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The echoes of greater Scythia

I’m reading The Great Indo-European Horse Sacrifice: 4000 Years of Cosmological Continuity from Sintashta and the Steppe to Scandinavian Skeid, since we now know that modern horses come from the Sintashta.

The Indo-European horse sacrifice is a pretty widespread thing. Please note the table above and its shared characteristics. Notice the references to the chariots. Chariots were clearly invented by the Sintashta. And, it seems the horses that could pull them were a special breed, the ancestors of modern domestic horses. But putatively Indo-European people expanded in Europe long before the emergence of the Sintashta in 2200-2100 BC. For example, the Bell Beakers show up in Ireland ~2500 BC. Steppe ancestry shows up ~2300 BC in Greece. Therefore, the spread of chariot-culture, and the modern horse lineages, post-date Europe’s original Indo-Europeanization.

I think this indicates that the influence of the Iranian Scythians was felt all over the Indo-European zone…

40 thoughts on “The echoes of greater Scythia

  1. I had just a quick look on the referred text where I noticed a couple of old acquaintances from the podcast (KK, TO). It is unbelievable how it is possible to make 400 pages of text about ‘Indo-Europeans’ and their arrival to Europe (referring on both versions, one which is already abandoned and the other which is just about) and not to mention (I haven’t read all footnotes) the civilisation and people who lived in Europe before IG (ie.IE) arrivals. It is interested that Scandinavians are not interested where they originated before coming to the north of Europe (again, I will read carefully to confirm the previous). Especially are humorous Greeks accounts with horses which they did not have. It is also a mystery where 20K horses (together with their raiders) came from to Alexander’s army and followed him to India including the famous Alexander’s horse itself.

  2. I’d of course suggest to Milan to read all the footnotes before speaking or writing, and I agree with Razib, but I think that the influence of Sintashta and Indo-Iranians is in Europe above all cultural, except in Anatolia and Greece (and perhaps even further), where it seems that many dinasties (those of the myth, but based upon real ancestry) did come from charoteers of Mitanni mixed at some point with Near Eastern people. Thus not only Tutankhamon but perhaps Ulixes etc. We’ll know from aDNA if also in Rome, for instance my R1b1a2-L23-Z2110-FGC24408 etc was in Italy at least from 3100 years ago, was in Noble Latin people, and it could come also from Sintashta charoteers.

  3. Yes very cool, I wonder if modern horse is breed to pull chariots. They are a lot bigger than their wild ancestors.

  4. Indo-Iranians came to Europe? Where from? Sounds similar to OIT. Cultural influence? On whom? Any example? And who are Indo-Iranians? Iranians=Aryans? Recently someone wrote that sc. Balto-Slavic split from Indo-Iranian language in Belorussia/Ukraine? It means that Indo-Iranian language originated in Belorussia? What was the relationship btw Yamnaya and Indo-Iranians? Have In-In brought their language to Europe? Before, after or in parallel with ‘Indo-Germansihe’. Any sightings of Slavs and R1a? There is a bit confusion.

  5. Sorry to go slightly off-topic.
    But does anyone know of any good images of Sintashta skulls belonging to individuals who we have genetic phenotype data (skin, hair & eye color) for?

  6. Razib,

    While we’re on the topic of sacrifice, what is your view of the theory that the animals shown on the Indus Valley Pasupati seal were offered as sacrifice to the depicted proto-Rudra figure?

  7. Milan, you liked “I girasoli”
    and this is a Tuscan like me whose family abandoned Italy in 1923
    but in spite of all that I was, I am and I’ll be a Roman. From Yamnaya? From Sintashta? Next war will be nuclear.
    Il Rabbino canadese canta
    dolci parole inglesi
    e all’improvviso da un bosco s’alza
    e sa di miele
    l’idioma di Francia.
    Quale seme sparsero
    le legioni di Roma!
    Frutto della violenza è sempre
    (Libro mastro, 1989, pp.115-6)

  8. “vs”, not in Latin, but in the modern use it does mean “against”. I am not against Milan. Only I don’t agree with what he says and believes, but probably we agree in many other things. Against this recent AUKUS I hope in an Europe without UK and until Pacific Ocean, hoping that AUKUS and China will fight southernmost (+/-). We don’t need of bigger blogs. They are all owned by the masters of AUKUS.

