Thursday, December 30, 2021

Swedes and Finns, Czechs and Hungarians

I saw a quora question, while the access to the site was blocked, I got the question and first line of the response in the mail.

Now, Czechs and Hungarians can't understand each other if they speak slowly. Czechs and Poles perhaps can, but Czechs and Hungarians can't. There is a reason why Czechs and Poles are counted as Slavs in linguistic and Hungarians as Fenno-Ugrians.

Similarily, Swedes and Finns can't understand each other if they speak slow, they often can understand each other if the Finn speaks Swedish, but that's a different question. Swedes and Danes and Norwegians have some ability to understand each other, all being Nordic languages and Finnish being Fenno-Ugrian.

Can Finns and Hungarians understand each other? No. While both are Fenno-Ugrian, it's like saying Czech and Swedish are both Indo-European. A Hungarian immigration heritage comrade in the military service and a comrade whose girlfriend (now wife, I hope - perhaps already wife?) was Finnish spent hours trying to search words resembling each other in Finnish and Hungarian, and they did find some, but that doesn't mean they can understand each other when they speak slowly.

Finns and Estonians can understand each other about as well as Swedes and Danes. I've been told. Finns and Lapps are more like Swedes and Germans. Finns and Hungarians, if I am not to use the parallel Swedes and Czechs, it's at least a bit like Lithuanians and Czechs or Gaels and Romanians (Balto-Slavic and Italo-Celtic seem more credible to me than Indo-European original unities).

How many languages have the word meaning bear that is "ursus" in Latin and "arktos" in Greek? I try Pokorny. I fail to find it, since Pokorny was before the "h2-" notation of certain PIE words (and PIE, Proto-Indo-European, has changed vastly since 1868, probably more than any other language, except possibly Dyirbal.

But wiktionary gives a help.

h₂ŕ̥tḱos leads to:

1) Albanian ar, newer ari, arushë
2) Hittite ḫar-tág-ga-aš
3) Armenian (both old and new) արջ (arǰ)
4) Lithuanian irštvà (“bear's den” and not "bear" which is lokys)
5) Welsh arth, Breton arzh, Old Irish art, now replaced by "bear"
6) Greek ἄρκτος
7) Sanskrit ṛ́kṣa, Classic Persian xirs with Avestan arṣ̌a, Kamkata-viri and Ashkun , Tregami voć
8) Finnish karhu, Estonian karu, with this Indo-European word as only one possibility of two.
9) Latin ursus. With urso, oso, ours, orso ... depending on daughter language.

I think this is the PIE word I have seen most spread between families after the numerals 2 to 10 + 100! All the IE families have 2 to 10 (Greek doesn't have the usual one for "one"), and by contrast, Germanic doesn't have this word for bear, that's a bit like "one" lacking in Greek (though one could say it's not completely lacking, since oιoς is "one" on a dice - but the cognate would be normally oιvoς and that means "wine").

Note, since "8 Finnish" is not IE, it's just 8 families overall, 1 to 7 + 9. I typically see 3 to 5 for a word, so far. This is one reason to maintain the possibility of rather areal features than a common proto-language.

Coming from the same region doesn't mean speaking the same language.

Speaking nearly the same language, it's not just about speaking slowly. I am a Swede, and lived next door to Denmark, and I consider my three stages with Danish were:

1) understanding short phrases ("mang' tak", "ti' kroner" ...)
2) understanding Danish in writing
3) trying to speak Danish and being heard as if speaking Swedish, and sometimes having to tell Danes to speak slower, sometimes being told so myself
4) getting usefully good at speaking Danish
5) relapsing from 4 to somewhere 2 or 3, since losing the contact.

And the better you understand each other, spontaneously or after learning the other language and seeing it already has cognates, the better suited you are to take loans from it as if they were cognates. I just saw "main page" of Danish wiki. It is "forside" in Danish. I would borrow this as "försida" if "hufvudsida" (what it means in internet terms) and "framsida" (what it means in other terms) didn't already exist. Between "nedlåtande" and "nedladende" one may have been borrowed from the other, I don't think any is arguing it was there in Old Norse - a historic language which is parent to Danish, Swedish, Norse, Icelandic and fairly close to modern Icelandic. Proto-Indo-European is a reconstructed language supposed to be parent to Germanic*, Latin, Greek, Avestic and Sanscrit as well as Old Irish.**

