Origins of Albanian language and ethnos

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  • Soldier of Macedon
    Senior Member
    • Sep 2008
    • 13675

    Originally posted by Epirot View Post

    According to this map, Thracian reaches up to the Baltic shores!!!
    Indeed it does, and just looking at their living space indicates clearly that most of it is inhabited by Balto-Slavic peoples today.
    They might have been the inter-mediators of Thracian words to proto-Slavs...
    The Scythians weren't always a homogenous group, and Balto-Slavic-speakers would have featured heavily among them. There is no chance of 'inter-mediators' between Balto-Slavic and Thracian because the lexical correspondences, sound changes, etc are just too close to be borrowings from one to another. There is only one way to explain it, and that is pre-existing commonalities stemming from a single mother-tongue. That is why people from Macedonia, to Slovenia, to Poland, to Russia and to the Baltic states use a word akin to Illyrian 'osseria' for a lake.
    In the name of the blood and the sun, the dagger and the gun, Christ protect this soldier, a lion and a Macedonian.

    Comment

    • Soldier of Macedon
      Senior Member
      • Sep 2008
      • 13675

      On the link below there is a comparison table of Iranian languages.



      I notice that the word gisht for 'finger' in Albanian is identical to that in Zazaki, which is a dialect of Kurdish. In Albanian, this word can also mean 'hand', and the word for 'hand' in Zazaki is dast. Both words in Zazaki likely come from the same root.

      This is only one example, but I am sure that more can be found. Of course, given the major changes that Albanian has underwent since its 'proto' stage, the number of correspondences will be limited - however, if they can be found in those words considered unique in Albanian, then it strengthens the argument for a connection between Albanian and Iranian languages.
      In the name of the blood and the sun, the dagger and the gun, Christ protect this soldier, a lion and a Macedonian.

      Comment

      • Soldier of Macedon
        Senior Member
        • Sep 2008
        • 13675

        Here is something from wikipedia about the Principality of Arbanon:
        n the beginning the name Arbanon was applied to a region in the mountainous area to the west of Lake Ochrida and the upper valley of the river Shkumbin in 11th century AD. There are very few sources about the creation of the principality with this name. In 1166 in a ceremony held in Kotor, an Andrea prior Arbanensis is mentioned among the participants accompanied by Lazarus Episcopis Arbanensis. A year later in 1167, Pope Alexander III, in a letter directed to Lazarus, congratulates him for returning his bishopric to Catholic faith and invites him to acknowledge the archbishop of Ragusa as his superior. After some resistance from local officials, the bishopric of Albania was put under the direct dependence of the Pope, as documented in a Papal letter dated in 1188 . We know very little about Progon who was the first Albanian ruler of the Principality of Arbėr in the 12th century. He gained the possessions of Kruja fortress and the lands surrounding it between 1190 and 1198 and had the title of archon (mentioned in the Gėziq inscription). After the castle of Kruja became his possession, Progon proclaimed himself a Prince in 1190. He was succeeded by his son Gjin who later was succeeded by Dhimitėr Progoni.
        Epirot, what can you tell us about this? Information on the internet seems to be extremely scarce, with the main source being the below (which itself doesn't go into too much detail):
        http://books.google.com/books?id=bcl...page&q&f=false

        The New Cambridge Medieval History: c. 1198-c. 1300, page 786: " little arbanon, shut away in the hinterland, with its main political center in Kruja, opted for a continuing attachment to the Orthodox tradition and for subjection to Epiros, as well as alliance to Serbia... "
        Here is something else with regard to the name 'Arbanon':
        The name may be derived from the Illyrian tribe of the Albani recorded by Ptolemy, the geographer and astronomer from Alexandria who drafted a map in 150 AD that shows the city of Albanopolis (located northeast of Durrės).

