Re: [tied] Check out Origin of Ancient Languages

From: george knysh
Message: 16230
Date: 2002-10-14

--- Piotr Gasiorowski <piotr.gasiorowski@...>
> As for George's question in an earlier posting
> ("What are the arguments for such an early emergence
> of Slavic [ca. 1300-700 BC?]"), the dates I
> tentatively suggested referred to the separation of
> the lineages leading to Proto-East Baltic and
> Proto-Slavic,

*****GK: "Balto-Slavic" as breaking up into three
lineages: -->Proto-West Baltic, -->Proto-East Baltic,
and -->Proto-Slavic? *****

not to the emergence of Proto-Slavic
> understood as the most recent common ancestor of the
> Slavic languages.

***GK: I suppose that it took some time for the
-->Proto-Slavic lineage to acquire sufficiently
distinct characteristics. What would be your informed
guess as to the earliest possible time for the
emergence of "Proto-Slavic" on linguistic grounds? On
archaeological grounds it would be very difficult to
argue for a period earlier than the Zarubynets'ka
culture (200 BC-200 AD). The historical evidence seems
to indicate that in Herodotus' time pre-Balts and
pre-Slavs were still lumped together under the
designation of "Neuri", although the Balto-Slav
territory where the "most ancient" Slavic toponyms and
hydronyms can be found (thoroughly mixed with Baltisms
BTW), viz., the area south of the Pripet r. were under
Scythian control. I wonder if that is the time frame
for the differentiation of the "god" name as used by
"Balts" and "Slavs". The southernmost "Balto-Slavic"
territory continued to maintain strong links with
post-Scythian political formations in the south.*****

If we call anything pre-fifth
> century (AD) "Slavic", we should remember that we
> step upon slippery ground.

*****GK: I agree. Beside the historical impact of
Scythians and of various Sarmat groups on the
southernmost "BaltoSlavs", there is also that of the
Goths. I suppose one may claim that Proto-Slavic was
basically there before (?) the attested borrowings
from Gothic, and that most if not all such should
pre-date the period of Slavic expansionism ? "Sometime
in the 2nd c. AD" would seem to me (subject to
correction as always) a reasonable date for the
emergence of the "Proto-Slavs". This would be in the
latest stages of the Zarubynets'ka culture. There is
enough ambiguity about the utilization of the term
"Venedi" by classical authors to preclude an exclusive
identification of it with Proto-Slavs. Pliny is too
vague. Tacitus could be referring to both East Balts
AND Slavs. Ptolemy uses it with respect to West Balts.
But "Stavani" (Ptolemy, ca. 140-150 AD) seems more
promising, esp. the possible Iranic explanation of
this as "the praised ones" (one theory about the
meaning of "Slavs"), in line with the symbiosis of
these southern BaltoSlavs with the later Aorsan-led
(Spalian) "Scythian" state. I also like the
implication of Pliny's "Trogodytae, Scythae degeneres
et a servis orti". This population was in the same
area as the "Venedae-Sarmatae" of the Peutinger map.
And "Trogodytae" can be explained by reference to the
"zemlyanky" of the non-nomadic late southern BaltoSlav
groups of hamaxobian "Scythia".******
> Though I doubt if the Aestii could really have been
> "Celtic" (who they were is a different question;
> West Baltic, perhaps), it's thinkable that there
> were some non-Germanic centum enclaves along the
> Amber Road even as late as the first century.

******GK: Is "Aestii" a Latinized Germanic appellative
? Note also that Tacitus' Aestii are Ptolemy's

Do you Yahoo!?
Faith Hill - Exclusive Performances, Videos & More