The Tartars are antagonists in His Dark Materials by Philip Pullman. The Tartars are based on the real world race from Eastern Europe and Asia. The Tartars are a warmongering race of xenophobic genocidal humans who want to conquer the whole of the Earth that Lyra comes from. The Tartars are reputed and feared by even intellectuals, all the scholars of Jordan College fear them.
The Tartars are meant to practice scalping, a gruesome art it is confirmed they do. They are unlike the panserbjorne, the armoured bears, because the Tartars are more barbaric at execution and more cunning.
The Tartars also serve the General Oblation Board, and are mercenaries, serving as henchmen and minions. The Tartars wear helmets with very thin visors, and all their male soldiers have wolf daemons.
The Tartars seem to be a very misognystic race, very bloodthirsty and often clash with the gyptians. Lyra is captured by two Tartars in London but is saved by Tony and his friends from the gyptians.
The Tartars are seen as comparable to the American government, including the CIA and their Foreign Policy, because of their hegemonistic plans and secrecy.