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The Archivist. The epic tales of Dede Korkut are some of the best known Turkic dastans from among a total of well over 1, recorded epics among the Mongolian and Turkic language families. Dede Korkut is a heroic dastan legend , also known as Oghuz-nameh among the Oghuz Turkic people ,  which starts out in Central Asia , continues in Anatolia and Iran , and centers most of its action in the Azerbaijani Caucasus.
For the Turkic peoples, especially people who identify themselves as Oghuz, it is the principal repository of ethnic identity, history, customs and the value systems of the Turkic peoples throughout history. It commemorates struggles for freedom at a time when the Oghuz Turks were a herding people, although "it is clear that the stories were put into their present form at a time when the Turks of Oghuz descent no longer thought of themselves as Oghuz. The Turcomans were those Turks, mostly but not exclusively Oghuz, who had embraced Islam and begun to lead a more sedentary life than their forefathers.
The twelve stories that comprise the bulk of the work were written down after the Turks converted to Islam, and the heroes are often portrayed as good Muslims while the villains are referred to as infidels , but there are also many references to the Turks' pre-Islamic magic.