Time lines for a Northern Vlach migration

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Liviu Iordache

Mar 9, 1997, 3:00:00 AM3/9/97

I wrote the following post two years ago, and I was never extremely
happy with it. Nevertheless, I still think that in general lines the
scenario is correct. I am reposting it now not only because Cristian
insisted my statements are elusive, but also with the hope of rising
the decency level of the discussion.

Date: Fri, 10 Mar 1995 16:19:08 CST
Newsgroups: soc.culture.romanian
From: Liviu Iordache <U58...@uicvm.uic.edu>

I have documented in previous posts the facts I'll use below to
describe the migration of the Romanian Vlachs. The pattern of
migration that fits best the historical and linguistic evidence is
GRADUAL migration, that is, SUCCESSIVE WAVES of Vlachs
from the Nis-Skopje-Sofia triangle joining existing pockets of
Vlachs in the north. Linguistic evidence corroborated with
historical data suggest that is possibly to argue that the first wave
of Vlachs crossed the Danube AS EARLY AS THE BEGINNING OF THE
the Vlachs occupying new areas north of the lower Danube
south of the Danube, in the Balkan peninsula, a gradual reduction
of the number of the Vlachs is recorded (see my post on the
chronology of early Vlachs).

A. The first set of arguments insists that after the Roman
retreat and until the end of the 6th century AD, there is no reason
to assume the ancestors of Romanians were living north of the Danube.
A1. North of the lower Danube, no historical records
concerning a Roman or Romance population after 271 AD are extant, nor
are there Latin inscriptions made after the second half of
the 3rd century AD or any other indications of the use of a Romance
language by any population after the Roman retreat. Not a single
record mentioned Daco-Romans or any Roman population north of the
lower Danube after 271 AD. The archeological finds are not specific to
a Roman population.

A2. The entire group of Latin elements shared by Romanian and
Albanian suggests the ancestors of the Romanian were living in close
connection with the ancestors of the Albanians. Linguistic innovations
developed in East Latin up to the 7th century are shared by Romanian,
Albanian, and several Italian dialects. Because, after 271 AD , the
territory north of the lower Danube was no longer part of the Empire,
the "unitary block" of the Romanian and Albanian in its East Latin
elements was situated south of the Danube.

A3. The territories north of the lower Danube were invaded by
Goths in the second half of the 3rd century AD and inhabited by
Gepidae until the end of the 6th century AD. Old Germanic elements
from that period (3rd to 6th centuries AD) are not present in the
Romanian language. The most obvious interpretation is that the
ancestors of the Romanians were not living during that time period
close to the area occupied by the German tribes. This fact
strengthens the suggestion that the old Romanians were not living
during that time period north of the Danube.

A4. Theophylactus Simocattas mentioned that the Byzantine general
Priscus, when fighting the Avars in Banat, in 601 AD, had
taken prisoners 3000 Avars, 800 Sclavines, 3200 Gepidae
and 2000 "barbarians". This record suggests that, at the
beginning of the 7th century, no Romance population was
present yet north of the lower Danube.

B. The second set of argument based on historical documents traces
backward in time the evidence for a Vlach presence north of the
Danube before the 11th century AD, and signals potentially valid
pulses (or waves) of mass movements, existent within a framework of
gradual migration.

B1. The first uncontested mention of Vlachs north of the Danube is
dated 1070 AD. Jan Dlugosz, a Polish chronicler, reports that
Rhutenians, Patzinakas and Vlachs were fighting in the army of cnez
Wiaczeslav against Boleslaw, who later become king of Poland.
Because the cradle of the Romanian language (as concluded on
linguistic grounds by O.Densusianu, A.Philippide and others) was
Illyria, the Vlachs must have crossed the Danube at an earlier date.

B2. The Russian Primary Chronicle (year 898 AD) is probably well
informed in stating that the Magyars, when invading modern
Hungary, had to fight not only the Slavs, but also the
Vlachs: "The Ugri (Magyars)... struggled across the great
mountains and began to fight against the Vlachs and the
Slavs in that region. For THE SLAVS HAD SETTLED
TERRITORY OF THE SLAVS. " (Dvornik, F., 1959, The
Slavs Their Early History and Civilization. American
Academy of Arts and Sciences, Boston). It is probable that
some Slavic tribes came to Transylvania as early as during
the epoch of the Gepidae, in the 5th century AD; some were
apparently settled there by the Avars in the 6th century.

B3. The bulgarian Khan Krum (802-814) defeated the Avars and
extended his domination north of the Danube, over Banat and
southern Transylvania. Material remains belonging to the
Balkan-Danube culture (9th to 10th centuries) , correlated
to this expansion of the Bulgarians across the Danube, were
found in Transylvania in two sites along the middle course
of the Mures (Daicovicu, Dacica, 1969) . The Bucov variant,
found in a small area in southern Carpathians may have
included , according to Daicoviciu and Maria Comsa, a
proto-Romanian component. Because the beginning of the
Vlacho-"South Slavic" symbiosis may be dated as early as the
beginning of the 7th century it is very probable that the Vlachs were
part of this north-Danubian Bulgarian expansion. That the area
north of the Danube was depopulated is suggested by the fact that in
813 Krum deported between 10,000 and 40,000 people from the
surroundings of Adrianopol to "Bulgaria north of the Danube".