  9. Genetics is crucial to make correct conclusions. However, it is often insufficient to make a synthetic (big picture) conclusion. The big picture conclusion must not be against the logic. So, we can make some conclusions based on the following (mostly mainstream) premises. Previously, we should check if any of the premises is wrong. If all premises are correct, which conclusion we can make?

    1. Indo-Iranian (In-Ir) language(s) split from sc. Balto-Slavic
    2. This split happened in Belorussia/Ukraine/Russia
    3. In-Ir languages are not older than 2000BC
    4. ‘Iranians’ = ’Aryans’
    5. Aryans=Slavs
    6. Sanskrit ˜ Slavic languages
    7. Slavic languages are ‘Indo-European’ languages
    8. Yamnaya (i.e. IG) language ‘not equal to’ Sanskrit

    Gio, which language was spoken in Tuscany, why Raseni were called ‘Etruscans’ (liver?), why they were subjected to the genocide and destruction of their culture (texts), were their language and alphabet finally deciphered or not, who was Diocletian?… You probably saw the YM’s Le salaire de la peur (1953)….. Walt will be now double happy Gilmore by (1) not reading my comments (2) reading only Gio’s comments (I guess, the similar age and sensibility).

  10. I think that the picture is almost clear now. Indo-European satem languages expanded from eastern Europe to central Asia, some haplogroups entered even the Turkish pool and came back with the Turkish/Mongol migration westward. Indo-Iranians migrated southwards. The charioteers formed in Sintashta. From them the Mitanni with all what I said above. They are probably at the origin of many dynasties in Near East, Anatolia, Greece and perhaps also in Europe. Many asked me in the past why I, R-L23-Z2103, was against an origin of R-L51 in Yamnaya. I should be glad to come from the chieftains of Yamnaya, but my hypothesis was that all R1b1 descended from the Villabrunas and that not all the R-L23 subclades did come from Yamnaya independently from my Y and my origin. I used only the STRs, all what we had then, and I based my theory upon two haplogroups above all: my R-L23-Z2103-Z2110 and R-L51-PF7589. That the latter formed in the eastern Alps seems to me almost demonstrated now. R-Z2110 is overwhelmingly present in Italy but the hugest subclade, R-CTS7556, expanded probably from north-western Europe. Why I think that my haplotype may have come form eastern Europe > Sintashta > Mitanni? It is a possibility, I spoke about when I wrote in the YFull blog, and the idea was in Woudhuizen, a great linguist. Of course also the subclade of my haplogroup may have had many pathways from eastern Europe to west. I don’t know if a previous migration from west to east may be demonstrated. Unfortunately Italian aDNA is in storage at Harvard and we know their agenda, and also the paper upon Etruscans was announced, was published an abstract, now the Y and the mt, but I didn’t look at the paper. Why this behaviour? The question of the Etruscans is clear now, i.e. what I am saying from so long. Every people “formed” from many intakes, just what the greatest scholar of the Etruscans, Massimo Pallottino, said. Etruscans formed in Italy and we find the closest to them in northern Italy, southern France ad Iberia. Why? Either from Roman colonization or because they belonged to the same stock in their origin.

  11. “They don’t need a bigger blog, just a different one.” That will happen when the owners of AUKUS buy also this.

  12. @Razib two questions for you.

    I am curious if there is any theory for why the Iranian peoples got pushed back in the last 2 millennium by turkic and mongloic peoples?

    We have some good theories about advantages that allow spread out on the steppes and beyond of the indo europeans and the indo-iranians now.

    But what allows their former dominances of the steppe to be superseded by tribes from north east Asia who adopt their lifestyle?

    Second question in your last clubhouse on sintashta you mentioned that cavalry is superior to chariots but Sintashta spread via chariots despite evidence of horse back riding that precedes Sintasha?

    Is it plausible that just as Sintashta horses had unique genetics that allowed them to be especially effective as driven animals that effective cavalry wasn’t possible until the evolution of horses that could be relied on during a fight. Or is it cultural evolution where learning to fight on horseback is just not obvious and doesn’t occur till sometime after chariots?

