By Chingiz Garasharly, doctor of philological sciences
Who were the aboriginal people who lived in the south of Europe, on the shores of the Mediterranean, in Asia Minor, prior to the Latins and Greeks and what language group were their languages part of? The origin of the indigenous languages, which emerged before the Indo-European languages and were widely used in the region, has been a subject of research in European linguistics over the last few centuries. However, since most of the researchers considered the issue only from the viewpoint of Indo-European language studies, no solution of the issue has been found to date. Therefore, no common opinion has been reached regarding the affiliation of such languages as Pelask that existed prior to the Greek language in Greece, Etruscan that was used in Italy prior to Latin, and Trojan language in the west of Asia Minor. The revelation of facts has also been hampered by the European hard-line approach, with the exception of a handful of scholars who had a different point of view.
PhD Chingiz Garasharly, University of Foreign Languages professor and researcher, has studied the issue from two aspects -- both from the viewpoint of Indo-European studies, in which he specializes, and Turkic languages, managing to shed light on the numerous grey areas in his books, "Turks - primordial inhabitants of the Mediterranean Sea region" and "The Trojans were Turks", which were published in English and Azerbaijani. Mr. Garasharly was quite successful as his arguments and research are relevant to the present-day as well. Thus, the words and names which were transferred from such related languages as Trojan, Etruscan and Pelask to the tongues of the Greeks and present-day European nations, are used in a number of modern Turkic languages which have preserved their unique identity, such as Chuvash, Kyrgyz, Tatar and Khakas.
We hope that European scholars will abandon their double standards in dealing with the issue, and science will prevail over politics.
Fazil Guney (Abbasov), PhD and Orientalist
The outdated traditional viewpoints that link the presence of the Turks in Asia Minor to Middle ages are found to contradict the stories of European authors of the 7th -14th centuries about Turkic origins of the Trojans.
According to the Fredegar Chornicle of the 7th century, the Turks and the Franks left Troy after its collapse. The Turks settled the Scythian lands, while the latter migrated to Pannoya (Hungary) and the territory by the Rhine.
The Trojan - Turkic kinship was mentioned later in Gesta Francorum of the 12th century.
Nicole Gilles considered the Turks to have descended from the Turcos of the Trojan origin.
Tyreli William, a 12th century historian, considered Turcos to have been the father of the Turks, who moved to the Scythian lands after the collapse of Troy.
Andrea Dandalo, a 14th century historian, associated the Turks with Turcos of Troy, at the same time he considered them to have arrived once from the Caucasian mountains.
Antoninus of Florence, Bracciolini, Poggio, Isidor, Ficcino and others shared the opinion of Trojan ancestry of the Turks.
Felix Fabri, a German author, even referred the Turkic history of Troy to the older period - to the time of Teucros, the son of the prince Hesione. According to him, after the collapse of Troy the Trojan refugees controlled by Franco, Hector`s son, moved to Germany, Franconia, while the others crossed the Rhine and settled in the territory of Modern France.
The other part of the Trocans controlled by Turcos settled Asian Scythia.
Pero Tafur, a Spanish author, writes that when he was in Istanbul he heard rumours that the Turks would soon revenge for Troy.
Giovanni Mario Filelfo informs in his work ``Amyris`` that Mehmed the 2nd had relationship with Troy. He presented his victory over the Greeks as a triumph of justice. To him, with the conquest of Istanbul the Turks revenged the Greeks who had once occupied it (E.Afyoncu, Vengeanje for Troy, Istanbul, 2011).
Sultan Mehmed knew the history of Troy. It is not by chance that having visited the ruins of Troy he had bowed his head down and told. ``God kept me till this time as an ally of this city and its people. We gained a victory on the enemies of this city and got it back. We revenged the Greeks for their bad behaviour against us - Asians, although long time has passed since then (E.Afyoncu).
