The racists/fascists/white supremacists have a grand plan


Marjorie Taylor Greene and Paul Gosar are firing up a new America First caucus. It is something to behold.

Wow. “Anglo-Saxon political traditions” and a return to “European” architecture, whatever that is. They didn’t bother with a dog-whistle, they’ve installed a foghorn on that jalopy.

They should have gone all out and spelled it “Amerikkka First”.

I notice that Louis Gohmert wants to join. I guess he figures to bring the intellectual artillery.

Comments

  1. mnb0 says

    “a return to “European” architecture”
    Let me guess, even make two guesses.

    Absolute monarchies. How more European can you get it?
    The political architecture made popular by Franco, Mussolini, Salazar, Antonescu und offensichtlich Herr Schicklgruber.

  2. stroppy says

    [blah blah blah]… European… [blah blah blah]… European…

    Awful lot of “Europe” in there. And to think, here we were, rolling along, so proud of developing our own identity, only to find out, nope, we still belong to England.

  3. birgerjohansson says

    Holy shit, there has been another mass shooting, eight confirmed dead in Indianapolis 😫

  4. kingoftown says

    Anglo Saxons causing trouble again? Sounds like you need a Great Heathen Army.

  5. mastmaker says

    That seems like a whole lot of “Wink, wink, nudge, nudge, know what I mean, know what I mean……”!

  6. raven says

    Cthulhu, this is cosmically stupid even for wacko right wingtnuts.

    ..strengthened by a common respect for uniquely Anglo-Saxon political traditions.

    The WASP’s, Anglo Saxons lost in the USA many decades ago!!!
    They are losers, outnumbered by…the Germans and Irish among others.

    German-Americans are America’s largest single ethnic group (if you divide Hispanics into Mexican-Americans, Cuban-Americans, etc). In 2013, according to the Census bureau, 46m Americans claimed German ancestry: more than the number who traced their roots to Ireland (33m) or England (25m).Feb 5, 2015

    German-Americans – The silent minority | United States
    https://www.economist.com › united-states › 2015/02/05

    The largest ethnic group by a long ways in the USA are Germans. Second are Irish. The English are third.

    The dreaded Great Replacement has already happened.
    Strangely enough, few people noticed and even fewer cared.
    Most likely because almost all European Americans are mixes anyway.

  7. cartomancer says

    Anyone who has studied actual Anglo-Saxon political traditions will be somewhat baffled at the sort of thing these people imagine is described by that term. The people of what is now England from the Seventh to the Eleventh centuries actually had a whole range of decentralised, consent-based local political structures that made Anglo-Saxon England quite unlike the more absolutist monarchies of the Carolingian, Ottonian and Moorish worlds. Continental European clergy, such as Grimbald of Rheims, moving from the courts of Charlemagne and Otto the Great to positions in Anglo-Saxon courts were amazed at how bureaucratic and independent the people in England were, and how little influence Kings and their appointees actually had. To such an extent that even the highly authoritarian feudal protocols of the Normans had to be massively checked when trying to govern a place like England. The first 150 years of Norman rule in England are essentially the story of the conflicts between the old Anglo-Saxon traditions of local autonomy and rule by local custom and precedential tradition and the Norman and Angevin assumption that they had total power and could do whatever they liked. Domesday Book, Henry I’s governing charter, The Anarchy, Henry II’s legal reforms, Magna Carta, it’s all part of a unique political story not found anywhere else in Europe.

    It does annoy the hell out of the Medieval historian me when people use “Anglo-Saxon” as a synonym for “English”. They are not the same thing at all.

    And the Classicist in me is very much riled up by this notion that “Classical” architecture (by which they inevitably mean Roman public buildings and their Greek predecessors) is essentially European and devoid of outside influences. Most of the truly monumental Roman projects from the Prinicipate were inspired by the monarchical prestige projects of the Diadochoi (successors of Alexander the Great), which drew on Egyptian, Syrian, Balkan, Persian and all kinds of other influences. The very marble of the Pantheon itself was quarried in Egypt.

