Re: Tyrrhenian context

From: Joseph S Crary
Message: 8981
Date: 2001-09-03


is every thing and Glen I thought you were the rebel? Your appraisal
appears to be the same unchanged opinion, written slightly
differently, in spite of quit clear evidence to the contrary.

I may be wrong but,

it appears that you are justifying a premature use of terminology
made by an earlier generation. As you know Herodot and Thucydides
were contemporaries and I think both were right. We also have
Hellanikos (Roman Antiquities) in Dion. Hal. I, 28, from Lesbos and
Anticlides in Strab. V, 2, 4, both of which call the Lemnians,
Pelasgians. The only time Tyrrhenian is used is to draw a closer
connection between the Lemnians and Etruscans. Because Thucydides
makes the point I suggest this link was based on language and the
history of a common origin. In a general sense I would place this
origin in Anatolia and call it Pelasgian.

The reason I call Tyrrhenian a Pelasgian Language is this:

Tyrrhenian is a term used exclusively to explain the dispersal of a
demographic, culture, and most likely a language from western
Anatolia. For an extended period this term was applied almost
exclusively to this group in west central Italy. Tyrrhenian is used
by the Hellenics as a national term for the Etruscans. Thus, the
available evidence demonstrates that Tyrrhenian is a term applied
specifically, both temporally and spatially.

In contrast Pelasgian is a term used both specifically and in a
general sense. However, it is not used as a term for the aboriginal
peoples. Rather it was used to designate a segmented demographic,
culture, and most likely a language group situated in both Anatolia,
Greece, and the southern Balkans. Temporally, Pelasgian is used to
designate this collective before and after the Tyrrhenian event.
Because of this general usage as it is applied to Lemnos coupled with
similarities found in this and the Etruscan languages, Tyrrhenian can
be called Pelasgian.

Because of perceived confusion over the nature of origin and the
extensive and well-documented material culture of the historic
Etruscans, archaeologist and linguists of the early 20th century, for
some reason used the Hellenic term Tyrrhenian. They apply it to
anything that is Etruscan-like. Thus, using the same logic Pelasgian
becomes Tyrrhenian, just as the English would become the American

I believe the important thing here is that the center of
Pelasgian/Tyrrhenian Languages was the Aegean until the end of the
Late Bronze Age. It may prove interesting to find how much of this
language group survived in the Hellenic period.

If anyone has any evidence, textual or otherwise from the 5th and 4th
centuries BC (or earlier) that would add to this discussion I would
appreciate it. Opinions are good when they are based on some form of
evidence with a context that can be evaluated. Opinions based on
personal belief have less value. I've always found that it is
important not to intertwine elements of one personal belief system
with long passed cultures and languages.

Hope this clears my position

JS Crary