GOWRAK, a Kurdish tribe in northwestern Persia. It is an offshoot of the Mokri tribe (Tābāni, p. 74) and is divided into three branches: (1) The Gowrak-e Mahā-bād, or Gowrak-e Mokri, who dwell in twenty-four villages near the sources of the Tatavu river, in the dehestān of Gowrak, south of Mahābād (Minorsky, p. 188). Their number was estimated at 2,000 families in 1933 (Kayhān, Joḡrāfiā II, p. 109) and at 3,100 families in 1342 Š./1963-64 (Komisiun-e melli, I, p. 123). The few who are still nomadic spend the summers in the Kuh-e Sarān, on meadows which belong to the Pirān tribe (Komisiun-e melli, I, p. 123). Because the boundary between the territories of the Gowrak-e Mahābād and the Mangur is ill-defined, there have been constant disputes, and even wars, between the two tribes (Tābāni, p. 75). (2) The Gowrak-e Sardašt, who dwell on the wooded spurs of the Kortak range, in the dehestān of Sardašt near the Iraqi border (Komisiun-e Melli, I, p. 123; Minorsky, p. 188). According to Minorsky, they occupy over 100 villages, but this number seems to be highly exaggerated. (3) The Gowrak-e Saqqez, who live northwest of Saqqez. Their number was estimated at 750 families (Komisiun-e melli, I, p. 126). The Gowrak are Sunnite and speak Kurdish (Komisiun-e Melli, I, pp. 123, 126).


Komisiun-e melli-e Yunesco (UNESCO) dar Irān, Irānšahr, 2 vols., Tehran, 1342-43 Š./1963-64.

Vladimir Minorsky, “Sāwdj Bulāk,ṟ” in EI’ IV, pp. 186-92. Razmārā, Farhang IV, pp. 465-66.

Ḥabib-Allāh Tābāni, Barrasi-e awżāʿ-e ṭabiʿi, eqteṣādi, wa ensāni-e Kordestān, Reżāʾiya (Urmiya), 1345 Š./1966.


(Pierre Oberling)

Originally Published: December 15, 2002

Last Updated: February 17, 2012

This article is available in print.
Vol. XI, Fasc. 2, p. 184