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Thread: Tumulus Burials in South Albania

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    Tumulus Burials in South Albania

    Tumulus-burial in Albania and Epirus

    The translation is not the best possible but there is some interesting stuff in here:



    The 60's and 70's saw extensive archeological work in Albania which previously had not received attention. Albania was part of the area which was assumed to have been overwhelmed by XIII-IX B.C. invasions from the north. The well known Albanian archeologist, Frano Prendi contradicted this view on the basis of unearthed evidence, indicating that there was no basis for identifying XIII-IX B.C invasions as Illyrian, and magnify the effect of these invasions on Albanian territories.
    According to Albanian archaeologists important changes had taken place around 2600 B.C. in the life of Maliq/Korce settlement. Copper work tools are seen to be in use, such as hatchets, needles and fishing hooks. This evident economic advance is manifested in indications of inter-regional trade, as indicated by the southward spread of Albano-Dalmation axe. Finds of many Myceanian objects indicates that trade with Hellas and the Aegean area had also increased. (Korkuti, M., Parailiret, Iliret, Arberit, 2003, p. 49)
    The characteristics of culture were evidence beyond Maliq, could be observed in settlements at Drin and Mat River valleys. Similarities in decoration and cult objects are also noted with settlements in Dardania (Hisar I, Glladnice Bubanj Hun Ia), Pelagonia (Servia, Armenohori). More general affinities are observed Dikili-Tash (Thessaly), Sulkuca (Rumania), Krividol (Bulgaria) and as far as Troy. (Ceka, p. 32) Examination of ground layers in Dersniku and Barci (in Korce area) indicates elements of locally developed Neolithic culture. (Ceka, p. 32)
    At the same time, Archeologist Frano Prendi discerned elements of regional differences during the Neolithic period. He concluded that it appears that culturally these settlements related to three distinct centers. The settlements of Podgorie and Veshtemi with shinny monochrome pottery or with white over a red background relate with Thessalo-Macedonian Neolithic period. Kukes area settlement with its clay pottery and use of brown color over a red base relates to eastern Dardania and beyond (Starcevo IIb). Mat area is characterized with ‘ impresso-cardium’ decoration and a variety of motives, and a monochrome pottery usually grey to black in color decorated with cardium impressions relates to eastern Adriatic cultures (Smilcic I). (Prendi, F., The Cambridge Ancient History, Volume III, Part 1, 2008, pp. 192-93)
    The discovered settlements, extending from Podgorie and Vashtem in plain of Korca, in Kolsh of Kukes, or use of caves in Blaz in Mati and Katundas of Berat. T he multiple cultural layers, and specifically the increasing number of tools made from flintstone, sharpened stone or bone, points to an increased population with an active economic role. As a reflection of this economic reality there are indications of an active ritual and spiritual activity also. Finds of anthropomorphic idols, made of baked clay of Magna Mater type, point to a spiritual life based on concepts relating to origin and community. These cult-rhytones are found in a area from Split (Danilo) in the north to Korith in the south (Elateia), from central Bosnia (Kakanji), in Kosova (Reshtan), in Korce basin (Dunavec), and as far as Thessaly (Drahmani). The improved economic productivity, as well as the active cultural/religious life must have contributed to the integration of the population of this wide area. (Ceka, N./Korkuti, M., Arkeologjia, 1998, p. 41)
    Dunavec and Cekran have a similar pottery, as well as objects of cult such as sat terracotta woman and four-legged zoomphoric shoots. The latter are an essential element also in the culture of Kolsh II, which together with Blazi II, Katundas II and Kosovar settlement at Rudnik IV relates fully to the Adriatic cultural area. To this tradition of pottery as well as cult impressions should also be mentioned the cult of burial under the dwelling floors in sleeping positions (Dunavec, Cakran, Rudnik and that of Bosnia). Thus, in a reality of divergences started to develop convergences, in a space that was later to be identified as Illyrian inhabited. (Ceka, N., Iliret, pp. 30-31)
    The next significant change after 2600 B.C. occured at about 2100 B.C. as new cultural effects have impacted the existing Neolithic culture. At Maliq entirely new elements appear, especially in pottery, which is distinguished from that of the Eneolithic period by its generally more primitive character. Frano Prendi summarizes the evidence relating to this period as follows:
    The most common shapes include vases with two handles above the rim, of Armenohori type; cups with handles level with or rising above the rim; vases of various shapes with two small handles below the mouthpiece, jugs with tall cylindrical necks, bowls with four small handles below the rim, little cups shaped like a truncated cone with a lip on the rim, and bowls with inverted rims (fig. 38). Other new elements in the pottery of this phase are tongue-shaped handles with decoration, finger-impressions, jug handles, etc. Conspicuous in the decorative styles of this phase are decorations in relief: impressed cords, simple circular bands with V or U shapes, buttons, nipples, and clusters of parallel ribs. Common too is the decoration made by the impression of the finger or nail, or spattered ‘pseudo-Barbotine’. Of particular chronological and cultural interest are some fragments of vessels decorated with stippled triangles, whose decoration recalls the most typical pottery of the Kostolac group (above, p. 155).
    All this pottery, hitherto unknown in Albania, was found in the Maliq Ilia layer, together with other objects peculiar to the Eneolithic period at Maliq. Of the latter, one may mention vases with an S-shaped profile, often decorated with shallow grooves on the shoulders and dishes with rolled rims, designs in black paint or incised, a number of anchor-shaped amulets, which had appeared for the first time at Maliq in the Eneolithic layer as indications of the Aegean Early Bronze Age, terracotta spoons with short handles, numerous weights for fishing-nets, and some cruciform figurines of terracotta in the Maliq II style, and many stone, bone and horn implements in the Eneolithic tradition.
