Author Topic: For Dominika and Others Interested in Lebanon  (Read 226 times)

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Online Luke

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For Dominika and Others Interested in Lebanon
« on: October 12, 2019, 06:51:12 PM »
Here is an interesting article about famous people who are considered Greeks or Romans, but the article says they were Phoenician: https://www.the961.com/old-lebanon/10-historical-legends-you-didnt-know-were-actually-phoenicians?fbclid=IwAR01LVilLBVp9o9Sew-Xnmj6pXdLkIv5LGCcs2f0PPmNV_2jCUuEPEU5ahE

Offline Ainnir

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Re: For Dominika and Others Interested in Lebanon
« Reply #1 on: October 12, 2019, 09:52:30 PM »
Nice.
Is any of the above Orthodox?  I have no idea, so there’s that.

Offline Dominika

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Re: For Dominika and Others Interested in Lebanon
« Reply #2 on: October 13, 2019, 07:10:50 AM »
Thank you :)
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Offline Alpha60

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Re: For Dominika and Others Interested in Lebanon
« Reply #3 on: October 13, 2019, 10:50:20 AM »
Here is an interesting article about famous people who are considered Greeks or Romans, but the article says they were Phoenician: https://www.the961.com/old-lebanon/10-historical-legends-you-didnt-know-were-actually-phoenicians?fbclid=IwAR01LVilLBVp9o9Sew-Xnmj6pXdLkIv5LGCcs2f0PPmNV_2jCUuEPEU5ahE

Lebanon is indeed the historic homeland of the Phoenicians, although the extent to which a Phoenician ethnicity survives is questionable.  The Maronites have been trying to claim a Phoenician identity, but this seems doubtful to me given they fled to Lebanon after a schism with the Syriac Orthodox Patriarch of Antioch; I suspect they are more likely a member the same approximate ethnic group or family of ethnicities as the other Syriac Christians of the Levant.  But they could well have intermarried with descendants of the Phoenicians. 

I also wonder if the Druze, who are endogamous, are partially of Phoenician descent.  Because here, the article gets interesting in mentioning Pythagoras; a British diplomat wrote of rumors of the veneration of Pythagoras among the Druze and among the Alawi, the latter of whom are also rumored to have sacred groves, in his book Heirs to Forgotten Kingdoms, which is somewhat of a survey of the endangered ethnoreligious minorities in the Muslim world.  I say somewhat, in that his descriptions of the Druze and Alawis are particularly lacking in verifiable detail about the true doctrines of the Druze religion, and of the Alawi religion in its original, esoteric, Sufi form, which Assad has taken great lengths to conceal or suppress in favor of an Alawism that looks even more like conventional Islamic worship than the Jafari Shia of Iran (in order to avoid tensions with the Sunnis).  It seems that those who would actually be in a position to know are either unwilling to speak or otherwise indisposed, so this is the sort of thing destined to remain unknown to us.
« Last Edit: October 13, 2019, 10:56:55 AM by Alpha60 »

Council of Nicea:
Εθη ἀρχαῖα κρατείτω. 
Mores antiqui obtineant.
The ancient ways shall prevail.

The sentiment of Nicea in Greek and Latin, translated into English.

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Re: For Dominika and Others Interested in Lebanon
« Reply #4 on: October 13, 2019, 11:05:17 AM »
I get the impression that the article is trying to create conflict where there is none. 'Phoenician' is an ethnicity, while both 'Greek' and 'Roman' are quite different qualifiers, where ethnicity plays only a minor role, if at all. In Isocrates' words, 'Greeks are they who partake in Greek education' - which was very much the case in the Levant until the early Middle Ages. Being Roman, on the other hand, was largely a matter of citizenship, that anyone could acquire through service in the legions (which were very heavily regional in their composition) or through adoption, regardless of their ethnic background.
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Offline Dominika

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Re: For Dominika and Others Interested in Lebanon
« Reply #5 on: October 13, 2019, 01:11:05 PM »
Yeah, that's true that especially in the Middle East (but also e.g in Poland and Lithuania util the 2ndWW) you can have dobutle or triple self-identificaiton, but ethnicity, state, relgiion, education etc.

Saint Raphael of Brooklyn said about himself: I am an Arab by birth, a Greek by primary education, an American by residence, a Russian at heart, and a Slav in soul.

