Etruscan Language

Etruscan Language



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The language of the Etruscans, like the people themselves, has remained somewhat mysterious and has yet to be fully understood. The alphabet used a western Greek script, but the language has presented difficulties to scholars because it is unrelated to contemporary Indo-European languages and the surviving examples of it are largely limited to very short inscriptions, the majority of which are proper names. Letters, pronunciation, general sentence structure and many proper nouns are generally understood, but the meaning of many more words which can not be inferred from context, loan words in other languages, and appearance in parallel texts, etc. remain the biggest stumbling block to fully deciphering the language. What is clearer from the vast number of surviving inscriptions is that a limited literacy was relatively common, including amongst women, and was widespread over the whole of Etruria.

Origins & Sources

Etruscan was a relatively isolated language not connected with the Indo-European languages of Italy, and with only two known related languages considered to have derived from the same common parent source. These are Raetic, spoken in the alpine region north of Verona, and the language spoken on Lemnos before Greek, both with very limited surviving text examples, and the latter probably derived from Etruscan traders. It seems that the 1st-century BCE historian Dionysius of Halicarnassus was entirely justified in claiming that the Etruscans were "a very ancient people resembling no other either in language or customs" (Heurgon, 1). Etruscan was spoken throughout Etruria, that is western central Italy from Rome in the south to the Po River Valley in the north where the Etruscans founded colonies.

There are over 13,000 individual examples of Etruscan text, which cover the major period of the civilization from the 8th to 1st century BCE.

There are over 13,000 individual examples of Etruscan text, which cover the major period of the civilization from the 8th to 1st century BCE. Most are from Etruria itself, but there are additional sources from southern and northern Italy, Corsica, and North Africa. The texts take the form of, mostly short and often fragmentary, inscriptions on pottery and metal or stone tablets. One of the most important and useful are the three gold sheet tablets from Pyrgi, the port of Cerveteri, which had the same information (albeit in a different context) in both Etruscan and the Phoenician alphabet. Discovered in the foundations of a temple and dating to c. 500 BCE, it describes a dedication of a sacred area to Astarte and was probably once pinned to the temple wall.

Artworks and such everyday objects as mirrors, weapons and armour, especially those left as votive offerings at sanctuaries are another source. A typical example of these short snippets of text is the following from a small terracotta flask:

Aska mi eleivana, mini mulvanike mamarce velchana

(I am an oil bottle and Mamarce Velchana donated me)

Pottery, funerary urns and wall paintings in tombs frequently carry short inscriptions, too. Unfortunately, there are very few surviving extensive written records and no books written by the Etruscans in their own language, although it is known that the Etruscans did create books made of folded linen pages (liber linteus), and those extracts which do survive point to a rich Etruscan literature. One example, with around 1500 words, the longest surviving text, survives indirectly and incompletely as the binding of an Egyptian mummy in the National Museum of Zagreb. It described various ritual procedures and ceremonies dictated by the calendar used in the Etruscan religion.

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Sometimes archaeologists get lucky and a single find proves invaluable – in this case, a small 7th-century BCE ivory tablet from Marsiliana d'Albegna which had been used as a wax writing tablet and had the complete alphabet engraved on the side, no doubt, as a memory aid for its owner. Another great find was a bucchero pottery cockerel from Viterbo which also had a complete alphabet scratched onto its surface.

A second indirect source is the glossaries of Greek and Latin writers who translated lists of Etruscan words into their own language. Another important aid to linguists is the use of loan words in a second language, and here Latin and Greek are again helpful. Finally, the archaeological context of inscriptions can provide information useful to their general meaning.

Alphabet & Structure

The Etruscan alphabet was adapted from a western Greek one, in all probability introduced by traders from Euboea sometime before 700 BCE, and so its pronunciation is generally known. With this Greek contact, new words were required for new objects arriving in the Etruscan world, and these show a marked similarity to their Greek originals. For example, pottery was imported into Etruria in large quantities, and such peculiar vessels as the Greek jug or two-handled stemmed cup, the prochous and lekythos, become pruchum and lechtum, respectively. Such assimilation is seen again in mythology where Greek figures are given Etruscanised names, e.g. Aias or Ajax becomes Eivas and Herakles or Hercules becomes Ercle.

The Etruscan alphabet had 26 signs, but some were not used; these were Greek without a corresponding sound in the spoken Etruscan (e.g. beta, gamma, delta, and omikron). Similarly, some letters were added to cover Etruscan sounds not present in Greek (e.g. 8 for the F-sound). There were only four vowels (a, e, i, u) and, with predominantly the word stress occurring on the first syllable, short internal ones were abandoned from the 5th century BCE, resulting in frequent consonant clusters. Texts were read from right to left, although longer ones could take alternate directions on each line (boustrophedon).

There is an indication of tense use, but such features as indicators of differences in noun numbers have not yet been identified. Sentence structure remains unclear, but a subject-object-verb sequence seems to prevail. The largest hole in linguists' knowledge of Etruscan is vocabulary as only around 200 words which are not proper nouns survive. For this reason, it is not inconceivable that further archaeological discoveries will expand this lexicon and give linguists a greater chance of fully understanding Etruscan.

Legacy

The Etruscans, as they colonised parts of northern Italy, spread their alphabet to the Veneti, Raetians, and Lepontians, amongst others. They also traded with peoples from the other side of the Alps, and so passed on their alphabet and language to Germanic tribes which would lead to the development of the Runic script of northern Europe.

The Etruscans were conquered by the Romans in the 2nd and 1st century BCE, and much of their culture assimilated into new Roman ways. Etruscan gradually disappeared as a daily language, replaced by Latin as seen on monument inscriptions of that period, but it seems to have survived in more formal contexts for Tyrrhenian hymns are referred to by the 1st-century CE Latin author Lucretius, and it is known that some Etruscan religious rites and practitioners survived into the Imperial period when they likely still used Etruscan formulas and phrases. In addition, just as the Romans continued some of the cultural practices of the Etruscans so too Latin adopted many words from the language of Italy's first great civilization. Finally, there are those who see the famous Tuscan burr, or gorgia toscana, of modern Italians in that region as an inheritance from their Etruscan forefathers.


2,500-Year-Old Monument Could Help Crack the Mysterious Etruscan Language

We know a lot about the ancient Romans—from their legal system to how they liked to cook their chicken stew. We have thousands of monuments, books, and archeological sites detailing their accomplishments and famous individuals. But before 500 B.C. when the Romans took over, the Estruscans ruled the central and northern portion of the Italian peninsula. And this culture remains an enigma to modern archaeologists.

Of particular mystery is the Estruscan language, which doesn't seem related to other nearby languages. And researchers have uncovered few inscriptions or documents to help us figure it out—until now. Archaeologists of the Mugello Valley Archaeological Project recently uncovered a 500-pound, four-foot by two-foot stele, or monumental marker at Poggio Colla site, northeast of Florence. The sandstone slab originally stood in front of an Etruscan temple and is inscribed with 70 legible letters and punctuation marks.

“We hope to make inroads into the Etruscan language,” Gregory Warden, co-director and principal investigator of the project who made the discovery, says in a press release. “Long inscriptions are rare, especially one this long, so there will be new words that we have never seen before, since it is not a funerary text.”

Most of what historians know about the Etruscans comes from their elaborate burials, which are still sometimes found in the Italian countryside. But it has been difficult finding documents about their government, daily life, and other aspects of Etruscan culture. Even though scholars know they were one of the most religious peoples in the ancient world, they don’t even know the names of their gods, though Warden hopes the new stele may finally reveal that.

“Inscriptions of more than a few words, on permanent materials, are rare for the Etruscans, who tended to use perishable media like linen cloth books or wax tablets,” Etruscan scholar Jean MacIntosh Turfa of the University of Pennsylvania Museum says in the release. “This stone stele is evidence of a permanent religious cult with monumental dedications, at least as early as the Late Archaic Period, from about 525 to 480 BCE. Its re-use in the foundations of a slightly later sanctuary structure points to deep changes in the town and its social structure.”

