Wilson Gray hwgray at GMAIL.COM
Wed Apr 24 22:48:39 UTC 2013

On Wed, Apr 24, 2013 Larry wrote:

> Attila has always been a popular name for Turks

I've noticed that and long wondered about it. Is Attila considered to have
been a (kind of) Turk? And is it true that the name is, in fact, a Gothic
nickname, sourced from the same lexical item and with the same original
meaning - "daddy" - that Russian _otets_ "father" is sourced from?

Did anyone else see the interview with the uncle now living in Maryland?
His command of English was, IMO, impressively near-native, making me think
that he had been important enough to have received a dynamite education,
back in the old country. He pronounced his version of the family name
as ['tsarni] and spelled it out for reporters as T-S-A-R-N-I. As to whether
this is closer to the true Chechen pronunciation, further deponent sayeth
not, knowing nothing about the Chechens other beyond the fact that the
Russians have been shitting on the Chechens for centuries, since the days
of the tsars, and that various well-known Russians, including Pushkin, were
exiled thither as punishment, like unto getting  shipped out to the old
United States Colored Troops (out)post, Fort Huachuca, Arizona, from
Frankfurt, Germany.

If the uncle spoke the names of his nephews, I missed it. But he did
emphasize that neither of them had ever set foot into Chechnya.

All say, "How hard it is that we have to die!"---a strange complaint to
come from the mouths of people who have had to live.
-Mark Twain

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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