  13. My (and mainstream) points/premises are open for challenge. Gio, you made a step in good direction (re languages) but ‘East European’ doesn’t mean much without naming the people, their language and timeline. As usual, you avoided to answer ‘difficult’ questions. And don’t worry about our down under pal. He is just a Kim Beasley and Bob Hawke meet Alan Bond, larrikin. If we speak about Frenchs, don’t forget that they similarly screwed Russians who paid Mistrals, which were already produced and about to be delivered. Speaking about this you also should know what is the ‘Australian kiss’. That is the same as ‘French kiss’, only – down under.

  14. @ Rafe – There’s not a lot of informed comment I can make, but remember that the first stirrups didn’t appear until the Sarmatians in the first century BCE, so before then without a saddle with stirrups the back of a horse was not an obvious stable fighting platform, and the chariot appeared to be much more obvious and appealing as a fighting platform, you could have two guys on there, on driving and the other handling projectile weapons, plus scythed wheels, and they must have been terrifying to infantry.

    But they had no rear defence. The chariot as a fighting platform became redundant the day one guy figured out that to take out a chariot, all you had to do was ride up behind it armed with a bow and shoot arrows into the guys on the chariot. That is the moment that cavalry became superior to chariots.

  15. I said “East Europeans” just for not saying Yamnaya or others. The migration to central Asia happened also from north (R-M73* was in the north, the Baltic and around, before migrating to Asia where we find R-M73-M478), etc. It seems that there was a migration firstly to central Europa, after to north and only later to central Asia. Indo-Iranians took above all R1a (Z93 and downstream) whereas at Yamnaya there was above all my R1b-L23-Z2103 etc, whereas in Asia my subclade is tiny in respect to R1a, and R1a probably was more in central Europe. It seems that that is more and more probable now. The name of the peoples? But they took a name only later: Balto-Slavs in Europe, Indo-Iranians in Asia.
    About the rest, you use many allusions, not all clear to me. Sometime you use an English plenty of mistakes, but here I am going to think that you really are that Balkan person living in Australia whom I thought before. Here isn’t a question of planes or submarines, but all what will carry to the next war. And you forget that everything is decided from the “bosses”, the owners of the purse who always remember the Opium Wars.

  16. Mr. Massey,

    Ancient armies utilized cavalry long before there was a stirrup. The famed Numidians, for example, who were widely considered to be some of the finest cavalrymen in the Mediterranean world rode small horses without a stirrup or even a saddle and controlled their horses with a rope and a stick. Their main weapon was the javelin as was the case with most other effective ancient cavalrymen.

    Contrary to popular imagery of knights, cavalry in general has been the most useful since time immemorial in such tasks that maximized their mobility advantages – scouting, reconnaissance, raiding, screening other forces, harassing attacks (“hit-and-run”), pursuit and, of course, to oppose the cavalry on the other side. Even in the heydays of armored cavalry, headlong charges of mounted men into densely packed mass of men were exceedingly rare (because they were liable to be exceedingly costly – trained horses, equipment, and men being rare and valuable resources that would be killed/damaged easily in melees).

    And the deficiency of the chariot for war was long known. Chariots operated very poorly on anything but a flat terrain, which severely constrained their use and effectiveness outside certain geographical limits. They were also expensive and fragile.

    When they were used in any significant numbers (in very ancient times), they were often employed as “battle taxis” to ferry leaders and captains into battle and then to safely extract them when the battle went awry, rather than as some sort of armored vehicles or main battle tanks. At best, they made good “mobile command posts.”

    I should also note that the “scythed wheel” thing is more modern fancy (“Ben-Hur”) than anything else – try to imagine how such things could be used without endangering the safety of the occupants or the structural integrity of a chariot and the horses tied to it. What do you think would happen to all the delicate mechanisms of a chariot if a scythed wheel were to get stuck or damaged (which would happen easily)?

  17. @ Twinkie – I bow to your far superior military knowledge, but I just want to note that archaeologists have unearthed scythed (or actually bronze bladed) chariots from the late Shang Dynasty, so they did happen, and it seems pretty clear those had to have been copied.

  18. @ Twinkie – One other thing I read recently which I found interesting, although this is getting tangential. During the Han Dynasty, when they had decided that they needed to rid themselves of the depredations of the Xiongnu once and for all, one of the two generals that the Emperor sent to pursue to Xiongnu used ‘armoured chariots.’ They were actually more like carts with high, heavy wooden sides with firing apertures in the sides. (The numbers of men and horses we are talking about here are really big – they make the Battle of Hastings sound like a Saturday night pub brawl in Glasgow.) (And this was after the weaknesses of chariots were obviously well appreciated.)