Researchers are currently cleaning and scanning the stele in Florence, and they will turn the inscriptions over to an expert in the Etruscan language to decipher the text after that.

“We know how Etruscan grammar works, what’s a verb, what’s an object, some of the words,” Warden says. “But we hope this will reveal the name of the god or goddess that is worshiped at this site. This is probably going to be a sacred text, and will be remarkable for telling us about the early belief system of a lost culture that is fundamental to western traditions.”

About Jason Daley

Jason Daley is a Madison, Wisconsin-based writer specializing in natural history, science, travel, and the environment. His work has appeared in Discover, Popular Science, Outside, Men’s Journal, and other magazines.


Having read Lada Ray’s excellent article How to Reformat People’s Consciousness and Keep them as Obedient Slaves – which (while mentioning Etruscans and the fact that their writing has been long ago read using Slavic) was an introduction to my translation of the Latinisation article Galician Intellectuals Wishing to Deprive Ukrainian of the Cyrillic Alphabet – I thought that the topic of the traces of the Russian language in the re-written European history deserves more attention.

Please note that translating a documentary film or an article takes a lot of time and emotional effort. I am doing it on a voluntary basis, but if someone feels like supporting my work, a Bitcoin donation to the following address is appreciated: 1Nemo1KPB8UjQjrURqn6V7Mscungx44XS2

This is a translation of a series of articles from KM.RU, which go under the common topic of Russian Language is the Great Heritage of the Whole of Humanity. The articles are ordered in such a way, so as to first give a theoretical background, followed by some specific examples.

Let me start with an article, which accentuates my own observations from using English, Norwegian, Spanish, German, and having an ear for Italian…

At least, until the XIV century, the overwhelming majority of the population of Europe spoke the same language – the Proto-Slavic.

No one today doubts the fact that Latin was created after the Greek letters. However, when comparing the so-called Archaic Latin, which is traditionally assigned to the VI century BC., and Classical Latin, which is traditionally assigned to the I century BC. (in other words, 500 years later), it is striking that the graphic design of the monumental Archaic Latin is much closer to the modern Latin, rather than to the Classical. The images of both varieties of the Latin alphabet can be found in any linguistic dictionary.


Black stone – one of the earliest artefacts inscribed in Latin (historic.ru)

According to the traditional chronology, it turns out that the Latin alphabet first degraded from archaic to classical, and later, during the Renaissance, again came closer to the original view. However, there is no such unjustified phenomenon within the concept of the supporters of the theory of the New Chronology, according to which the supposedly “ancient” Greek and Hebrew letter, not even speaking about the Latin alphabet, are derived from the Proto-Slavic (and thus Proto-European) alphabet.

When comparing Latin to modern languages, it is necessary to also pay attention to the fact that the structure of the medieval Latin language is almost identical to the structure of the Russian language. It is also inherited by the contemporary Italian.


Dante with a copy of “The Divine Comedy” at the entrance to Hell. The fresco in the Santa Maria del Fiore (kotaku.com)

It is believed that the literary Italian was created by Dante Alighieri, who lived allegedly, according to the traditional chronology, at the turn of XIII-XIV centuries. The Name – the nickname “Dante Alighieri” is translated as “Damned liguriets” (in other words: A citizen of the Republic of Genoa). And indeed, he was cursed by the Catholic Church and sentenced in absentia to be burned.

It is noteworthy that no original manuscripts of Dante, just like of Boccaccio and Petrarch, ever survived. Dante, according to the theory of the New Chronology, created the “Divine Comedy”, most likely at the end of the XVI century, After the Council of Trent, which published a list of banned books, and plunged us into total censorship. “For some reason, after Dante, Petrarch and Boccaccio, for 200 more years all the other Italian authors write exclusively in Latin, – said Jaroslav Kessler in his book “Russian civilization. Yesterday and tomorrow” – and the Italian literary language as such is formed based on the Tuscan dialect (toscanovolgare) only by the beginning of the XVII century”. The blossoming up of the Latin literature falls on XVI-XVII centuries. The poetry of Dante, Petrarch and Shakespeare is born from the same epoch, and it is not the “antiquity”, but the XVI-XVII centuries. However the original manuscript of another Italian genius, Leonardo da Vinci (1452-1519), are preserved, and in the number of almost 7000 pages. This clearly indicates that in fact the real story of the Italian culture is just beginning in the XV century, while before that it was Byzantine, in other words, largely Slavic.


Leonardo da Vinci’s self-portrait (megabook.ru)

In in reality, the history of the origin of an artificial Latin language was repeated by L.Zamengof, when in 1887 he created the artificial language Esperanto, based on Latin, but with Germanic and Slavic elements. The only difference is that Latin was created on the basis of the Slavonic, and more specifically – on the Greco-Roman dialect of Proto-Slavic language, subjected to the influence of Judeo-Hellenic language. But it was not necessary to create artificial languages.

Scientists conducted an analysis of 20 major modern European languages, including Slavic, Baltic, Germanic, Roman and Greek, and identified more than 1,000 keywords, belonging to approximately 250 common to all the Balto-Slavic groups roots and covering all the concepts required for full communion. And this plainly demonstrates that, at least until the XIV century the vast majority of people in Europe spoke the same language – the Proto-Slavic.

In the light of the concept developed here, the sudden abundant appearance of the “Greek” literary artefacts at the end of XVI century becomes quite clear. Literary pogrom, inspired by the Inquisition and blessed by the Council of Trent, simply forced the Protestant intellectuals at the end of the XVI century to find other ways and different languages for the publication of their works, as the original literature in Latin was subjected to severe censorship, and freethinking authors were sent straight to the fires of the Inquisition. And thus appeared a pagan “Ancient Greek” mythology, relatively safe in terms of the Inquisition only due to its “ancient” character, the works “Roman” philosophers, “the ancient Greek satirist Aesop” (aka the French fable author of the XVII century Lafontaine), and so on.

And the emergence of modern European writing fully fits into the period of XI-XVI centuries (down to half a century margin of error): XI century. – Proto-Slavic alphabet (Cyrillic), XII century – Hebrew, Greek writing (zodiacal dating – 1152), Runic writing (zodiacal dating – 1198), Glagolitsa, XIII century – Latin, XIV century – the “artificial” languages: Church Slavonic, the liturgical Latin, the language of the Torah and the Koran, XV century – the beginning of printing, Bible gets printed in the XVI century. Note that the disappearance of the comparatively late Runic script and Glagolitsa is not a matter of chance: they were quickly driven out by forced introduction of Latin.

The activity of Saints Cyril and Methodius, who created the Church Slavic alphabet based on Proto-Slavonic was clearly already conducted against the backdrop of Latinisation of the Western and the Southern Slavs, so it must, according to the authors of the theory of the New Chronology, be dated 400 years later than according to the traditional dating – to the end of XIII – beginning of XIV centuries.


Gennady of Novgorod, lithography (megabook.ru)

It is noteworthy that in the late XV century the Archbishop of Novgorod Gennady advocated education to the Russian clergy, complaining: “We can not find those, whoever is talented in grammar… so at to elect him to be a priest… He can not do anything, just reads along the book, while knot knowing anything of our church writing.”

Meanwhile, it is clear from the quoted passage that Archbishop is talking about educated Russian people, who were presented to Gennady for examination of the suitability of a church service, but who at the same time did not know the Church Slavic language! In other words, far more people mastered the Russian civil script, than the Church Slavic.

The above was a fragment of an interview of Jaroslav Kessler.

The next article discusses how any attempts to unearth (literally) the Slavic roots of the European languages were met with hostility. Some of that was discussed in How to Reformat People’s Consciousness and Keep them as Obedient Slaves with regard to Etruscans.

