Brit-Am Research Sources (4 May, 2014, 4 Iyar, 5774)
1. Renaissance Source: The Ten Tribes and Edomites in Thrace (southeast Europe) ?
Brit-Am Commentary and Notes on above source
2. Phoenicians in Spain
3. Sources on Tartessus in Spain and Tarshish. Extracts
1. Renaissance Source: The Ten Tribes and Edomites in Thrace (southeast Europe) ?
The truth of the christian religion in six books
By Hugo Grotius, Jean Le Clerc (1627)
translated by John Clarke, London 1829.
p.54 Herodotous undoubtedly put the Phoenicians for the Idumeans; as Aristophanes does in his play called the Birds where he calls the Egyptians and the Phoenicians, the circumcised. Ammonius, of the difference owords, says the Idumaeaus were not originally Jews but Phoenicians and Syrians. ...
The Colchians and their neighbours were of the ten tribes that were carried away and from thence some came into Thrace.
Thus the Scholiast on Aristophanes's Acharnenses says: "That the nation of the Odomants is the same as the Thracians, they are said to be Jews." Where by Jews, are to be understood improperly Hebrews, as is usual . From the Ethiopians circumcision "
p.65 So called from Esau who is called Ousoos by Philo Biblius. His other name was Edom which the Greeks translated Eruthram from whence comes the Erythraean [Redf] sea because the ancient dominions of Esau and his posterity extended so far. They who are ignorant of their origin confound them as we observed with the Phoenicians.
Brit-Am Commentary and Notes on above source:
(a) Colchis. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
In Greco-Roman geography, Colchis (Georgian: Kolkheti; Greek Kolkhis, presumably from Kartvelian olkheti or olkha) was the name for a region in the Southern Caucasus. Colchis was located on the eastern coast of the Black Sea, centered on present-day western Georgia.
The Colchians were the population native to Colchis. They are assumed to have been early Kartvelian-speaking tribes, ancestral to the contemporary groups of Svans, Mingrelians and Lazs. Ancestors of the Colchians were probably established on the Black Sea coast from as early as the Middle Bronze Age.
For centuries, until its annexation by Pontus in 164 BC, Colchis was an independent kingdom. This kingdom has been described in modern scholarship as "the earliest Georgian (political) formation". Colchis (also known in late Antiquity as Lazica, or Egrisi) would later contribute significantly to the development of medieval Georgian statehood, alongside Iberia.
Colchis is also an important land in Greco-Roman mythology, most notably as the kingdom of Medea and the Golden fleece, destination of the Argonauts.
The name of Colchis first appears in Aeschylus and Pindar. The earlier writers only speak about it under the name of Aea (Aia), the residence of the mythical king Aeates...
... According to Pliny the Elder:
'The Colchians were governed by their own kings in the earliest ages, that Sesostris king of Egypt was overcome in Scythia, and put to fight, by the king of Colchis, which if true, that the Colchians not only had kings in those times, but were a very powerful people.'
Overrun by the Cimmerians and Scythians in the 730s-720s BC, the kingdom disintegrated and came under the Achaemenid Persian Empire towards the mid-6th century BC. The tribes living in the southern Colchis (Tibareni, Mossynoeci, Macrones, Moschi, and Marres) ...
Colchis in mythology
Jason and the Argonauts arriving at Colchis. Argonautica tells the myth of their voyage to retrieve the Golden Fleece. ..
In Greek mythology, Colchis was the home of Aeetes, Medea, Golden Fleece, fire-breathing bulls Khalkotauroi and the destination of the Argonauts.[
Colchis is also thought to be the possible homeland of the Amazons.
According to the Greek mythology, Colchis was a fabulously wealthy land situated on the mysterious periphery of the heroic world. Here in the sacred grove of the war god Ares, King Aeetes hung the Golden Fleece until it was seized by Jason and the Argonauts. Colchis was also the land where the mythological Prometheus was punished by being chained to a mountain while an eagle ate at his liver for revealing to humanity the secret of fire. Amazons also were said to be of Scythian origin from Colchis.
