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Thread: Why some people believe that Alexander the Great was not Greek when ...

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    Why some people believe that Alexander the Great was not Greek when ...



    - He spoke Greek
    - He worshiped the same Gods as the rest of the Greeks
    - His name is Greek
    - His father's name is Greek (Philip)
    - His mother's name is Greek (Olympias, she comes from Epirus)
    - His cousin was another great military genius, Pyrrhus of Epirus
    - His favourite heroes were the Argives(= Greeks) of the Trojan War, and especially Achilles
    - His teacher was Aristotle (no comments for that)
    .
    .
    .

    And above all, why some people that are of another origin, still insist that [Slavs] are Macedonians, when it is clear by the Byzantine chronicles that these people came to the Greek peninsula a thousand years later?

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    Of course he was greek, or at least hellenic, since he spoke a hellenic language. Don't mind what slavs says.

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    1 out of 1 members found this post helpful.
    Quote Originally Posted by Echetlaeus View Post
    .

    And above all, why some people that are of another origin, still insist that [Slavs] are Macedonians, when it is clear by the Byzantine chronicles that these people came to the Greek peninsula a thousand years later?
    What if people in Macedonia (FYROM) are genetically ancient Macedonians/Greeks and only in minority and Culturally Slavic? Can't they enjoy Alexander as their hero too, just because they speak not Greek language now?


    Look at the numbers of Y haplogroups for Macedonia and Northern Greece here:
    http://www.eupedia.com/europe/europe...logroups.shtml
    They are pretty much same people, aren't they?

    There is bigger genetic discrepancy between N Greece versus South, than between N Greece and Macedonia (FYROM).
    Be wary of people who tend to glorify the past, underestimate the present, and demonize the future.

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    Quote Originally Posted by LeBrok View Post
    What if people in Macedonia (FYROM) are genetically ancient Macedonians/Greeks and only in minority and Culturally Slavic? Can't they enjoy Alexander as their hero too, just because they speak not Greek language now?


    Look at the numbers of Y haplogroups for Macedonia and Northern Greece here:
    http://www.eupedia.com/europe/europe...logroups.shtml
    They are pretty much same people, aren't they?

    There is bigger genetic discrepancy between N Greece versus South, than between N Greece and Macedonia (FYROM).
    I think what upsets Greeks is that many Macedonians say Alexander the Great spoke a Slavic language. That isn't really a historically supportable opinion, IMO, but a lot of Macedonians actually seem to believe it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Aberdeen View Post
    I think what upsets Greeks is that many Macedonians say Alexander the Great spoke a Slavic language. That isn't really a historically supportable opinion, IMO, but a lot of Macedonians actually seem to believe it.
    Wow, never heard about this, lol. Although, why to get emotional about such insanity?

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    0 out of 1 members found this post helpful.
    Quote Originally Posted by LeBrok View Post
    What if people in Macedonia (FYROM) are genetically ancient Macedonians/Greeks and only in minority and Culturally Slavic? Can't they enjoy Alexander as their hero too, just because they speak not Greek language now?


    Look at the numbers of Y haplogroups for Macedonia and Northern Greece here:
    http://www.eupedia.com/europe/europe...logroups.shtml
    They are pretty much same people, aren't they?

    There is bigger genetic discrepancy between N Greece versus South, than between N Greece and Macedonia (FYROM).
    There is a solution for that: FYROM should be part of Greece and the people living there, since they are Greek (as you say), should learn the Greek language as well.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Echetlaeus View Post
    There is a solution for that: FYROM should be part of Greece and the people living there, since they are Greek (as you say), should learn the Greek language as well.
    Shouldn't the solution belong to the people in a democratic way? If anything Greek history should teach you this.

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    1 out of 1 members found this post helpful.
    Quote Originally Posted by Echetlaeus View Post
    - He spoke Greek
    - He worshiped the same Gods as the rest of the Greeks
    - His name is Greek
    - His father's name is Greek (Philip)
    - His mother's name is Greek (Olympias, she comes from Epirus)
    - His cousin was another great military genius, Pyrrhus of Epirus
    - His favourite heroes were the Argives(= Greeks) of the Trojan War, and especially Achilles
    - His teacher was Aristotle (no comments for that)
    .
    .
    .