    So, in sum, fuck off fascists and learn some history.

    That is all.

  8. raven says

    ..strengthened by a common respect for uniquely Anglo-Saxon political traditions.

    What are those uniquely Anglo-Saxon political traditions anyway?
    Lynchings?
    Civil Wars?
    Executing your opponents and rivals?
    Witch hunts and witch burnings?
    Fighting with the Vikings, Scottish, and French?
    Setting up colonies all over the world and then losing them?

    Democracy was mostly an ancient Greek tradition.

  9. unclefrogy says

    Nice to see that they are making in completely clear who they are and what they believe.
    I guess it is a case of not being a thought a fool but speaking out and removing all doubt.
    no rationalizations just come right out and declare yourself the enemy of democracy

  10. raven says

    Anti-German Sentiment Wikipedia

    In the 19th century, the mass influx of German immigrants made them the largest group of Americans by ancestry today. This migration resulted in nativist reactionary movements not unlike those of the contemporary Western world.[10] These would eventually culminate in 1844 with the establishment of the American Party, which had an openly xenophobic stance.

    The first peak of US Nativist and anti-immigration movements was the mid-19th century.
    The targets were German, Irish, and Catholics.
    There were riots that killed dozens or hundreds and a powerful political movement based on Nativist bigotry.

    The WASPs were afraid they would be outnumbered and…replaced.
    Which is what happened.
    And, no one really noticed or cares.

  11. raven says

    These people are way out there in La La land.
    There is no mass immigration into the USA any more.
    After 2009, more Mexicans left the USA than entered it.
    They are slaughtering a strawperson.

    Migration Flows Between the U.S. and Mexico Have Slowed …https://www.pewresearch.org › hispanic › 2015/11/19

    Nov 19, 2015 — Going the other way, about 1 million people left the U.S. for Mexico between 2009 and 2014. … The negative immigration flow from Mexico to the U.S. also is … The Mexican unauthorized immigrant population has continued to …

  12. blf says

    The entire document, America First Caucus Policy Platform (PDF) is very creepy.

    More snippets (it didn’t copy-and-paste cleanly, so any Tpyos offerings or similar are possibly not in the original but presumably the result my attempts to clean up the mess):

    Sovereignty America was founded on the basis of individual and state sovereignty, to ensure that no free American would be lorded over by a Monarch ever again. Unfortunately, bureaucrats in Washington, D.C. and the elites who control them have risen to form a new oligarchy — one that is far more decadent, corrosive and hostile to the will of the people than the Founders could have ever dreamed of. This is why sovereignty is of paramount importance to the AFC. […]

    Foreign Aid Whether it is aid for humanitarian or military purposes, sending taxpayer money outside of the nation is generally an unwise undertaking and an entanglement that rarely provides any benefit to our citizens. Often, these funds end up in the wrong hands, are squandered through corruption, or go toward the pet projects of liberal interventionists. With so many unmet needs in the United States, helping other countries with their infrastructure, their military, their immigration problems and their economies makes no sense.
      American tax dollars should not go toward teaching gender studies in Pakistan or supporting ideologically subversive non-governmental organizations (NGOs). […]

    (Accidently originally posted in poopyhead’s current [Pandemic and] Political Madness All the Time thread.)

  13. says

    “America First” has been a red flag for me for decades now. Is it time to burn the Reichs… I mean Congress yet? Oh yeah they tried that already. I guess they just weren’t ubermench enough.

  14. birgerjohansson says

    Let us make it clear that “European architecture” means Albert Speer stuff.
    Lots of neoclassical colonnades framing broad, straight avenues wide enough for the tanks rolling down two abreast.
    Acoustics favourable for Alte kameraden’ to be heard across town is an optional extra.

  15. petesh says

    @14: “Going the other way, about 1 million people left the U.S. for Mexico between 2009 and 2014.”