    So, this smart general drew up these carts in a big defensive circle, and let the Xiongnu cavalry batter themselves against them, while Chinese crossbowmen sat protected inside the carts picking off the Xiongnu cavalry. And inside this big circle, the general deployed 5,000 cavalry to clean up any Xiongnu that managed to break through the circle.

    That struck me as a really smart bit of military engineering – if you are chasing an elusive enemy who won’t come to you when you want him to, it’s no use building a static reinforced fortress because they’ll just avoid it, so in effect he built himself a mobile fortress that he could take with him and deploy in any way he wanted.

    I don’t know if you can fill me in on any more of the Han-Xiongnu War, but if you can, I would appreciate reading about it, as I appreciate any time you write on military matters.

    It links back to Razib’s previous thread with the War of the Heavenly Horses, where the Han set out to get enough of the famed Ferghana horses to build a big enough cavalry force to beat the Xiongnu at their own game – they were the horses which allegedly sweated blood (whether due to subcutaneous parasites or just the bursting of subcutaneous blood vessels) which became mythologised as ‘the Heavenly Horses that saved China’ – there was a fair bit of poetic licence in that, and the Chinese did later get bigger and stronger horses than the Ferghana horses, but the Ferghana horses feature prominently in Chinese art up to and including during the Tang Dynasty.

    What else – in the Ballad of Mulan, there is a lot about her famous horse which figures prominently in the myths about her, although according to my daughter’s research, if Mulan ever existed, which is doubtful, she was almost certainly not Han, but rather belonged to the Tuaba clan of the Xianbei. In the 2009 Chinese film Mulan: Rise of a Warrior, by far the best Mulan film made and well worth seeing (and interestingly enough a collaboration between the Mainland, Taiwan and Hong Kong, a production that simply would not be possible now – and with a cast of thousands and some really impressive battle sequences), Mulan makes a big deal boasting about how famous her horse is – the horse is almost one of the central characters, which is true to the legends.

  19. JM: In the 2009 Chinese film Mulan: Rise of a Warrior, by far the best Mulan film made and well worth seeing (and interestingly enough a collaboration between the Mainland, Taiwan and Hong Kong, a production that simply would not be possible now – and with a cast of thousands and some really impressive battle sequences)

    Definitely not possible now starring Vicki Zhao Wei!

  20. @ Matt – Yes, she is definitely not flavour of the month now, and neither is her husband, who has been under suspicion for quite a while for dodgy financial dealings, I think it is fair to say.

    It has to be said that physically Zhao Wei was a poor choice for the role of Mulan – much too small and feminine looking to fool anyone dressed as a bloke. But in her favour, she absolutely acted her socks off in that film – brilliant acting performance.

  21. Ah, I don’t know enough about the actual political circumstances of her “cancelling” to go further than making a wiseass quip. Agree on her acting charisma and screen presence though – star quality makes work a lot of action movie castings that are physically not quite right…

  22. Mr. Massey,

    archaeologists have unearthed scythed (or actually bronze bladed) chariots from the late Shang Dynasty

    I would suspect such a chariot was ceremonial and/or scything as such was decorative.

    ‘armoured chariots.’ They were actually more like carts with high, heavy wooden sides with firing apertures in the sides

    War wagons cropped up from time to time in history. The Hussites used them against knights in Europe, for example. They were very different creatures than chariots, however (i.e. they were entirely defensive and static in use – the unarmored horses most likely weren’t hitched in battle and were herded inside the defensive circle; otherwise they would be slaughtered by attackers and the defenders would soon lose mobility).

    Whatever advantages such wagons conferred, they should be weighed against the transport requirements such “armored” wagons imposed. Wagons large enough to house men and any significant shielding would have been quite heavy, requiring many draft animals, which in turn would have created exorbitant consumption requirements. At best, they would have been niche weapons.

    The numbers of men and horses we are talking about here are really big – they make the Battle of Hastings sound like a Saturday night pub brawl in Glasgow.

    Numbers of combatants reported in Chinese annals are entirely and, often comically, unreliable. They are about as believable as the size of Persian armies the ancient Greeks claimed to have defeated (millions/hundreds of thousands).