Hans Georg Lundahl
St. Sabinus and Companions***

Spoleti item natalis sanctorum Martyrum Sabini, Assisiensis Episcopi, atque Exsuperantii et Marcelli Diaconorum, ac Venustiani Praesidis cum uxore et filiis, sub Maximiano Imperatore. Ex ipsis Marcellus et Exsuperantius, primum equuleo suspensi, deinde fustibus graviter mactati, postremnm, abrasi ungulis et laterum exustione assati, martyrium compleverunt; Venustianus autem non multo post, simul cum uxore et filiis, est gladio necatus; sanctus vero Sabinus, post detruncationem manuum et diutinam carceris macerationem, ad mortem usque caesus est. Horum martyrium, licet diverso exstiterit tempore, una tamen die recolitur.

* Germanic itself supposed and probable parent to Gothic, Anglo-Saxon, Old Saxon, Old High German and Old Norse. ** And a few more. *** One of them arguably patron saint of the family of a well beloved French children's book writer : Antoine de Saint-Exupéry.

Thursday, December 23, 2021

A Welsh Coal Mine and Three Parisian Priests

In the 19th C. there were a lot of philosophers around in Europe. Herbert and Charles in England, Arthur and Friedrich in Germany and a few more. How did they behave? They disagreed with each other, and they tried to state their disagreements very pointedly and perhaps I'm myself an heir to their pointedness at times. But this did not stop the disciples of each to make rhetorical interpreations of their masters, taking their actual words as understatements and psychologically examining what they would have thought if considering this further thing.

If they had lived 300 years earlier, they would have used the Bible for disagreement. They were back then named Martin, Huldrich, Martin, Thomas, John, John and John. Thanks to them, some people who grew up in the area where their disagreements prevailed came to conclude the Bible has no intelligible content, since there are thousands of irreconcilable ways of interpreting it, and each goes about with great attention and has no notion he's contradicting it.

Now, back to the 19th C. Everyone knows, it went on to World War I. And in a novel by Ken Follett, 1914, a few months before Sarajevo shooting, there is an explosion and a fire in a mine in Wales. There is a type of trees and ferns from before the Flood, they were covered by lots of sediment during it 4978 years ago, and the remains of them are labelled Cambrian, because they make so much coal in Wales, and Cambria is Latin for Cymru, which is Welsh for Wales. Now, the coals are not alone, tidy, in the coal mines, there is methane, there is coal dust, and when something goes wrong in a coal mine it can go very wrong.

It can go so wrong, and it is so unpleasant even when all goes right, that free and innocent citizens earlier on were not supposed to do the work, it was reserved for slaves or offenders condemned to slavery.

In Ken Follett's novel, five men die, fifty men are grieveously injored. And King George V hearing of it goes to visit the families who lost a miner. One Ethel Williams, arguably his fiction, had suggested it to the king. And she looks on and says "I never thought I'd see a King knock on a miner's door."

Well - there was another King who did that before George V. Not the least one. He could consider Jupiter or Sirius as small pebbles. He came down to the hut of miners condemned to slavery. Indeed, he went down into the mine too. We celebrate this for the 2021st anniversary in two days, if the world still stands. Before He went back up, He had not just given five gold sovereigns to grieving, He had given five wounds to save miners from the fire. And before He left, He had left us with twelve good and true men, and told them to keep to His teaching.

St. Thomas Aquinas, Bishop Stephen II Tempier of the the Diocese of Paris (it became an archdiocese centuries later) and Duns Scotus were among the heirs of the twelve. Each had made a sacrifice to pefectly serve the One King and to get the attention they didn't spend on worshipping Him on what the miners needed to be safe.

It is inconceivable that they quarrelled like 19th C. philosophers, about as inconceivable as that they should have behaved like the Coal company that negelcted the safety in the 1914 mine explosion, which I think Ken Follett did not make up.

So, while St. Thomas and bishop Tempier disagreed on how and why angels are different persons rather than one, and Scotus agreed with the bishop after he had spoken, they did certainly not make the kind of war on each other that Reformers, 19th C. philosophers, 19th and 20th CC. nationalists would do later on.

St. Thomas spoke up and said, since angels are incorporeal, they differ by being different as ideas, they have different species. It could not be otherwise, and he gave as a parallel, while white objects of matter can be different from each other because of the matter (and for that matter they can so by other qualities than whiteness), the whiteness itself if just one. I think some fashion designers would have rushed to correct him on that one very quickly, if Paris had already had its haute coûture. "Ah no, crêpe de Chine and cray white and snow white are very different!" they would say.