    See, they fled the Kenyan usurper. Surely they were battering down the wall again in 2017–2020, right?

  16. vereverum says

    Well, a bunch of Germans called Angles invaded Britain and renamed it England.
    There was no England in the British Isles before the Germans came.
    Then some other Germans, Saxons, thot it would be fun to invade so they did.
    Anglo-Saxon = German-German.

  17. blf says

    SC@17, “Gather round, little Tudors…”

    It occurred to me there might be a Horrible Histories song or sketch about this progeny of European architecture. I couldn’t think of one, and an admittedly very quick search didn’t find anything. However, there apparently is a fairly recent (2017) book in series, Gruesome Great Houses (Horrible Histories): “Discover all the foul facts about fifty gruesome great houses […]. From Holyroodhouse in Edinburgh to Buckingham Palace in London, HORRIBLE HISTORIES: GRUESOME GREAT HOUSES covers the history of Britain and Ireland from the time of the savage [sic] Stone Age right up until the present day. Full of dark mysteries, gruesome ghost stories and terrible tales of betrayal and revenge, it’s a seriously horrible read with all the gore and more.”

  18. says

    One of the best examples of Neoclassical architecture in the US is the Capitol building. During her first week in office, Greene helped incite and possibly abetted an attack on it.

  19. tacitus says

    Let us make it clear that “European architecture” means Albert Speer stuff.

    But there’s a twist — it will all be gilded to match the preferred stylings of their Dear Leader.

  20. blf says

    @23, Not gilded, but painted gold-ish.
    Of course, the invoices will say “gilded” with inflated rates, payable to Kushner Gilding LLC.

  21. StonedRanger says

    If Louis Gohmert is the ‘intellectual artillery’ does that make the donald their ‘intellectual Noocleear weapon’?

  22. robro says

    Where’s the Donation button? I’m sure this is just trolling the rubes for $$$.

  23. says

    ‘Anglo Saxon’ somehow became the catch-all phrase for people from England, i.e. WASP white Anglo Saxon protestant. Re read what Cartomancer wrote. The outrages you are listing Raven, occurred after the above mentioned Anglo Saxon pre Norman rule “the old Anglo-Saxon traditions of local autonomy and rule by local custom and precedential tradition” It was a unique and liberated way of life for Europe at that time – women were even able to own land and hold power – The Anglo Saxon realm and rule were virtually wiped out on that one day in 1066 – in fact Anglo Saxons were as hounded and excoriated as the Scots the Irish and the Welsh. Never was sure why the Anglo Saxons got the bad name rap as it was the Norman French (descended themselves from Viking invaders) and their descendants who produced almost all those rulers who did the terrible things you listed. Shit a bunch of those rulers never even spoke English (as it was outlawed for a time) and some kings like Richard I was in England a total of 6 months during his reign. Genetically, modern English folk are only one third Anglo Saxon and the Anglo Saxons never called themselves that. (Robin Hood was Anglo Saxon btw – those stories about the merry men in Sherwood Forest were about the Saxon resistance trying to survive under rule of the Normans. ) If anyone is interested and don’t know the gob-smackingly amazing year that was 1066 , read about it – it is better than any Game of Thrones episode ever imagined. You can’t make up people like Edward the Confessor, Earl Godwin, Harold, Tostig, Gyrth and Leofwine. William the bastard, and Harald Haardradda the 7 foot ‘Landwaster’ last Viking King of Norway. Miracles, oracles, treachery, betrayal, hostage swapping, ship wrecks, heroic rescues from the quick sands of Mont St,. Michel, military maneuvers that are still talked about in military academies to this , berserkers, amazing acts of grace and forgiveness to the defeated, (Harold to the survivors of Stamford Bride), acts of courage that bring me to tears, tragic deaths, democratic elections, tyranny, MacBeth (yes that one) and Halleys comet too! The Anglo Saxons were wonderful, creative, artistic, forward thinking and fair.

