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Altaic Studies deal with a group of languages (and respective cultures) that show obvious similarities: Turkic, Mongol and Manchu-Tungus. Whether they are really related or whether they just influenced each other remains a matter of scholarly discussion. The Permanent International Altaistic Conference (PIAC) was established in 1957 as a working group to further research on this issue. Annual meetings have since been taking place in different countries, and the respective proceedings offer a wealth of information on the Altaic languages and cultures. The 2016 meeting took place at Ardahan, Turkey, a new and modern university close to the borders of Georgia and Armenia; it covered a wide range of subjects of which a peer-reviewed selection is published in the present volume. The papers deal with an Old Turkic inscription, the Bâbur-nâma (memoirs of Bâbur), Crimean history, Uighur calligraphy, the modern role of the Kazakh language, the ancestor cult in Turkic traditions, administrative and state concepts in the 18th century Chinese imperial pentaglot dictionary (which includes Turki), an appreciation of Denis Sinor (1916-2011), celebrated Altaist and for many years secretary general of the PIAC, the publishing projects of the outstanding Lamaist scholar and politician Lalitavajra (Rol-pa'i rdo-rje) and several poetic travelogues in Mongolia. The editors are members of the PIAC: Barbara Kellner-Heinkele is Prof. emer. of Turkic Studies (Free University of Berlin) and secretary general of the PIAC, Oliver Corff is an independent scholar of Chinese Studies, Hartmut Walravens is retired from his positions at the Berlin State Library and as Director of the worldwide ISBN system.