Edit: or famous poet Adam Mickiewicz, that was writing in Polish, considering himself Lithuanian, by ethnicity also Belarusian and Jewish.
« Last Edit: October 13, 2019, 01:13:29 PM by Dominika »
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Re: For Dominika and Others Interested in Lebanon
« Reply #6 on: October 13, 2019, 01:57:09 PM »
Interestingly, while Googling the quote by Isocrates (I remembered the phrase, but not its origin), I came across a discussion on Quora on whethere there are black Greeks. The answerss were about equally for yes and no, but both sides seemed to converge on the same premise: that there is no African vector in Greek ancestry, but historically plenty of people of colour have become Greek, either by immigration or through mixed marriages. It was probably even easier in the times of empires, whether Alexander's or the Romans', than today. It was happening long before Yannis Antetokounmpo. 8)
'Evil isn't the real threat to the world. Stupid is just as destructive as evil, maybe more so, and it's a hell of a lot more common. What we really need is a crusade against stupid. That might actually make a difference.'~Harry Dresden

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Offline RaphaCam

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Re: For Dominika and Others Interested in Lebanon
« Reply #7 on: October 13, 2019, 02:47:20 PM »
It's really weird how the once (and for so much time) powerful Phoenician language just died off. Speaks a lot about how liquid historical entities are.

Some scholars hold a hypothesis that the Maltese were so quickly fully arabised (unlike Sicilians) because they still spoke Phoenician, so Arab was very easy to pick up. It acutally makes a lot of sense: very generically speaking from what is known for sure, Semitic languages under Islamic rule died off quickly (except little isolate Aramaic pockets), Coptic (not Semitic, but related) took some more time, Berber (same as Coptic) ones resisted until having millions of speakers to this day, and non-Afro-Semitic ones simply never gave way (with the notable exception of some Nilo-Saharan speakers in southern Egypt and Sudan).

All to say that if the Byzantines had held Malta at least for 200 years more until Norman rule, maybe Phoenician might still be a living language.
« Last Edit: October 13, 2019, 02:52:19 PM by RaphaCam »
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Online Luke

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Re: For Dominika and Others Interested in Lebanon
« Reply #8 on: October 13, 2019, 04:32:47 PM »
I get the impression that the article is trying to create conflict where there is none. 'Phoenician' is an ethnicity, while both 'Greek' and 'Roman' are quite different qualifiers, where ethnicity plays only a minor role, if at all. In Isocrates' words, 'Greeks are they who partake in Greek education' - which was very much the case in the Levant until the early Middle Ages. Being Roman, on the other hand, was largely a matter of citizenship, that anyone could acquire through service in the legions (which were very heavily regional in their composition) or through adoption, regardless of their ethnic background.
But was there not a time that Athens, Sparta, and other Greek cities had requirements for citizenship outside of language?  Did that fade away after Alexander the Great?  Or did that fade before Alexander?

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Re: For Dominika and Others Interested in Lebanon
« Reply #9 on: October 13, 2019, 05:38:33 PM »
I get the impression that the article is trying to create conflict where there is none. 'Phoenician' is an ethnicity, while both 'Greek' and 'Roman' are quite different qualifiers, where ethnicity plays only a minor role, if at all. In Isocrates' words, 'Greeks are they who partake in Greek education' - which was very much the case in the Levant until the early Middle Ages. Being Roman, on the other hand, was largely a matter of citizenship, that anyone could acquire through service in the legions (which were very heavily regional in their composition) or through adoption, regardless of their ethnic background.
But was there not a time that Athens, Sparta, and other Greek cities had requirements for citizenship outside of language?  Did that fade away after Alexander the Great?  Or did that fade before Alexander?

Being from a Greek city-state made you Greek, whether you qualified for actual citizenship or not; very few people actually were citizens, but all residents, including women and slaves, could be Greek. Greekness was cultural, especially linguistic, while Romanness was civic. So it was perfectly possible for someone to be Phoenician and Greek, or Phoenician and Roman, or all three at once.
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Offline RaphaCam

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Re: For Dominika and Others Interested in Lebanon
« Reply #10 on: October 13, 2019, 06:39:53 PM »
Being from a Greek city-state made you Greek, whether you qualified for actual citizenship or not; very few people actually were citizens, but all residents, including women and slaves, could be Greek. Greekness was cultural, especially linguistic, while Romanness was civic.
Which explains why such a small country is so genetically and phenotypically diverse. Some Greeks look Baltic or Scandinavian, some look Semitic, most look... let's say inbetween? Isolation between villages definitely helped, so there was less "enthropy", unlike, say, the Portuguese or the Sami (the "pure" ones at least), who are extremely diverse in origin, but were shrunken before expanding, resulting in a lot of distinctiveness, but not much diversity.
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Re: For Dominika and Others Interested in Lebanon
« Reply #11 on: October 13, 2019, 08:30:40 PM »
I was not sure if the dialects in Hellenic times were close enough that they knew they were speaking a common language or not.