    The fact that we find in the Maliq Ilia level the material peculiar to the previous autochthonous foundation mixed in an unexpected and abrupt way with large quantities of the new ceramic material which we have described above, indicates that we have here the appearance of a new ethnic element which penetrated this area of south-east Albania towards the end of the Eneolithic period and the beginning of the Bronze Age, and did not destroy the local Eneolithic population but intermingled with them or lived amongst them, creating certain changes in their economic and ethno-cultural structure by an internal development which was able to assimilate or reject particular features, the Early Bronze Age civilization of Maliq took a developed shape and close-knit form. It can be said that some pottery shapes and styles of this period at Maliq, including the corded ware, is most closely associated with the Armenokhori group in Pelagonia, which in terms of Aegean chronology is dated towards the end of the Early Bronze Age. Some particular features of Maliq Ilia and Illb pottery are seen too in other Early Bronze Age sites in Macedonia such as Servia, Kritsana, Ayios Mamas and elsewhere, and similarly in Epirus.(p. 213)
    According to Prendi the invasions had a limited effect on existing settlements. The same settlements from Eneolithic period continued their life. Important settlements like Maliq, Neziri, Treni, Benja show no interruption in cultural layers. Pottery, as indicated above does show an impact from the the invasions that occurred at the end of Neolithic period. But at the same time, Prendi refers to the existence of material that was characteristic of the previous period, indicating that the autochthonous population was an important composite of the population and culture that evolved. The cultural effects of this population could also be seen in the continuation of burial ritual, in which the dead bodies were placed in sleeping positions within their dwellings, and the use of terracotta in a crosswise design. It would be reasonable to assume that the Albanian territory was not overwhelmed by the people from the steppe at the same degree as were other territories in southern Balkans. (Ceka, N.,Iliret, p.35)
    According to Prendi, the invasions did not interrupt cultural affinity of Albanian territories with Macedonia and the Aegean. He indicated that some pottery shapes and styles at Maliq related to the Armenochori group in Pelagonia, and that some particular features of Maliq Ilia and Illb pottery are seen too in other Early Bronze Age sites in Macedonia such as Servia, Kritsana, Ayios Mamas and elsewhere, and similarly in Epirus.(Prendi, F., p. 213)
    In reality, there in an increase in Creto-Mycenaean arms and pottery in Albanian at this time. Albanian archaeologists attribute this to the active trading relationship between the Albanian area and the Aegean. They indicate that this trade is related of the demand of area’s tribal aristocracies for luxury products. (Ceka, N./Korkuti, M., Archeologjia, p. 55)
    Some, on the other hand, see this area as having been colonized by Creto-Mycenaeans. In the view of Albanian archaeologists, there is no evidence of an invasion from south, and the only impact has been from the settlers of a different culture that came from the north, mentioned above, and that to a limited extent. Commenting on this subject, Prendi would conclude: attempts to interpret in any other way the Middle Helladic elements in Albania have, it seems, no solid foundation. Thus, for example, one cannot possibly explain the presence of these elements so typical of the Greek Middle Bronze Age by the assumption that the early Mycenaeans colonized Albania in the seventeenth and sixteenth centuries B.C. The fact that these examples of Creto-Mycenaean civilization are found not only in the border areas, but equally in the interior, in geographically isolated places such as Mati, and often too in association with locally made pottery of native tradition in the tombs, goes to show that these burial-grounds belong to a native population and not to one originating from the south. (Prendi, F., p. 219)
    By the middle of the Bronze age, Maliq IIIc and Neziri cultures reveal many common elements. (Ceka, N.,Iliret, p.35) By the end of Broze Age, Maliq IIId shows wares to be decorated with geometric motives over a lustrous brown background. The motifs follow the earlier linear geometric style, naturally enriched by new motifs and more complex designs. The pottery painted before firing links Maliq IIId3 firmly with western Macedonia, represented by Boubousti, and equally with the Late Bronze Age painted pottery of central Macedonia. Frano Prendi saw a similarity in painted pottery found in Epirus with that of Maliq.
    N. L. G. Hammond wrote about Maliq and pointed to the autochthonous origin of the pottery painting, indicating that the “painted pottery like that of Maliq III d3 has been known in Epirus, but opinions vary as to when it first appeared in north-west Greece. We do not know of any site outside the Korce basin which has this pottery painted after firing and is of autochthonous origin, as it is at Maliq. Further, it is only at Maliq that we see the origins of this style. (N. L. G. Hammond indicated that the tumulus at Pazhok has dating that corresponds to Middle Helladic period. (The Cambridge Ancient History, Volume III, Part 1, 2008, p. 222)
    A study done by Barbara Horejs indicates that a total of eight different stylistic groups in Late Bronze Age mattpainted pottery have been discerned north of Central Greece. It is indicated that all these centers have a local tradition in mattpainted pottery with clear links to older prototypes. (Barbara, Horejs, Phenomenon of Mettapainted pottery in Northern Aegean, 2007)
    This pottery has been named devollite. It originated and flourished at the basin of River Devoll. During the Iron Age, this pottery characterized the whole of southern Illyrian areas. It is this pottery that is considered to provide a direct link between the Bronze Age population and the historical time population known as Illyrian. (Ceka, N., Iliret, p. 36) The area has also shown a similarity in the construction of fortifications, which became characteristic during the later Bronze Age. This construction is characterized by the placement of multi walls, use of confining tumuli, and leaving a wall encircled open space at the entrance. These construction elements could be seen In Borsh, QeparoLleshan, Tren and as far as Glasinac (Verecevo, Stipanic, Zagrovoc) and Liburnia (Budin, Oton, Dusar). (Ceka, N., Iliret, p. 36)
    According to the Albanian archaeologists, these common cultural similarities indicate formation of an ethnicity with specific cultural attributes that had taken shape during the Middle Bronze period. This was the result of a reality in which life from the Neolithic period had continued uninterrupted in the development of a distinct culture. The introduction of pastoral economy, as well as economic advances, associated with changes in means of production, must have been prime contributors in the integration of the population. The new economy would have necessitated a breakdown of the existing tribal structures.
    The next sizable population movement took place at the end of the second millennium B.C., which some have called Doric invasion, some others Illyrian invasion, and others have used other names. The invaders were a group of people that are identified to have brought urnfield culture south. Krahe (1955) had indicated that the Illyrians were the bearers of this culture which had developed by the fusion of the Danubian Yamnaya cultures. Elements of this civilization, reached Albania towards the end of the Bronze Age. (The Cambridge Ancient History, Volume III, Part 1, 2008, p. 228) The well known Albanian archeologist Frano Prendi summarized the evidence and the scope of impact of settlemets at the end of Bronze Age that Albanian territories had faced.
