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Certain familiar Continental names appear to lurk in corners of Wales and Ireland, e.g. Fr. Charente, older Carantonus, Caranto= Carant (Worc.), Ir. Carad; Germ. Wetter Ir. Feōir (R. Nore); Gaul. Asmantia = W. Amman, Ir. Ammat. Similarly, Gaul. Amantia W. Afan (Glam.); Gaul. Sumina W. Syfyn-vey (Pemb.), for the retention of s in the Welsh name cf. Ir. Socc (R. Suck) W. Soch (Carn.); Med. Lat. Separis (Sèvre)=Ir. Sechair. The name Eden is found in Merion., Cumberl., Fife, and Roxburgh, and cannot very well be separated from Ir. Eithne (Kerry, Westm.) in spite of Ptolemy's Ituna. W. Irfon (Radnor) is doubtless the same name as Sc. Irvine, earlier Yrewin. Several Welsh forms contain the prefix try, which may help to explain the formation of Trisantona. The second element of Trydonwy, a river mentioned in a poem in the Red Book of Hergest, has a suspicious resemblance to the name of the Danube.





[Circulated at a Meeting of the Philological Society in September, 1913.] THE original home of the Slavs has been much in dispute. The older authorities, such as Klyúčevski, adhere to the traditional doctrine that from 300 B.c. onwards the Slavs were migrating by tribes (plemená) from the south-eastern slopes of the Carpathians to the plains of the Dněpr. The later school, such as Šákhmatov, consider that the homeland of the Slavs was on the Baltic, in Livonia and on the banks of the Western Dviná.

These theories are all speculative: against the first may be urged the difficulties of penetrating the solid wedge of Teutonic peoples situated between the Carpathians and the present Polish territory; against the second the age-long settlements of the Esths, Finns, and Courlanders (all Finnish tribes) on the shores of the Baltic, more or less in the present German-speaking provinces of Russia; the Lithuanians and Wends were also firmly established in the same region.

The Russian ethnologists have made much use of the vague indications of Herodotus and Strabo, and such later geographers as Procopius and others. But we have names only, and travellers' descriptions and those only at second-hand.

When in the ninth century A.D. the Slavs had become established from Novgorod in the north, right down the great water-way of Central Russia, the Dněpr, down to Kiev, authentic written history begins, from native Slav sources, from the Arabian historians who visited Russia from the Caspian and southern shores of the Black Sea, and from Byzantine sources. By this time the Slavs had divided into three great branches: the Western Slavs occupied Poland, the Eastern Slavs (the various Russian dialects) Russia from north to south (but in scattered settlements on Lake Ilmen down to Kiev; everything to the east, the present governments of Vologdá, Kostromá, Tambóv, Vorónež, Khářkov, Ekaterinoslav, belonged in the main to the Finns, save in so far as they were subject to nomad Turanian invaders); and, lastly, the Southern Slavs, in Serbia and Croatia.

Early in the ninth century Saint Cyril and Saint Methodius began proselytizing the Slavs. Like Ulfilas amongst the Goths, they had to create an alphabet, Latin with its twenty-four symbols (of which two, c and q, were pleonastic), Greek with its twentyfour being equally insufficient. A transliteration of the phonetic alphabet these great evangelists devised will serve to illustrate the sounds of the earliest Slavonic known. It will also elucidate the position of Slav amongst the Aryan languages. The dialect chosen by these apostles was Old Bulgarian, the language of the Slavs settled amongst the Bolgars (a Turanian tribe) in Thrace and Macedonia; another branch of the Bolgars remained behind in what is now North-Eastern Russia. The sounds phonetically represented were—


Slavonic vowels fall into two groups, 'hard' and 'soft', i.e. pronounced with a precedent


E(Modern Russian has a symbol for the hard sound).

Y(like in 'will' but more guttural).

O (like German Mond: if long, like aw in 'law'; two symbols derived from o and w).

U (as in 'pull'; symbol derived from ou).

(=; became mute in modern Russian).



Ie (represented by two symbols; the second one, E in Church Slavonic, also stands for Ia). I (as in French estime; three symbols derived from y, i, and u).

(Io was a Russian and Polish development not found in Church Slavonic; it came out of je in paroxytone.)


(like in brilliant; mute in Russian, save to 'soften' consonants).

Old Church Slavonic has quantity as well as accent; quantity has vanished (as in the Romance languages) except in Serbian. Nasal vowels

(as in French non). io.

