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I have also wondered about the relationship between the Hungarians and the various peoples-languages around the Baltic. There was such diversity in 1,000AD.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Sun Mar 15th, 2015 at 02:30:58 PM EST
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There is a so-called Baltic language family, which includes Latvian and Lithuanian (and mostly extinct other dialects like the pre-German original Prussian). This is thought to be related most closely to the Slavic family (though, again, the notion of a simple family tree ignores mixing). The main languages further north (Estonian, Finnish) are of the Finnie branch of the Finno-Ugric language family, thought to be the result of a wantering from the Urals across the far north. Though, again, there was probably substantial mixing, which is undeniable in the case of the also Finno-Ugric Sami [Lapps] whose genetic analysis shows a strong local component with at least 5,000 years of separate history.

BTW, Ukrainian nationalists like to emphasize that the Muscovite Rus assimilated a significant Finno-Ugric population, thus they believe Ukrainians as successors to the population of the Kievan Rus are more properly Slavic than Russians. (Which is also funny, considering all the nomadic people moving through the are of modern Ukraine from east to west who mixed with the Slavs there.)

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.

by DoDo on Sun Mar 15th, 2015 at 04:03:52 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Also, from the age of the Scythians to that of the Mongols, the greatest diversity was doubtless among the nomadic people of the central Eurasian steppes: a succession of short-lived tribes moving great distances, changing alliances and marrying all over the place (also by robbing women), taking along the language and traditions of all the more settled people along its boundaries. There are literally dozens of these that reached Europe but quickly disappeared as a distinct group (like the Huns, the Avars, the Alans, the Pechenegs or the Cumans) for which historians' ideas of origins are at best speculative, but who are present among the ancestors of modern Europeans.

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Sun Mar 15th, 2015 at 04:33:39 PM EST
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