  24. xdrta says

    Fascinating stuff, no doubt, but I couldn’t get past “foreign citizens are imported en-masse.” Geez, imported, like wine or computers. Who knew?

  25. Marissa van Eck says

    Holy spicy sheepshit with extra onions.

    So…is this a sign of desperation, or is it a sign they feel they’re powerful enough to make this work? Either one’s unsettling.

  26. Alverant says

    #16 Don’t you mean “I’m sure this is just trolling for rubles”?
    America isn’t going to be great if we act like 50 mini-countries with their own set of laws. It didn’t work in the days of horse and buggy and isn’t going to work in the age of jets and internet.

  27. outis says

    Hang on a minute, “America first caucus”, right? So it’s not this:

    https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2021/apr/17/trump-thinktank-america-first-policy-institute

    the “America first policy institute” is being founded by someone else again then.
    Maybe because “Critics, however, regard it as a cash cow for alumni of the Trump administration whose stained reputations make it hard to find gainful employment.”
    So the Old Boy Network is not working for these carachters, and they must be creative, and go and grift elsewhere. More “impressionable people” easily separated from their cash I guess…

  28. lumipuna says

    ‘Anglo Saxon’ somehow became the catch-all phrase for people from England, i.e. WASP white Anglo Saxon protestant.

    I can only presume ethnically English people in the US started calling themselves by a euphemistic name because identifying as “English” in any sense would seem suspiciously like loyalty to the crown. Other names for English-Americans would include Anglo-American, Anglo, White (in sensu stricto) and American (the real sort). See also Anglican vs. Episcopalian church.

  29. davidc1 says

    @18 And searchlights used as a Cathedral of ice to hide the stormtroopers beer bellies .
    I have been a bit naughty on faceache again ,joined a group called ,English and Proud ,Patriots only .LOL
    Posted the bit below.

    “I joined this site because I thought it was a piss taking site that mocks people who have union jack tee shirts and tats ,who voted tory and for britshit ,who are rabid racists .
    It seems to be a site FOR people who have union jack tee shirts and tats ,who voted tory and britshit ,who are rabid racists .”

    Such fun .

  30. wzrd1 says

    I’m guessing that those from the old New Netherlands and Pennsylvania Dutch are cut out. Not to mention former Dane and Swede colonists.
    And Italians are totally out, along with the Irish…

  31. wzrd1 says

    Oh, Governor Tom Wolf mobilized 1000 National Guard troops to support Philadelphia when the Chauvin verdict is announced.

  32. Owlmirror says

    What Do We Mean by Anglo-Saxon? Pre-Conquest to the Present

    The results of this study have implications for how the field of medieval studies, and studies of pre-Conquest England in particular, use Anglo-Saxon. Not only is the term analytically problematic because it conflates ethnically and politically distinct peoples in the pre-Conquest era, but its present-day use as a ethno-racial identity marker inevitably associates the field with race and whiteness at a time when the field is striving to break from its roots in eighteenth- and nineteenth-century, ethno-nationalist thinking.

  33. Ridana says

    “Who, me? I didn’t write that. I don’t even know the people on my staff who did. I have a lot of staff. Never met ’em. Never read this before.”

  34. raven says

    Ironically, one of the founders of the America First caucus is Paul Gosar, R Arizona.
    That guy isn’t even close to being an Anglo-Saxon.
    He is Slovenian and Basque.

    Wikipedia

    Gosar was born in Rock Springs, Wyoming, on November 27, 1958.[8][9] He is the oldest of the seven sons and three daughters[10][11] born to Antone John Gosar and Bernadette M. (née Erramouspe) Gosar. His paternal grandparents were Slovenian and his maternal grandparents were Basque immigrants from Banca, on the Franco-Spanish border.[12]

    Historically, the Slovenians were discriminated against as Slavs. The Basques were lumped in with the Hispanics and discriminated against on that basis and also because they competed with white landowners in the American West.