    In this transitional period which was to last some three centuries with each century providing new elements in its material culture, several components are discernible: the autochthonous tradition, elements of sub-Mycenaean and Proto-Geometric civilization, and elements of Cental European origin which were spread through Albania by the second wave of the Pannono-Balkan migration (end of the twelfth and the eleventh centuries B.C.). This wave, unlike the first, had a marked influence on Albania, although only in some areas.
    Of the number of cultural objects which spread from the north in all directions, there are swords with a tongue-shaped hilt (see Plates Vol.), flame-shaped spear-heads and socketed axes, which become fairly common in this period, and also pins with conical or vase-shaped heads (Vasenkopfnadeln), simple arched fibulae with or without buttons, whose origin, in all likelihood, is from the Liburno-Dalmatian coast, and so on. The earliest examples of this type with its many variants are recorded so far in the regions bordering southern Albania, as for example, at Dukat in Vlore, and are completely absent in the interior, as far as we know. This phenomenon suggests a purely maritime circulation of these eleventh and tenth century fibulae via the Adriatic.
    In spite of the special influence of the Urnfield civilization which played an important role in the enrichment of the Early Iron Age civilization in Albania, especially in the south, one must emphasize that it did not impose any essential difference on the autochthonous foundation of Albanian civilization, and even less on the ethnic structure of the population. This can be seen most clearly in the uninterrupted practice of burial rites in tumuli, the customary inhumation in the Illyrian manner being in the contracted position. The small number of urn-burials, for instance in the Bare tumuli, can be associated with the influence of the second wave of the Pannono- Balkan migration in Albania, but the objects found in them are with a few exceptions typically Illyrian objects. The pottery particularly is derived without stylistic modifications from the Late Bronze Age. Thus, for example, in the Korce basin and the adjoining areas, the pottery of the first era of the Iron Age is almost identical in technique, shape and decoration with the Late Bronze Age painted pottery of Maliq, so that it is often difficult to distinguish between them. This is an important factor in demonstrating the continuity of the tradition of the’ Devollian’ pottery from the Late Bronze Age period into the Early Iron Age and even down to the sixth century B.C.
    Thus, according to the Albanian archaeologists it would be wrong to identify the XIII-IX invasions as Illyrian, and magnify the effect of this invasion on Albanian territories. Their findings were in direct contradiction to the view that had taken hold with some historians and focused on the assumption that XIII-IX B.C. invasions from the north had overwhelmed western Balkans.
    Another tradition observed with the population Albanian archaeologists consider autochthonous has been the ritual of tumulus burial which has continued from the Bronze era. This burial rite spread through Albania, as elsewhere in the north-west Balkans, towards the beginning of the Bronze Age. Different types of tomb continued in general use over a long period, indeed until the end of the first part of the Early Iron Age.The tumulus-burials of the Bronze and Early Iron Ages in Albania are of various types: simple pits, as at Barf, Mati and Pazhok; cist-graves made of lateral slabs of soft stone partly buried in the earth and covered with one or more slabs laid one on top of another, as at Vajze, Dropull, Bajkaj etc.; wooden coffins as at Pazhok, and pits lined and covered with stones, as at Barf, Mat, Dukat, Pazhok, Kukes, etc. In spite of their diversity these tombs, as their contents indicate, appear to be associated both chronologically and ethnically. The conservatism indicated by the persistent use of these types of tomb is a new archaeological pointer to the ethnic continuity of their users, and helps to trace the genesis of ethnic identity amongst the Illyrian people in Albania. (The Cambridge Ancient History, Volume III, Part 1, 2008, pp. 229-30)
    According to Albanian archaeologists, discovered tumuli at Vajze, Vodhine, three tumuli at Pozhak, and one in Mat were built during the middle Bronze Age, while tumuli at Patos, Dukat, Prodan, Rehoves, Bardhoc, Krune, some of the Mat and Pozhak, etc., are reflective of late Bronze Age. N.G.L. Hammond indicated that the tumulus at Pazhok has dating that corresponds to Middle Helladic period. (The Cambridge Ancient History, Volume III, Part 1, 2008, p. 229)
    Some historians, for various reasons, have adapted the view that Illyrians migrated to the southern Balkans at end of the twelfth and the eleventh centuries B.C. N.G.L. Hammond who has been consistent with the view of early Greek culture and language emergence in Greece as well as in the adjoining areas to the north, in areas historically identified as Macedonia and Epirus, put Illyrian migrations into the area even later, indicating that great expansion of Illyria tribes occurred from c 900 BC onwards, the center from which they came being Glasinac in Central Yugoslavia…
    He indicated that tumulus-burial was characteristic of Illyrian tribes both to the north of Albanian and in Albania, but was customary also among other pastoral groups which were Greek-speaking, e.g. in central Epirus and in western Macedonia (in Pelagonia and Eordaea) or Phrygian-speaking (e.g. below Vergina). A great expansion of Illyria tribes occurred from c 900 BC onwards, the center from which they they came being Glasinac in Central Yugoslavia… The leading warriors buried in some of these tumuli had as many as ten spears each in heir graves. Tribes from the Glasinac area entered North and Centarl Albania in large numbers and overran the existing Illyrian tribes…The expansion carried some groups of warriors into central Epirus, others into Central Macedonia, and one group to Halus on South Thessaly, where a tumuli contained remains of men and woman with words, knives and spears of the eight century BC…(N.G.L. Hammond in Winnifrith,Tom, Perspective on Albania, 1992, p.34)
    Hammond saw Prendi’s assertion about Albanian autochthonous presence as confronting his well established contention that Epirus was populated by Greek speaking tribes, contrary to much of the ancient sources. His reference to Prendi’s comments about the tumuli do not add credence to his point of view. He does not directly discuss the view of the continuous use of the tumuli since Bronze Age. He does not reject Prendi’s contention, but he is not ready to accept that non-Greek speaking tribes populated Epirus.
    He promptly commented about Albanian archeological finds indicating that two sites, Vajze and Vodhine, had tumuli which were first constructed and used in the Middle Bronze Age, if not earlier, and were then re-used towards the end of the Late Bronze Age and on into the Early Iron Age, presumably by people who claimed some connexion with the original ‘heroes’. In the period of re-use the bronze weapons and ornaments from these and other tumuli swords, spear-heads and long pins were unusual in being engraved and in having distinctive features such as facetting on the socket of a javelin-head, and this has led to the conclusion that an independent metal-working establishment existed in the northern area (see above, pp. 224^, and that it produced short swords with some Mycenaean features but with other aspects which were ‘uncanonical’ in terms of Aegean archaeology.