Why do the attempt at the study of ancient Russian letters are stopped and severely punished.

(Epigraphy – an auxiliary historical discipline that studies the content and form of inscriptions on hard materials [stone, ceramics, metal, etc.] and classifies them according to their time and cultural context.)

Because from the perspective of a number of sciences, including toponymics and historiography, prior to the Germans Slavic settlements existed in a number of places in Germany, it is natural to assume that the most ancient written language in Europe came from Russia. This was the hypothesis of a number of researchers, however, the German scientists were against. The aim of the German scientists was to show that as the Russians in particular, and Slavs in general never had anything original to contribute. Therefore, the findings of figures of the Slavic gods in Prilvitse, where Slavs used Germanic runes, was a good luck for the German rather than for the Slavic point of view. In other words, the early Slavic writing was German.


Prilvitskie idols (valhalla.ulver.com)

Only Jacob Grimm noticed that in the German letter there are some subtle differences, so this variety can be called for the Slavic runes. However, a Croatian Vatroslav Yagitch devoted a lifetime to proving that there are no special differences in that form of the German writing used by the Slavs. But H. Fren discovered a Russian inscription in the Arabic manuscripts of El Nedim and at once a Danish researcher Finn Magnus tried to show that it is inscribed with the German runes. However, his reading was rather clumsy and A. Shegren tried to improve this reading. So any special identity of the Russian letters was not even discussed.

Russian archaeologist Gorodtsov, while digging in Alekanovo village of Ryazan province, found an inscription on a pot, and after a year-long deliberation recognised in them “letters of the ancient Slavic writing”. But Gorodtsov was not an epigraphist, and his single message is no longer referenced by any researcher. While a Ukrainian archaeologist Vincent Chvojka, who discovered not only the Tripolis archaeological culture, but also the inscriptions on a vessel, which he described as Slavic, was later proclaimed by the colleagues from Moscow as a “dilettante.” The pre-revolutionary archaeologist from Kiev, Charles Bolsunovsky, who attempted to expand the monograms of the Russian princes into individual letters, is also deemed to be a dilettante by the modern archaeologists. In the XIX century, being called a dilettante – or an amateur – was quite a sufficient punishment.

In the twentieth century, everything became even more serious. Thus, Nikolai A. Konstantinov from Leningrad, who tried to decipher the “pre-Dnieper signs”, was forced to end his career under the pressure from the “conscience of the nation”, academician Dmitry Likhachev. In Kazakhstan, there turned up a researcher of ancient literature, this of the pre-Turkic one – a Kazakh writer Olzhas Suleimenov. For this he was threatened with expulsion from the Communist Party (at the time it was a “wolf ticket”, not allowing to engage in any form of creative activities in the future). He was only saved from such a severe punishment by the intervention of the First Secretary of the Communist Party of Kazakhstan comrade Kunaeva.


Olzhas Suleimenov (megabook.ru)

A Serbian researcher Radivoje Pesic was forced to emigrate to Italy from the socialist Yugoslavia under Josip Broz Tito. He was a professional epigraphist, researcher of Etruscans. However, he found a new type of writing in Slavic culture in Vinca, which relates to the Neolithic age. It is for this discovery of a new kind of Slavic script (although not deciphered by him), that he was forced to say goodbye to his homeland. And even in today’s Serbia, after his death, the memory of him is not the best.

But the most flagrant demonstration of this kind of persecution can be considered the suicide of a young epigraphist from Moscow N.V. Engovatov. At the height of Khrushchev’s thaw, he allowed himself to not only search for the ancient Slavic written language, but also to relate about its results in the socio-political press, the magazine “Ogonyok”, some newspapers and weeklies. And even though he was still on the distant approaches to the solution of the problem, he was fired at from the scientific arms of the large calibre: the journal “Soviet archaeology” №4, 1960, published an article by two academicians of the USSR Academy of Sciences, B.A. Rybakov and V.L. Yanin, “On the so-called ‘discoveries’ by N.V. Engovatova”. There were no specialists of higher rank in the Soviet Union at that time. Further career of the young scientist was closed, and he shot himself.

The same idea of ​​the inadmissibility of the search for the ancient Slavic letters (for example, for the “pre-Polish alphabet”) was repeated by B.A. Rybakov from the stands of the 5th International Congress of Slavists. So it was simply impossible to legally search for the ancient Slavic alphabets.

http://ic1.static.km.ru/sites/default/files/03_mikale_0.jpg
Michael Ventris (icls.sas.ac.uk)

However, experts of the subject will always remember that decipherment of Linear B by Michael Ventris made it possible to read the ancient Greek texts dating 500 years further back. However, the scientific community did not apply any punitive measures to Ventris, on the contrary, he was welcomed. Similarly, there were no problem with learning the ancient Hebrew letters: on the contrary, new discoveries in this direction only encouraged.

So why in one case – the glory and honour, and in the other – expulsion from the Party, exile to another country, or bringing about a suicide?

The answer is simple: because all the other epigraphists are deciphering minor writing systems. Consequently, the Slavic, Russian ancient letters is the most important thing, the most significant for the historiography of Europe and the world, which none of epigraphists can touch on pain of death.

River Russ became Neman and Porus turned into Prussia

Until recently in the West, it was fashionable to attribute the first mentioning of the Slavs in general to no earlier than the V century. Later, a “concession»was mad to the Slavs – III or even II century. Since it was becoming too indecent to ignore “Gethica” of the Gothic historian Jordan. And he directly informed about the wars of their national hero Germanarich against the Slavs in these times. So the world historiography graciously conceded to the Slavic existence the II century. But on one condition – not further to the west than the the mouth of the Danube, within the boundaries of the Black Sea steppes to the marshes of the Pripyat and Desna (maximum – the upper reaches of the Dnieper, and even that, grudgingly). It seems like that should be more than enough for those “savages”.


Vatican. St. Peter’s Square (megabook.ru)

At the same time, no one comes to the simple idea that the main sources on the history of Slavs and Russia are either simply destroyed or, more likely, taken from a wide use and are stored in special vaults of Vatican. So there was no “prolonged for many centuries lack of extensive contacts with the Rus people” and “incredible diversity in estimates” about this people, as postulated by some (incl. domestic) researchers. What was are the centuries of protracted censorship on the integral and consistent image of the Russian people’s history.

Professor, Chairman of the Commission of Russia Academy of Sciences on the ancient and medieval history of culture, Valery Chudinov remarks: “I very well remember the 50s of the twentieth century, when it was impossible in Russia anywhere to find either a caricature of Adolf Hitler or to form an idea of ​​the development of the Nazi Party in Germany: all sources of information were confiscated by the censor, and those interested in the problem of the position of various political forces in Germany could be suspected of disloyalty… We observe the very same thing in the history of the Middle ages: the Germans and the Italians, who came to the Slavic lands, won their place in the sun, first by fire and sword, destroying the owners of the land that hosted them, and then destroying the memory of said owners. A similar situation is being played out before our eyes, in Kosovo, where Serbs, who sheltered fleeing from neighbouring Albania citizens, these very same Albanian citizens, first began to squeeze out and then simply destroy. All Slavic shrines in this area were also subjected to destruction, so that no one would have any doubt that the Kosovo Albanians had “always” lived in this area, and not just from the middle of the twentieth century. Note that the rest of the European nations, especially the German and Italian, supported the line of the enemies of the Slavs, that is they just continued the line, which they held for centuries.”


Photo of two Albanians in national dress, 1904 (venividi.ru)

In such a situation, it would be strange to find any consistent data from at the Kosovo Albanians about the residing on this territory Serbs and their shrines. Even if by miracle such information would still remain, it would be contrary to a host of other information, so it will not be possible to recover a true picture of the Albanian expansion from that data. Subsequent generations will be convinced that SHKIPITAR (that is Albanians) had lived here for many thousands of years. While Serbians will fleetingly mentioned as “unknown” and “unmentioned” barbaric people, pagans its origin will be associated primarily with the “monsters-people of the oecumene land”.