    One thing to keep in mind about ancient military logistics is that there was no modern transportation system and thus no supply system of any kind (the exception being water transport*). Typically armies could only carry a small amount of provisions (as any additional transport would create its own cascading consumption needs) and relied on local foraging and pillaging for supplies in offensive operations. They also had to follow sources of potable water large enough to support masses and herds of men and horses, respectively (which explains why battles often occurred in the same spots over and over).

    As you can imagine this severely limited the number of men and horses (and any draft animals) that made up armies. On top of this, any Chinese army operating in the grasslands occupied by nomads such as the Xiongnu would have had to traverse through endlessly empty terrain devoid of any towns and villages with provisions. So any such expeditionary force was likely quite small – otherwise mass die-offs from starvation would soon render it small anyway.

    *The Romans made extensive use of water transport and, of course, they also famously built a network of roads unmatched by any until modern history. They were quite exceptional in their ability to field and supply large forces. When they marched away from their ships and roads, however, they often ended up quite badly.

  23. There are not so many attempts to challenge the premises I tabled above. The most of them belong to the ‘mainstream’. All of them are important to form a big picture of ancient history. Before we make the final conclusion and paint the big picture let’s make step-by-step some interim conclusions.

    Considering that sc. Balto-Slavic and sc. Indo-Iranian languages split not before 2000BC, it means that before 2000BC, they were ONE language. (For a moment, let’s ignore the time needed that one language splits and to register two separate groups of languages.
    THIS is the (Rg) Vedic language and from THIS language, brought by Aryans, evolved the Sanskrit. THIS language is different from ‘Indo-Germanishe’ (i.e. Yamnaya) language. Tthese interim conclusions are also open for challenge. So, we have now all tools to make the final conclusion…

    It is unfortunate that I made so many ‘mistakes’ that Gio was unable to understand my questions. For example – if Etruscan texts/alphabet were deciphered (when, by whom) or their language is still ‘mysterious’? At the moment, we can ignore the ‘allusion’ related to the alleged genocide conducted on Etruscans and their texts which is still some sort of taboo topic. In addition, it is not for any consideration a framework which has a gap of 10-11 K years btw Villanova and Yamnaya.

  24. About your “mistakes” I did mean that, being my knowledge of English scarce, when I post some letter to some friends, my writings are corrected from the installed program and I see many “mistakes” and they are found also in what you write, thus the question is as to your origin. My doubt that you could be a Serb living in Australia makes me think that your knowledge of English should be better in this case… but why many use nicknames whereas I use my real name and identity from the beginning? To know who someone is is important for understanding what he means.
    About Etruscans I wrote this above: “The question of the Etruscans is clear now, i.e. what I am saying from so long. Every people “formed” from many intakes, just what the greatest scholar of the Etruscans, Massimo Pallottino, said. Etruscans formed in Italy and we find the closest to them in northern Italy, southern France ad Iberia. Why? Either from Roman colonization or because they belonged to the same stock in their origin”. Have you understood? Peoples formed from many intakes, and none owns Etruscans because a component of them came from the Aegean Sea, migrated through the Balkans until the eastern Alps or central Europe taking many other components etc. The same Romans. Read Schulze, Lateinischen und Etruskischen Eigennamen for knowing how many Roman families had a Latinized Etruscan name and even Etruscans had Roman or Italic names and surnames. Only Jews think to descend from Abraham, but many are thinking and writing (beyond me) that their Near Eastern component is in European Jews much lower than their line of defence at 30%.
    And, please, don’t write “Indo-Germanishe” anymore. Indo-Germanisch.
    Between Villabruna and me, if we are directly connected, passed many ancestors, many migrations, many vicissitudes. The same the languages we have been speaking.


    I did not mention anything about Raseni’s genetics, I asked if anyone deciphered their texts&alphabet. It seems, you don’t know much about the Etruscans – the founders of Western civilisation. “The same the languages we have been speaking.” (Since V’bruna up to Gio). Which language? What was happening btw 14K-3K BC?

    So, from the previous comment, to be on the same page – I hope that everyone is clear that BS/InIr proto language (which gave Veda, Mahabharata, Sanskrit) is different from the sc. Yamnaya language. Now, we should find where the Proto BS/InIr originated. Almost there.

  26. Indo-European / Indogermanisch [Indo-germanisch]
    Indo-European languages / Indogermanische Sprachen

    “It seems, you don’t know much about the Etruscans – the founders of Western civilisation. ‘The same the languages we have been speaking’. (Since V’bruna up to Gio). Which language? What was happening btw 14K-3K BC?”