Apollonius of Rhodes named Aea as the main city (Argonautica, passim). ...
(b) There had been a colony of Ancient Egyptians in the area. The Egyptians like the Hebrews and others did practise circumcision. Colchis may be the area known as Mutsri (i.e. Egypt) in Assyrian and other writings.
Herodotus describes the Colchian Egyptians as dark and curly-haired.
Passing over these monarchs, therefore, I shall speak of the king who reigned next, whose name was Sesostris. He, the priests said, first of all proceeded in a fleet of ships of war from the Arabian gulf along the shores of the Erythraean sea, subduing the nations as he went, until he finally reached a sea which could not be navigated by reason of the shoals. Hence he returned to Egypt, where, they told me, he collected a vast armament, and made a progress by land across the continent, conquering every people which fell in his way. ....
[2.103] In this way he traversed the whole continent of Asia, whence he passed on into Europe, and made himself master of Scythia and of Thrace, beyond which countries I do not think that his army extended its march. ... Returning to Egypt from Thrace, he came, on his way, to the banks of the river Phasis. ... Either he of his own accord detached a body of troops from his main army and left them to colonise the country, or else a certain number of his soldiers, wearied with their long wanderings, deserted, and established themselves on the banks of this stream.
[2.104] There can be no doubt that the Colchians are an Egyptian race. Before I heard any mention of the fact from others, I had remarked it myself. After the thought had struck me, I made inquiries on the subject both in Colchis and in Egypt, and I found that the Colchians had a more distinct recollection of the Egyptians, than the Egyptians had of them. Still the Egyptians said that they believed the Colchians to be descended from the army of Sesostris. My own conjectures were founded, first, on the fact that they are black-skinned and have woolly hair, which certainly amounts to but little, since several other nations are so too; but further and more especially, on the circumstance that the Colchians, the Egyptians, and the Ethiopians (Nubians), are the only nations who have practised circumcision from the earliest times. ...
[2.105] I will add a further proof to the identity of the Egyptians and the Colchians. These two nations weave their linen in exactly the same way, and this is a way entirely unknown to the rest of the world; they also in their whole mode of life and in their language resemble one another. The Colchian linen is called by the Greeks Sardinian, while that which comes from Egypt is known as Egyptian.
The Egyptian Colchians may have migrated to India as indicated elsewhere.
There were also elements from the Ten Tribes and from Esau (Edom) in the region. Idumaraz (Edom-Land) had been located in this area.
Thrace is identified with Bulgaria but in ancient times also encompassed neighboring portions of southeast Europe. The Idumantes and other groups from Edom were here. They too moved westward. The Cimmerians-Cymbry, Dacians, Getae, and Goths all included elements from the Ten Tribes; all moved westward; all sojourned for a while in the area of Thrace.
Colchis was the birthplace of Medea a personage in Greek Mythology. De Gobineau (Historie des Perses) already remarked that the name Medea was intended to indicate a linkage to the Medes. The Medes were close by and Colchis may have been part of their original expanse.
Moschi is mentioned in the Talmud as an area the Ten Tribes went to and as having been part of "The Cities of the Medes" (2-Kings 17). The Moschi were one of the numerous peoples in the Colchis area.
The name Iberia may derived from Iber meaning Hebrew.
2. Phoenicians in Spain
The early colony at Cadiz -- known to the Phoenicians as Gadir and to the Romans as Gades -- was gradually joined by more cities: Abdera (modern Adra), Sexi (modern Almunecar), Malaka (modern Malaga) and Carteia (on the Bay of Gibraltar). On the Spanish island of Ibiza was the colony of Ibshim, called Ebusus by the Romans.