    He indicates that tumuli in Vajze and Vodhine were used by people who claimed some connexion with the original ‘heroes’, and that the weapons and ornaments have a northern relationship, but apparently considers them as imports, maintaining that the Illyrian migration stopped north of Epirus. He adds that “although many more tumuli await excavation, it has become clear (from tumuli in southern Albania -BB) that the rulers … in Epirus had a common culture and that their contacts and affinities were rather with the rulers of the Korce plain at Barf than with those of the Mati valley. Yet they were distinct from the peoples of South Epirus, where tumuli have been found only recently (below, p. 636). He has formulated the view that Tumulus-burial was customary also among other pastoral groups which were “Greek-speaking”.
    Hammond is attempting to reconcile Albanian finds with his well known assumptions about Epirus. He indicates that the rulers in Vajze and Vodhine had contacts and affinities with the rulers of Korch plain at Barf, with the purpose of differentiating from rulers further north, but gives no further explanation. But at the same time, he indicates, these rulers were distinct from the people of south Epirus. Apparently he considers the “rulers” to be distinct on the basis of ethnicity with the “people” of Epirus, again he does not give details. Albanian archeologists have observed common cultural affinities between Maliq IIIc and that of Nezir (Mat), the latter also relating to the interior of southern Adriatic, which later was to be known as Mat-Glasinac(Bosnia) culture.
    When he refers to the only site, at the time of his writing, in the Greek side of Epirus, he indicates, “At Vitsa in Zagori burials were made in shallow trenches, or in cist-graves roofed with branches on which stones were placed, or under a cairn of stones. The burials were close-packed; set in three layers, and very close to the settlement, and the cemetery was in use from just before 900 B.C. into the fifth century B.C. To judge from the objects buried with the dead this community had contacts with Barc, Vergina, Vodhine, the Illyrians, and also southern Greece.” (Hammond 1976: 154/155) Archaeologists have referred to the pottery found in southern Greece as “barbarian ware”.
    More telling about the common culture of the people of this area is Hammond’s remark about tumuli at Vista in Zagoria, indicating that “the offerings with men, women and children show connections with the last pre-Illyrian phase at Vergina, with the Illyrian phase at Kuci Zi, with the burials of north Epirus and with southern Greece”. (The Cambridge Ancient History, Volume III, Part 1, 2008, p. 638).
    Again Hammond remains faithful to his assumption that Illyrians are late comers into Epirus, and that the indicated common practice above relates to the Iron Age period only. Additional discoveries in south Epirus have contradicted his point of view. Late Bronze Age (according to author: (ca. 1600/1580-1100 B.C.) Epirotic sites (Ephyra and Pogoni) “are known from Messenia, Elis, Leukas, Albania and the Dalmatic coasts”. (Papadopoulos, Thanasis J., Tombs and burial customs in late Bronze Age Eoirus) Papadopolous suggests that the tumuli at Ephyra were made during the prosperous years of the Late Bronze Age and not after the collapse of Mycenaean Ephyra as Hammond indicated. Styrenius (C. Styrenius, The Neolithic and Bronze Ages, 1971, p. 103) and Snodgrass (A.M. Snodgrass, The Dark Ages of Greece, 1971, pp. 172, 177) , suggest an origin and continuous use from the Middle Helladic times for the tumuli in this area. This would indicate that any practice of splitting the tradition of tumulus burial in Epirus into pre and after-Illyrian period is arbitrary.
    Prendi indicated that in the light of all that has been said, the question arises: who were the carriers of the Bronze Age civilization, and of that of the transitional period leading to the Iron Age, in Albania? Although the archaeological evidence is still limited, our study of it, period by period, has shown beyond doubt the continuous nature of the development of Illyrian civilization over the whole period under review, and enables us to view the people of the area as an established ethnic entity. This fact bears witness to the presence in the Albanian countryside of the same population throughout the whole of the Bronze Age and the transitional period to the Iron Age. This phenomenon is established more clearly than anywhere else at Maliq and in the Korce basin generally, where the materials of different phases of the Bronze Age and the Early Iron Age enable us to follow the uninterrupted evolution of the culture, with all the intermediate links from one stage to the next. In terms of history the archaeological evidence reveals a people which was growing up at this time peacefully and without interference from other ethnic groups, improving in its culture, its economic structure, and its internal social relationships; and this led. apparently towards the end of the Bronze Age, to the formation of the first ethnic communities with a common language and culture, namely the Illyrians. This process of the autochthonous formation of the Illyrian race began, according to the evidence of Maliq, at the beginning of the Bronze Age, on the basis of new economic cultural and ethnic structures in which the earliest migrations of the nomadic Indo-European shepherds certainly played an important part. These migrations interrupted the Eneolithic development of the area. This is seen in Maliq Ilia, whose culture, as far as we have uncovered it, has traits organically different from the Eneolithic culture of Maliq (Maliq II a and b). In penetrating into the Korce basin, this Indo-European group did not drive out or destroy the local population. On the contrary, it intermingled with them, imposing some elements of its language and culture and also its type of economy, while retaining for a period a number of the traits and methods of production of the native Eneolithic culture, at least up to the end of Maliq Illb, at which time the Early Bronze Age culture at Maliq succeeded in establishing itself as an individual culture with strictly local traits. It is exactly from this autochthonous base that we see the uninterrupted internal process of the formation of Illyrian culture in the southeastern area of Albania. To sum up, we may recall that at the beginning of the Early Bronze Age (Maliq Ilia), when new Indo-European elements of a different race became fused with the native Eneolithic elements, a new ethnocultural base was created. On this base there developed in turn the beginning of the slow and very complex process of the formation of the Illyrian race which was to reveal clearly defined traits in the Late Bronze Age. Thus the Illyrians created and developed their culture in the course of the Bronze Age in Albania, in close liaison of course with neighboring countries, and in particular with the Aegean world.(p. 237)
    We know the Illyrians spoke a language of their own, but unfortunately no written record of it has been preserved. A logical conclusion would be that the people of this area, today’s Albania and former Epirus, must have spoken dialects of this language. Opinions that that southern fringes of this area was Greek speaking has no basis of support. Crossland concluded that “the phonetic characteristics of some place-names in central and northern Greece have been thought to prove that Illyrians or closely related peoples were settled there before the Greek language was introduced . If they were, Greeks must have migrated into southern Epirus early in the first millennium at the latest. (pp. 841-2, R. A. Crossland, The Cambridge Ancient History, Volume III, Part 1, 2008)
    "As we have already stressed, the mass evacuation of the Albanians from their triangle is the only effective course we can take. In order to relocate a whole people, the first prerequisite is the creation of a suitable psychosis. This can be done in various ways." - Vaso Cubrilovic

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    Very interesting and informative. I was always amazed by how the ancient regions of Illyrian, Epirus, Makedonia, Aetolia and Acarnania were culturally very similar and continue to be so even nowadays, together with some isolated areas in Peloponnese too.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Johane Derite View Post
    Tumulus-burial in Albania and Epirus

    The translation is not the best possible but there is some interesting stuff in here:



    The 60's and 70's saw extensive archeological work in Albania which previously had not received attention. Albania was part of the area which was assumed to have been overwhelmed by XIII-IX B.C. invasions from the north. The well known Albanian archeologist, Frano Prendi contradicted this view on the basis of unearthed evidence, indicating that there was no basis for identifying XIII-IX B.C invasions as Illyrian, and magnify the effect of these invasions on Albanian territories.