Naturally, the Serbs will be portrayed as fanatics, monsters, cannibals and criminals, and not as defenders of their own land from the barbarian aliens. Note that the Serbs had already once suffered the same fate, when on the same field of Kosovo, they have suffered a defeat from the Turks also then the Turks did not have any information about the previous shrines of the Slavs, and even if some of the original documents came into their possession (after all, Constantinople had strong historical archives), they were destroyed.


“Catherine II – lawgiver in the Temple of Justice» Painting by D.G. Levitsky (megabook.ru)

As recalled by Professor Chudinov, “Catherine the Great wrote: “But as Sultan stoke their baths with archival papers, it is likely that also this scripture will be used to this end and will en up there” (IMP, with 168.). One can stoke the baths with archival documents, which have incalculable value, only in one case: when it is the documents of the enemies, of whom no memory must be preserved. The Europeans started treating the word Serbs (serby) as servi, i.e. servants while the word sclavi, i.e. the Slavs, was turned into slaves. Note that such a derogatory naming of the ancestral Europeans from alien Germans and Italians is only possible in a condition of the alien victory over the hosts.”

But the opposite did not take place, and the Slavs called the Germans for “Nemcy” (translator: singular: “Nemec”, this is still the modern Slavic naming of the Germans), i.e. the people, who are “mute”, do not speak the common language of that time, that is – Russian. Our ancestors did not consider any people as servants or slaves, because they themselves did not know slavery. That’s why they let strangers into their land, considering them as people like themselves. It did not occur to them, that the new neighbours will eventually be engaged in the extermination and enslavement of the Slavs, and later – also in the elimination of the historical memory of the Slavs. The last act has a distinct name, introduced after World War II, although the phenomenon as such existed before – the Cold War. In contrast to the “hot”, this war is being waged in two dimensions – economic and information.


Element of the map of Prussia until 1905, with river Russ marked on it (emersonkent.com)

Here is one concrete example of one such “battle” in the ongoing information war, which Valery Chudinov shows, “Taking variation Rus/Ros as the root word, scientists have produced the correct decoding of, for example, the name of the area on the southern coast of the Baltic Sea – Prussia, which is ascending to the long-standing name of this land, Porusie, or “land at Russ river” as Neman was named in the annals, and how this river was depicted on maps as early as the beginning of the twentieth century (and still is on the contemporary Polish maps) (HUS, p. 106). I believe that here is an example of one of the brilliant victories of the Cold War episode, won by the Germans: River Russ became river Neman, i.e. Russian affinity of the terrain gave way to German one, even though the word “Neman” is Russian (the Germans call themselves Deutsche). The episode with Porus (Porusie, “lands along Russ”) was won even more interestingly: initially the newly-arrived Baltians were called for Prussians, and then the name was applied to the Germans, who took over the area and drove away the Baltic Prussians… In other words, the separation of Porus from Rus occurred in two stages. And then it turns out as if Germans were at war with the Prussians and seemingly this has no relevance to Rus at all. However, having dug to the original historical names in these two episodes, the researchers thus weakened the consequences of such cartographic expansion of the Germans. Weakened, but not eliminated, for Russian students in geography lessons still memorize the words Prussia and Neman, and not Porusia and Russ.”

The next article takes time to address some of the criticism aimed at Russian-based reading of Etruscan writing. As for me, the name “Etruscan” (Этрусский) is enough. As with many Russian words, it’s a composite: “Et” (“Эт”) means “this is/these are”, while “ruscan” (“русский”) means, well, “Russian”. You can’t get a clearer message than that! By the way, the reading of the name of the Italian capital, which stems from Etruscans becomes clear if you apply the mirror writing that Etruscans used and Russian/Old Russian: “Rome” (“Рим”) becomes “Мир” – (Mir) – “World”. Btw, I wonder why Leonardo da Vinci was so fond of mirror writing.

All of he centuries-old work of the Europeans to expel the Slavs from ancient history can go down the drain

The global historiography simply can not permit the very thought that the Slavs (and, in particular, Russian) were not simply the inhabitants of Pripyat marshes in the early Middle Ages, but the direct co-tribesmen of the ancient tribe of the Etruscans, who lived in Italy in the II millennium BC, whose culture, as is commonly believed, laid the foundation for the Ancient Rome. Unfortunately, many of the domestic researchers, who in other cases demonstrate their scientific integrity, also march within the European historiography paradigms.


The scene of a feast from the Etruscan tombs of the Leopards (about 470 BC) (artpax.info)

Here Professor Valery Chudinov cites an extensive fragment from the Book of Nadezhda Guseva (doctor of historical sciences, ethnographer and indologist – Ed.): “Parallel to the naturally interpreted explanation for the formation of the names of places or rivers, the scientific circles also developed a less common treatment of ethnonyms. And it was in this field that there arose a lot of contradictions in explaining, for example, the ethnonym “Etruscans”. After the scientists from many countries tried for two hundred years to explain the origin of this people, and reveal their connection with other populations both neighbouring and distant countries, a book by E.Klassen was published in Russia in the XIX century: “New materials for ancient history in general and for Slavic-Rus” (KLA), in which there were given decryptions and readings of the inscriptions on tombstones and some tablets of the Etruscans, and this decryption lead to believe that the language of these inscriptions was Russian. The reason for this interpretation was that the font of the writing was very close to the Greek alphabet, from which it is believed Cyrillic originated. Inspired by its deciphering, Russian readers, as well as some researchers, have not paid attention to the fact that such a modern Russian, which Klassen offers suggests, could not have been spoken in Etruria in the II-I millennium BC., as those inscription are dated.” (GUS, pp. 106-107).


Tadeusz Volansky (megabook.ru)

Chudinov responds to this remark: “Judging by the numerous inaccuracies (consisting truncations and a distorted title of E.Klassen’s book, not only in the text, but in the list of references, in the mention of the name of E.Klassen as the author of the deciphering, while in fact the author was Tadeusz Volansky, who inserted his own book into the book of E.Klassen, in the absence of any “Etruscan tables” in the book, etc., etc.), N.R. Guseva didn’t read E.Klassen’s book, while he opinion is formed, based on other people’s reviews.

For me as a researcher of the problem, it is of interest that the inscriptions are dated by her no only from the first, but also from the second millennium BC it seems that it is a dating from the XIX century. Nowadays, the most ancient Etruscan inscriptions are dated already from the VIII century, in other words their history was brought closer to our days by 12 centuries. Although, in my opinion, the inscription are younger by another 12-15 centuries. As for the “modern Russian”, in which allegedly the T.Volanskij’s inscriptions are written, then, no one hand, no one before me studied the Russian language of the Etruscan times, so is very difficult to talk about how “modern” or “ancient” it is.

On the other hand, T.Volanskij’s decryption, though very progressive for its time, if only by the noble desire to considered the Etruscans language as a Slavic one (like a true Pole, T.Volansky never believed that the Etruscan language was Russian: he translated only Etruscan inscriptions into Slavic languages including Polish and Russian), were incorrect. So there is no reason to consider this attempt as a model one. So my objections to NR Guseva are: 1) written from hearsay, 2) there are errors in the knowledge of the source and, therefore, an error in its interpretation, 3) one of the unsuccessful attempts to read Etruscan texts is proclaimed as an example evidence of Etruscans belonging to the Slavs, and 4) condemn the unsuccessful attempt by T.Volanskogo to the other readers from the standpoint of an alleged knowledge of the Russian language of Etruscan times. Therefore, not only do I see any credibility in N.R. Guseva’s opinion, but it also contains all the features of unprofessional handling of the sources in question”.

