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Re: Continued Review of _Odin in Azov_

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  • faltin2001
    ... opprinnelige ... gikk ... sammenlignet ... mot hunerne, ... stykker mellom ... andre ... Svanhilde ... Jormundreks-sagaen ... any ... of the ...
    Message 1 of 7 , Sep 11, 2002
      --- In gothic-l@y..., "Bertil Haggman" <mvk575b@t...> wrote:
      >
      >
      > Thor Heyerdahl - Per Lilliestroem, Jakten pa Odin -
      > Pa sporet av var fortid, Oslo, Norway, J.M. Stenersens Forlag, 2001.
      > 320 pages.
      > ____________________________________________________
      >
      > Per Lilliestrom: På 200-tallet var gepidene en del av den
      opprinnelige
      > gotiske stammen som dannet en egen fraksjon og dro vestover. De
      gikk
      > inn i historien som visigotere eller vestgotere. Pa 300-tallet
      > under kong Ermanrik, nadde ostrogoterne den stoerste utbrdelse
      > av sitt herredoemme, og som haerfoerer er Ermanrik blitt
      sammenlignet
      > med Alexander den store. Men da hunerne i ar 375 kom stormende
      > pa hesteryggen fra oest, ble han sveket av noen av sine heruliske
      > undersatter, som gikk over til fienden. Etter a ha lidd nederlag
      mot hunerne,
      > forsoekte Ermanrik a hevne seg pa en av de svikefulle heruliske
      > hoevdingene. Men da han ikke klarte a fa fatt pa denne hoevdingen,
      > hevnet han seg ved a la hoevdingens hustru, Sunilda, slites i
      stykker mellom
      > to hester. Noen historikere mener at han begikk rituelt selvmord,
      andre
      > tror at denne ostrogoternes stoerste haerfoerer doede i en grotesk
      > blodhevnkamp med herulernes kongeklan, rosomonene, som Sunilda
      > tilhoerte. Den grufulle og tragiske skjebnen til Sunilda, eller
      Svanhilde
      > som hun ogsa ble kalt, ble et populaert motiv i den germanske saga-
      > litteraturen, ikke minst pa Island, der temaet er tatt opp i
      Jormundreks-sagaen
      > og ogsa i to av eddadiktene.
      >
      > Jordanes regarded the Gepidi as a Gothic people and am not aware of
      any
      > researchers who have another opinion. Personally I am a supporter
      of the
      > Gepidi being treated on this list as Goths, and it would be
      interesting to know
      > opinions on this matter.


      This raises a wider and important question. What did it mean or
      entail to be a Goth? Was Gothic a religion, which Gepids (Gepidae)
      and other tribes could join, thus justifying the identification of
      Gepids with Goths? Clearly at the time of Jordanes and for several
      centuries before him being Gothic had no religious conotiation. The
      Goths were Arian Christians, being Gothic was a purely political
      term. That Gepids and Goths cannot have shared much of a common
      religious pre-Christian tradition is borne out be the fact that the
      Gepids did not share the Gothic practice of burying their dead
      without weapons. For the Goths this remained a defining element of
      their identity from their beginings in the Wielbark culture right to
      Italy and Gaul. Yet, Gepidic warriors went to their graves heavily
      armed.

      So if Gepids were not Goths in a religious sense, is there evidence
      that they regarded themselves as identical (i.e. Gepids being Goths)
      in a political sense. We certainly have no evidence that Gepids
      called themselves Goths at occations. In fact, Gepids and Goths
      seemed to have had a hostile attitude towards each other for much of
      their known history. As we know, there has not been just one Gothic
      tribe, but several groups and several ethnogenesis. Thus, the Goths
      at the Black Sea were the product of a new ethnogenesis, combining
      several ethnic groups including non-Germanic groups. In the Balkan
      again, new Gothic groups formed, now combining people like Tracians,
      Dacian, Getae and others. Yet, while those groups which regarded
      themselves as Goths seemed to have maintained some sort of common
      link, the Gepids were consistently regarded as separate and mostly
      hostile polity. In this sense it it difficult to argue that Gepids
      are Goths or a Gothic people.