    According to Albanian archaeologists important changes had taken place around 2600 B.C. in the life of Maliq/Korce settlement. Copper work tools are seen to be in use, such as hatchets, needles and fishing hooks. This evident economic advance is manifested in indications of inter-regional trade, as indicated by the southward spread of Albano-Dalmation axe. Finds of many Myceanian objects indicates that trade with Hellas and the Aegean area had also increased. (Korkuti, M., Parailiret, Iliret, Arberit, 2003, p. 49)
    The characteristics of culture were evidence beyond Maliq, could be observed in settlements at Drin and Mat River valleys. Similarities in decoration and cult objects are also noted with settlements in Dardania (Hisar I, Glladnice Bubanj Hun Ia), Pelagonia (Servia, Armenohori). More general affinities are observed Dikili-Tash (Thessaly), Sulkuca (Rumania), Krividol (Bulgaria) and as far as Troy. (Ceka, p. 32) Examination of ground layers in Dersniku and Barci (in Korce area) indicates elements of locally developed Neolithic culture. (Ceka, p. 32)
    At the same time, Archeologist Frano Prendi discerned elements of regional differences during the Neolithic period. He concluded that it appears that culturally these settlements related to three distinct centers. The settlements of Podgorie and Veshtemi with shinny monochrome pottery or with white over a red background relate with Thessalo-Macedonian Neolithic period. Kukes area settlement with its clay pottery and use of brown color over a red base relates to eastern Dardania and beyond (Starcevo IIb). Mat area is characterized with ‘ impresso-cardium’ decoration and a variety of motives, and a monochrome pottery usually grey to black in color decorated with cardium impressions relates to eastern Adriatic cultures (Smilcic I). (Prendi, F., The Cambridge Ancient History, Volume III, Part 1, 2008, pp. 192-93)
    The discovered settlements, extending from Podgorie and Vashtem in plain of Korca, in Kolsh of Kukes, or use of caves in Blaz in Mati and Katundas of Berat. T he multiple cultural layers, and specifically the increasing number of tools made from flintstone, sharpened stone or bone, points to an increased population with an active economic role. As a reflection of this economic reality there are indications of an active ritual and spiritual activity also. Finds of anthropomorphic idols, made of baked clay of Magna Mater type, point to a spiritual life based on concepts relating to origin and community. These cult-rhytones are found in a area from Split (Danilo) in the north to Korith in the south (Elateia), from central Bosnia (Kakanji), in Kosova (Reshtan), in Korce basin (Dunavec), and as far as Thessaly (Drahmani). The improved economic productivity, as well as the active cultural/religious life must have contributed to the integration of the population of this wide area. (Ceka, N./Korkuti, M., Arkeologjia, 1998, p. 41)
    Dunavec and Cekran have a similar pottery, as well as objects of cult such as sat terracotta woman and four-legged zoomphoric shoots. The latter are an essential element also in the culture of Kolsh II, which together with Blazi II, Katundas II and Kosovar settlement at Rudnik IV relates fully to the Adriatic cultural area. To this tradition of pottery as well as cult impressions should also be mentioned the cult of burial under the dwelling floors in sleeping positions (Dunavec, Cakran, Rudnik and that of Bosnia). Thus, in a reality of divergences started to develop convergences, in a space that was later to be identified as Illyrian inhabited. (Ceka, N., Iliret, pp. 30-31)
    The next significant change after 2600 B.C. occured at about 2100 B.C. as new cultural effects have impacted the existing Neolithic culture. At Maliq entirely new elements appear, especially in pottery, which is distinguished from that of the Eneolithic period by its generally more primitive character. Frano Prendi summarizes the evidence relating to this period as follows:
    The most common shapes include vases with two handles above the rim, of Armenohori type; cups with handles level with or rising above the rim; vases of various shapes with two small handles below the mouthpiece, jugs with tall cylindrical necks, bowls with four small handles below the rim, little cups shaped like a truncated cone with a lip on the rim, and bowls with inverted rims (fig. 38). Other new elements in the pottery of this phase are tongue-shaped handles with decoration, finger-impressions, jug handles, etc. Conspicuous in the decorative styles of this phase are decorations in relief: impressed cords, simple circular bands with V or U shapes, buttons, nipples, and clusters of parallel ribs. Common too is the decoration made by the impression of the finger or nail, or spattered ‘pseudo-Barbotine’. Of particular chronological and cultural interest are some fragments of vessels decorated with stippled triangles, whose decoration recalls the most typical pottery of the Kostolac group (above, p. 155).