    I know very well all about Etruscan languages, history and genetics. About the language it would be enough that you read some published books.
    When I wrote “The same the language” I did mean that languages have been changing during the time as our DNA with mutations an intakes and mixing with other languages and what you ask has no meaning. You lack the fundaments of the science and of the reasoning. We may know what is documented. About what isn’t, we may do only hypotheses, and it is what linguists have been doing through reconstructed families. About Indo-European I suggested you the book of Mallory&Adams, The Oxford Introduction to Proto-Indo-European and the Proto-Indo-European World. Read it and after many years come back to speak to me (if I’ll be still alive).

  27. Interesting book, thanks for bringing it to our attention. The Carpathian Basin during the LBA, probably unsurprisingly, looks like a particularly relevant area for the European adoption of the chariot. Plausibly the starting point of its early European adoption from Mycenaean Greece to the Nordic Bronze Age. In that sense, it’d be strictly pre-Scythian-related, though I take the reference to “Scythians/Greater Scythia” to be metonymic for “later, proto-Indo-Iranian-speaking steppe and forest steppe” anyway so this latter part is a bit of nitpicking.

    Robert Drews in his more recent theories, when the Transcaucasian origin of IE starting making less sense in light of the aDNA, thought it was the western point of the chariot-driven IE expansion during the LBA. We know that’s definitely too late now (unless one is willing to stick to some less plausible models of relatively late, eastern European R1a-rich groups Indoeuropeanizing the whole of western and southern Europe where Beaker and Yamnaya expansions would represent non-IE phenomena; I remember a Russian commenter elsewhere who made the case for that, implausible in my view but interestingly argued anyway!) but it made some sense once upon a time, if you viewed the expansion as “small/elite and late”. Even the more limited Greek data, an area that was very significant for that Drews kind of scenari points more to the earlier-date intrusion theories (EHIII/MHI rather than only MHIII/LHI) so far as Razib mentions…

    In the previous thread, Matt brought up the horse’s instinct to paw to break ice/deep snow to get at the water or grass underneath. Anthony also specifically brought that behavior up as one potential motive for horse domestication on the steppe (since they were initially used for meat), i.e. they’re easier to take care of than sheep and cattle who can’t feed on their own under particular snow/ice conditions as Matt was referring to. On the topic of IE mythological parallels, an interesting potential reflection of that is present in Greek mythology where Pegasus uses his hooves to strike the ground and create the spring of Hippocrene. Germanic Baldr’s horse is also supposed to create springs by striking the ground with its hooves in some Danish folklore. Of course, swift horses being compared to or related to fast-flowing waters makes some sense irrespective of that particular, interesting behavior too.

  28. IE population group time of arrival
    1. Pelasgians c. 3100 BC
    2. Luwians c. 2300 BC
    3. Greeks c. 1450 BC
    Table XVI. Overview of the Minoan IE population groups and their approximate time of arrival in Crete.[FRED C. WOUDHUIZEN, DOCUMENTS IN MINOAN LUWIAN, SEMITIC, AND PELASGIAN, 2016, p. 309]

    This is the demonstration that the “levantinists-kurganists-levantinists”, i.e. the Harvardians, and all those who followed them (like Davidski and its blog that banned me) failed. Not only IE centum languages are older than the satem ones, those who expanded from eastern Europe, but the origin is more close to the Balkans and probably before in the refugium Padan plain-Adriatic-Balkans and perhaps the oldest origin are the Villabrunas. The link of the Etruscan language with the Anatolian one is old, and Etruscan may have some intake of the migration of the agriculturalists from the Aegean Sea but may be also the witness of the oldest presence of IE around the Alps. Some link with Pelasgians and also Luwians may have happened in the Balkans but other carachteristics are older, above all at the sintactic level.

  29. Pretty good information from Gio, which I presented many times from different angles. But, there are still some distortions, not only for using the meaningless term ‘IE’. It is used the term ‘Greeks’ which did not exist at that time. It was given by the indigenous people more than 1000 years later. On the other side, the author does not say that Pelasgians and Luwians were Serbian speaking people. If you Google, you will find that Pelasgian, Lydia, Lycian, Phrygian, Carian languages are extinct. It is known that the oldest ‘Greek’ language was actually the adopted indigenous language while the ‘original’ ‘Greek’ language was not sc. ‘Indo-European’.