B4. The Miracula Sancti Demetrii, a hagiographical text from the
7th century AD, informs that in 619 AD the Avar khan,
having failed to trap Heraclea , ravaged all Illyricum and
its provinces, and deported to the regions of the Danube
270,000 people (men and women): "...they lead the people to
a place near the Danube in the direction of Pannonia....the
aforementioned Chagan settled all the people he had captured to be
henceforth his subjects. They were intermarried with Bulgars, Avars,
and other people, had children with them, children whom they BROUGHT
ORTHODOXY and the holy and life-giving baptism the race
of the Christians increased ... another and NEW PEOPLE
EVOLVED, and in time the greatest number of them become
free. ...the Chagan, considering them to constitute a people
with an IDENTITY OF ITS OWN..." (Charanis, P., 1976,
Kouver, the chronology of his activities and their ethnic
effects on the regions around Thessalonica. Balkan Studies,
11, 229-247). The report is confirmed by Theophanes and
Nicephorus. This document proves that at the beginning of
the 7th century numerous Orthodox Christians, probably
Latin-speakers, were deported from Illyria northward across
the Danube.

C. However, even if the about interpretations are correct, there
are other facts indicating that the Vlachs presence north of the
lower Danube becomes significant only during later times, probably
after the beginning of the 13th century AD.

C1. During 12th to 15th centuries AD many documents record the
presence of Vlachs living in the Old Serbia (see my post on
the chronology of early Vlachs).

C2. Vlachs must have constituted a considerable part of the
Second Bulgarian Empire (also called the Vlacho-Bulgarian
Empire). Significantly enough, the first Czars of the new
Bulgarian Empire were Vlachs: The Asanesti family. The
size of the Vlach population is indirectly suggested by the
number of soldiers their leaders were able to rise (Wolff,
R.L., 1949, The "Second Bulgarian Empire" Its Origin and
History To 1204, Speculum, 24, 167-206):

C2.1 In 1189 Petru Asan specifically promised to
Frederick Barbarossa 40,000 Vlach and Cuman
archers for an attack on Constantinople.

C2.2 Ionita Kaloian , "Caloiohannes Imperator
Bulgarorum et Blachorum", was able to rise an
army of 100,000 soldiers. If only 1/10th of
these soldiers were Vlachs their number would
still suggest a large population of Vlachs south
of the Danube.

C3 in 1207 when Caloian was killed, Ivan Asan, the legal
successor, was in Cumania (the Valachian plain at present)
where he and his brother Alexander were sent by their uncle
Kaloian with the purpose of trying to seize power there.
This fact suggests that although they were hoping for local help
from the Vlachs living north of the Danube, the Cumans
were the dominant element in that area.

Liviu Iordache


Mar 9, 1997, 3:00:00 AM3/9/97

Liviu Iordache wrote:
> I wrote the following post two years ago, and I was never extremely
> happy with it. Nevertheless, I still think that in general lines the
> scenario is correct. I am reposting it now not only because Cristian
> insisted my statements are elusive, but also with the hope of rising
> the decency level of the discussion.
>Ha Ha Ha !!!Good joke!! Are you kidding? You gotta be insane to really believe that you have "strived" to raise "the decency level" of this newsgroup, which is, by any standards, one of the most self-hating newsgroup I ever saw. And I know what I am talking about: just try to compare whatever you have access on the net! Just analyse your postings! If you don't agree, I will post them again! With all your insults!

Really: please check your crap on the net! I am serious about that!
I mean please check your insults: To greeks, to Cristian Alb, it does
not matter! Oh you Saint JORDACHE! Everybody is persecuting you ,pour
child! They are so nasty!

I don't want to put together all your insults on the net, but I have
received plenty of complaints from my greek counterparts. They only
wanted to haVE SOME DECENT EXCHANGE OF IDEAS with their Romanian
friends, and they are really dissapointed!

Speaking about decency, your explanation about the city PULA, in the
Istria half-island,where you have suggested that something really
strange has happened ( I mean that the name of the city represents the
name of the male sexual organ in Romanian(remember the answer you gave
to Cristian Alb?). I got to dissapoint you:
No way!

Actually the Romans promissed the veterans /(b(e)tr(e)ns)/ that they
will receive after 30 years of millitary service a pu(e)lla (a girl) to
The transfer subject-object is at least as documented as the transfer
object - subject in other languages. If you still don't know , I can
tell you that the word faggot, which means gay in today's English, has
had the meaning " Bunch of sticks used to burn at stake the sodomites
and heretics by the Holy Church"! Check the ENCYCLOPEDIA BRITANNICA,
"cause you are quoting it endlessly!

I have really had high hopes about an open-minded discussion on the
net,deprived of insults, now that there are no more political issus to
be "solved".Not on the net! I have only found self-hating crap.

The nicest answer I have ever received was from a Hungarian
neighbourhood organization, in Silicon Valley. What they have said in
essence,(in Hungarian) was: there are much better ways to communicate
your ideas in Hungarian science papers. I totally agree with that. They
also said: internet means senzationalizing crap! I also happen to agree
with it!

So, good luck! Maybe your mind works this way! Maybe you really happen
to think that you are sanitizing the net! Great expectatations! And
great delusions!
Bye, MR Liviu Iodache!And good luck for your exAMS!


In other words, instead of using an "edu" network, why don't you work to
make some money at some Burger King ?
I am not kidding!
I was honest enough to work at a Burger King , in order to make some
money to pay my bills. I would have never accepted some other
institutions to pay my bills. And I am using my (payed) internet
conection only in my spare time. And I am paying for it.

Why on this world are you not doing the same thing? In other words, why
are you not honest?
Why don't you pay honestly your bills, while working honestly in your
assigned position?



Mar 10, 1997, 3:00:00 AM3/10/97
to ant...@tdl.com

Are you troubled by the reality ?


Me wrote:
> Liviu Iordache wrote:
> >

> Bye, MR Liviu Iodache!And good luck for your exAMS!


Mar 16, 1997, 3:00:00 AM3/16/97

I read at the time your artcle and now I thank you for it. It was my first
encounter with a non-mithical history of my kind. So sad so many cannot
face the facts and keep dreaming.

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