    All this pottery, hitherto unknown in Albania, was found in the Maliq Ilia layer, together with other objects peculiar to the Eneolithic period at Maliq. Of the latter, one may mention vases with an S-shaped profile, often decorated with shallow grooves on the shoulders and dishes with rolled rims, designs in black paint or incised, a number of anchor-shaped amulets, which had appeared for the first time at Maliq in the Eneolithic layer as indications of the Aegean Early Bronze Age, terracotta spoons with short handles, numerous weights for fishing-nets, and some cruciform figurines of terracotta in the Maliq II style, and many stone, bone and horn implements in the Eneolithic tradition.
    The fact that we find in the Maliq Ilia level the material peculiar to the previous autochthonous foundation mixed in an unexpected and abrupt way with large quantities of the new ceramic material which we have described above, indicates that we have here the appearance of a new ethnic element which penetrated this area of south-east Albania towards the end of the Eneolithic period and the beginning of the Bronze Age, and did not destroy the local Eneolithic population but intermingled with them or lived amongst them, creating certain changes in their economic and ethno-cultural structure by an internal development which was able to assimilate or reject particular features, the Early Bronze Age civilization of Maliq took a developed shape and close-knit form. It can be said that some pottery shapes and styles of this period at Maliq, including the corded ware, is most closely associated with the Armenokhori group in Pelagonia, which in terms of Aegean chronology is dated towards the end of the Early Bronze Age. Some particular features of Maliq Ilia and Illb pottery are seen too in other Early Bronze Age sites in Macedonia such as Servia, Kritsana, Ayios Mamas and elsewhere, and similarly in Epirus.(p. 213)
    According to Prendi the invasions had a limited effect on existing settlements. The same settlements from Eneolithic period continued their life. Important settlements like Maliq, Neziri, Treni, Benja show no interruption in cultural layers. Pottery, as indicated above does show an impact from the the invasions that occurred at the end of Neolithic period. But at the same time, Prendi refers to the existence of material that was characteristic of the previous period, indicating that the autochthonous population was an important composite of the population and culture that evolved. The cultural effects of this population could also be seen in the continuation of burial ritual, in which the dead bodies were placed in sleeping positions within their dwellings, and the use of terracotta in a crosswise design. It would be reasonable to assume that the Albanian territory was not overwhelmed by the people from the steppe at the same degree as were other territories in southern Balkans. (Ceka, N.,Iliret, p.35)
    According to Prendi, the invasions did not interrupt cultural affinity of Albanian territories with Macedonia and the Aegean. He indicated that some pottery shapes and styles at Maliq related to the Armenochori group in Pelagonia, and that some particular features of Maliq Ilia and Illb pottery are seen too in other Early Bronze Age sites in Macedonia such as Servia, Kritsana, Ayios Mamas and elsewhere, and similarly in Epirus.(Prendi, F., p. 213)
    In reality, there in an increase in Creto-Mycenaean arms and pottery in Albanian at this time. Albanian archaeologists attribute this to the active trading relationship between the Albanian area and the Aegean. They indicate that this trade is related of the demand of area’s tribal aristocracies for luxury products. (Ceka, N./Korkuti, M., Archeologjia, p. 55)
    Some, on the other hand, see this area as having been colonized by Creto-Mycenaeans. In the view of Albanian archaeologists, there is no evidence of an invasion from south, and the only impact has been from the settlers of a different culture that came from the north, mentioned above, and that to a limited extent. Commenting on this subject, Prendi would conclude: attempts to interpret in any other way the Middle Helladic elements in Albania have, it seems, no solid foundation. Thus, for example, one cannot possibly explain the presence of these elements so typical of the Greek Middle Bronze Age by the assumption that the early Mycenaeans colonized Albania in the seventeenth and sixteenth centuries B.C. The fact that these examples of Creto-Mycenaean civilization are found not only in the border areas, but equally in the interior, in geographically isolated places such as Mati, and often too in association with locally made pottery of native tradition in the tombs, goes to show that these burial-grounds belong to a native population and not to one originating from the south. (Prendi, F., p. 219)
    By the middle of the Bronze age, Maliq IIIc and Neziri cultures reveal many common elements. (Ceka, N.,Iliret, p.35) By the end of Broze Age, Maliq IIId shows wares to be decorated with geometric motives over a lustrous brown background. The motifs follow the earlier linear geometric style, naturally enriched by new motifs and more complex designs. The pottery painted before firing links Maliq IIId3 firmly with western Macedonia, represented by Boubousti, and equally with the Late Bronze Age painted pottery of central Macedonia. Frano Prendi saw a similarity in painted pottery found in Epirus with that of Maliq.
    N. L. G. Hammond wrote about Maliq and pointed to the autochthonous origin of the pottery painting, indicating that the “painted pottery like that of Maliq III d3 has been known in Epirus, but opinions vary as to when it first appeared in north-west Greece. We do not know of any site outside the Korce basin which has this pottery painted after firing and is of autochthonous origin, as it is at Maliq. Further, it is only at Maliq that we see the origins of this style. (N. L. G. Hammond indicated that the tumulus at Pazhok has dating that corresponds to Middle Helladic period. (The Cambridge Ancient History, Volume III, Part 1, 2008, p. 222)
    A study done by Barbara Horejs indicates that a total of eight different stylistic groups in Late Bronze Age mattpainted pottery have been discerned north of Central Greece. It is indicated that all these centers have a local tradition in mattpainted pottery with clear links to older prototypes. (Barbara, Horejs, Phenomenon of Mettapainted pottery in Northern Aegean, 2007)
    This pottery has been named devollite. It originated and flourished at the basin of River Devoll. During the Iron Age, this pottery characterized the whole of southern Illyrian areas. It is this pottery that is considered to provide a direct link between the Bronze Age population and the historical time population known as Illyrian. (Ceka, N., Iliret, p. 36) The area has also shown a similarity in the construction of fortifications, which became characteristic during the later Bronze Age. This construction is characterized by the placement of multi walls, use of confining tumuli, and leaving a wall encircled open space at the entrance. These construction elements could be seen In Borsh, QeparoLleshan, Tren and as far as Glasinac (Verecevo, Stipanic, Zagrovoc) and Liburnia (Budin, Oton, Dusar). (Ceka, N., Iliret, p. 36)
    According to the Albanian archaeologists, these common cultural similarities indicate formation of an ethnicity with specific cultural attributes that had taken shape during the Middle Bronze period. This was the result of a reality in which life from the Neolithic period had continued uninterrupted in the development of a distinct culture. The introduction of pastoral economy, as well as economic advances, associated with changes in means of production, must have been prime contributors in the integration of the population. The new economy would have necessitated a breakdown of the existing tribal structures.