The European sources of the 7th century and of the later period would have had no reason to fabricate false stories about Troy. They were based on the real historical facts they were well-informed about by that time. Of this evidence not only historijal facts, but also the transparent old Turkic names of the Trojans. We discover both the name of Priam, the last Trojan king, and the names of his people - Alber, Askan, Eney, Atas, Aytilla and others in old Turkic onomasticon. Priam was the name of a Turanian (Old Turkic) commander in an old Turkic epic.
The Trocans, the early inhabitants of the eastern coast of the Aegean sea, originated from the Dardanians - a Thracian tribe. Their being of Thracian origin is mentioned in the classical literature and is identified in onomastic material. For instance, Dardan, described in the ``Iliad`` as the ancestor of the Trojans, personifies the Dardanians. Dardania, a province in Troy, was the place the Dardanians settled in.
The toponym Taruisha (``Troy``), mentioned in the Annals of Tudhalias, a Hittite ruler of 1250-1220 B.J., permits us to refer the history of Troy to a period much older than the time of Homer.
The personal names of the Trojans have reasonable Turkic interpretation denoting mostly the moral and physical advantages of the people, heroism, etc.
Priam, the name of the last Trojan king, is obviously the same Priyam, the name of a Turanian commander, described in an old Turkic (Kazakh) epic
We discover in the anthroponomy of the Trojans a whole group of Turkic names, which have evident counterparts in the old Turkic, Kazakh, Kirghizian, Chuvash and other Turkic languages.
Dardan, an ancestor of Priam`s generation, is the same Kirghizian Dardan - a personal name.
Dardan was also a provincial name in Troy and the name of a mountain in Kazakhstan.
Turkic Dardan stems from the Kirghizian appellative dardan, which forms the personal name meaning ``healthy``, ``enormous``, ``clumsy``. The name Dardan, used today by the Bulgars to mean ``strong man``, is the same Kirghizian personal name. The Bulgarians must have borrowed this name, like many other Turkic anthroponyms, from their Turkic ancestors, the old Bulgarians.
This semantics of the appellative is also adequate to form the name of mountain (Dardan in Kazakhstan): the element dar in dardan means ``as big as a mountain`` ``enourmous`` in the Kazakh language.
Alber, the name of a Trojan commander, is the same old Turkic Alper, denoting ``hero``, ``brave`` (O.Turk. alp, alb ``hero``, ``brave`` - er ``man``).
Alper was widely used as a component of Old Turkic personal names, and in the name of Alper Tonga, a Turanian ruler.
The Trojans, who settled in North Europe after the collapse of Troy, left this name in old Germanic sagas. ``The saga about Nibelungs`` tells us about the albs (``heroes``) and their king Alberikh - Trojan by origin.
Askan, the name of a Trojan hero, is completely consonant with an Old Turkic personal name - Askan, used by the Huns. Today it is observed in the anthroponomy of the Turkic Altays.
Its origin stems from the appellative askan (``violent``, ``naughty``), the Chuvash variant of the Turkicazhgın.
Paris, the name of Priam`s son, is consonant with the Turkic (Khakas) Paris, a variant of the personal names Baris/Barys/Barysh/Bars, used in other Turkic languages. It is derived from the Turkic parys/pars/bars (``ounje``, ``snow leopard``) and used as the symbol of strength in Turkic anthroponomy. It is also observed in such compound personal names as Barsbeg, Barskan, Barısbek (Kazakh), Barisbi (Karachay - Balkar), etc..
Atas, the name of another son of Priam, can be compared with Atas, a Kazakh personal name, derived from the Turkic ata (``father``) with the unprodujtive suffix s, denoting likeness, similarity: atas ``like father``, ``similar to father``. The analogical word is observed in the Bashkir language (atas ``like father``).
Il. In ancient literature Il is presented as the son of Dardan. Its Turkic counterpart is the personal name Il, used by the Tatars, Bashkirs and Karakalpaks.
It is derived from the Turkic polysemantic word il/el (``people``, ``folk``, ``state``, ``power``), denoting ``man of power``. It is also observed in Turkic compound personal names such as Ilmekey, Ilmet, Ilmorsa, etj., old Turkic Ilbilge, El Temür, El Bugha, etj..