Chudinov also touched upon another of Guseva’s observations: “Historian Y.D. Petukhov developed a scheme of the genealogical tree of Indo-European languages, by tracing them from “proto-Slavic/Boreale”, and among the other descendants of that ancestor he also included the Etruscans, calling them “raseno-Etruscans” thus in his book “In Gods’ Path”, he traces the relationship of Etruria with Asia Minor – via the Balkans to northern Italy, completing the circle over the Dnepr and Black Sea, as well as linking the Etruscans and the ancestors of the Slavs.” (GUS, p 107.).

As Chudinov explained, “One would not like to discuss the works of Y.D. Petukhov in passing I believe that over time, I will give a detailed review of these interesting constructions… The important thing is that he mentioned Etruscans as the Slavs.”

Guseva, however, continues to insist: “He was not a novice in his search: many researchers wrote already in the XIX century about a marked influence on the Etruscan art and culture by the many aspects of the culture of Asia Minor. The big total work on the history, culture and language of the Etruscans, was the capital research of the French historian-orientalist Z. Maiani”Etruscans start talking”. Having prefaced his work with detailed prior publications, the author points out that some of the words and signs found in Etruria, are indecipherable as belonging to the Indo-European family system, but the basic vocabulary is clearly correlated with the major part of the system.” (GUS, p. 108).

But Zachary Maiani took upon himself an almost impossible task: to understand as a language the mess, into which the Etruscan was by Massimo Pallottino (Italian Etruscologist, professor of the University of Rome – Ed.) in his “reading”, when he simply “split into words” a continuous sequence of letters and then “transliterated” it, that is – gave the Latin spelling of Etruscan texts. As pointed out by the Valery Chudinov, “not knowing the reversals, that is how Etruscan letters should be shuffled, nor the ligatures, or, on the contrary, the writing of the dismembered letter (translator: for example as in the following single Russian letter: ‘ы’, which an unwary person may be tempted to split into two letters ‘ь’ and ‘ı’), not knowing Etruscan words, it is practically impossible even to split the text into words.” So, from the point of view of Professor Chudinov, “Zachary Maiani actually read a Latin surrogate of Etruscan, and his book should be titled “Surrogate Etruscan starts turning into some babble”, because over more than a quarter of a century, he was able to understand only about 300 words of this surrogate language, whereas I was able to identify more than 2,000 Etruscan-Russian word over two years time.

A legitimate question arises: are the professional Etruscologists after more than two centuries of observations did not understand that they are dealing with a form of the Russian language? I think they understood. Similarly, Europeans are well aware that the Albanians do not have any legal rights to Kosovo. However, they believe that it is necessary to get rid of the Slavs at any cost… Returning to our problems: why would they say that the Etruscan language was Slavic? What if the unearthed inscriptions suddenly contain something, that runs counter to accepted European historiography, in which the Slavs were expelled from the ancient period? What if it turns out that there was Russia, and Moscow, and that the “hand of Moscow” ordered to create Rome? Then all the centuries-old works of Europeans on the expulsion of Slavs from the ancient history go down the drain, and so well-going for Europeans cold war turns into a counter-attack of the Slavs”.

This was aragment of an interview of Professor Valery Chudinov to KM TV about the secret origin of the Etruscans and their relationship with the Russian people

It was in this language that the service in the famous St. Stephen’s Cathedral were conducted.

Unfortunately, the records of abbot Mauro Orbini (?-1614) were read by a few in our country. To explain for the non-experts: he is – the author of the monumental work “Slavic Kingdom” (published, as is commonly believed, in Pesaro in 1601 in Italian), in which he was one of the first to attempt to give a generalized history of all the Slavic peoples. Incidentally, Orbini believed that the Swedes, the Finns, the Goths, Danes, Normans, Burgundians, Bretons and many other Europeans stemmed from the Slavs.


The title page of the “Slavic Kingdom”, 1601 edition (library.yale.edu)

Orbini was proud of the feats of the Slavs, their majesty and power. He tells us about the spread of the Slavs, the invention of the Slavic written language, the ancient history of the Czechs, Poles, Polabans, Russians and especially the Southern Slavs. As the sources, Orbini used Russian chronicles, Callimachus, Cromer, Varshevitskij, Gajk, Dubravitskij, as well as Byzantine, German and Venetian writings. By personal order of Tsar Peter I, the book has been translated (with cuts) into the Russian language under the title of “Historiography praising the name, fame, and the expansion of the Slavic people and their kings and lords under many names and in many kingdoms, principalities, and provinces. Gathered out of many historical books, by the hand of the Lord Mavrourbina Archimandrite Raguzhskogo” (1722).


The first page of the Russian edition of the book by Mavro Orbini from 1722 (11pr.net)

Among other things, the Orbini’s book states that said “Slavic people” possessed France, England, Spain, Italy, Greece, the Balkans (“Macedonia and Illirich Lands”), as well as the coast of the Baltic Sea. In addition, according to the author, many European nations descended from the Slavs, while the official contemporary science says have nothing in common with their progenitors. Orbini fully realised that the historians will have a negative attitude to his work, and wrote about it in his book (re-translated from old Russian): “And if one of the nations would rebuke in hatred this true description – I call in witnesses historiographers, the list of whom I attach, and who in their historiography books speak regarding this case.”


St. Stephen’s Cathedral in Vienna, photo from 1905 (general-art.ru)

We shall not recount in detail all Orbini’s work (a list of primary sources alone takes an impressive amount space there), and will focus only on one curious aspect. So, Mauro Orbini said: “From that time (that is from the time of Cyril and Methodius – Ed.) and till this time (that is to the end of the XVI century, according to the author – Ed.) priests of the Liburn Slavs, subjects of Archduke Noritskij, serve the Liturgy and other divine rites in their own native tongue, with no knowledge of the Latin language, and moreover Noritskij Counts themselves used the Slavic letters in the public writings, as seen in the Church of the Holy Stephen in Vienna” (here from the updated Russian translation of 1722).


Coat of arms of the Roman emperors Habsburgs (manwb.ru)

We repeat: he is talking about the famous Catholic cathedral of St. Stephen in Vienna, which is the national symbol of Austria and the symbol of Vienna itself. It turns out that in the XVI century Austria (and according to the official version, it was in this century that Vienna became the capital of a multinational state of the Austrian Habsburgs – the emperors of the Holy Roman Empire) still wrote in Slavic! While the church services were held in the Slavic language! And the Slavic inscriptions adorned not just anything, but in the cathedral – St. Stephen’s Cathedral. The cathedral still stands today and is well known, but now you will not find Slavic inscriptions there. The authors of the theory of “The New Chronology” Anatoly Fomenko and Gleb Nosovskii, believe in their book “Slavic conquest of the world”, that obviously the awkward letters were ‘carefully’ destroyed by the reformers in the XVII-XIX centuries so as to no longer remind the inhabitants of Vienna of their “wrong” Slavic past. (Translator note: In Russia herself, many ancient inscriptions on the graves and in the churches, as well as the faces of some of the dukes in the church painting in the churches were chiselled off when Romanovs came to power, so literal “erasing of history” is a common practice.)


Anatoly Fomenko (left) and Gleb Nosovskii visiting KM.RU

And it is only one of the brightest examples cited by Orbini. Note that it touches not even the distant past, but the contemporary to Orbini times. In this case the author acts not as a chronicler, but as a living witness of the events.

The following article is important for understanding how a wedge is put between people and how peoples are separated using language as a tool. This is an example from the recent history, but it’s not the last such event to have taken place. Ukrainian “language” and now the Belorussian are the current ongoing examples of linguistic segregation.

Bulgarians are a Russian people from the shores of Volga river. People living there are to this day called “Volgarí” (Волгари) – compare to “Bolgary” (Болгары), which is how Bulgarians call themselves. For more information on the subject, I recommend Lada Ray’s article Bulgaria Returning to Native Shores: ‘Thank you Russia – 1878 and 1945’.