        The name may have a continuation in the name of a medieval settlement called Albanon and Arbanon, although it is not certain this was the same place. In his History written in 1079–1080, Byzantine historian Michael Attaliates was the first to refer to Albanoi as having taken part in a revolt against Constantinople in 1043 and to the Arbanitai as subjects of the Duke of Dyrrachium. During the Middle Ages, the Albanians called their country Arbėr or Arbėn and referred to themselves as Arbėresh or Arbnesh.

        As early as the 16th century the placename Shqipėria and the ethnic demonym Shqiptarė gradually replaced Arbėria and Arbėresh. While the two terms are popularly interpreted as "Land of the Eagles" and "Children of the Eagles", they derive from the adverb shqip, which means "understanding each-other".

        Under the Ottoman Empire Albania was referred to officially as Arnavutluk and its inhabitants as Arnauts. The word is considered to be a metathesis from the word Arvanite, which was the Medieval Greek name for the Albanians.
        Do you have any information on Michael Attaliates? He apparently wrote of a people called 'Arbanitai' who were transplanted as mercenaries from Sicily to Albania by a rebel military commander called George Maniakos in 1042. I have seen this repeated on the internet, but never confirmed with a source.
        In the name of the blood and the sun, the dagger and the gun, Christ protect this soldier, a lion and a Macedonian.

        Comment

        • Droog
          Member
          • Mar 2011
          • 120

          Originally posted by Soldier of Macedon View Post
          On the link below there is a comparison table of Iranian languages.



          I notice that the word gisht for 'finger' in Albanian is identical to that in Zazaki, which is a dialect of Kurdish. In Albanian, this word can also mean 'hand', and the word for 'hand' in Zazaki is dast. Both words in Zazaki likely come from the same root.

          This is only one example, but I am sure that more can be found. Of course, given the major changes that Albanian has underwent since its 'proto' stage, the number of correspondences will be limited - however, if they can be found in those words considered unique in Albanian, then it strengthens the argument for a connection between Albanian and Iranian languages.
          a)You have mixed up even the basic rules of linguistics
          b)gisht doesn't mean hand
          c)it's modern form is gisht, but its medieval one is glisht
          d)read the works of real linguists

          e)Although there aren't congates of course Iranian languages are related to Albanian as they are IE. Zazaki also uses the word "name" for name as English and that means nothing else other than this: Zazaki and English are both IE languages whose word *h1nomn̥ underwent the same development.
          Last edited by Droog; 05-05-2011, 04:58 AM.

          Comment

          • Soldier of Macedon
            Senior Member
            • Sep 2008
            • 13675

            I used google translate as I didn't have any Albanian dictionaries near me at the time. For the word 'hand' it listed 'gisht' lower on the list, which suggest that in some context it can also be used to refer to a 'hand'. Is this incorrect? If so, go and advise your kinsmen at google translate who provided the translation. I hardly need your advice on the basic rules of linguistics, offer it to someone who wants to go backward in your direction. Furthermore, you don't need to waste my time with your elementary understanding of how cognates work. If you wanted to reply with something clever, you should have shown me which other languages aside from Albanian and Iranian use the word 'gisht' for a 'finger'. Can you manage that?
            In the name of the blood and the sun, the dagger and the gun, Christ protect this soldier, a lion and a Macedonian.

            Comment

            • Droog
              Member
              • Mar 2011
              • 120

              Originally posted by Soldier of Macedon View Post
              I used google translate as I didn't have any Albanian dictionaries near me at the time. For the word 'hand' it listed 'gisht' lower on the list, which suggest that in some context it can also be used to refer to a 'hand'. Is this incorrect? If so, go and advise your kinsmen at google translate who provided the translation. I hardly need your advice on the basic rules of linguistics, offer it to someone who wants to go backward in your direction. Furthermore, you don't need to waste my time with your elementary understanding of how cognates work. If you wanted to reply with something clever, you should have shown me which other languages aside from Albanian and Iranian use the word 'gisht' for a 'finger'. Can you manage that?
              SoM do you know what the term phonological development means? You're assuming that two words that seem similar to you 1) have the same ph.d. 2)are pronounced in the same way 3)belong in the same era(which they obviously don't as I explained above) etc. You'd be making the same mistake with the word "name" that is the same in English and Zezaki.