      Yet, Jordanes called the Gepids a Gothic people. What does that mean?
      Should that mean that the Gepids emerged out of the Goths? Possibly,
      but other authors call the Goths a Skythian people (as opposed to
      Germanic people). Would this then imply that the Goths are a Sythian
      splinter group? No, the term Gothic has increasingly superceded the
      term Scythian in my view. Thus, when ancient authors categories
      Gepids as Gothic people and Vandals as Gothic people (and Goths as
      Skythians) they probably wanted to say that these were **eastern**
      Barbarians as opposed to the Germanics.

      The only way in which the Gepids may be labled a Gothic (speaking)
      people in a meaningful way might be in linguistic terms. As East
      Germanic people they probably spoke a language that was close or even
      identical to Gothic.

      Dirk
    • Bertil Haggman
      Heinrich Sevin has expressed the case for the Gepids being Goths well in his book _Die Gebiden_: At the beginning of the Christian era the Goths and Gepids
      Message 2 of 7 , Sep 11, 2002
        Heinrich Sevin has expressed the case for the Gepids
        being Goths well in his book _Die Gebiden_:

        At the beginning of the Christian era the Goths
        and Gepids lived at the mouth of the Vistula.

        They did not come from there, but according to
        their own historians, their forefathers came by ship,
        they migrated from Scandinavia on the other side.
        Pointing in that direction is also their language,
        which is closest to the North Germanic. In South
        Sweden there are still names close the Gothic:
        Goetarike (Gotenreich), Vaester- and Oestergoetland
        (West- and East Gothland) as well as Gotland and
        Gotska Sandoen. In Goetarike long after the
        Goths had migrated the Gauts lived.

        The defining difference came seemingly, in my
        opinion, when the Gepids came under the rule of
        the Huns, where they formed their own ethnic union.
        But in 454 AD the Gepids were at the head of a
        coalition against the Huns.

        Personally I think Per Lilliestrom is correct when
        depicting the Gepids in the third century AD as
        of Gothic stock.

        This supports the argument that the Gepids, at least
        before they were subjugated by the Huns, could be discussed
        on this list, as has been the Eruli, as a Gothic people.

        Gepidically

        Bertil Haggman




        Yet, Jordanes called the Gepids a Gothic people.

        The only way in which the Gepids may be labled a Gothic (speaking)
        people in a meaningful way might be in linguistic terms. As East
        Germanic people they probably spoke a language that was close or even
        identical to Gothic.
      • faltin2001
        ... I read Sevin s book. It is old (1950s or 60s) and portrays many aspects that have long been superceded by new research especially with regards to the
        Message 3 of 7 , Sep 12, 2002
          --- In gothic-l@y..., "Bertil Haggman" <mvk575b@t...> wrote:
          > Heinrich Sevin has expressed the case for the Gepids
          > being Goths well in his book _Die Gebiden_:
          >


          I read Sevin's book. It is old (1950s or 60s) and portrays many
          aspects that have long been superceded by new research especially
          with regards to the origin of the Goths.


          <snipped the bit that is based on Sevin's outdated introduction>



          > Personally I think Per Lilliestrom is correct when
          > depicting the Gepids in the third century AD as
          > of Gothic stock.



          What does of 'Gothic stock' mean? Gothic is not a biological or
          genetic characteristic, but a political term. There is no Gothic DNA.
          There were likely Roman provincials, Sarmatians, Tracians, Dacians,
          etc. who became Goths. The Gepids originated from the same Iron Age
          culture as the Goths and their ancestors may have been part of the
          earliest Goths, the Gutones. Yet, it makes no historical sense to say
          that Gepids are a Gothic people in the 5th or 4th century.



          >
          > This supports the argument that the Gepids, at least
          > before they were subjugated by the Huns, could be discussed
          > on this list, as has been the Eruli, as a Gothic people.