According to Academician Fomenko, up to the XVIII century we spoke the same language in both Russia and Bulgaria, down to the smallest details.

Many interesting things become revealed today when viewing Bulgarian history from the perspective of the concept of “The New Chronology”. For example, the creator of “The New Chronology”, Academician Anatoly Fomenko with the research team, was surprised to find that the old Bulgarian texts (for example, “Naming of the Bulgarian Khans”) is in fact written in exactly the same language as the old Russian texts (not to be confused with Church Slavonic!). They are virtually indistinguishable – neither in the language form, nor in the form of the letters! If you are not told in advance what kind of text your see – old Bulgarian or old Russian, then you are unlikely to guess its identity. Knowing the Old Russian language, experts were able to read those texts with ease read, unlike the later Bulgarian texts (not even speaking about the contemporary Bulgarian), which an unprepared Russian person understands with difficulty.


Text in “Naming of the Bulgarian Khans» (turklib.com)

“And this is understandable. Bulgarian language, branching from the old Russian in approximately XIV-XV centuries, eventually diverged from it and began to develop more or less independently. It did not diverge far, but noticeable differences had already appeared.” – explains Academician Fomenko explains. He’s also convinced that in Bulgaria of XIV-XV centuries simply the old Russian language was apparently in circulation, “also called Old Bulgarian language or the old language of the ‘Volga river dwellers’. As the language of the Rus-Orda. Moreover, it turns out, it was common in Bulgaria virtually unchanged up until the nineteenth century.”

It was no accident that in the XVIII-XIX centuries a special reform of the language had to be carried out, notably both in Bulgaria and in Russia. The grammar was slightly changed, and as a result the new languages started to markedly differ from each other. Although these languages ​​are still very similar, their complete identity disappeared.

As Anatoly Fomenko insists in his book “Mathematical Chronology of Biblical Events”, “up to the XVIII century one and the same language was spoken in Russia and Bulgaria, right down to the smallest details. Then this identity of the Russian and Bulgarian languages was intentionally destroyed. Bulgarians were taught (forced?) to speak slightly differently. Why was this done? Apparently, so as to create a linguistic border between the Bulgarians and the Russians. After all, the very fact that up to the XVIII-XIX centuries almost the same language was in use in both Bulgaria and Russia, clearly contradicted the Scaligerian history (Joseph Juste Scaliger, the founder of modern scientific historical chronology), which asserts that the Bulgarians and the Russians lived as different peoples for many hundreds of years.”

To clarify: Scaliger – this is the very same mathematician of the XVII century, who “invented” the chronology, on which the whole of the official world paradigm of historiography is based. Peter I, in his quest to imitate the West, forced its introduction also in Russia. However, Fomenko believes that the implementation of Scaligerian history in Russia was started already by the ancestors of Peter – the Romanovs, to strengthen their dynastic claim to the Russian throne.

However, the question arises: how could have the two nations – Russians and Bulgarians – for centuries managed to keep almost an identical language? After all, living apart, Bulgarians and Russians would have had to rather quickly start speaking much differently.

Anatoly Fomenko answers this question directly and categorically: Without a doubt, the reform of the Bulgarian language in the era of XVIII-XIX centuries was carried out deliberately to hide as much as possible of this glaring contradiction in the Scaligerian-Romanov history of the Balkans.

In the reconstruction-hypothesis established by Anatoly Fomenko, the explanation for all this is very simple. Bulgarians came to the Balkans as part of the Ottoman Horde forces in the XV century, they were mostly Russian and naturally spoke in Old Russian. The communications between Balkans and Russia remain very close up to the XVII century, so the language long remained virtually the same. Incidentally, we see the same in the case of the very distant from each other parts of Russia.


Cyril and Methodius with the students. Fresco of the monastery “St. Naum”, now in the Republic of Macedonia (megabook.ru)

Academician Fomenko, in order to avoid confusion, clarifies that we are talking about the identity of the Old Bulgarian and Old Russian languages, and not of the Church Slavic, which has them an indirect relationship, and was obviously intended for the translation of the Greek church literature, first and foremost of the Holy Scriptures, to which end it (and the corresponding alphabet), were in fact developed by the great educators Cyril and Methodius.

Russian, also known as “Slovenian” language, was spoken on the vast territory, from the Adriatic Sea to the Urals and from Scandinavia to the Mediterranean

Any revolution is always a disaster for those, whose world it destroys. (In this context, the revolution must be understood in a broad sense – as a set of events that drastically alter the state of a society.) But it’s also an antistrophe, the ability to realize their ambitions for those who before could not even dream of it (“He, who was nothing, becomes everything). Revolutions are always associated with a change in the basic foundations of the mass consciousness of people (although, in theory, it is enough that 1/6th of the population accepts the innovations). And the foundations of consciousness (mentality) are directly connected with the language, because the language is a category of a higher order, than biology-physiology.


King of England Henry VIII (megabook.ru)

A few examples from history. It is believed that Henry VIII in the first half XVI century forcibly imposed a mandatory “correct” English in England, while those who did not master it, lost all rights, including property (very similar to the current situation in the Baltic States). And that despite the fact, that for a long time the official language of England was… French. While in France – Latin! There is evidence that the “home” language of the first Romanovs was Polish. During Peter I rule, Dutch became the language of the court (and not German, as that dialect is is commonly called!). Later in Russia French became the language of the “tops”, while the family of Nicholas II spoke English at home, anticipating the current dominance of the “American English”.


Moldavian Prince Roman I (megabook.ru)

According to the official version, the major European national languages ​​(English, French, German, Italian, Spanish) largely developed in the XVI-XVII centuries. The fate of the Russian language is completely different, though! Karamzin called Russian language of the XV century for “Slovenian” (from the name of the northern group of the Eastern Slavs – “Slovens”), which was spoken on the vast territory – from the Adriatic Sea to the Urals, and from Scandinavia to the Mediterranean. For quite understandable without any translation of the Russian language written Both the official letters of Moldavian Prince Roman of the XIV century and the letters of the Turkish Sultan Murad of the XV century, documents of office of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania in XIV-XVI centuries – all were written in a quite understandable Russian language, which does not require any translation (Translator not: into modern Russian. See also a comment by Krzysztof Zanussi in Project ‘Ukraine’. Documentary by Andrei Medvedev regarding the language use in Lithuania). It is noteworthy that there (in Grand Duchy of Lithuania) this language bore an amazing name – «Попросту» (“Simply”, or “In a simple way”)! In other words, it was understandable to almost everyone, it was not for church, but for civil use. Until this day in Lithuania it is called “Russian” (meaning not the modern Russian language, but the one that was used in Europe in the Middle Ages), while by our linguists for “Old Belorussian”. It is believed, that in the XVI century and up until 1697 poetry was written in this language, not worse than in Italian, and, notably, using Cyrillic writing.


Ottoman Sultan Murad II (megabook.ru)

But… in Romanovs’ Muscovy these books were banned: during the whole of the XVII century a total of 6(!) books of the secular kind were published. The Old Believers were almost without exception literate, while Nikonian reforms led to the fact that in just 40 years the majority of the population turned into ignoramuses. Peter I, abolishing the Patriarchate and subjugating the Church, introduced a civil alphabet and began to revive literacy. (Translator note: At the same time Peter I conducted persecution of the Old Believers, many of whom had to go into exile into the periphery territories, for example to the present-day Lithuania. Also, Peter I conducted a calendar reform, which tied Russian calendar to the Western-European and chopped off over 5000 years of history). His cause was later continued by Lomonosov, Dashkova and others. However, the classic Russian language only formed in the first half of the XIX century with the efforts of Zhukovsky, Pushkin, Boratynsky, Gogol, Lermontov, and a whole galaxy of writers of the “golden” century. The main achievement of these educators is the creation of a unified Russian language understood by all classes (“class” – “soslovie”, in Russian).