Aytilla. To Apollodoros, Aytilla was Priam`s sister. An analogical name is now used in the Kirghizian language as a male name.
Personal names that belong to both men and women are often observed in Turkic languages.
Batiya. This female personal name is referred to the daughter of Teucros, the first king of Troy. The same female name (Batiya) is used in the Kazakh anthroponomy.
Dolon. This Trojan personal name sounds completely the same as the Turkic personal names Dolon in Kirghizian and Dolan in Kazakh languages.
In genealogies Dolon is presented as the ancestor of the Kirghizian tribes. In a 16th century source, for instance, we see a person by the name Dolon-biy among the ancestors of the Kirghizians.
Koon, a Trojan personal name, is consonant with Koyon (Kirghizian), a personal name of zoological origin (koyon ``rabbit``).
Thus, we find the names of both Priam and his generation in Turkic anthroponomy.
So many parallels can never be incidental, particularly in the light of old European stories informing of the Turkic origin of the Trojans and the Thracians.
Parallels, discovered in other spheres of onomasticon, reveal that Troy and Turyana/Turan, the country o fol Turks, represented the same nation, or at least the different branches of the proto-Turks.
Tarna, the name of a Trojan province, is the same old Turkic Tarna - a Khazar tribal name.
Traces of this ethnonym are found in Azerbaican and the whole Caucasus, where tribesmen of Tarneans were settled.
Gargar is an important ethnomym which ties the Mediterranean to the Turkic world. A town by the name Gargara was situated near Troy. A province under this name is mentioned in the ``Iliad``. To these can also be added an old Italian province by the name of Gargaria which is surely connected with the Trojan migration to Italy.
As was mentioned above, the identical names - Gargar/Karkar were spread in the Turkic onomasticon as the names of tribes (Azerbaican, Turkmenistan), mountains (Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan), and as a personal name in ``Manas``, a Kirghizian epic.
Killa, the name of a Trojan town, derived from the appellative killa (``home``, ``temple``), was associated with the temple of Apollo located there. Western researchers interpret the name as originating from the Hittite word hila (``home``) and Lycian word kla (``temple``. These words could have been borrowed from early Mediterranean languages. For instance, the Hittite is known to have had a huge number of non-Indo- European lexicon, although its grammar is Indo-European by origin. One of them was the word killa (``home``) - a local Mediterranean element.
The same word is used in the modern Chuvash (Turkic) language (kil ``home``) which was also a component of the names Sarkel or Shrkil (``white home``), a well-known city of the Turkic Khazars.
Bayana. This non-Greek theonym was Athorodita`s epithet in Troy. In Greek mythology Athorodita was known as the goddess of marriage, birth and nursing. The same function belonged to the Turkic Goddess, Bayana, which has obvious Turkic roots. Composed of the Turkic bay (``protectress``, ``great``, ``sacred``) and ana (``mother``), the theonym denotes ``the protectress of the tribe``, ``the great mother of the tribe``.
After Troy was destroyed by the Greeks, its population migrated in different directions, among which two of them are of particular interest: those who migrated to Italy founded the Etruscan civilization and those who settled in the north of Europe were dealt with in old Germanic sagas as the Turkic kings of Sweden and Norway (Gurevich A.Y.History and Saga, Moscow, 1972).
The Etruscan texts found in Italy are now proved to have been written in an Old Turkic language (Ch.Garasharly. The Turkic Civilization lost in the Mediterranean basin, Baku, 2011). Some European linguists yet in previous centuries kept the idea that the Etruscans were of Turkic origin.
Sultan Mehmed, Turkish sultan, who was well-informed about Turkic origins of Troy, was right to consider the conquest of Istanbul as vengeance for Troy. Later in the 20th century Mustafa Kemal Ataturk considered his victory on foreign invaders as vengeance for Ektor, a Trojan hero, the son of the last Trojan king - Priam.
In fact these Turkish victories were not at all invasion, but liberation of old motherland and vengeance for Troy of which evidence the European sources of 7th-15th centuries.