              ps. gisht never meant hand
              ps2. don't use google translate

              Comment

              • Epirot
                Member
                • Mar 2010
                • 399

                Originally posted by Soldier of Macedon

                Do you have any information on Michael Attaliates? He apparently wrote of a people called 'Arbanitai' who were transplanted as mercenaries from Sicily to Albania by a rebel military commander called George Maniakos in 1042. I have seen this repeated on the internet, but never confirmed with a source.
                Well...I have to check it out in my files once again what does really meant Michael Attaliates with the 'Arbanitai' of Sicilia. As far as I remember, he nowhere implied that Albanians of Dyrrachium were transplanted there from Sicily. I find it as fairly non-plausible because how could a few mercenaries impose their name to a people, who during Middle age had a great territorial extension.

                Epirot, what can you tell us about this? Information on the internet seems to be extremely scarce, with the main source being the below (which itself doesn't go into too much detail):
                In fact, the period between VII century (when Slavic upheaval seem to cease) up to the X century contains only a few accounts for the situation in the inner Balkans. Almost all Byzantine accounts were concentrated mainly in the struggles to gain the royal throne in Constandinople or in eventual secessionist riots that took place in several parts of Byzantine Empire. During this time, Byzantine chroniclers did not pay much attention about post-Illyrian remnants like Albanians or Vlachs, who were retained in the distant mountain regions of Montenegro, Dardania and Epirus.
                Last edited by Epirot; 05-06-2011, 10:38 AM.
                IF OUR CHRONICLES DO NOT LIE, WE CALL OURSELVES AS EPIROTES!

                Comment

                • Epirot
                  Member
                  • Mar 2010
                  • 399

                  Originally posted by Soldier of Macedon View Post
                  No 'linguistic circles' have produced any convincing arguments in favour of Albanian being descended from Illyrian (or Thracian, for that matter). And if there was anything, you would have already posted it on this forum by now (given the previous discussions). The connection you speak of is basically limited to a handful of words, and for each correspondence that Albanian has with either Illyrian or Thracian, there are several more in Balto-Slavic.

                  .
                  Maybe it is not that convincing to you, but the mainstream of modern linguists consider Albanian as being derived from either Illyrian and Thracian. I am aware that the information regarding these ancient idioms is extremely scarce, but we have to deal only with those glosses, words, toponymes that have links to modern languages. And a sizable number of them are linked with the Albanian.

                  Balto-Slavic-speaking peoples live in the overwhelming majority of the territory (both south and north of the Danube) where Illyrians and Thracians lived. If anybody is representative on geographical grounds, it is them, and not the Albanians.
                  I am left far from being persuaded. If the speakers of Balto-Slavic are more representatives of Thracians than Albanians, then can you corroborate further your assertion with other arguments. For instance, is there any cultural similarity of Balto-Slavs with the Thracians?

                  Either way, there is nothing to suggest an Albanian (Christian or Muslim) connection to Dacia prior to the 16th century - it all appears to have taken place during the Ottoman period.
                  I will dedicate this response to your previous question about Illyrian-Thracian linguistic similarities. So, the Illyrian influence toward Dacia begun at least from Appian’s times. Romans saw no difference at all between Mysians, Dacians and Illyrians.

                  There I shall tell more about the Mysians. For the present, since the Romans consider the Mysians a part of Illyria and this is my Illyrian history, in order that it may be complete it seems proper to premise that Lucullus invaded Mysia as a general of the republic and that Tiberius took it in the time of the empire.

                  CHAPTER V
                  Where is that quote cited? I can't seem to find a source for it on the internet.
                  The original is in Italian. I will find it and post here!
                  IF OUR CHRONICLES DO NOT LIE, WE CALL OURSELVES AS EPIROTES!

