Etruscan

David L. White dlwhite at texas.net
Thu Mar 22 16:51:10 UTC 2001

```        Surely Demon-David (Destroyer of Self) cannot be expected to take
all this lying down ...

>         It is not as if I am trying to connect /turs^/ with "Veia", after
> all.  More to the poinst, it appears that the subtlety of my argument about
> "Tarchun" has not been appreciated.  We begin with two propositions of quite
> uncertain validity, plus one fact:

>         1) That "Tarchun" is to be connected with /tors^/.
>         2) That the Etruscans (or at least an elite among them)
>             came from Anatolia.
>         3) Tarchun was the first Etruscan city.

>         Now if both these propositions are true, we have an explanation for
> why the first Etruscan city should bear the name "Tarchun".  If they are not
> both true, then there is only a one in seven chance that the first Etruscan
> city would just happen to bear the only name among seven that is conceivably
> relatable to /tors^/.   Thus it would appear that there is a 6 out of 7
> chance that both propositions are true.  This sort of argument is surely not
> traditional, but that is irrelevant to its validity.

Before you going throwing traditional methodolgy, which has led to
spectacularly successful results in the usage of scholars far greater than
you will ever be, out onto your intellectual garbage heap, you might want to
consider why it developed in the first place.  (Here is a good rule:  never
break a rule until you have understood why it is a rule.)  In this case, the
problem is that is we accept things that have, say, a 90% chance of being
true as being in effect 100% true, it does not take long until any chain of
reasoning based upon such things reaches "certain" conclusions which are
probably false.  I am too lazy to do the math right now, but I think it only
takes about six or so iterations until the probability of all of them being
true (and therefore of any propostion dependent on all of them being true)
drops to below 50.  That, for your information, is why the validity of
propositions is traditionally required to approach 100 before they are
regarded as valuable.

>         It is fairly normal for aspirates to have voiceless fricatives as
> allophones, or such sound changes as we see in Greek would not get off the
> ground.  Furthermore, the variation we see in "mach" '5' versus "muvalch"
> '50' suggests an original rounded /x/ (or at least [x]), as it is a lot
> easier to motivate loss of [x] than loss of [kh].  The very common occurence
> of "chv" after sonorants, particularly /l/ and /r/, suggests a unitary
> phoneme that had to be spelled as a sequence owing to the nature of the
> spelling system.  Etruscan "Tarchun" could quite possibly go back to such
> a thing, which in some cases might have been a later development of /s^/,
> for phonetic reasons which have been given before.

So Etruscan has a phoneme, rounded /x/, that no one has ever noticed
before?  I think the specialists can be trusted to do their jobs a little
better than that.

>         The various changes it went through rendered the original word
> (/tursik-/?) no longer recognizable as the same word as /troia/ by the time
> "the glory that was Troy" came along in a Greek guise.  So they engaged in
> a relatively straightforward re-borrowing.  Stranger things have happened.

Vaguely as in "shirt" and "skirt", I suppose.  Possible, but you
seem awfully dependent on positing things which are merely possible, then
casually proceeeding to regard them as probable.  The same sad syndrome is
evident in your attempts to explain the long vowel of the adjective /troo-/.

Demon-David (Destroyer of Self)

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