3. Sources on Tartessus in Spain and Tarshish. Extracts
(a) THE LOST CITY OF TARTESSUS
by Steven A. Arts
The ancient Greek philosopher, Plato, told us about the virtual sea of mud and debris where once brave Atlantis stood. The German archaeologist Adolph Schulten thought that Tartessus was the historical Atlantis and set about searching for the ruins. ... I have to agree somewhat with Schulten. If there ever was a real Atlantis, Tartessus comes closest to fitting all of the various criteria.
The Old Testament is replete with references to that old city. Take II Chronicles 9:21 as an example: "For the kings ships went to Tarshish with the servants of Huram: every three years once came the ships of Tarshish bringing gold, and silver, ivory, apes and peacocks."
... To get the "ivory, apes and peacocks" the ships of Tarshish would have had to journey down the northwest coast of the African continent, past the Sahara desert to central Africa, in order to procure these exotic objects.
.... Tarshish was in a perfect geographical position to obtain gold and silver from the nearby Sierra Morena mountains in southern Spain, if that is indeed where it was located. Ivory, apes and peacocks could have come from the nearby northern and western African coast.
Doing research into the lost city of Tartessus or Tarshish, the conclusion is that the city was formerly located in southwestern Spain, very near the modern city of Cadiz, which was called Gades in ancient times. The ships of Tarshish were said to be located on the Atlantic side of the Pillars of Hercules, this last being identified with modern Gibraltar. Gades was later the most important Phoenician city on the Atlantic Ocean.
II Kings 10:22 says: "For the king had at sea a navy of Tharshish with the navy of Hiram: once in three years came the navy of Tharshish, bringing gold, and silver, ivory and apes, and peacocks." Again the references to African natural products. Tharshish is just a variant spelling of Tarshish in the Bible.
Carthaginian coins have been found in the Azores Islands, proof that the ancient mariners had the ability to travel great distances from the shore.
There is a further mention of silver in the Bible in Jeremiah 10:9. "Silver spread into plates is brought from Tarshish, and gold from Uphaz, the work of workmen, and the hands of the founder; blue and purple their clothing; they are all the work of cunning men."
II Chronicles 20:36 says: "And he joined himself with him to make ships to go to Tarshish: and they make the ships at Ezion-Geber." Now Ezion-Geber was an ancient city located on the Gulf of Aquaba, which is itself an arm of the Red Sea. Look at a map of that area. Ships built there would either have to be transported to the Mediterranean Sea overland through ancient Israel, or circumnavigate the entire continent of Africa. For the Suez Canal was far in the future. Perhaps that is why it took the ships of Tarshish so long to reach her European and west Asian ports of call. There is literary proof that the Phoenicians sailed from Ezion-Geber, around Africa, and through the Mediterranean Sea, back to Phoenicia, in ancient times.
II Chronicles 20:37 says: "Then Eliezer the son of Dodovah of Mareshah prophesied against Johoshaphat saying, because thou hast joined thyself with Ahaziah, the Lord hath broken thy works. And the ships were broken, that they were not able to go to Tarshish." Again an allusion to a naval disaster of some sort for Tarshish.
The area where Tarshish was supposedly located, the area of the Guadalquivir River in southwestern Spain, has a long history. In 1923 there was a late Bronze Age hoard of bronzes discovered off the coast of a city called Huelva. There were, among the many discoveries, an Irish lunate spearhead and some Cypriote finds.
That there were Irish finds in this area is not really surprising. In the area of northern Brittany lived a Celtic tribe which the ancients called the Oestrymians. This tribe was supposedly associated with the Tartessians, and were said to have helped those people mine the Scilly Islands off the southwest coast of Britain. That Celtic tribes as far apart as the Oestrymians and the Irish traded with one another is not surprising.
There is also an ancient tradition in Ireland that that island was invaded by the Irish from northern Spain. This was the group that tradition terms the Milesians.
It was often thought that the Phoenicians themselves mined the Scilly Islands. However, this new information tells us that the Tartessians, with the help of the local Oestrymians, actually mined the islands for tin. It makes sense, because in more historically recorded times, none other than Julius Caesar recorded how the Veneti, a Gaulish Celtic tribe in the same area of Brittany, were accomplished mariners. It is perhaps possible that the Oestrymians and the Veneti were even one and the same tribe, or closely related to one another.