          Any tribe that was directly involved with the Goths can be discussed
          on this list if the context relates to the Goths directly.

          Dirk


          >
          >
          >
          >
          > Yet, Jordanes called the Gepids a Gothic people.
          >
          > The only way in which the Gepids may be labled a Gothic (speaking)
          > people in a meaningful way might be in linguistic terms. As East
          > Germanic people they probably spoke a language that was close or
          even
          > identical to Gothic.
        • george knysh
          ... *****GK: We might wish to take our cue from the Romans on this one. The distinction between Goths and Gepids was already made in the 3rd century. We
          Message 4 of 7 , Sep 12, 2002
            --- faltin2001 <dirk@...> wrote:
            > --- In gothic-l@y..., "Bertil Haggman"
            > <mvk575b@t...> wrote:
            > > Heinrich Sevin has expressed the case for the
            > Gepids
            > > being Goths well in his book _Die Gebiden_:
            > >
            >
            >
            > I read Sevin's book. It is old (1950s or 60s) and
            > portrays many
            > aspects that have long been superceded by new
            > research especially
            > with regards to the origin of the Goths.
            >
            >
            > <snipped the bit that is based on Sevin's outdated
            > introduction>
            >
            >
            >
            > > Personally I think Per Lilliestrom is correct when
            > > depicting the Gepids in the third century AD as
            > > of Gothic stock.
            >
            >
            >
            > What does of 'Gothic stock' mean? Gothic is not a
            > biological or
            > genetic characteristic, but a political term. There
            > is no Gothic DNA.
            > There were likely Roman provincials, Sarmatians,
            > Tracians, Dacians,
            > etc. who became Goths. The Gepids originated from
            > the same Iron Age
            > culture as the Goths and their ancestors may have
            > been part of the
            > earliest Goths, the Gutones. Yet, it makes no
            > historical sense to say
            > that Gepids are a Gothic people in the 5th or 4th
            > century.
            >
            >
            >
            > >
            > > This supports the argument that the Gepids, at
            > least
            > > before they were subjugated by the Huns, could be
            > discussed
            > > on this list, as has been the Eruli, as a Gothic
            > people.


            *****GK: We might wish to take our cue from the Romans
            on this one. The distinction between "Goths" and
            "Gepids" was already made in the 3rd century. We have
            coins of Emperor Probus (276-282) with the legend
            "VICTORIA GOTHICA" and at least one that I'm aware of
            with the legend "VICTORIA GEPIDICA". And there are
            other texts (including one pertaining to events of ca.
            291) which clearly distinguish Goths and Gepids.*****


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          • faltin2001
            ... Hi George, I agree of course and think that in political terms Gepids and Goths were certainly different peoples/tribes, who were often even hostile
            Message 5 of 7 , Sep 13, 2002
              --- In gothic-l@y..., george knysh <gknysh@y...> wrote:
              >
              > --- faltin2001 <dirk@s...> wrote:
              > > --- In gothic-l@y..., "Bertil Haggman"
              > > <mvk575b@t...> wrote:
              > > > Heinrich Sevin has expressed the case for the
              > > Gepids
              > > > being Goths well in his book _Die Gebiden_:
              > > >
              > >
              > >
              > > I read Sevin's book. It is old (1950s or 60s) and
              > > portrays many
              > > aspects that have long been superceded by new
              > > research especially
              > > with regards to the origin of the Goths.
              > >
              > >
              > > <snipped the bit that is based on Sevin's outdated
              > > introduction>
              > >
              > >
              > >
              > > > Personally I think Per Lilliestrom is correct when
              > > > depicting the Gepids in the third century AD as
              > > > of Gothic stock.
              > >
              > >
              > >
              > > What does of 'Gothic stock' mean? Gothic is not a
              > > biological or
              > > genetic characteristic, but a political term. There
              > > is no Gothic DNA.
              > > There were likely Roman provincials, Sarmatians,
              > > Tracians, Dacians,
              > > etc. who became Goths. The Gepids originated from
              > > the same Iron Age
              > > culture as the Goths and their ancestors may have
              > > been part of the
              > > earliest Goths, the Gutones. Yet, it makes no
              > > historical sense to say
              > > that Gepids are a Gothic people in the 5th or 4th
              > > century.
              > >
              > >
              > >
              > > >
              > > > This supports the argument that the Gepids, at
              > > least
              > > > before they were subjugated by the Huns, could be
              > > discussed
              > > > on this list, as has been the Eruli, as a Gothic
              > > people.
              >
              >
              > *****GK: We might wish to take our cue from the Romans
              > on this one. The distinction between "Goths" and
              > "Gepids" was already made in the 3rd century. We have
              > coins of Emperor Probus (276-282) with the legend
              > "VICTORIA GOTHICA" and at least one that I'm aware of
              > with the legend "VICTORIA GEPIDICA". And there are
              > other texts (including one pertaining to events of ca.
              > 291) which clearly distinguish Goths and Gepids.*****
              >



