Re: [Slovak-World] Another History of Slavs - was: Question to Martin
> The people who eventually migrated to Ireland, livedYou probably mean the Celts, Dave. The Celts in ancient Europe are
> in the Bratislava area supposedly from the first to
> fifth century. Who were they and where did they come from?
one of those numerous historical mysteries. And any explanation may
change what is generally believed about the history of the Slavs, too
(skip to the bottom if what follows is too OT).
Some records suggest that the Celtic tribe of Cotini lived in
north-western Slovakia 2,000+ years ago. Others say that other Celts
lived around Nitra and the Hron. Excavated villages and forts in
central and eastern Slovakia, and near Bratislava are ascribed to the
Besides, the Celts are mentioned as the local ancients everywhere you
turn in Europe.
But then, by about the year 500, you have all kinds of peoples all
over Europe -- from the Old Slavs in Eastern and Central Europe to
the Old Germanic peoples in the north, to the Old Romance tribes in
the west. And the Celts are 'suddenly' just on the westernmost
fringes -- in Brittany (France), Wales, Ireland and Scotland.
How could the Celts have evaporated across the whole continent?
Could they all have upped and marched to the Atlantic coast? How did
the multitudes of the other Europeans hatch all over? Are we just
imagining that there were (only/mainly) Celts everywhere? There is
no generally accepted explanation.
Part of the problem may be conjectures. Once we get to before about
800 in Central Europe, things begin to be less and less certain as to
who was who and where. On the one hand there are mentions of tribal
names in Latin (Roman, Byzantine) documents with little reliable
geographic and even less ethnographic reference. On the other hand
there are excavations with no indication of what languages those
bones may have spoken.
We also tend to imagine that once we accept that the Celts lived in,
say, Slovakia, that that is the end of the story. Yet, Europe, and
especially the mountains, was populated extremely sparsely by today's
standards, and all kinds of tribes/peoples lived all over at the same
time, but were never recorded anywhere.
That applies to the history of the Slavs, too. With a fresh look at
what evidence there is, the conclusions can be strikingly different
from the common assumptions, and yet grounded in the same -- scanty
An exceptionally detailed analysis of a multitude of sources (a
1,600-page! dissertation, Western Michigan U.) argues that there
isn't a single record or archeological evidence of any migration of
the Slavs that would have spread them to where they are now; and that
it is practically impossible that no evidence would have been
preserved if there had been such a supposed prolonged, continual,
massive transfer of people.
Using lots of data, its author argues that the Slavs had lived in
Central Europe at least hundreds of years earlier than what the
general consensus is.
That could tie in with one of the about five theories of where
the common linguistic ancestors of the modern Europeans came from
(all except the Basques, Hungarians, Estonians and Finns).
4,000 to 6,000 years ago, those people ("Indo-Europeans") are
believed to have lived either in one of the areas north of the Black
Sea, or south of the Black Sea, or -- accodring to one not
particularly popular theory -- across Central Europe, from about
northern Germany to about Hungary.
If the latter theory were correct, it would mean that the Slavs'
(and the Germanic peoples') ancestors were those who simply stayed
put, and that the ancestors of the other Europeans were those who
migrated away from Central Europe.
However, I wouldn't hold my breath for specialists to look into it.
votruba "at" pitt "dot" edu