There is also a direct tie-in between the Tartessians and Celtic tribes in the Iberian peninsula itself. That there were so-called Celt-Iberian tribes in what is now Spain and Portugal, has long been known. There has been found bits and pieces of various Celtic deities, such as one called Endovellicus. This deity was supposedly worshipped over a large area of southwestern Spain back then. Endovellicus was associated with the underworld or Otherworld. Endovellicus was an oracular deity and had only one temple, surrounded by minor shrines. Endovellicus was also associated with the boar, which was an extremely popular animal with the ancient Celts. Boars figure prominently in surviving Celtic tales. Laurel and pine were also associated with this god, which represented immortality.
It has also been speculated that Endovellicus was associated with several other Celtic deities such as Succelos (Dis Pater) and Cernunnos, the last being a horned or antlered god of fertility and plenty. The "Anacreon" by Strabo also links Tartessus with the popular demi-god Heracles. The first king of Tartessus was supposed to have been named Habis, who made laws to unite the people. The Tartessians also had close ties to the eastern Greeks, especially the lost Greek colony called Mainake in southwestern Spain.
(b) Tarshish and the Origins of the Gaelic Language: 1 by Ian Adamson
It was the special trade with Tarshish which made the commercial greatness of the Phoenecians, and led to their colonisation of Spain and the West African coast. This explains why the latter settlements are related to the earliest phase of Tyrian and Sidonian expansion in the early centuries of the first millennium B.C. Thus the farthest points were settled first, and the need for intermediate stations to secure connection was felt later. Josephus has fortunately preserved for us extracts from two Hellenistic historians, Dius and Menander of Ephesus, which supply us with a synopsis of the history of the Golden Age of Tyre. Thus we learn that Hiram 1, son of Abibal, reigned from 980 to 946 B.C. and was the great friend of Solomon, king of the Jews. The relations between Jews and Phoenecians had been generally friendly before this; it appears from Judges V. 17, Genesis XLIX, 13 and 20, that Asher, Zebulon, and Dan acknowledged some dependence on Sidon and had in return a share in its commence.
We know that Tartessos had been trading with the Greeks since the voyage of Colaeus beyond the Pillars of Hercules about 638 B.C. On the site of present day Marseilles in Southern France, the enterprising Greek mariners of Phocaea in Asia Minor founded about 600 B.C. the colony of Massalia (in Latin Massilia). ... It is, indeed, not improbable that the Phoenecians were settled at Marseilles before the Greek period, and that the very name of the place is Phoenecian.The people from Tartessos became important trading partners of the Phoenicians, whose presence in Iberia dates from the 8th century BC, and who nearby built a harbour of their own, Gades (present-day Cadiz).
(c) Tarshish and the Origins of the Gaelic Language: 2 by Ian Adamson
There is general agreement that the core area of Tartessos is around Huelva extending to the valley of the Guadalquivir, while the area under Tartessian influence is much wider
The Tartessian language is the extinct Paleohispanic language of inscriptions in the Southwestern script found in the southwest of the Iberian Peninsula mainly in the south of Portugal ( Algarve and southern Alentejo), but also in Spain (south of Extramadura and western Andalusia). There are 95 of these inscriptions with the longest having 82 readable signs. Around one-third of them have been found in Early Iron Age necropolises or other Iron Age burial sites associated with rich complex burials. It is usual to date them from the 7th century BC and consider the southwestern script to be the most ancient paleohispanic script with characters most closely resembling specific Phoenician letter forms found in inscriptions dated to c.825 BC.
