Re: [gothic-l] Re: Toledo
- We might compare, as best we can, reconstructed linguistic frontiers
from c. 300 with those from c. 800. The West Germanic languages did
expand, Anglo-Frisian largely replacing Latin and Welsh in the
British Lowlands, and Dutch-German expanding into the Low Countries,
Rhineland, Switzerland, and the upper Danube to the Alps. The East
Germanic languages seem to disappear outside the Crimea and possibly
other enclaves as the Slavic languages spread... Arabic also spreads.
Gothic never had the religious importance of Latin or Arabic. If it
was not the majority language in Gutþiuda, it was the most important
(and the various histories nowhere suggest local language/trade
language/prestige language divisions), was adopted for that reason,
and was supplemented by Greek and Latin for the same reason as early
as Wulfila's own exile.
The size and demographics of the exile groups remain largely unknown.
Refugee populations tend to have slightly higher proportions of women
and children than most populations, and the same may have applied to
the refugees of 376. I think there were multiple mass migrations into
the Balkans, starting with 376, and smaller migrations, starting in
348, which could have changed the linguistic landscape in the Balkans
just as other migrations changed the linguistic landscape in England.
(Even if the total migration only amounts to 10-30% of the regional
population). However, Slavic-speakers repeated the process in the
same parts of the Balkans. I think there were much smaller, and more
characteristically military, campaigns into Italy, Gaul, and Spain.
The name Totila, as has been noted elsewhere, is not old Gothic. It
involves an additional sound-shift. This suggests living, primarily
spoken, language, as well as contact with West-Germanic dialects.
I'm afraid your email formatting is screwed up and I can't reply
below. The map shows dense concentrations of Germanic place-names in
the far northwest, i.e. the Swabisk area, a local concentration in
northern Catalonia, and few elsewhere. I think this shows that they
are better at identifying West-Germanic place-names than East-
Germanic ones, and nothing else.
On Jul 18, 2007, at 4:39 PM, Rydwlf wrote:
> Hi there,
> I have the feeling that the issue of Spanish toponimes of germanic
> origin has been debated some time in the past in this same list. I
> am sure about the germanic (specially gothic) origin of some
> settlements, mostly villages (that still retain the name). There is
> a high number of examples.
> I have done some research with Google but all the information I
> find is quite fragmentary. Anyway if you're interested I can try to
> give a list of webpages dealing with the issue (and mentioning
> quite a lot of examples), and some book references.
> Figure 15 in the following page can give a rough idea of the
> distribution of toponimes of germanic origin in Iberia.
> Unfortunately I cannot quote the sources, but the author probably
> does so in some page of his work (sorry but I'm short of time today).
> Hope it helps,
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