                  Comment

                  • makedonin
                    Senior Member
                    • Sep 2008
                    • 1668

                    Originally posted by Epirot View Post
                    For instance, is there any cultural similarity of Balto-Slavs with the Thracians?
                    There certainly are some but we first have to establish what were this Thracian cultural traits!

                    Now, not that I agree with all that the following author has written, but she made a interesting observation about Macedonian customs:

                    It was the Thracian Rider, a deity worshipped all over ancient Thrace and Macedonia, whom some think to be a form of Rhesus, the hero of whom Homer wrote. . He had a long lease of life, for the Roman legionaries of Thracian origin went on worshipping him, and his shrines are found wherever the legions went, and in Rome itself. You may find several sculptures representing him in the Budapest Museum. The mystery of Prince Marko was solved. There had been two similar processes and a synthesis of the results.

                    The cult of the Thracian rider was practiced in Prilep, and was driven underground by Christianity; but it never left the hearts of the people but it never left the hearts of the people, who in this uncomfortable life liked to think of a comfortable immortal, happy as eternities long, unacquainted with pain. Even so, when prince Marko was lowered from power to vassalhood he too never left the hearts of the people, who under the yoke of the Turk liked to think of the milder yoke of this reflective Christian prince. Therefore the two became fused in the common mind, the happy god, the sad mortal, and the imagination of folk-song followed now one strain and now another in this entanglement of opposites.

                    from the Web Archive > Rebecca West
                    for download the relevant part: Rebecca West
                    Rusalii - Macedonian Ethnic Dance.

                    Up from 7:20 you can watch Rusalii dance:
                    YouTube - Folk dances and songs ensemble-Tanec,Macedonia (Part3)

                    YouTube - Folk dances and songs ensemble-Tanec,Macedonia (Part4)
                    Last edited by makedonin; 05-09-2011, 02:11 AM.
                    To enquire after the impression behind an idea is the way to remove disputes concerning nature and reality.

                    Comment

                    • Bratot
                      Senior Member
                      • Sep 2008
                      • 2855

                      Among the cognates between Thracian and Albanian: the Thracian inscription mezenai on the Duvanli gold ring has been unanimously linked to Messapian menzana (=horse deity) to Albanian mėz (=pony), as well as to Romanian mānz (=colt), and it is agreed that Thracian mezenai meant 'horseman'; Thracian manteia is supposed to be cognate to Albanian mand (=mulberry). It may also be connected to the Slavic mantija (=cloak). Sorin Paliga, a linguist at the academy of Bucharest, recently linked Romanian buză (=lip) and Albanian buzė (=lip) to the Thracian personal names Buzas, Buzo, Buzes. This word also exists in Bulgarian where it means 'cheek', in Serbian obraz means 'cheek', in Macedonian with the meaning of 'lip', and in Polish buzia where it means 'mouth' or 'lips'.
                      So everything can be linked to slavic with much more certainity.

                      If one can link menzana with mėz than I guess we can add Macedonian 'mazga'(mule) or 'magare'(donkey) as well.
                      The purpose of the media is not to make you to think that the name must be changed, but to get you into debate - what name would suit us! - Bratot

                      Comment

                      • Onur
                        Senior Member
                        • Apr 2010
                        • 2389

                        Among the cognates between Thracian and Albanian: the Thracian inscription mezenai on the Duvanli gold ring has been unanimously linked to Messapian menzana (=horse deity) to Albanian mėz (=pony), as well as to Romanian mānz (=colt), and it is agreed that Thracian mezenai meant 'horseman'; Thracian manteia is supposed to be cognate to Albanian mand (=mulberry). It may also be connected to the Slavic mantija (=cloak). Sorin Paliga, a linguist at the academy of Bucharest, recently linked Romanian buză (=lip) and Albanian buzė (=lip) to the Thracian personal names Buzas, Buzo, Buzes. This word also exists in Bulgarian where it means 'cheek', in Serbian obraz means 'cheek', in Macedonian with the meaning of 'lip', and in Polish buzia where it means 'mouth' or 'lips'.
                        Epirot, it`s quite normal for your language to have this level of similarity with Polish, Thracian or with any slavic tongue but this doesn't prove much and it`s not enough to claim that Thracian, Dacian and Albanian were/are close relative languages.