              Hi George,

              I agree of course and think that in political terms Gepids and Goths
              were certainly different peoples/tribes, who were often even hostile
              towards each other. A statement that 'Gepids are a Gothic people' or
              are 'of Gothic stock' as Bertil put it, is difficult to support for
              the period from the 3rd to 6th century. As a modern historical
              identification this identity seems to make little sense. As I stated
              earlier, I think that the term 'Gothic people' has occationally been
              used like the term Scythian people, for 'eastern barbarians'.

              The term being of 'Gothic stock' seems to imply some sort of
              biological relationship or physical similarity. In this respect,
              Istvan Bona's book called 'Anbruch des Mittelalters:
              Gepiden und Langobarden im Karpatenbecken', Budapest 1975, is of
              interest. Bona reports about anthropological investigations on
              skeletons from the middle Danube and Theis area. He states that
              anthropologists found that male Langobards had an average height of
              1.8m, with typical caucasian features (he mentioned long skulls,
              eagle-noses, etc.). In contrast, the East Germanic people (Gepids,
              Heruls, Goths) in that area showed only an average height of 1.7m.
              Thus, they were significantly and noticably smaller than Langobards.
              The East Germanic skeletons also displayed slight mongoloid features
              (round skulls, short flat noses, etc.) at times. The anthropologists
              cited by Bona, attributed this to a mixing with Sarmatians, Huns and
              Alans.

              I could imagine that this kind of physical similarity among eastern
              people like Goths, Gepids and Heruls in contrast to West Germanic
              people like the Langobards could have provided ancient authors like
              Jordanes (himself apparently of Gothic-Alanic origin) with additional
              reason for putting them into one category.

              cheers,
              Dirk
            • george knysh
              ... *****GK: What s curious is Jordanes lumping together of Goths and Gepids (Heruli not included here). Perhaps this was also due to the Gepid control
              Message 6 of 7 , Sep 13, 2002
                --- faltin2001 <dirk@...> wrote:
                > The East Germanic skeletons also displayed slight
                > mongoloid features
                > (round skulls, short flat noses, etc.) at times. The
                > anthropologists
                > cited by Bona, attributed this to a mixing with
                > Sarmatians, Huns and
                > Alans.
                >
                > I could imagine that this kind of physical
                > similarity among eastern
                > people like Goths, Gepids and Heruls in contrast to
                > West Germanic
                > people like the Langobards could have provided
                > ancient authors like
                > Jordanes (himself apparently of Gothic-Alanic
                > origin) with additional
                > reason for putting them into one category.

                *****GK: What's curious is Jordanes' lumping together
                of Goths and Gepids (Heruli not included here).
                Perhaps this was also due to the Gepid control
                ("Gepedoios") for some time of the area previously
                held by the Goths ("Gothiscandza"). Archaeologically,
                the Wielbark Goths evolved into the Chernyakhiv Goths,
                while the Gepids apparently stayed at the Late
                Wielbark stage (many of them at any rate). But the
                point about fusions with eastern steppe peoples (esp.
                Huns) seems valid.*******
                >

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