(as in French hein). ie.

These nasals survive only in Modern Polish. In Russian they passed into u, iu, ia, or e. Their value may be gathered by the correspondence of the participial terminations: Greek -ovTes, -OVTI, Old Slavonic oci, Russian uci; cf. Latin gerentia, French gérance (i.e. žeras).


Gutturals: k, g, kh (symbol derived from Byzantine x).

Dentals: t, d.

Labials: p, b, ƒ (symbols derived from and 0), v (symbol derived from Byzantine B).

Nasal consonants: m, n.

Sibilants: s and §, ≈ and ž.

Fricatives, ts, and sc (or in earlier Church Slavonic pronounced it). In addition the Cyrillic alphabet retained and y.

Liquids: 7, r.

Church Slavonic and Lithuanian present the remarkable feature of great similarity with Sanskrit. Nouns and pronouns are similar in inflexion; the dual exists in verbs and nouns, as fully developed as in Sanskrit; Lithuanian retains the 8 of the nominative singular, which Slavonic dropped and Sanskrit vocalized into h and o. The broad distinction between Sanskrit and Slavonic sounds is the greater number of sibilants in Slavonic and the tendency to consonantal combinations and dropping of mediate vowels.

Where Sanskrit developed a full system of causative, desiderative, and intensive forms of verbs, Slavonic created the 'aspects'-the perfective, imperfective, semelfactive, inceptive, habitual, iterative, etc.; cf. the shades of meaning in 'say' and 'tell', German öffnen, eröffnen, 'to break' and 'to shatter'.

Church Slavonic (as also Modern Serbian and Bulgarian) had a full tense system of imperfect, aorist, and compound tenses. Modern Russian (i.e. the Great-Russian dialect of the Moscovite state, founded in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries by settlers from South Russia amongst the Finns) and Polish have dropped all the tenses except the present, form the past by means of the perfect participle, and distinguish the tenses by uses of the imperfective and perfective aspects'.

In Church Slavonic, Modern Serbian, and to a certain extent in Polish there is a law of the mutation of consonants before the 'hard' and 'soft' vowels. In Modern Russian this rule is only followed in derivatives. Thus & before soft vowels becomes cor ts (cf. Latin Caesar, French César, Italian Cesare (c)), g before soft vowels becomes z and (before e and i respectively), t before soft vowels becomes (Russian), šč (Old Slav.), d before soft

vowels becomes in Russian, d' in Serbian, žd in Church Slav., kh before soft vowels becomes s and s. In Modern Čech this scheme of mutation is even more complicated.

One grammatical feature is common to the Teutonic and Slavonic languages: the double inflexion of adjectives, nominal and determinative (obtained through a postponed article or pronoun incorporated with the nominal inflexions).

The vocabulary of the Slavonic languages is very different from that of most Aryan languages. The exposed position of the Slav tribes, their subjection to Turanian tribes, to the Mongols and alien races of all descriptions, have made the Slav stock very impure, and there are fewer common Aryan roots in Slavonic than perhaps in other kindred languages (save, perhaps, Celtic, in which the original Aryan form seems remotest).

With these few remarks on the position and linguistics of Slavonic it remains to mention some of the early literary products of mediaeval Russia.

In Church Slavonic proper there exist the Bible, the liturgies, and sacred literature generally. In the eleventh and twelfth centuries a modified form of the language was used, into which national characteristics gradually crept in; such instances may be found in Middle Bulgarian, Old Serbian, and Old Russian. The Slav countries of the Roman confession—the Croatians, Čechs, and Poles-adopted the Roman script, with many diacritical marks; the orthodox communities retained the Cyrillic with slight adaptations to their national dialects.

First and foremost amongst Early Russian writings the Chronicles should be assigned their high place. Nestor, a monk of Kíev, in about the middle of the eleventh century, is credited with the beginning of the wonderful series of minute annals, by means of which there are about eighteen or nineteen separate local Chronicles composed from Novgorod in the north, Súzdal in the east, Galicia in the west, and Kiev in the south-the pre-Tataric history of Russia can be traced out with a wealth of detail almost comparable with what the modern Press will afford the historian of the present age. The earlier traditions prior to 1050 are unreliable, but, despite learned attempts to shake them, the drift of them must be substantiated. The style is good, concise, picturesque, and vivid. Such ample stores of knowledge of the Anglo-Saxon days of England would render English history a matter of far greater certainty.

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