                        Also, these similarities are evident in all languages of the world. For example, if i remember correctly, Anatolian Hittites of 1700 BC were calling "water" as "watah". Or i can give you a list of 900+ Sumerian words from 3500 BC which exists in today`s Turkic languages or 1400+ in today`s Hungarian. So, just because we can find these similarities, today`s English people were neighbors/relatives of Hittites?? or today`s Hungarians, Turks relatives of Sumerians??

                        Comment

                        • Epirot
                          Member
                          • Mar 2010
                          • 399

                          Originally posted by Onur View Post
                          Epirot, it`s quite normal for your language to have this level of similarity with Polish, Thracian or with any slavic tongue but this doesn't prove much and it`s not enough to claim that Thracian, Dacian and Albanian were/are close relative languages.
                          Onur, I agree with you that there is no enough linguistical stuff because the heritage of ancient Paleo-Balkans languages is fairly scarce. In absence of inscriptions (neither Thracian nor Illyrian were written languages) we are compelled to deal only with a handful of glosses, words, toponymes and anthroponymes. In the present state of things, many Thracian and Illyrian words can be etymologized via Albanian. The link of Albanian with both Illyrian and Thracian are strengthen even from supportive evidences like: cultural, geographical and historical ones. The Albanian inhabited area stands in what once was called as Southern Illyria (Dardania, Praevalitana, Epirus Nova, Epirus Vetus). The Thracian component in Albanian may be explained from any latter migration of Northern Thracians who were pressured to leave their native lands from 'Barbarian' invanders.
                          Last edited by Epirot; 05-07-2011, 06:39 AM.
                          IF OUR CHRONICLES DO NOT LIE, WE CALL OURSELVES AS EPIROTES!

                          Comment

                          • Soldier of Macedon
                            Senior Member
                            • Sep 2008
                            • 13675

                            Originally posted by Epirot View Post
                            Maybe it is not that convincing to you, but the mainstream of modern linguists consider Albanian as being derived from either Illyrian and Thracian.
                            The reason why they tend to classify Albanian as either Illyrian or Thracian is because they haven't been able to classify it within any other modern IE linguistic family, and the reason for this is the significant bastardisation of the language since it began from Proto-Albanian. It has nothing to do with their concrete certainty that Albanian was indeed either Illyrian or Thracian.
                            I am aware that the information regarding these ancient idioms is extremely scarce, but we have to deal only with those glosses, words, toponymes that have links to modern languages. And a sizable number of them are linked with the Albanian.
                            But there are several more lexical correspondences that Thraco-Illyrian shares with Balto-Slavic. Shouldn't it be the other way around, if Albanian is the true descendant of these languages?
                            I am left far from being persuaded.
                            If I can't persuade you with regard to that point, then take a look at a map from antiquity and a map from today, and you will persuade yourself when you notice that the overwhelming majority of territory inhabited by the Thracians and Illyrians is today peopled by Balto-Slavic speakers.
                            If the speakers of Balto-Slavic are more representatives of Thracians than Albanians, then can you corroborate further your assertion with other arguments.
                            Aside from the geographical connection, language is another strong indicator. Sound changes, fundamental vocabulary and even lexical innovations are all probable. I will cite some examples in the other thread relating to the Macedonian and Albanian linguistic comparison.
                            For instance, is there any cultural similarity of Balto-Slavs with the Thracians?
                            For the large part, culture evolves over the centuries, so I am not sure if too many placid and direct connections can be established between a modern culture and an ancient one. John Wilkes cites several possible examples between Illyrian and South Slavic cultures. Can you be more specific? Is there something that culturally links Albanians to Thracians or Illyrians that isn't shared by any other Balkan culture?
                            Romans saw no difference at all between Mysians, Dacians and Illyrians.
                            I believe that all of the Paleo-Balkan peoples were linguistically related in a manner similar to how the majority of the Balkan populations are today, that majority being speakers of South Slavic languages. The reason why the Romans saw no difference is also attributed to the fact that they basically named the whole of the Balkan peninsula after Illyria, most probably because the Illyrians were geographically closest to Italy.
                            The original is in Italian. I will find it and post here!
                            Please do. I am curious to know how this was recorded as a quote by Skenderbeg. Did the author of the text know him personally?
                            In the name of the blood and the sun, the dagger and the gun, Christ protect this soldier, a lion and a Macedonian.