Offline RaphaCam

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Re: For Dominika and Others Interested in Lebanon
« Reply #12 on: October 14, 2019, 12:45:33 AM »
I was not sure if the dialects in Hellenic times were close enough that they knew they were speaking a common language or not.
Dialects vastly and quickly died off in Hellenistic times. Attic and Ionic were definitely mutually intelligible: they had a close common root, Ionic was the main base for the Homeric corpus and most pre-Socratic philosophy was written in Ionic, while Socratics themselves wrote in Attic. Aeolic seems to have been more radically different, but I don't know how much this compromised mutual intelligibility. Doric seems to have sounded more like a wholly different language, although a close one...

Koine came as a mix of Attic and Ionic, some varieties keeping a substrate from previous dialects, but still pretty homogeneous compared to the picture in classical Greece. For some reason, it never really stuck in far southern Greece (Laconia) until modern times, with a minor dialect derived straight from Doric still being spoken by a few.
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Re: For Dominika and Others Interested in Lebanon
« Reply #13 on: October 14, 2019, 06:27:07 AM »
I was not sure if the dialects in Hellenic times were close enough that they knew they were speaking a common language or not.
Dialects vastly and quickly died off in Hellenistic times. Attic and Ionic were definitely mutually intelligible: they had a close common root, Ionic was the main base for the Homeric corpus and most pre-Socratic philosophy was written in Ionic, while Socratics themselves wrote in Attic. Aeolic seems to have been more radically different, but I don't know how much this compromised mutual intelligibility. Doric seems to have sounded more like a wholly different language, although a close one...

Koine came as a mix of Attic and Ionic, some varieties keeping a substrate from previous dialects, but still pretty homogeneous compared to the picture in classical Greece. For some reason, it never really stuck in far southern Greece (Laconia) until modern times, with a minor dialect derived straight from Doric still being spoken by a few.

The Aeolic dialect was what lyric poetry of around the 6th century BC was written in, so in later ages educated people definitely were passably familiar with it. On the other hand, the choruses in classical drama were written in the Doric dialect, which means that, considering the status of the theatre in Athenian society, virtually everyone could understand at least that literary version of it. The difference among dialects was mostly in the vowels, anyway. Roughly like Irish and Scots Gaelic today.
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Online Luke

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Re: For Dominika and Others Interested in Lebanon
« Reply #14 on: October 14, 2019, 10:25:06 AM »
^That is interesting to know, as currently I am reading English translations of three plays by Euripdes (Εὐριπίδης).

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Re: For Dominika and Others Interested in Lebanon
« Reply #15 on: October 14, 2019, 12:15:54 PM »
I was not sure if the dialects in Hellenic times were close enough that they knew they were speaking a common language or not.
Dialects vastly and quickly died off in Hellenistic times. Attic and Ionic were definitely mutually intelligible: they had a close common root, Ionic was the main base for the Homeric corpus and most pre-Socratic philosophy was written in Ionic, while Socratics themselves wrote in Attic. Aeolic seems to have been more radically different, but I don't know how much this compromised mutual intelligibility. Doric seems to have sounded more like a wholly different language, although a close one...

Koine came as a mix of Attic and Ionic, some varieties keeping a substrate from previous dialects, but still pretty homogeneous compared to the picture in classical Greece. For some reason, it never really stuck in far southern Greece (Laconia) until modern times, with a minor dialect derived straight from Doric still being spoken by a few.

The Aeolic dialect was what lyric poetry of around the 6th century BC was written in, so in later ages educated people definitely were passably familiar with it. On the other hand, the choruses in classical drama were written in the Doric dialect, which means that, considering the status of the theatre in Athenian society, virtually everyone could understand at least that literary version of it. The difference among dialects was mostly in the vowels, anyway. Roughly like Irish and Scots Gaelic today.
Yeah, that's good comparison, but with written word and with being used to the dialect, it should be much easier to understand. I was thinking more of a "pre-exposure" thing. For instance: Catalan is closer to Provençal than to Spanish, but even uneducated Catalans will understand Spanish with more ease, since they're more exposed.
"May the Lord our God remember in His kingdom all Holy Catholic Apostolic Church, which heralds the Word of Truth and fearlessly offers and distributes the Holy Oblation despite human deficiencies and persecutions moved by the powers of this world, in all time and unto the ages of ages."

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