    The picture would be clearer if it was said that ‘Anatolians’ originated in Balkan and the only language they could speak was Serbian which evolved from Vincan. It would be interested also to say where from the future Greeks came. I could not see in the literature that they came from the M.East and Egypt. The terms ‘Minoan and Mycenean Greece’ are oxymorons. The falsified history leaves impression that they were indigenous in today’s Greece and hides that their instant mythology was appropriated from local people. In this light we can make conclusions about Minoan literacy which is (in wiki) presented as ‘Greek’. I pointed before on a paper which discusses some of these things written by Gio Tomezzoli.

    Later on, we will establish that the Lydian language was the same language spoken (and written) by Etruscans which future destiny we can predict from the Virgil’s OT excerption. On the way, we may also revisit an old Walt’s friend – Croesus ‘Montezuma’, the king of Lydia (it is a shame that he will not read this) so as the Phrygian music loving pal’s favourite merlot.


  30. Milan, things are difficult per se, very difficult, and I think that they don’t need your madness. Fred Woudhuizen is an “independent scholar”, thus no academia, no work, probably he is rich per se. I read everything, no prejudice, I am in this field an independent scholar too, but he like me did his studies, his laurea, his PhD, I don’t know if he had it, but “The ethnicity of the Sea People” he wrote for that is a great book, we may or not agree with it. And he read all the bibliography about the argument. I am seeing now that he shares the theory that Etruscans did come from Anatolia, that their language is linked with Luwian, and I am not convinced about that. Perhaps a group of them may have had that origin, but there are many doubts yet, and the recent aDNA of Etruscans disproves all that: tons of R1b and even 1 I1* old 3000 years, which could demonstrate that not all I1* in Italy had come during the Middle Ages with German people, and we have a sample in our tests separated 3100 years ago. And, please, stop in saying that at Vinca they spoke “Serb”.  We don’t know which language was spoken in Vinca or from the Villabrunas, and if it were IE, it would be an old form of that, like the reconstructed one from Mallory&Adams, a book that Woudhuizen has been reading attentively.

  31. What’s the problem Gio? Why nervousness? What is the madness? Because I wrote that Serbian language evolved directly from Vinca’s language? I promised before that I would dedicate a special comment about this transition. But, as a preview – if you have some people who called each other – SRB (Serb), how would you name their language? You do not see as a madness to call some people ‘Greeks’ more than 1000 years before they got this name from someone else and call their language ‘Greek’ even it was adopted from indigenous people while their original Middle-Eastern language was NOT IE.

    I had a deep appreciation for your good thinking buddy FM and after this comment I have even more. It doesn’t matter because he uses the term ‘IE’, if we know what it means (‘Indo’ is simply meaningless here). A guy in the Substack also used this term and after our exchange, he confessed that this is only a language classification category, not a specific language. Excellent FM thinking re Etruscans, I will also post a comment and after that ask you for your opinion.

    I1 has nothing to do with Germans. I1 also originated in Vinca and moved to the north (Scandinavians). They are the closest genetic cousins of I2. Of course, that Serbian from 5-6000 years ago, or 4000 years ago was different from the language 10 years ago. But still, about 22% of Sanskrit is identical with modern (!) Serbian and 11% very similar (according to Tagore’s granddaughter who studied Slavic languages for 30 years). When I asked you about the language spoken in 814BC, at the beginning of Alexander’s dynasty, you should think about the origins of this language, if you already could not say anything about Latin.

    I listened Razib’s podcast with Mallory. I can pass you one or two of my observations. But, I would be also interested in Sea People, studied by your buddy Fredo. I also did some SP studies, I am sure that Razib will open this topic again. Stay cool, take one espresso with grappa and talk to your friend about Etruscans. Please ask him if their language was deciphered (pls send him a link to the book I gave you), re-read Virgil, your wishy-washy Etruscan ‘theory’ does not look serious.