    And above all, why some people that are of another origin, still insist that [Slavs] are Macedonians, when it is clear by the Byzantine chronicles that these people came to the Greek peninsula a thousand years later?
    He spoke Macedonian to his troops, and not Greek. It is documented many times while addressing his troops.
    He knew Greek because he was taught Greek, It was suppose to be the civilizalized language in its time. It's like in medieval and renaissance, Italy, france, germany, england, Spain etc all send their sons ( if they could afford it ) to be taught Latin, because it showed civilization more than the other languages.

    Epirotes and Macedonians where closely related along with the Molossians and the other 13 epirote tribes in the area, but they where classified as Barbarians by the hellenic Greeks.

    Ancient Macedonians, language was not Greek or slavic or thracian or illyrian............it was Macedonian and is extinct now like illyrian and thracian are
    có che un pòpoło no 'l defende pi ła só łéngua el xe prónto par èser s'ciavo

    when a people no longer dares to defend its language it is ripe for slavery.

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    Alexander the great as far as recorded history is concerned, is portrayed as Macedonian
    and present day Macedonians do not consider themselves as greek

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    3 out of 3 members found this post helpful.
    When people struggle to communicate it's usually because of an emotional issue, in this case it is political.

    The debate is cultural and historical but the solution and the problem's origin is political.

    This is a political problem and has to do with national identity and political affiliation (first it was national boundaries following Balkan war, then it morphed into an issue of cold war boundaries), not ethnicity. The issue of who and what it means to be Macedonian began with the Balkan war between the Greeks and Bulgarians (not so much the Yugoslavs) in northern Greece. Bulgarians aligned themselves with Germany resulting in them losing land to Greece ... however the humiliation of these 'other' Greeks was perpetuated for years following the iron curtain cutting through Greece dividing Greeks into communists (assisted by the Yugoslavs/USSR/Bulgarians) and royalists (UK/France/USA). This civil war tore Greek society in two, some communists went north into exile to Yugoslavia, the USSR and Bulgaria complicating matters, creating anti-Greek propaganda which was in actual fact anti-Royalist but this line became blurred. Many Greek children from communist families in Greece were sent to schools in Yugoslavia and many lost track of their parents and ended up in orphanages. The problem is political, to be patriotic and Greek has somehow always been an issue for pro-communist Greek families ... how could they support a state that failed them to such an extent. People outside Greece (Westerners) and many fanatics within today's Balkan region don't understand this and simply take a nationalistic view. The irony of the situation is that the Western powers supported Greece in it's attempt to have sovereignty over northern Greece during the cold war, a challenge with so many Greek communist supporters around and Greece's northern borders purely communist neighbors. This was ugly business and many people were not 'Greek enough' to stay in certain areas ... some were of mixed background or had a grandfather or brother who was a communist supporter.

    Greece as a country supported democracy, assisted in the fight at every turn as its sovereignty depended on the defeat of communism. Bare in mind that Greek society was too fragmented and the cold war too intense to allow an alliance between all Greeks, full blood, half blood and/or naturalized over time. In the north most mixed Greek families had some Slavic ancestry which meant, extended family with communist ideas.

    Many years later, both Greece and the ex-Yugoslavia are democratically governed and Bulgaria is an EU member with Greece. The problems of a bygone era will continue to plague the region long after the cold war has ended.

    Was Alexander the Great a communist or a royalist? A moot point, exactly!
    Last edited by Dorianfinder; 29-03-14 at 17:24.

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    1 out of 1 members found this post helpful.
    Macedonia as it rapidly expanded in the Balkans, it became a multi-ethnic society and to maintain such a state, one needs an alphabet and a state language. Since Greeks were the most literate at the time and possesing an alphabet, their language and alphabet was borrowed by the Macedonian state. However this borrowed official language was written in the Greek alphabet but the words were a mix of Greek, Thracian, and Illyrian, to address all the various ethnicities within the state. The question still remains what was the original language of the Macedonians ? (Greek, Illyrian, or Thracian) I don't believe there is enough evidence to definitely answer this question.