    If we call Americans of English descent “Anglo Saxons”, which many people on this thread have already pointed out is probably wildly wrong, than the target of MJ Greene/Gosar’s scam caucus is 8% of the US population.

  35. mailliw says

    America First?

    I presume this includes Canada and everywhere south of the Rio Grande?

  36. says

    What is it with fascists and “classical architecture”? Thierry Baudet keeps banging that same drum. Is it a dog whistle that means “Albert Speer”?

  37. KG says

    und offensichtlich Herr Schicklgruber. – mnb0@1

    It’s unfortunate that the first comment on a thread focused on the historical ignorance of the far right, should perpetuate a silly piece of historical ignorance. Adolf Hitler’s name was Adolf Hitler. He was never called Schiklgruber, and referring to him by that name does not, in fact, establish one’s anti-fascist credentials, nor score off Hitler himself, who has been dead since 1945. It just shows that one is a numpty. Hitler’s father was born Alois Schicklgruber to the unmarried Maria Schicklgruber (notice that the spelling is different from mnb0’s, although German surnames did tend to vary in spelling even in the 19th century – see below), but changed his name in 1876-7 (the process involved several steps), 11-12 years before Adolf Hitler’s birth, to a variant of that of his stepfather and putative biological father, Johann Georg Hiedler.

  38. tacitus says

    Marjorie Taylor Greene scraps planned launch of controversial ‘America First’ caucus amid blowback from GOP (CNN)

    Absolute joke. Of course, now she’s taking the “safe” option of following along with whatever Trump comes up with instead.

  39. Tethys says

    I assume Rep. Q word salad Greene has learned some real history about the Anglo-Frisian and Saxon people’s.

    The CNN article announcing her abandonment of the half-baked idea is notable for the quotes from McCarthy and Cheney declaring such nativist racist ideas anathema to the party of Lincoln.

    Also notable is the claim by Gosar that he never supported this ‘plan’ and had zero knowledge of it before it was reported on Friday.

  40. lumipuna says

    If we call Americans of English descent “Anglo Saxons”, which many people on this thread have already pointed out is probably wildly wrong, than the target of MJ Greene/Gosar’s scam caucus is 8% of the US population.

    In relation to my previous comment at 37, I suspect a much larger portion of US white people might actually identify as “Anglo-Saxon” than “English descent”, precisely because the former term has different connotations. AFAIK most US white families descend from a varying mix of various European ethnicities, mostly other than English, but have long assimilated into the dominant white colonial culture. This culture also has highly mixed origins, but it could be considered at least nominally English based (more than anything else), if only because the British colonial authorities managed to instill English language on the main colonial population.

    Thus, “Anglo-Saxon” has come to mean more than just people of mostly or entirely English descent. It seems to mean people fully affiliated with the mainstream English-speaking white US culture, without any substantial heritage from recent immigrant/minority ancestors. Obviously, this doesn’t include all US whites, probably not even most, but it probably does include much more than 8% of the US population. In a pinch, any white-skinned English speaker who wanted to hang out in US ethnonationalist circles could plausibly identify themselves as “Anglo-Saxon”.

  41. PaulBC says

    lumipuna@51

    It seems to mean people fully affiliated with the mainstream English-speaking white US culture, without any substantial heritage from recent immigrant/minority ancestors.

    This seems similar to the demographic category non-Hispanic whites which is common to see on survey results, though it sets up an unlikely dichotomy that if you are white, you are either English-speaking or Spanish-speaking.

  42. Rob Grigjanis says

    I’ve often wondered why the Welsh and Gaels refer to the English by their words for ‘Saxon’. Particularly weird for the Scots, since they were dealing with Angles.

  43. PaulBC says

    lumipuna@51

    In a pinch, any white-skinned English speaker who wanted to hang out in US ethnonationalist circles could plausibly identify themselves as “Anglo-Saxon”.