  32. As I said many times in the past, of course I’d be glad that it was demonstrated that our spoken languages and our haplogroups did come from Vinca, just because Vinca is close to Italy and my theory of an Italian refugium of hg. R1b1 presupposes a refugium above all in the Padan plain -Adriatic – Balkans, i.e. Vinca, but the question would be to understand the vicissitudes of our languages and haplogroups. Even though it could be true, my R1b, if it could be demonstrated that it descends from the R1b1 of  Villabruna 14000 years ago, it didn’t stay here from then. Probably it migrated in many parts of the world (and don’t forget that it is worth also for I2, if it is your Y, which was in the Villabruna clan it too: demonstrated 17000 years ago in Riparo Tagliente, Verona, Italy) and the question we are discussing about is if it came from Yamnaya, from the Baltic  or from the Alpine zone etc. The same for the languages. It may happen that someone comes back to where his ancestors lived thousands of years ago, before we all go “Ubi non nati sunt”. I know very well Virgil (Publius Vergilius Maro / Puplie Verkhnei Maru) beyond Seneca, probably of Etruscan origin as Virgil he too. 

  33. Gio, I am not interested where R1b genes or any other originated. I know that R1b was found in Lepenski Vir, 10K+ years ago (‘Kurganists’ should explain this) but I don’t know (and don’t care) where originated. It seems that there is a consensus that “I” is the only haplogroup originated in Europe and it split to I1 and I2. A ’homme de Bichon’, I2 man, 14 K years old was found in Suisse Jura. But, I am not interested much in this, either. My focus is a ‘cultural history’ period, it means, roughly from the height of the Ice Age, or from its end, i.e. approx. since 10-12 K BC. In your framework, you don’t have a period btw 14k-3k BC. You should find where people lived during the Ice Age. My assertion (based on my readings and research) is that 90% + of people lived in Vinca. People could not live in steppe where, after the melting of ice, was a Mediterranean size lake. Where lived the future ‘steppe’ people? Maybe in Vinca, too, but I am not focussed on this?

    More important is that Vinca was the ONLY environment where pra-language could be formed during 10 or 20 K or whatever of years. There is a genetic continuity of people who lived there up to today where the Serbian language is spoken. Neither Villabruna nor steppe were places where pra-language and subsequent language could develop. If someone asserts a (language, genetic, anthropology) discontinuity, he/she should explain this seriously not as a patron/client or host/guest crap. Yamnaya proponents assert this discontinuity but without providing any meaningless or logical evidence or explanation. I think they will soon experience the destiny of the sc. Anatolian hypothesis. If you cannot digest the term Serbian language as a continuation of Vinca language I can, only in your case, use the term ‘Schiavone’ language (you did not come back with this wiki reference term).

    One Etruscan song for you:

  34. What you wrote above is just an illustration of what I mean for “madness”. Your language, Serb, hasn’t been spoken in Serbia from Vinca to you. Your language, a Slav language, came from elsewhere as the other languages of the Balkans, and in “Serbia” (of course the name didn’t exist before the Slav migration) people spoke some old IE language, and during the Roman Empire certainly Latin, as is demonstrated from the 40% of Albanian vocabulary of Latin origin and the survived Romance languages as Romanian, Vlach and also Istro Romanian and Dalmatian destroyed from your friend “Tito”. Venetians lost 100000 men in fighting against Turks, and now you have got Kosovars. Every person has got its history.
    This Etruscan song is pathetic. She sings in Italian. Better this link with reliable Etruscan pronunciation:

  35. Your lack of knowledge and your ignorance are unbelievable and simply not worth any answering. I think you are frustrated because you cannot fill in the gap of 11 k in your ‘framework’. Romance language of Romania? Only 16% of Romania was for 168 years occupied by R. Empire, definitely not enough time to spread the Latin language on 100%. The ‘Romanian’ language is artificial and was introduced to Romania in 1856 by Jesuits as a part of the ‘East Romans’ project (some call it – Esperanto on Serbian foundation). Who consisted 83% of non-Italian Roman Empire army at that time (in OT comment) and who gave a couple dozens of Emperors? Diocletian, Constantine, Jovian, Julian, Justin, Justinian, etc, who were they? Albanians? All this is not strange considering that your knowledge of Etruscans is very poor and even you don’t know when Latin originated and where was spoken. What does it mean Venezia, Padania, Schiavone, Bologna, Novara, Pescara, Ruma? So, disappointing the lack of knowledge, frustration and unwillingness to learn anything. I guess, there is no point of discussing anymore about anything.

  36. Hope that what you wrote (and also my writings) will remain in this blog and in all the web and everyone in the world can get his opinion about that.

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