    The next sizable population movement took place at the end of the second millennium B.C., which some have called Doric invasion, some others Illyrian invasion, and others have used other names. The invaders were a group of people that are identified to have brought urnfield culture south. Krahe (1955) had indicated that the Illyrians were the bearers of this culture which had developed by the fusion of the Danubian Yamnaya cultures. Elements of this civilization, reached Albania towards the end of the Bronze Age. (The Cambridge Ancient History, Volume III, Part 1, 2008, p. 228) The well known Albanian archeologist Frano Prendi summarized the evidence and the scope of impact of settlemets at the end of Bronze Age that Albanian territories had faced.
    In this transitional period which was to last some three centuries with each century providing new elements in its material culture, several components are discernible: the autochthonous tradition, elements of sub-Mycenaean and Proto-Geometric civilization, and elements of Cental European origin which were spread through Albania by the second wave of the Pannono-Balkan migration (end of the twelfth and the eleventh centuries B.C.). This wave, unlike the first, had a marked influence on Albania, although only in some areas.
    Of the number of cultural objects which spread from the north in all directions, there are swords with a tongue-shaped hilt (see Plates Vol.), flame-shaped spear-heads and socketed axes, which become fairly common in this period, and also pins with conical or vase-shaped heads (Vasenkopfnadeln), simple arched fibulae with or without buttons, whose origin, in all likelihood, is from the Liburno-Dalmatian coast, and so on. The earliest examples of this type with its many variants are recorded so far in the regions bordering southern Albania, as for example, at Dukat in Vlore, and are completely absent in the interior, as far as we know. This phenomenon suggests a purely maritime circulation of these eleventh and tenth century fibulae via the Adriatic.
    In spite of the special influence of the Urnfield civilization which played an important role in the enrichment of the Early Iron Age civilization in Albania, especially in the south, one must emphasize that it did not impose any essential difference on the autochthonous foundation of Albanian civilization, and even less on the ethnic structure of the population. This can be seen most clearly in the uninterrupted practice of burial rites in tumuli, the customary inhumation in the Illyrian manner being in the contracted position. The small number of urn-burials, for instance in the Bare tumuli, can be associated with the influence of the second wave of the Pannono- Balkan migration in Albania, but the objects found in them are with a few exceptions typically Illyrian objects. The pottery particularly is derived without stylistic modifications from the Late Bronze Age. Thus, for example, in the Korce basin and the adjoining areas, the pottery of the first era of the Iron Age is almost identical in technique, shape and decoration with the Late Bronze Age painted pottery of Maliq, so that it is often difficult to distinguish between them. This is an important factor in demonstrating the continuity of the tradition of the’ Devollian’ pottery from the Late Bronze Age period into the Early Iron Age and even down to the sixth century B.C.
    Thus, according to the Albanian archaeologists it would be wrong to identify the XIII-IX invasions as Illyrian, and magnify the effect of this invasion on Albanian territories. Their findings were in direct contradiction to the view that had taken hold with some historians and focused on the assumption that XIII-IX B.C. invasions from the north had overwhelmed western Balkans.
    Another tradition observed with the population Albanian archaeologists consider autochthonous has been the ritual of tumulus burial which has continued from the Bronze era. This burial rite spread through Albania, as elsewhere in the north-west Balkans, towards the beginning of the Bronze Age. Different types of tomb continued in general use over a long period, indeed until the end of the first part of the Early Iron Age.The tumulus-burials of the Bronze and Early Iron Ages in Albania are of various types: simple pits, as at Barf, Mati and Pazhok; cist-graves made of lateral slabs of soft stone partly buried in the earth and covered with one or more slabs laid one on top of another, as at Vajze, Dropull, Bajkaj etc.; wooden coffins as at Pazhok, and pits lined and covered with stones, as at Barf, Mat, Dukat, Pazhok, Kukes, etc. In spite of their diversity these tombs, as their contents indicate, appear to be associated both chronologically and ethnically. The conservatism indicated by the persistent use of these types of tomb is a new archaeological pointer to the ethnic continuity of their users, and helps to trace the genesis of ethnic identity amongst the Illyrian people in Albania. (The Cambridge Ancient History, Volume III, Part 1, 2008, pp. 229-30)
    According to Albanian archaeologists, discovered tumuli at Vajze, Vodhine, three tumuli at Pozhak, and one in Mat were built during the middle Bronze Age, while tumuli at Patos, Dukat, Prodan, Rehoves, Bardhoc, Krune, some of the Mat and Pozhak, etc., are reflective of late Bronze Age. N.G.L. Hammond indicated that the tumulus at Pazhok has dating that corresponds to Middle Helladic period. (The Cambridge Ancient History, Volume III, Part 1, 2008, p. 229)
    Some historians, for various reasons, have adapted the view that Illyrians migrated to the southern Balkans at end of the twelfth and the eleventh centuries B.C. N.G.L. Hammond who has been consistent with the view of early Greek culture and language emergence in Greece as well as in the adjoining areas to the north, in areas historically identified as Macedonia and Epirus, put Illyrian migrations into the area even later, indicating that great expansion of Illyria tribes occurred from c 900 BC onwards, the center from which they came being Glasinac in Central Yugoslavia…
    He indicated that tumulus-burial was characteristic of Illyrian tribes both to the north of Albanian and in Albania, but was customary also among other pastoral groups which were Greek-speaking, e.g. in central Epirus and in western Macedonia (in Pelagonia and Eordaea) or Phrygian-speaking (e.g. below Vergina). A great expansion of Illyria tribes occurred from c 900 BC onwards, the center from which they they came being Glasinac in Central Yugoslavia… The leading warriors buried in some of these tumuli had as many as ten spears each in heir graves. Tribes from the Glasinac area entered North and Centarl Albania in large numbers and overran the existing Illyrian tribes…The expansion carried some groups of warriors into central Epirus, others into Central Macedonia, and one group to Halus on South Thessaly, where a tumuli contained remains of men and woman with words, knives and spears of the eight century BC…(N.G.L. Hammond in Winnifrith,Tom, Perspective on Albania, 1992, p.34)
    Hammond saw Prendi’s assertion about Albanian autochthonous presence as confronting his well established contention that Epirus was populated by Greek speaking tribes, contrary to much of the ancient sources. His reference to Prendi’s comments about the tumuli do not add credence to his point of view. He does not directly discuss the view of the continuous use of the tumuli since Bronze Age. He does not reject Prendi’s contention, but he is not ready to accept that non-Greek speaking tribes populated Epirus.
