpgy and speleology to archaeology, popular legends and shamanism.
Sources: *Sv. Gorshenina, “Un précurseur de l’archéologie et de l’ethnologie françaises en Asie centrale”, CRAI 141, 1997, 255-272 with bibliography.
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