Tartessian is usually treated as unclassified (Correa 2009, Rodriquez Ramos 2002, de Hoz 2010) though several researchers have tried to relate Tartessian with known families of languages. Koch (2010 and 2011) claims that much of the Tartessian corpus can be interpreted as Celtic, with forms possibly of sufficient density to support the conclusion that Tartessian was a Celtic language, rather than a non-Celtic language containing a relatively small proportion of Celtic names and loanwords .A critical view of Koch's work that considers it is not really convincing and that points out inconsistencies, in form and content, and ad hoc solutions, but recognizes that a strong vote for the Celtic hypothesis by Celtic nationalists can be found at Bryn Mawr Classical Review 2011.09.57.
The Turdetani of the Roman period are generally considered the heirs of the Tartessian culture. Strabo mentions that 'The Turdetanians are ranked as the wisest of the Iberians; and they make use of an alphabet, and possess records of their ancient history, poems, and laws written in verse that are six thousand years old, as they assert.' It is not known when Tartessian ceased to be spoken, but Strabo (writing c. 7 BC) records that 'The Turdetanians, and particularly those that live about the Baetis, have completely changed over to the Roman mode of life, not even remembering their own language any more.'
The legendary Ninth Legion, Legio IX Hispana, the Spanish Legion, was one of the oldest and most feared units in the Roman Army. Put together in Spain by Pompey in 65 BC, it came under the command of Julius Caesar who was Governor of Further Spain in 61 BC, and served in Gaul throughout the Gallic Wars from 58 - 51 BC, the Legion was decisive in ensuring Caesar's control of the Republic.
After Caesar's assassination it remained loyal to his successor Octavian. It fought with distinction against the Cantabrians in Spain from 25 - 13 BC but suffered terribly in the British revolt led by Boadicea ( Boudica) in 60AD, losing as many as 50 - 80 per cent of its men . However, several high ranking Officers who could only have served after 117 AD are well known to us, so we can safely assume that the core of the Legion was still extant in the reign of Hadrian, 117 - 138 AD.
The first great leader of the Feni (later 'Gaels') in Ireland, Tuathal (Teuto-valos) Techtmar, was probably a Roman soldier, commanding Q-Celtic speaking auxiliaries from Spain. The earliest known source for the story of Tuathal Techtmar's conquest of Ireland from the Aithech thuatha (Vassal Tribes) is a poem by Mael Mura of Othain AD 885. Mael Mura intimates that about 750 years had elapsed since Tuathal Techtmar had marched on the ancient British or Cruthin ritual centre of Tara to create his kingdom of Meath, which would date the invasion to the early 2nd Century AD. This is probably approximately correct. The standard pseudo-historical convention is employed, however, to make him an exiled Irishman returning with a foreign army.
The account in the Lebor Gabala Erenn, which does contain a shadow of history, is probably older and in this we see that Tuathal was born outside Ireland and had not seen the country before he invaded it. We can synchronise his invasion to early in the reign of Hadrian (122 - 138) and his death fighting the Cruthin near Antrim in the reign of Antoninus Pius (138 - 161).This fits with Juvenal (c60 to 127 AD) who wrote 'We have taken our arms beyond the shores of Ireland'.Tuathal may indeed represent the fictitious Mil Espane, or even the Ninth Legion, the Legio IX Hispana, but that we will probably never know.
The 5th and 6th centuries AD in particular are known to have been a period of unusually rapid development in the Gaelic language, as shown by the contrast between the general language of Ogham inscriptions and the earliest Old Gaelic known from manuscripts. There is little doubt that this was due to the widespread adoption of the Gaelic speech by the original inhabitants and the passage of older words and grammatical forms such as Old British(Welsh) into Gaelic. By this time, therefore, Gaelic had become, according to Heinrich Wagner, 'one of the most bizarre branches of Indo-European' since 'in its syntax and general structure it has many features in common with non-Indo-European languages.' These included Semitic and Hamitic influences, and point to an origin in Southern Spain, with Tarshish as the most obvious candidate.
Next issue of BARS:
More sources on Tarshish and a brief but possibly important summarization, comments, and notes on Tarshish, Atlantis, and Ireland by Yair Davidiy.