Bishop Tempier was concerned that this idea of incorporeal creatures needing different species of ideas to be different might be considered as a limit on the Omnipotence of God (which St. Thomas was certainly not trying to limit!) and so condemned the idea that God couldn't create different angels unless by making them different species. In addition, he might have been concerned also not to contradict City of God, where St. Ausgustine says that angels and demons were created the same kind. For Thomas, one could say, St. Augustine mainly wanted to deny angels and demons being exactly two kinds, different by moral alignment. For Tempier's conviction, and Scotus' statement, one could say that St. Augustine had in fact said "one kind".

Whatever is to be said for either part, there is nothing to be said for the idea that Bishop Tempier acted with St. Thomas as van Helsing with Dracula, waiting till he had gone to bed and then using a stake through his heart. Very much on the contrary. He carefully walked up to St. Thomas mortal (or written) remains, measured their exact position, and considered that St. Thomas, both by corpulence and by already-having-diedness was not likely to move one inch further up to Doomsday. Then he measured the exact distance of one inch more as outside the fence. Putting St. Thomas safely inside it for eternity. And then a few years later a young Father John (a Franciscan, not a Dominican) set himself very safely in the exact middle of Bishop Tempier's fence and stated God is making angels different by giving them a different thisness. The fence is still there. The 219 condemnations were never retracted. 48 years later, Bishop Stephen III Bourret stated sth like "if Thomas Aquinas wrote something which happened to fall under the condemnation of my predecessor, this ban is now lifted as to the works and sentences of Thomas Aquinas" and after that Pope John XXII canonised him, not just for perfect apostolicity of his doctrine, but also for a life in innocence and for miracles worked after he died. Things God worked on his behalf, like the handkerchiefs touching St. Paul's clothes, or the touch of the Holy Prophet Elisaeus' corpse.

Hans Georg Lundahl
two days before Christmas

Tuesday, December 21, 2021

Byzantine Emperors from Constantine to Alexios V Doukas : Lifespans

Constantine I 65 Constantine II 24 Constantius II 44 Julian the Apostate 31/32 Jovian 33 Valentinian I 54 Valens 49 Theodosius I 48

Arcadius 31 Theodosius II 49 Marcian 65 Leo I 73 Leo II 7 Zeno 65 (both before and after the next one) Basiliscus ? Anastasius I Dicorus 87 Justin I 77 Justinian I 83 Justin II ?

Tiberius II Constantine 62 Maurice 63 Phocas 62/63 Heraclius 65 Heraclius Constantine III 29 Heraklonas 15/16 Constans II 37 Constantine IV 35 Justinian II 42 Tiberius III ? Philippikos Bardanes ? Anastasios II ? Theodosius III ? Leo III the Isaurian 55/56 Constantine V 57 Leo IV the Khazar 30 Constantine VI 33 Irene of Athens 51

Nikephoros I 60/61 Staurakios 18/20 Michael I Rangabe 73 Leo V the Armenian 45 Michael II 59 Theophilos 30 Michael III 27 Basil I 75 Leo VI the Wise 45 Alexander Porphyrogenitus 42 Constantine VII Porphyrogenitus 54 Romanos II Porphyrogenitus 27 Nikephoros II Phokas 57 John I Tzimiskes 50 Basil II Porphyrogenitus Boulgaroktonos 65/66

Constantine VIII Porphyrogenitus 67/68 Romanos III Argyros 65/66 Michael IV the Paphlagonian 30/31 Michael V Kalaphates 26/27 Zoë Porphyrogenita 72 Theodora Porphyrogenita 75/76 Constantine IX Monomachos 50/55 Michael VI Bringas ?

Isaac I Komnenos 53 Constantine X Doukas 61 Romanos IV Diogenes 42 Michael VII Doukas 40 Nikephoros III Botaneiates 78/79 Alexios I Komnenos 61/62 John II Komnenos 55 Manuel I Komnenos 61 Alexios II Komnenos 13/14 (On 2 March 1180, at the age of eleven, he was married to Agnes of France aged 10, daughter of King Louis VII of France. She was thereafter known as Anna,[3]: 64  and after Alexios' murder three years later, Anna would be remarried to the person responsible, Andronikos, then aged 65.) Andronikos I Komnenos 66/67 Isaac II Angelos 47 Alexios III Angelos 58 Alexios IV Angelos 21 Alexios V Doukas 63/64.