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    1 out of 1 members found this post helpful.
    Whatever language the ancient Macedonians spoke, it certainly wasn't a Slavic language, since proto-Slavic probably didn't split into various languages until about 1500 years ago, with the Serbs arriving in the Balkans shortly after that. The current claims of Macedonians that Alexander the Great spoke a Slavic language and the current claims of Greeks that Alexander definitely spoke Greek seem to have to do with modern boundary issues.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Aberdeen View Post
    The current claims of Macedonians that Alexander the Great spoke a Slavic language
    Do you have evidence of someone claiming this?

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    Quote Originally Posted by ElHorsto View Post
    Do you have evidence of someone claiming this?
    The dispute is very much real:

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-13884844

    "Alexander statue stokes Macedonia EU row" (this video is three years old)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Taranis View Post
    The dispute is very much real:

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-13884844

    "Alexander statue stokes Macedonia EU row" (this video is three years old)
    I'm aware of this dispute, but also in this video I can't hear anybody claiming that ancient Macedonia spoke slavic.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Aberdeen View Post
    Whatever language the ancient Macedonians spoke, it certainly wasn't a Slavic language, since proto-Slavic probably didn't split into various languages until about 1500 years ago, with the Serbs arriving in the Balkans shortly after that. The current claims of Macedonians that Alexander the Great spoke a Slavic language and the current claims of Greeks that Alexander definitely spoke Greek seem to have to do with modern boundary issues.
    In my opinion the Ancient Macedonian language was a dialect of Greek, although a rather divergent one. The most crucial difference is that *pʰ, *tʰ, *kʰ of Archaic Greek were pronounced as *b, *d, *g in Ancient Macedonian. The best example for this the place name "Berenikē" (now Benghazi in Libya), which is ancient Macedonian in origin and means "bearer of victory" (Pherenikē). In modern Greek is "pherō" (the word "pheromone" comes from this), and in ancient Macedonian this would have been *berō. You might argue - by a bit of a stretch - that this was due to an adstratal influence from another Indo-European language branch, as in all northern European branches of IE *bh, *dh, *gh became *b, *d, *g (not just Slavic, but also Albanian, Baltic, Celtic and Germanic).

    But of course, you are totally correct that in any case Ancient Macedonian was totaly unaffiliated with the Slavic languages, as Slavic languages only started to be spoken on the Balkans during the Migration Period.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ElHorsto View Post
    Do you have evidence of someone claiming this?
    I've been told that by some Macedonian emigrants living in Canada. Others admit that the language of Alexander wasn't Slavic, but say that ancient Macedonian wasn't related to Greek at all, and that they're the descendants of Alexander but now speak a Slavic language, which they feel shouldn't prevent them from supporting the idea of a "Greater Macedonia" that includes part of what is now Greek, Albanian and Bulgarian territory. Other Macedonian speakers from Greece say that to be Macedonian is to be Greek, although they consider themselves to be a distinct cultural group within Greece, one that's Slavic speaking because of historical events. I'm sure that if you talked to enough Macedonians, you'd hear other interpretations of what it's all about. Nothing is ever simple in the Balkans. But a number of Macedonians do use various arguments as to why Macedonia should be allowed to expand into include territory that's currently part of other countries, and they seem to particularly want to claim part of Greece.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Taranis View Post
    In my opinion the Ancient Macedonian language was a dialect of Greek, although a rather divergent one. The most crucial difference is that *pʰ, *tʰ, *kʰ of Archaic Greek were pronounced as *b, *d, *g in Ancient Macedonian. The best example for this the place name "Berenikē" (now Benghazi in Libya), which is ancient Macedonian in origin and means "bearer of victory" (Pherenikē). In modern Greek is "pherō" (the word "pheromone" comes from this), and in ancient Macedonian this would have been *berō. You might argue - by a bit of a stretch - that this was due to an adstratal influence from another Indo-European language branch, as in all northern European branches of IE *bh, *dh, *gh became *b, *d, *g (not just Slavic, but also Albanian, Baltic, Celtic and Germanic).