                            Comment

                            • Soldier of Macedon
                              Senior Member
                              • Sep 2008
                              • 13675

                              Originally posted by Droog
                              SoM do you know what the term phonological development means?
                              I believe the answer to that would be yes, unless I have been locked in an underground cave all of my life with no access to reading material or the internet. Let me know if you have any more similarly presumptuous and silly questions.
                              You're assuming that two words that seem similar to you
                              What, they only look similar to me, and not to you? I find your effort to negate the similarity of the two words quite comical, given that they represent exactly the same thing and that they are spelled in exactly the same way. I doubt the sound in each when pronounced differs in any significant way, it's not exactly a tongue-twister of a word. There is really only a few ways to pronounce 'gisht', and they're all similar.
                              belong in the same era(which they obviously don't as I explained above) etc.
                              Your explanation was invalid. The term used by both the Albanians and the Zazaki today is not only similar, it is exactly the same. Have you looked into the history of the Zazaki word to prove beyond doubt that it hasn't followed a similar phonological development? Any reason why you think it wouldn't, aside from your desire to try and distance Albanian from Iranian languages, or some possible Illyrian fantasy that you harbour?
                              You'd be making the same mistake with the word "name" that is the same in English and Zezaki.
                              Not exactly, because although Germanic and Iranian languages are both IE, they do not belong to common sub-groups that branched away from PIE. The same cannot be said with certainty regarding the Albanian language. What you need to ask yourself is this: Which other IE language today uses something similar to 'gisht' for 'finger', aside from Albanian and Zazaki? Come back with some answers on that, and I may start to take your intervention here a little more seriously. It is quite a unique word so I am genuinely interested if anybody else uses it. All I am doing is exploring a possibility, and it's not like I am the first person to suggest a common link between Albanian and Iranian languages.
                              In the name of the blood and the sun, the dagger and the gun, Christ protect this soldier, a lion and a Macedonian.

                              Comment

                              • Onur
                                Senior Member
                                • Apr 2010
                                • 2389

                                I found an interesting article about Illyrians and Albanians written by a Russian linguist. Epirot, you may find this interesting since you were talking about the similarities between Albanian and Romanian languages;

                                The genesis of the Balkan Peoples

                                The formation of a people is the result of continuous and extremely complicated processes. In determining the ethnogenesis of the population of a region, the first question to be answered would seem to be: what is the origin of the tribes or peoples that dwelt in the region concerned in antiquity, that is to say, what were those peoples that represent the substratum of the contemporary ones? The first task to be solved is, therefore, the problem of the substratum, i.e. the problem of the protohistory of the region under examination.

                                The problem of the genesis of a people may be examined linguistically, historically, archaeologically and ethnologically. As a linguist, I shall try to put forward some linguistic considerations and data towards a solution of this problem in relation to the Balkan peoples.