14 16 20 21 24 27 27 27 29 30 30 31 31 32 33 33 35 37 40 42 42 42 44 45 45 47 48 49 49 50 51 53 54
13 15 18 21 24 26 27 27 29 30 30 30 31 31 33 33 35 37 40 42 42 42 44 45 45 47 48 49 49 50 50 51 53
02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34

54 55 55 56 57 57 58 59 61 61 61 62 62 63 63 64 65 65 65 65 66 66 67 68 72 73 73 75 76 77 79 83 87
54 54 55 55 57 57 58 59 60 61 61 61 62 62 63 63 65 65 65 65 65 65 66 67 72 73 73 75 75 77 78 83 87
35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 48 49 50 51 52 53 54 55 56 57 58 59 60 61 62 63 64 65 66 67

34 - 50 - 51 - 67
33 - 33 - 33 - 33
01 - 17 - 18 - 34

Very comparable to "Frankish"* royalties : the median (34th value from 67) is 54 or 53 according to low or high counts, and the higher quartile 63 or 64 to 65 years is like non-royals./HGL

* Louis XVI of France, former West Francia, Marie Antoinette from Austria, former part of East Francia, and from Lotharingia, former Mid Francia.

Wednesday, December 15, 2021

The kind of thing that happens in historiography

Quoting from wikipedian article Primary Chronicle

The historical period covered in the Tale of Bygone Years begins with biblical times, in the introductory portion of the text, and concludes with the year 1117 in the Chronicle's third edition. Russian philologist and founder of the science of textology, Aleksey Shakhmatov, was the first one to discover early on that the chronology of the Primary Chronicle opens with an error. The Chronicle has it that “In the year 6360 (852), the fifteenth of the indiction, at the accession of the Emperor Michael, the land of Rus’ was first named.”[5]: 58  However, 11th century Greek historian John Skylitzes' accounts of the Byzantine history show that Emperor Michael III did not begin his reign in 852 but rather a decade earlier, on January 20, 842.[6] Because of the work's several identified chronological issues and numerous logical incongruities that have been pointed out by historians over the years, the Chronicle's value as a reliable historical source has been placed under strict scrutiny by the contemporary experts in the field (see “§ Assessment and critique”).

So, at a key point, it is ten years off, unless it is Skylitzes who is ten years off.

It says other "chronological issues" and "numerous logical incongruities" and in the section mentioned we get things left out because they didn't fit and invented even if not there.

It can be mentioned that the Novgorod First Chronicle is considered as a corrective.

A N D it may be mentioned that the study leading to these assessments were started by one Aleksey Shakhmatov who was a Czarist and therefore a Great Russian nationalist at some level./HGL

PS - other example. We know the Church Historian and Hymnographer died in Mytilene one 4th of Huly - but was it 712 or 726 or 740? Wiki gives all three alternatives!/HGL

Sunday, December 5, 2021

The Restrainer : the Roman Emperor

This may seem counterintuitive. Isn't the Restrainer the Holy Spirit? Or the Church?

Isn't Rome the Fourth Beast of Daniel?

The restrainer is "taken out of the way" at a certain moment, and that's close to the end times, isn't 476 or even 1453 too early?

Now let's answer these in turn.

The Holy Spirit is always present in the Church, in the lives of the faithful. The Church is present until the end of time. In Matthew 28:20 Our Lord said "Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and behold I am with you all days, even to the consummation of the world." But the world is not consumed seven or 3 and a half years before Doomsday, therefore the Church is always present. The unbelieving Jews (who are such for the moment) and who come to faith, will be parts of the Church, not of a separate end times covenant. And as the Church is always present, so is the Holy Spirit. Therefore, the Holy Spirit is not the restrainer, since the restrainer is taken out of the way and the Holy Spirit isn't.

Senatorial Rome was the fourth beast, and Antiochus IV Epiphanes came as a vassal of the fourth beast. Yes, he had been hostage to Rome, and bowed down before the Roman Senate. The third beast, Greece, had come in the time of Alexander. This means, Caesar restraining the haughtiness and selfishness of the Senatorial nobility became a restrainer of the fourth beast. Even more so Constantine, since the first Roman persecution of Christians had been according to Senatusconsultum de Baccanalibus and since Constantine put an end to persecutions, at least relatively speaking.