    But of course, you are totally correct that in any case Ancient Macedonian was totaly unaffiliated with the Slavic languages, as Slavic languages only started to be spoken on the Balkans during the Migration Period.
    So ancient Macedonian was probably a dialect that was intermediary between Greek and one of the other ancient Balkan languages? That would make sense, but I hope your scholarly comments don't attract the attention of those folk who want to argue about whether ancient Albanian was Illyrian, Theban or whatever else. There's already a thread about that and it's quite convoluted.
    Last edited by Aberdeen; 28-03-14 at 19:53. Reason: clarification

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    1 out of 1 members found this post helpful.
    Quote Originally Posted by Aberdeen View Post
    I've been told that by some Macedonian emigrants living in Canada.
    Others admit that the language of Alexander wasn't Slavic, but say that ancient Macedonian wasn't related to Greek at all, and that they're the descendants of Alexander but now speak a Slavic language, which they feel shouldn't prevent them from supporting the idea of a "Greater Macedonia" that includes part of what is now Greek, Albanian and Bulgarian territory. Other Macedonian speakers from Greece say that to be Macedonian is to be Greek, although they consider themselves to be a distinct cultural group within Greece, one that's Slavic speaking because of historical events. I'm sure that if you talked to enough Macedonians, you'd hear other interpretations of what it's all about. Nothing is ever simple in the Balkans. But a number of Macedonians do use various arguments as to why Macedonia should be allowed to expand into include territory that's currently part of other countries, and they seem to particularly want to claim part of Greece.
    Maybe. I only encountered the argument where Macedonians use their slavic part of identity to claim parts of greece, exactly like greeks use their greek identity to claim the ancient macedonian aspect of macedonian identity. I did not see yet anybody claiming Alexander the Great using the slavic argument, exactly because it is absurd.
    It is possible that even some macedonians get confused by the complex tit-for-tat argument chain, because their identity is hybrid: slavic + ancient macedonian. The latter is claimed by greeks by the way.

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    1 out of 2 members found this post helpful.
    Quote Originally Posted by Echetlaeus View Post
    - He spoke Greek
    - He worshiped the same Gods as the rest of the Greeks
    - His name is Greek
    - His father's name is Greek (Philip)
    - His mother's name is Greek (Olympias, she comes from Epirus)
    - His cousin was another great military genius, Pyrrhus of Epirus
    - His favourite heroes were the Argives(= Greeks) of the Trojan War, and especially Achilles
    - His teacher was Aristotle (no comments for that)
    .
    .
    .

    And above all, why some people that are of another origin, still insist that [Slavs] are Macedonians, when it is clear by the Byzantine chronicles that these people came to the Greek peninsula a thousand years later?
    Greeks were a mixture of more people,speaking same language,when Alexander Macedon was living.
    When East Roman Empire took birth and adopted Greek as language,you can say for sure that Greek native speakers became a very various gathering of people.
    I think they were calling themselves rather Romans,than Greeks.
    However,some Turks conquered East Roman Empire and lots of population switched to Turkish.
    The people that remained on the area that today belongs to Greece,or so were also quite mixed.
    So what are you telling here ,that Alexander Macedon is of same ethnicity with today Greek speakers is just nonsense.
    Alexander Macedon was not speaking today Greek language,he was speaking ancient Greek which is not exactly same language with today Greek.
    What are you saying,that "Alexander Macedon was Greek" is as true as you would say that ancient Romans were same as today inhabitants of Italy or to say,Trajan was Italian or to say ,Augustus was Italian.
    Now,go read more and stop preaching non-sense.
    And to add one more thing,people of Macedonia have all the right to use that name,as North Germany is still called Prusia and Latvia and Lithuania are not saying Prusia is name that belongs to Balto-Slavic speakers,as Russians are still use the name Russia and Sweden are not telling Russia should stop using that name,because is linked to Rus,which is named of Swedes,how they were called some 1000 years ago and so on.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Taranis View Post
    In my opinion the Ancient Macedonian language was a dialect of Greek, although a rather divergent one. The most crucial difference is that *pʰ, *tʰ, *kʰ of Archaic Greek were pronounced as *b, *d, *g in Ancient Macedonian. The best example for this the place name "Berenikē" (now Benghazi in Libya), which is ancient Macedonian in origin and means "bearer of victory" (Pherenikē). In modern Greek is "pherō" (the word "pheromone" comes from this), and in ancient Macedonian this would have been *berō. You might argue - by a bit of a stretch - that this was due to an adstratal influence from another Indo-European language branch, as in all northern European branches of IE *bh, *dh, *gh became *b, *d, *g (not just Slavic, but also Albanian, Baltic, Celtic and Germanic).
    that's interesting, I think an example of this would be the word φίλε, file, fila (Greek) - dude,brother(English) - vela, vella (Albanian). It seems the soft "f" in Greek corresponds to its stronger vocal version "v" in Albanian.