    As a white American of Irish Catholic descent, I can’t envision any situation in which I’d want to identify myself as “Anglo-Saxon.” Those taking the race angle would traditionally go for “Celtic” which is also nonsensical, but who knows what they do now?

    It was interesting living in Switzerland for a year and learning about the Celtic origin of the names of some towns around Zürich. Those Celts got around.

  44. Rob Grigjanis says

    PaulBC @55:

    Those Celts got around

    No kidding. Most French, British and Central Europeans have a large chunk of Celtic-speaking ancestry. A fair amount in Spain and Portugal as well. And of course that’s not a racial thing. The spread of agriculture/language/culture doesn’t always translate into mass migrations.

  45. Rob Grigjanis says

    I should have said that the spread of language etc doesn’t always imply population displacement.

  46. stroppy says

    lumipuna @ 51
    Anglo-Saxons, the original anglophones.

    I’m not sure how many Americans have any clear idea of what Anglo-Saxon actually means, but I suspect this is more about it having the caché of mythological grandeur. It practical terms it’s about how long-contentious language policy meshes with long-contentious immigration policy here. It’s about conformity; you don’t necessarily have to be white, so long as you buy into the premise, which is easier if you grew up speaking English, were inculcated with American exceptionalism, and are afraid of change– oh, and so long as you don’t get uppity.

    ‘Race’ in general has always been a very flexible term that depends on who’s using it and the exigencies of the moment. Kind of an all purpose blunt weapon.

  47. lumipuna says

    PaulBC:

    This seems similar to the demographic category non-Hispanic whites which is common to see on survey results, though it sets up an unlikely dichotomy that if you are white, you are either English-speaking or Spanish-speaking.

    Indeed, white Spanish speakers seem to be the one white linguistic minority prominent enough to warrant recognition in the census and general parlance, while others are lumped with English speakers in some “properly white” category. Probably in part because Hispanic people in US as a whole are largely perceived as non-white.

    Rob Grigjanis – AFAIK “Saxon” was apparently used in Roman Britain as a lump name for the Germanic tribes who raided the coast and eventually settled in Britain. I suppose British Celts picked it from the Romans and passed it on to Gaelic Celts.

  48. lumipuna says

    Anglo-Saxons, the original anglophones

    Or, depending on dialect, the original saxophones…

    I’m not sure how many Americans have any clear idea of what Anglo-Saxon actually means, but I suspect this is more about it having the caché of mythological grandeur. It practical terms it’s about how long-contentious language policy meshes with long-contentious immigration policy here.

    Ah, that’s better phrased than I could ever manage. Thanks.

  49. Rob Grigjanis says

    lumipuna @59: IIRC (sorry if I don’t) you’re Finnish? Is that how the Finnish word for Germany came to be Saksa?

  50. Tethys says

    Saxons take their name from the seax. A big knife, or small sword. They were not invaders, contrary to Bede.

    The entire narrative of Anglo Saxon invaders from the continent colonizing Britian and rescuing it after Rome left is not supported by modern archeology in England.

    St. Hilde is just one example of the high status of women in early medieval A-S culture. They also had elected rulers and a political assembly called a Thing that is the ancestor of democracy.

    I am constantly surprised by how much litigation and the law are referenced in the ancient sagas of supposed ‘barbaric’ Germanic tribes.

  51. lumipuna says

    Tethys 62: Romans picked the name Saxon after one Germanic tribe was already using it for themselves. I know the traditional invasion narrative is disputed, but I suppose at least some Germans did settle in Britain to transfer the language.

    Rob 61: Yes, we use Saksa for Germany and Saksi for Saxony/Saxon but I think these were originally variants of the same word.

    Also, the word seax seems to have been borrowed into Swedish and Finnish as some type of knife, and more recently as “scissor blade”. In modern Swedish, scissors is sax, and the Finnish word is sakset (plural noun for two blades).

  52. davidc1 says

    @41 LOL There are some right berks on there .Below is a typical post.