Incidentally, the word “soslovie” is a purely Russian notion, it means a community of people who have their own language, slang, understanding each other “from the words” (Translator note: “soslovie” [сословие] consists of the preposition “so-” [со-], meaning “co-” and root “slovie” [-словие], meaning “of word” – in other words “class”, “soslovie” is a group of “coworded” people). This slang, despite the specificity of terms and meanings is within the scope of the commonly accessible language. And, for example, in Greece and Norway there still exist two languages – “book” and “vulgar”. (Translator note: In Norwegian there is a “Bokmål” – “book language”, derived from the Danish and “Nynorsk” – “New Norwegian”, artificially created as an amalgam of the large variety of the Norwegian local dialects.) The revolution in Russia in the early XX century was objectively inevitable, but it led to very serious catastrophic consequences, including for the Russian language. As a “revolutionary” slang there appeared a lexicon of truncated combined word-freaks like “Kombed” (“Commettee of the Poor”), “Combrig” (“Brigade Commander”), “Narcom” (“People’s Commissar”), “Comintern” (“Communist International”).


Poster by the Gestapo during the Second World War (capitolhillblue.com)

In the first case “com-” is from the word “committee”, in the second – from the “commander”, in the third – from the “commissar”, in the fourth – from the “communist”. Echoes of this phenomenon is found in the words of the current “Prodmag” (“Food store”), “Universam” (“Universal self-service store”, “supermarket”), “Spetsnaz” (“special forces”), etc. A similar phenomenon was also in Germany, for example, “Gestapo” is an abbreviation of the German Geheime Staatspolizei (“Secret State Police”)…

October Revolution also needed a spelling reform. Having been carried out in 1918, it “cut off” from itself a considerable part of the Russian intelligentsia, which did not accept either the revolution or the revolutionary newspeak.

But the language, as a system of a high degree of organization and self-protection, is very tenacious. This fully applies to the Russian language. Evidence? You are welcome. The “telegraphic” Russian language can reduce up to 50% of the initial letters of words without losing the meaning. This is a direct evidence of at least two-fold redundancy, reliability, embedded into the language. Language absorbs what is viable, digests and throws out the surplus “carrion.”

Nature abhors a vacuum. And dialectal simple word “loh” (“goof”), which means emaciated after spawning salmon, which you can take with your bare hands, and Pskov-Tver, “lohan” (“a fool”) fully manifested in their meanings in the 1990s, during another revolution..

So do not be afraid of borrowed sayings such as “as’ka” (“ICQ”) or “fleshka” (“flash drive”): Russian language digested more than that before. An indicator of such digestibility are Russian suffixes, endings, declination.

While the Russian language is alive – Russia is alive too. And not only that: many different ethnic groups can communicate with each other exclusively in Russian. Therefore, the question of the Russian language is political, both in Russia and outside it. Several years ago, there was a campaign for the reform of the Russian language, which, thank God, was stopped. Russia needs not reforms of the Russian language, but a reform of the teaching methods of the Russian language – from top to bottom.


1 Answer 1

Greek was in wide usage as the lingua franca of the Near East. It also has the benefit of actually surviving Roman rule, in the same capacity, all the way till the Late Antiquity. The Romans themselves read and spoke Greek. Thus, Greek works have had a much greater chance of surviving simply from a great, wider, and more durable distribution.

The Etruscan language, on the other hand, was never that widespread. It also reached its height much earlier than Greek most surviving Etruscan dates from around 700 B.C. Having been conquered by Rome since the third century B.C., the Etruscan heartland was completely subsumed into the Latin civilisation at time when Greece was thriving.

The Etruscan language had largely gone extinct by the time of Claudius. Apart from perhaps some priests/scholars, Etruscan works would have been unintelligible to almost anyone who might possess Greek books.

Given the highly limited, if not outright extinct, readership, it is unsurprising that Etruscan literature were mostly lost. It would happen both from natural attrition over the centuries, as well as in the ravages of Late Antiquity wars in Italy. The (better preserved) religious Etruscan texts were lost in warfare around the same time.


Etruscan cities: a journey of discovery

German writer Werner Keller once stated the Etruscans wrote “the first, great chapter of Western history.”

Between the 8th and the 6th century BC, this ancient people of miners, metalworkers and seafaring traders settled in the area between today’s western Umbria, Tuscany and northern Lazio (somewhat extending to Emilia-Romagna and Lombardy in the North, and Campania in the South). They reached a level of power that Livy describes as “quite extensive over the sea and land” before the Romans took over.

And even Rome’s culture and power grew and developed at first in close connection to Etruscan history: indeed, the last three Capitoline kings – Tarquinio Prisco, Servio Tullio and Tarquinius Superbus – were Etruscan (aristocrats rebelled against the latter and overthrew him in 509 BC: thus ended the Etruscan hegemony in Rome and the Roman Republic was born).

Among other things, the Romans owe to Etruscan culture and traditions haruspicy (a form of divination), triumphal arches, gladiator games and various symbols of power (the fasces, the curule seat, the praetexta robe, the scepter…).

Scholars still debate over Etruscans’ origins: some say they were indigenous, some say they came from the Orient, some say from the North. Most maintain Etruscan language was not Indo-European, but it is still being studied.

Being organized in a federation of twelve City-States – the Dodecapolis – Etruscans left many important records of their life in Central-Northern Italy.

Let us accompany you on a journey that touches on some of the major centers of this historical civilization.

We start in Tuscany, from Populonia: one of the most populated Etruscan cities and – facing the Gulf of Baratti – the only one in the Dodecapolis to be on the coast.

Renowned for its vast necropolis, Populonia features a large variety of funerary structures: from burial mounds to pits, from sarcophagi to hypogea.

Other important finds are linked mostly to mining and metalworking, with some noteworthy pieces from the industrial districts revolving around hematite, a mineral extracted from the rich mines of Elba. Thanks to its location, Populonia was always an important crossroads for maritime trade in the Mediterranean.

Populonia, municipality of Piombino (Livorno, Tuscany)

Populonia, comune di Piombino (Livorno, in Toscana)

Slightly less than 200 kilometers south of Populonia, Tuscania is in Lazio, in the province of Viterbo.

During the 4th century, it was famous for the intellectual education its people enjoyed it was a “countryside, university citadel” that yielded no less than two “zilachs” (chief rulers of a City-State) and a number of brilliant public administrators and religious leaders.

Although not a coastal city, Tuscania flourished with maritime trade thanks to the port of Regas, near today’s Montalto di Castro.

Tuscania, province of Viterbo (Lazio)

Tuscania, provincia di Viterbo (Lazio)

Tuscania, provincia di Viterbo (Lazio)

We stay in Lazio, just some 30 kilometers west towards the Tyrrhenian coast, and visit another of the twelve City-States in the Etruscan League, Vulci.

About ten kilometers from the seaside, Vulci was well known – especially after the 8th century – for its ceramics, probably influenced by the presence of Greek craftsmen. Craters, amphorae, decorated and colored vases here were created by the expert hands of celebrated masters such as the Argive Painter.

Vulci, near Montalto di Castro (Viterbo, Lazio)

Vulci, territorio di Montalto di Castro (Viterbo, nel Lazio)

Vulci, territorio di Montalto di Castro (Viterbo, nel Lazio)

Further south, 20 kilometers from Vulci, we reach Tarquinia, also an Etruscan City-State in Lazio.

The focal point of this settlement is an exceptional series of frescoes, preserved in the burial chambers of the mounds that make up the city’s vast necropolis.

British author D. H. Lawrence once described a haunting quality in the Etruscan representations. These leopards with their long tongues hanging out: these flowing hippocampi, those cringing spotted deer, struck in flank and neck: they get into the imagination, and will not go out.