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    2 out of 2 members found this post helpful.
    Using language to define ones ethnicity is stupid, today, tomorrow and in the ancient past. Language does not define ethnicity.

    Speaking Greek does not make you Greek.
    Speaking slavic does not make you a slav
    Speaking latin does not make you a Roman.

    I hope we do NOT believe that the people who speak English today, all around the world are ethnically English!

    To conclude - Alexander was Macedonian ethnically, stated Macedonian.............The Macedonian of Alexanders time has disappeared from the face of history, it does not exist, it is gone, can we agree with this instead of bringing up the stupidity of today's nationality in reference to the ancient past.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sile View Post
    Using language to define ones ethnicity is stupid, today, tomorrow and in the ancient past. Language does not define ethnicity.

    Speaking Greek does not make you Greek.
    Speaking slavic does not make you a slav
    Speaking latin does not make you a Roman.

    I hope we do NOT believe that the people who speak English today, all around the world are ethnically English!

    To conclude - Alexander was Macedonian ethnically, stated Macedonian.............The Macedonian of Alexanders time has disappeared from the face of history, it does not exist, it is gone, can we agree with this instead of bringing up the stupidity of today's nationality in reference to the ancient past.
    That is a quite nice saying.
    Alexander Macedon was an Old Macedonian.
    No one knows what happened to Old Macedonian people.
    Sure, no one denies that they were speaking a dialect of Ancient Greek.
    Today Greek language is born from Ancient Greek language.
    According to Wikipedia:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Macedon
    Macedon was gave to that country meaning maybe tall people.
    Were not the native people from there conquered by some Greek language and after switched to Greek language?
    Later,were not they conquered by other Greek speakers and maybe changed their Greek dialect again?
    I do not know.
    But I think rather the people who ruled that place changed ,maybe some Slavic speakers conquered the people there.

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    Quote Originally Posted by LeBrok View Post
    Shouldn't the solution belong to the people in a democratic way? If anything Greek history should teach you this.
    Please study Greek history thoroughly and try to understand Isocrates.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mihaitzateo View Post
    Greeks were a mixture of more people,speaking same language,when Alexander Macedon was living.
    When East Roman Empire took birth and adopted Greek as language,you can say for sure that Greek native speakers became a very various gathering of people.
    I think they were calling themselves rather Romans,than Greeks.
    However,some Turks conquered East Roman Empire and lots of population switched to Turkish.
    The people that remained on the area that today belongs to Greece,or so were also quite mixed.
    So what are you telling here ,that Alexander Macedon is of same ethnicity with today Greek speakers is just nonsense.
    Alexander Macedon was not speaking today Greek language,he was speaking ancient Greek which is not exactly same language with today Greek.
    What are you saying,that "Alexander Macedon was Greek" is as true as you would say that ancient Romans were same as today inhabitants of Italy or to say,Trajan was Italian or to say ,Augustus was Italian.
    Now,go read more and stop preaching non-sense.
    And to add one more thing,people of Macedonia have all the right to use that name,as North Germany is still called Prusia and Latvia and Lithuania are not saying Prusia is name that belongs to Balto-Slavic speakers,as Russians are still use the name Russia and Sweden are not telling Russia should stop using that name,because is linked to Rus,which is named of Swedes,how they were called some 1000 years ago and so on.
    Do you understand that your arguments have no scientific proof. It is quite goofy to say that Neohellenic is not the same with Ancient Greek. Of course it is not the same the way you see it! Do you expect a language to be exactly the same after 2500 years? The point is that modern Greek have ancient roots, and it is precisely this part that links modern Greeks with the Ancients.

    You said that quite a lot of people mixed with Turks(or other races). Please, provide evidence about the magnitude of admixture. Just saying it is naive.

    Was Alexander Greek just because he spoke the same language with the rest of the Greeks? Just because of that someone would say no, nonetheless it is not only the language, but rather a plethora of characteristics, some of them have been mentioned before. Just look at the name of his friends and generals, this will give you an insight I suppose.

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