    “This one is for the child marxist in this group.
    Leftist always bring evil;
    Benito Mussolini was an Italian political leader who became the fascist dictator of Italy from 1925 to 1945. Originally a revolutionary socialist, he forged the paramilitary fascist movement in 1919 and became prime minister in 1922.”

    Then one bloke commented that the nazis were socialists because the word appeared in the name .

    He posted something about this guy .”The Nazis Were Leftists, Deal With It | by Paul H Jossey | Medium” https://paulhjossey.medium.com/the-nazis-were-leftists

    I told him to go read a proper history book by a real historian .

  53. PaulBC says

    davidc1@64 Yawn. Yes, all the bad fascists are really socialists. It’s amazing where motivated reasoning can take you, along with a dash of No True Scotsman.

  54. raven says

    The Nazis were Socialists like North Korea lives up to its formal name of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea.

  55. birgerjohansson says

    KG @ 48
    You mean we “patriotic” Mericans can change our names to Hiedler without libruls getting the joke (sinister laughter).
    .
    Lumipuna @ 63
    I like how Finland is doing its own thing. Apparently Finland and Estonia both refer to Sweden as Ruotsi, dating back to the time when viking-age Swedish travellers from Roslagen made the Baltic region unsafe. “Rus” in Russia is also believed to derive from a viking-age dynasty.
    BTW I know Hungarian and Finn languages no longer have any shared vocabulary but the frequency of consonants or some other factor makes the languages sound related to someone like me who do not understand a word beyond “perkkele”. An echo of a distant, pastoralist past?

  56. KG says

    if only because the British colonial authorities managed to instill English language on the main colonial population – lumipuna@51

    I don’t think the colonial authorities needed to “instill English language”. Obviously there were significant numbers of non-English-speakers among the pre-1776 European settlers in the 13 colonies, but the majority would have been English-speaking throughout the 18th century. It’s a myth that the official language of the USA could have been German.

    The entire narrative of Anglo Saxon invaders from the continent colonizing Britian and rescuing it after Rome left is not supported by modern archeology in England.

    Source? Certainly there doesn’t seem to have been more than a few percent of incomers, but AFAIK majority opinion among relevant experts is still that a considerable degree of elite replacement occurred over much of England. I’ve seen suggestions (I think from Stephen Oppenheimer) that there may have been Germanic speakers in eastern parts of England in pre-Roman times, but I think that’s still very much a minority view. And incidentally, the traditional narrative is more that the Anglo-Saxons came in and trashed the place, rather than rescuing it.

    The spread of agriculture/language/culture doesn’t always translate into mass migrations. – Rob Grigjanis@56

    Certainly. But recent evidence does suggest a large degree of population replacement in Britain in the Bronze Age, the incomers probably being Indo-European speakers.

  57. lumipuna says

    birgerjohansson 68:

    Apparently Finland and Estonia both refer to Sweden as Ruotsi, dating back to the time when viking-age Swedish travellers from Roslagen made the Baltic region unsafe. “Rus” in Russia is also believed to derive from a viking-age dynasty.

    Yes, I vaguely recall that the Estonian version is spelled Rootsi. In Finnish, Estonia (native name Eesti) is called Viro, after Virumaa region. Russia is traditionally called either Ryssä/Ryssänmaa (from Swedish Ryssland) or Venäjä (possibly an ancient Germanic loan, possibly related to the Vends). Historically, Ryssä was more commonly used but it eventually became a slur due to excessive negative connotation and was mostly dropped after WWII.

    BTW I know Hungarian and Finn languages no longer have any shared vocabulary but the frequency of consonants or some other factor makes the languages sound related to someone like me who do not understand a word beyond “perkkele”. An echo of a distant, pastoralist past?

    I once heard a brief sample of spoken Hungarian, and it was very foreign sounding, I’d say “Slavic sounding” for lack of a better description. North Sami sounds eerily familiar to me, even more than Estonian, while being entirely unintelligible. No wonder, since Finnish language apparently originated when local Sami speakers adopted a Finnic language from Estonia, while retaining their native accent and hoarding lots of Germanic loan words.

