Re: Germanic and Celtic (was Re: Verb-second ... verb-penultimate languages?)
|From:||R A Brown <ray@...>|
|Date:||Thursday, April 27, 2006, 5:58|
Jörg Rhiemeier wrote:
> On Wed, 26 Apr 2006 08:37:24 +0100, R A Brown wrote:[snip]
>>None of the ancient authors ever refers to any of the inhabitants of
>>Britain & Ireland as Celts. Indeed, no one referred to anyone in these
>>islands as Celtic until the 18th century.
> Yes; however, Caesar noted the similarity between the languages of the Britons
> and the Gauls. At any rate, "Celtic" is merely a term of convenience for a
> group of related languages, and I think this relationship is established
> beyond doubt.
That Gaulish and ancient British were similar seems certain. I do not
know enough about Celtiberian to comment one way or another. But we went
through this not so very long ago on this list.
> And there are worse misnomers, such as "Hittite" and
>> Since then, however, the term
>>has acquired overlays of all sorts mythic and political connotations
>>that are unwarranted, so some of us are not entirely comfortable with
>>this blanket term.
> I see. There is lots of rubbish being published about the Celts.
Being & has been. I've seen at least one book that talks of 'Celtic
Empire' stretching from Ireland to Galatia in Asia Minor - this
monolithic structure all being ruled, of course, by druids (tho the only
evidence we actually have for druids is confined to Britain & Gaul). So
much baggage has attached itself to the term Celtic since it was adopted
in the 18th for this linguistic & cultural continuum. Even its extent
seems to increase; I have met people claiming, for example, that the
Minoans were proto-Celts and that Georgia (in the Caucasus, not the US!)
Ach y fi!
Anything is possible in the fabulous Celtic twilight,
which is not so much a twilight of the gods
as of the reason." [JRRT, "English and Welsh" ]