                                For the periods for which there are no written documents archaeologists determine regions belonging to the same culture by means of the identification of excavated objects. Linguists use a similar method. The linguist's material consists of toponyms, especially those which present a fairly wide frequency. By specifying a region where a characteristic toponym often appears we are able to delimit a linguistic or ethnic unity. Thus on the basis of the very frequent place names of the type Brighton, Frinton, Honiton, Leamington, Luton, Northampton, Royston, Southampton, Taunton, etc. formed with -ton (= town) an English-speaking region can easily be determined. In the same way, on the basis of frequent toponyms of the type Neustadt, Bernstadt, Heiligenstadt, etc. it is possible to define a German-speaking region (German Stadt 'town', 'city'), and on the basis of the type Belgrad, Stargard, Vyšegrad, etc. a Slavonic-speaking region (Slavonic gard, grad 'town', 'city').

                                By means of this method, and also on the basis of various other considerations, linguistics in the last twenty years has achieved very important findings about the ancient population of the Balkan Peninsula.

                                VII. The Illyrian Region

                                A theory dominant for a long time was that the entire western part of the Balkan Peninsula was inhabited by Illyrians. But the ethnic situation in this part of the Peninsula is not so clear as in its other parts. Here toponyms with a large-scale frequency are not to be found. (in ) appears only four times, also four times and Ulc- (in Ulcisia, Ulcinium) three times.

                                After the recent studies of H. Kronasser, R. Katicic', Rendic'-Mioevic' and G. Alföldy, it can be regarded as very probable that Illyrian was spoken only in Illyria and some neighbouring regions. In middle Dalmatia another language was spoken, in Liburnia also another one (Liburnian), and the Venetic language was close to Latin, not to Illyrian. In the opinion of the present writer, Illyrian is an IE language intermediate between Venetic and Phrygian. This question still remains open.

                                Daco-Mysians, Thracians, Greeks, pre-Greeks, Macedonians, Phrygians and Illyrians formed, therefore, the main substratum that underlies the Balkan peoples of today. In the first half of the first millennium b.c. the Greek colonisation began, embracing the eastern and south-eastern shores of the Peninsula. In the first millennium a.d., ancient Thrace gradually became strongly Hellenised.

                                Towards the end of the first millennium b.c., the Roman conquest of the Balkan Peninsula began, gradually resulting in a partial Romanisation of the northern and north-western zones of the Peninsula. The so-called Jireek line that leads from northern Albania (Lesh) to Serdica (today Sofia) and north of the Balkan mountains as far as the Black Sea separates the two zones of Roman and Greek influence respectively. In the north-eastern part of the Balkan Peninsula, especially in the area of what is now Rumania, invasions of certain Iranian tribes occurred at different times from the 7th century b.c. After the 3rd century a.d. continuous invasions of Goths began, followed by various Turkic tribes as well as Slavs. Between the 6th and the 9th centuries a.d., Slavs occupied large parts of the northern central zone of the Peninsula, and penetrated also into some regions of its southern zone.

                                After the 14th century, the Peninsula was invaded by the Turks.

                                The mediaeval and modern history of the Balkan peoples is better known. Hence I would like to touch briefly only upon two very much disputed problems, namely, the origin of the Albanians and the Rumanians, and the invasion of the Slavs.

                                VIII. Albanians and Rumanians

                                Whether the Albanians are the successors of die Illyrians or the Thracians is a problem that has long been debated. Today the Albanians dwell in a region that was known in antiquity as Illyria. For that reason the Albanians have often been regarded as the heirs of the ancient Illyrians, although there are no other data supporting such a claim. In the same way, the Bulgarians might be considered as Thracians if the other Slavonic peoples and languages were not known.

                                But many linguists and historians, e.g. H. Hirt, V. Pārvan, Th. Capidan, A. Philippide, N. Jokl, G. Weigand, P. Skok, D. Detschew, H. Baric', I. Siadbei, etc. have put forward very important considerations indicating that the Albanians cannot be autochthonous in the Albania of today, that their original home was the eastern part of Mysia Superior or approximately Dardania and Dacia Mediterranea, i.e. the northern central zone of the Balkan Peninsula, and part of Dacia.