Tarquinia, province of Viterbo (Lazio)

Tarquinia, provincia di Viterbo (Lazio)

Tarquinia, provincia di Viterbo (Lazio)

We now turn away from the sea and travel some 50 kilometers to reach Sutri (still in Lazio).

Named after Suthrina, a god similar to Saturn, its coat of arms features an image of the deity on horseback. The most important Etruscan archaeological sites here are some 60 tombs carved out of tuff and dating back to the 5th century BC, and the remains of Etruscan fortifications embedded in the medieval city walls.

After being hotly contested between Romans and Etruscans, in 389 BC it was conquered by Marcus Furius Camillus. The general stormed over Sutri with such speed that his military action was at the origin of a Latin saying, ire Sutrium , meaning “make haste.”.

Sutri, province of Viterbo (Lazio)
www.comune.sutri.vt.it/new

Sutri, provincia di Viterbo (Lazio)

Sutri, provincia di Viterbo (Lazio)

The final stop in our Etruscan itinerary is Cerveteri, known as Caere in antiquity, approximately 40 kilometers from Rome.

Cerveteri (or “Caisra” in Etruscan) had a privileged relationship with the Hellenic world, as evidenced by the fact it had a state treasury at Delphi.

Surrounded by many necropolises (the most important of which is the “Banditaccia”, north-east of the city), Caere was one of the most important City-States of the Dodecapolis, and extended over a territory thirty times the size of today’s Cerveteri.

A prolific producer of bucchero ceramics, jewelry, and tooled bronze and silver, Caere engaged in maritime trade through three ports one of them was Pyrgi (near today’s Santa Severa), where three gold tablets were found in a temple in 1964, with inscriptions that allowed great strides forward in our knowledge of the Etruscan language and history.

Cerveteri-Caere, Rome metropolitan area
www.caere.it

Cerveteri-Caere (Roma)

Cerveteri-Caere (Roma)

Cerveteri-Caere (Roma)


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Are the Etruscans the ancestors of the Russian people?

The Etruscans are an ancient and very little known civilizations. It is known that this is essentially the ancestors of the Romans. The Romans borrowed from the Etruscans architecture, various rites and technologies.

The Etruscan state was located between the Tiber and Arno rivers. During the reign of Emperor Claudius 1, in the 1st century AD, the entire history of Etruscan civilization was collected, but it burned down during the fire of the Alexandrian Library. The language of the Etruscans is still not deciphered. And the main question, where did this people go?

One of the versions of the appearance of this civilization is of alpine origin. Ostensibly the Etruscans came from the north. But there are no material facts about this. Herodotus claimed that the Etruscans came from Asia Minor. Proof can serve their way of making sculptures. The Etruscans did not carve stone sculptures, but molded them from clay. And that is exactly how sculptures were made in Asia Minor.

Genetic studies also left a lot of mysteries. It turned out that the Etruscans did not belong to any people of both Italy and Turkey. It was essentially a completely different nation. And apparently he disappeared instantly, leaving no genetic traces. And it speaks of some kind of disaster.

The scientist Joanna Mountain claims that the Etruscans had their own language, not belonging to the Indo-European group.

They tried not to mix with local peoples.

Some scientists draw parallels with the name of the people. Etruscans consonant with the word Russian.

Moreover, some scientists say they were able to decipher the language of Etruscans.

And the basis was taken Slavic languages.

Researcher V. Shcherbakov believes that the Etruscans wrote as it is heard. And if you take into account his method, the Etruscan words are very similar to the Slavic.

It is not known where it came from and where this people disappeared. But the fact that it was a very developed civilization, no doubt.

Probably, the Etruscans left the inhabited lands as a result of climate change, and maybe even a natural cataclysm. But he hopes for his jointing of their language, until he comes.


The Etruscans

The Etruscans were an important nation and a significant pre-Roman civilization in ancient Italy, located primarily in the central region now known as Tuscany. The etruscans were called Tyrrhenoi or Tyrsenoi by the Greeks and Etrusci or Tusci by the Romans. The terms Tyrrhenian Sea and Tuscany is derived from these names. The Etruscans called themselves Rasenna, a term that is often shortened to Rasna or Rasna.

A Portrait of An Etruscan Family. Etruscan Art Suggests that Women Were Held in High Esteem, in Contrast to their Role in Rome and Greece

The Etruscans conquered Rome when she was still in her infancy. The Etruscans kings ruled Rome for a period of about 100 years and are credited with turning Rome from a small farming village into a city. In fact, many aspects of Roman, and Europeam civilization can be traced to Etruscan origins and contributions.

Ironically, Rome, a former Etruscan territory would eventually bring about the destruction of the Etruscan cities. As the power of Rome grew, that of the Etruscan confederacy declined and one after the other the Etruscan city states fell to the Romans.

Despite their close contact with the Romans, little is known about the Etruscans and their culture. After the Roman conquest the Etruscans were granted Roman citizenship and were absorbed into Roman society. Traces of their homeland can still be found in modern day Tuscany in Italy.

There are two different theories about the origin of the Etruscans, both originating with the ancient Greek writers.

According to Herodotus, the Etruscans originated in Lydia (now western Turkey) and emigrated to Italy around 800 B.C. as a result of a famine in their native land. Contrarily, Dionysius of Halicarnassus (c. 100 BC) believed that the Etruscans were indigenous to Italy, part of an ancient nation "which does not resemble any other people in their language or in their way of life, or customs."

The theory that the Etruscans came from what is now modern Turkey has been questioned as a result of recent archaeological finds which show that there was no break in the funeral traditions between the prehistoric inhabitants of the Etruscan lands and the historical Etruscans. This suggests that the Etruscans were in fact the original inhabitants of the area.

Etruscan Sarcophagous Reveals Advanced Artistic Sensibilities

Little is now known about their culture, religion and literature. In fact, the only examples of Etruscan writing can be found in tombs and consists mainly of short epigrams and genealogical information. No works of Etruscan literature survive, if they even existed at all.


Etruscan, member of an ancient people of Etruria, Italy, between the Tiber and Arno rivers west and south of the Apennines, whose urban civilization reached its height in the 6th century bce. Many features of Etruscan culture were adopted by the Romans, their successors to power in the peninsula.

The ancestors of Italians are mostly Indo-European speakers (e.g. Italic peoples such as the Latins, Umbrians, Samnites, Oscans, Sicels and Adriatic Veneti, as well as Celts in the north and Iapygians and Greeks in the south) and pre-Indo-European speakers (the Etruscans and Rhaetians in mainland Italy, Sicani and …


Etruscan Language - History


Voyages in History
When did what vessel arrive with whom onboard and where did it sink if it didn't?


The Etruscans lived in Etruria, roughly today's Tuscany, Italy.

What Language Did the Etruscans Speak?

The language of the Etruscans was Etruscan, which became in Rome's days sort of what Latin is for us today: Nobody spoke it but scholars and academics were studying it.

The Etruscans &mdash Before and After

The Etruscan culture flourished from around 700 BC until 200 BC. The culture of the people who inhabited Tuscany before the Etruscans is called the Villanovan culture. After 200 BC the Etruscan culture was absorbed by the Romans.

What Do We Know About the Etruscans?

Lovers of archaeology are having a field day with the Etruscans because no Etruscan literature survived. Thus, all information about these people have to be patched together from archaeological digs and references made by later Greek and Roman writers, such as Herodotus and Dionysius of Halicarnassus .

What we do know is that the Etruscans dominated the entire peninsula and influenced the Roman culture. For instance, the Roman toga was actually Etruscan. And what we know as the Roman numerals were in fact, you guessed it, Etruscan numerals.


Similar to the Greeks and the Romans, the Etruscans had many gods, Tinia or Tin being the main god.

Animal sacrifice was practiced and Etruscan professionals were able to read the future from the animal's dead liver.

And here is Italy in 326 BC:


Watch the video: Etrusker