Introduction / History
The Khinalug people have lived for many centuries in one village situated high in the mountains of Azerbaijan, near the Sahdag peak in the Quba district. Xinaliq village is located seventy km by road southwest of Quba town. It is the highest populated location in Azerbaijan, reaching an elevation of 2,500 m above sea level.
Houses in the village are constructed of stone, with traditional flat earth-and-timber roofs which form terraces reached by wooden ladders from below or from the connecting streets above. Xinaliq village is famous for its unique language, which is native to no other location.
The population figures cited by officials and other individuals suggest that the current Khinalug population of Azerbaijan is probably between 2,000 and 3,000. Everyone currently living in Xinaliq village is ethnically Khinalug, except for a few women.
The people of Xinaliq village are Sunni Muslim. The residents said that Islam plays an important role in the life of the village. For Khinalug, the most important purposes were family life, communication within the village, and gaining prestige among others in the village. A secondary purpose for Khinalug, especially among women, was religious activity. Men also felt Khinalug was important for making money. Khinalug was not considered to be at all important for obtaining news.
Text source: Fariz Abasov