    (BTW, perkele is usually spelled with one k, though sometimes the spelling “perkkele” is used to imitate someone saying the word in Swedish accent.)

  58. Rob Grigjanis says

    lumipuna @70:

    Finnish language apparently originated when local Sami speakers adopted a Finnic language from Estonia

    I’ve read that Latvian (my parents’ native language) arose from Finnic speakers (Livonian or closely related?) adopting a Baltic language. Ain’t language fun?

  59. lumipuna says

    KG 69:

    I don’t think the colonial authorities needed to “instill English language”. Obviously there were significant numbers of non-English-speakers among the pre-1776 European settlers in the 13 colonies, but the majority would have been English-speaking throughout the 18th century. It’s a myth that the official language of the USA could have been German.

    Maybe “instill” is too strong a word. However, AFAIK the Middle Colonies originally mainly spoke Dutch (NY/NJ) or Swedish (DL/PA), and by early 18th century they were flooded mainly with English speaking (mainly Scots-Irish rather than English) and German speaking folks. While some pockets of German speakers persisted in Pennsylvania, English did win among the PA frontier pioneers, who later contributed hugely into the white population growth and settlement of interior North America. By the time this frontier expansion begun in earnest, English had already won, but initially it was was perhaps close that PA pioneers didn’t end up speaking Swedish or German all the way to Oregon Trail.

  60. stroppy says

    Well, in the late 1600s Pennsylvania became an English colony under Willam Penn, and to the extent there was a flood it was English settlers early on. (Pennsylvania = Penn’s woods)

    There was some mixing of language (Pennsylvania “dutch”–actually German) as in “Throw Mamma down the stairs some laundry;” “Outen the lights;” “It’s spritzing outside;” and so on that you might still hear there. German is still spoken among the Amish.

  61. lumipuna says

    My information is from a book by Peter G. Jordan and Mats Kaup – I don’t remember the title verbatim, but it was about the origin of the Pennsylvania backwoods frontier in 17th and early 18th century.

    As many here know, Delaware originated as a Swedish colony in 1638. By the time it was taken over by England in 1664, there was a small population of ethnic Swedes, Finns, Danes, Dutch etc. who happily intermarried and increasingly spoke some sort of common Swedish-based frontier gibberish. The hardiest of these settlers began spreading into what later became Pennsylvania and southwestern New Jersey, paving way for the English and others who were less accustomed to clearing woodlands.

    Indeed, by about 1700, the “Swedes” of Delaware river valley were already outnumbered by the English (and to lesser extent Welsh, Scots etc.) brought in under William Penn, and began also adopting English language through intermarriage and the influence of colonial authority. Then around 1700-1730 there was an even bigger influx of Scots-Irish and German settlers in the region, and these greatly contributed to the cultural and genetic heritage of Pennsylvania frontier population. During this period, the frontier began advancing rapidly from Delaware valley into Schuylkill valley and on to Appalachia.

  62. PaulBC says

    @75 I now wonder if this somehow explains the presence of Swede Rd and Swede Square in Norristown, PA (a borough near Philadelphia). I can’t find very much in a preliminary search.

  63. Tethys says

    It is unfortunate that we have such paltry written historical records for the period between Rome leaving and the establishment of the various Anglian and Saxon settlements. We know about the Merovingians, and their animosity towards Saxons, but the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle isn’t written until the 900s. Bede was writing in the 700s, and his evangelizing about a country in darkness is referring to the people reverting to pagan religious practice, or being the wrong sort of Christian. He certainly didn’t seem to be bothered by pagan Anglo-Saxon Æthelfrid slaughtering the Briton priests.

    There had been Christian monasteries in Ireland and Britain for hundreds of years before Augustine ever showed up. They are mentioned as centers of great learning in the dark ages, and many of them were run by women and coed.

    Britain AD: The invasion that never was.

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