In 476, only Western Caesars were taken out of the way, and in 1453, only the Eastern ones, after 476 there had been a new continuity of Western ones since 800, and 1453 was also followed by a new continuity of Eastern ones:

In 1547, Ivan IV assumed the title of “Tsar and Grand Duke of all Rus'” (Царь и Великий князь всея Руси, Tsar i Velikiy knyaz vseya Rusi) and was crowned on 16 January,[19] thereby turning the Grand Duchy of Moscow into Tsardom of Russia, or "the Great Russian Tsardom", as it was called in the coronation document,[20] by Constantinople Patriarch Jeremiah II[21][22] and in numerous official texts,[23][24][25][26][27][28] but the state partly remained referred to as Moscovia (English: Muscovy) throughout Europe, predominantly in its Catholic part, though this Latin term was never used in Russia.[29]

I'm not going to bother about all the footnotes of this welldocumented wiki. The most interesting ones are 20 to 22, since they speak about a coronation document signed or commented on by Constantinople Patriarch Jeremiah II.

20 Чин венчания на царство Ивана IV Васильевича. Российский государственный архив древних актов. Ф. 135. Древлехранилище. Отд. IV. Рубр. I. № 1. Л. 1-46
21 Lee Trepanier. Political Symbols in Russian History: Church, State, and the Quest for Order and Justice. Lexington Books, 2010. P. 61: "so your great Russian Tsardom, more pious than all previous kingdoms, is the Third Rome"
Barbara Jelavich. Russia's Balkan Entanglements, 1806-1914. Cambridge University Press, 2004. P. 37. Note 34: "Since the first Rome fell through the Appollinarian heresy and the second Rome, which is Constantinople, is held by the infidel Turks, so then thy great Russian Tsardom, pious Tsar, which is more pious than previous kingdoms, is the third Rome"

Obviously, I do not consider First Rome fell by Apollinarian heresy but the point to be taken is, Christians with more affection for Constantinople than for Rome have accepted Moscow as Third Rome. This means, after 1547, there were two representatives of Rome, of Caesarian Rome, of the restrainer, in the World, in Vienna and in Moscow, and they were only taken out of the way much more recently than that, when "contemporary history begins" - within five years from Gavril Princip shooting archduke Francis Ferdinand of Austria, both Charles I of Austria and Nicolas II of Russia were taken out of the way.

Some have considered the nec plus ultra of lawlessness as pogroms against Jews. Now, German pogroms have been either within one area, of which both Strassburg and Zurich had ceased to be under Habsburgs prior to 1914, or within two or three periods of upheaval. That the First Crusade involved a People's Crusade that did plunder Jews (whereon Peter the Hermit, who had preached the Crusade, left it) is certain, but whether they went as far as killing isn't. The two other periods would be Rex Rintfleisch, 20th April to 19th October, in the year 1298 also featuring a fight between two Ceasars, between Adolf of Nassau, deposed by the Princes Electors, and Albert I of Habsburg, defeating him, protecting Jews, and then after another Habsburg had been defeated and an Adolf had replaced him (without any Imperial crown), after that non-Caesar Adolf had come to Vienna in 1938.

In Russia there were pogroms in the civil war following the Communist Revolution, and the Czarist forces were not the most prominent culprits. I read in Rivarol, 24th November, that the responsibilities were : 40 % Ukrainean Nationalist, 17 % Russian Whites or Czarists (the leaders tried to restrain this) and 9 % Red Army. 40+17+9 = 66, so 34 % were by either unknown or none of these armies, if the percentages are correct. The pogrom on 400 Jewish families in Odessa (January 1918) seems to have been Communist, Red Army or Communist Civilians, since some have argued they were targetted for their riches and not for being Jewish. That motivation and getting some kind of good press from Commies, suggests the perpetrators in that case were Commies. I have not asked Sylvain Rousillon for details, so far.

But we need not be in two minds that lawlessness has increased manyfold since the end of World War I. If Caesarian Rome lasted to then, the restrainer could well have been taken out of the way after Austria and Russia ceased fighting in that war.

Hans Georg Lundahl
Second Lord's Day of Advent

"The Restrainer" is in Douay Rheims "he who now holdeth" in II Thessalonians 2:6, 7

[6] And now you know what withholdeth, that he may be revealed in his time. [7] For the mystery of iniquity already worketh; only that he who now holdeth, do hold, until he be taken out of the way.