                                Now, however, when it is clear that Daco-Mysian and Thracian represent two different IE languages, the problem of the origin of the Albanian language and the Albanians themselves appears in quite a new light. The most important facts and considerations for determining the origin and original home of the Albanians are the following.
                                • The Illyrian toponyms known from antiquity, e.g. Shköder from the ancient Scodra (Livius), Tomor from Tomarus (Strabo, Pliny, etc.), have not been directly inherited in Albanian: the contemporary forms of these names do not correspond to the phonetic laws of Albanian. The same also applies to the ancient toponyms of Latin origin in this region.
                                • The most ancient loanwords from Latin in Albanian have the phonetic form of eastern Balkan Latin, i.e. of proto-Rumanian, and not of western Balkan Latin, i.e. of old Dalmatian Latin. Albanian, therefore, did not take its borrowings from Vulgar Latin as spoken in Illyria.
                                • The Adriatic coast was not part of the primitive home of the Albanians, because the maritime terminology of Albanian is not their own, but is borrowed from different languages.
                                • Another indication against local Albanian origin is the insignificant number of ancient Greek loanwords in Albanian. If the primitive home of the Albanians had been Albania itself, then the Albanian language would have to have many more ancient Greek loanwords.
                                • The Albanians are not mentioned before the 9th century a.d., although place names and personal names from the whole region of Albania are attested in numerous documents from the 4th century onwards.
                                • The old home of the Albanians must have been near to that of the proto-Rumanians. The oldest Latin elements in Albanian come from proto-Rumanian, i.e. eastern Balkan Latin, and not from Dalmatian, western Balkan Latin that was spoken in Illyria. Cf. the phonetic development of the following words:

                                  Vulgar Latin caballum 'horse' Rum. cal, Alb. kal
                                  Vulgar Latin cubitum 'elbow' Rum. cot. Alb. kut
                                  Vulgar Latin lucta 'struggle, fight' Rum. lupt, Arum. luft, Alb. luftė

                                  Therefore Albanian did not take shape in Illyria. The agreement in the treatment of Latin words in Rumanian and in Albanian shows that Albanian developed from the 4th till the 6th century in a region where proto-Rumanian was formed.
                                • Rumanian possesses about a hundred words which have their correspondences only in Albanian. The form of these Rumanian words is so peculiar (e.g. Rum. mazre = Alb. modhullė 'pea(s)') that they cannot be explained as borrowings from Albanian. This is the Dacian substratum in Rumanian, whereas the Albanian correspondences are inherited from Dacian.

                                  The above arguments are well known, but they have not been regarded as sufficient for a definitive solution of the problem. The most important fact to be revealed has been the separation of Daco-Mysian from Thracian. It has thus been established that the phonemic system of Albanian is descended directly from the Daco-Mysian.

                                  In this way it has been definitively proved that Albanian is descended from Daco-Mysian. Therefore the primitive home of Albanian is a Daco-Mysian region, probably Mysia Superior (Dardania, Dacia Mediterranea) or western Dacia. This fact enables us to explain the numerous typical agreements between Albanian and Rumanian.

                                  Rumanian and Albanian took shape in the Daco-Mysian region;
                                  Rumanian represents a completely Romanised Daco-Mysian and Albanian a semi-Romanised Daco-Mysian.


                                Vladimir Georgiev (The Slavonic and East European Review 44, no. 103, 1960, pp. 285-297)

                                http://groznijat.tripod.com/vg/vg.html

                                Interesting article but it ignores the Iranian elements in Albanian language by totally focusing on Latin elements in it. Nevertheless, the author concludes it by saying that Albanians has been linguistically semi-assimilated by the Latins/Romans. Thats what i always thought about them too.

                                So, i still believe that Evliya Celebi`s writings about Albanians is the most reasonable claim about their origins.

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