    He promptly commented about Albanian archeological finds indicating that two sites, Vajze and Vodhine, had tumuli which were first constructed and used in the Middle Bronze Age, if not earlier, and were then re-used towards the end of the Late Bronze Age and on into the Early Iron Age, presumably by people who claimed some connexion with the original ‘heroes’. In the period of re-use the bronze weapons and ornaments from these and other tumuli swords, spear-heads and long pins were unusual in being engraved and in having distinctive features such as facetting on the socket of a javelin-head, and this has led to the conclusion that an independent metal-working establishment existed in the northern area (see above, pp. 224^, and that it produced short swords with some Mycenaean features but with other aspects which were ‘uncanonical’ in terms of Aegean archaeology.
    He indicates that tumuli in Vajze and Vodhine were used by people who claimed some connexion with the original ‘heroes’, and that the weapons and ornaments have a northern relationship, but apparently considers them as imports, maintaining that the Illyrian migration stopped north of Epirus. He adds that “although many more tumuli await excavation, it has become clear (from tumuli in southern Albania -BB) that the rulers … in Epirus had a common culture and that their contacts and affinities were rather with the rulers of the Korce plain at Barf than with those of the Mati valley. Yet they were distinct from the peoples of South Epirus, where tumuli have been found only recently (below, p. 636). He has formulated the view that Tumulus-burial was customary also among other pastoral groups which were “Greek-speaking”.
    Hammond is attempting to reconcile Albanian finds with his well known assumptions about Epirus. He indicates that the rulers in Vajze and Vodhine had contacts and affinities with the rulers of Korch plain at Barf, with the purpose of differentiating from rulers further north, but gives no further explanation. But at the same time, he indicates, these rulers were distinct from the people of south Epirus. Apparently he considers the “rulers” to be distinct on the basis of ethnicity with the “people” of Epirus, again he does not give details. Albanian archeologists have observed common cultural affinities between Maliq IIIc and that of Nezir (Mat), the latter also relating to the interior of southern Adriatic, which later was to be known as Mat-Glasinac(Bosnia) culture.
    When he refers to the only site, at the time of his writing, in the Greek side of Epirus, he indicates, “At Vitsa in Zagori burials were made in shallow trenches, or in cist-graves roofed with branches on which stones were placed, or under a cairn of stones. The burials were close-packed; set in three layers, and very close to the settlement, and the cemetery was in use from just before 900 B.C. into the fifth century B.C. To judge from the objects buried with the dead this community had contacts with Barc, Vergina, Vodhine, the Illyrians, and also southern Greece.” (Hammond 1976: 154/155) Archaeologists have referred to the pottery found in southern Greece as “barbarian ware”.
    More telling about the common culture of the people of this area is Hammond’s remark about tumuli at Vista in Zagoria, indicating that “the offerings with men, women and children show connections with the last pre-Illyrian phase at Vergina, with the Illyrian phase at Kuci Zi, with the burials of north Epirus and with southern Greece”. (The Cambridge Ancient History, Volume III, Part 1, 2008, p. 638).
    Again Hammond remains faithful to his assumption that Illyrians are late comers into Epirus, and that the indicated common practice above relates to the Iron Age period only. Additional discoveries in south Epirus have contradicted his point of view. Late Bronze Age (according to author: (ca. 1600/1580-1100 B.C.) Epirotic sites (Ephyra and Pogoni) “are known from Messenia, Elis, Leukas, Albania and the Dalmatic coasts”. (Papadopoulos, Thanasis J., Tombs and burial customs in late Bronze Age Eoirus) Papadopolous suggests that the tumuli at Ephyra were made during the prosperous years of the Late Bronze Age and not after the collapse of Mycenaean Ephyra as Hammond indicated. Styrenius (C. Styrenius, The Neolithic and Bronze Ages, 1971, p. 103) and Snodgrass (A.M. Snodgrass, The Dark Ages of Greece, 1971, pp. 172, 177) , suggest an origin and continuous use from the Middle Helladic times for the tumuli in this area. This would indicate that any practice of splitting the tradition of tumulus burial in Epirus into pre and after-Illyrian period is arbitrary.
    Prendi indicated that in the light of all that has been said, the question arises: who were the carriers of the Bronze Age civilization, and of that of the transitional period leading to the Iron Age, in Albania? Although the archaeological evidence is still limited, our study of it, period by period, has shown beyond doubt the continuous nature of the development of Illyrian civilization over the whole period under review, and enables us to view the people of the area as an established ethnic entity. This fact bears witness to the presence in the Albanian countryside of the same population throughout the whole of the Bronze Age and the transitional period to the Iron Age. This phenomenon is established more clearly than anywhere else at Maliq and in the Korce basin generally, where the materials of different phases of the Bronze Age and the Early Iron Age enable us to follow the uninterrupted evolution of the culture, with all the intermediate links from one stage to the next. In terms of history the archaeological evidence reveals a people which was growing up at this time peacefully and without interference from other ethnic groups, improving in its culture, its economic structure, and its internal social relationships; and this led. apparently towards the end of the Bronze Age, to the formation of the first ethnic communities with a common language and culture, namely the Illyrians. This process of the autochthonous formation of the Illyrian race began, according to the evidence of Maliq, at the beginning of the Bronze Age, on the basis of new economic cultural and ethnic structures in which the earliest migrations of the nomadic Indo-European shepherds certainly played an important part. These migrations interrupted the Eneolithic development of the area. This is seen in Maliq Ilia, whose culture, as far as we have uncovered it, has traits organically different from the Eneolithic culture of Maliq (Maliq II a and b). In penetrating into the Korce basin, this Indo-European group did not drive out or destroy the local population. On the contrary, it intermingled with them, imposing some elements of its language and culture and also its type of economy, while retaining for a period a number of the traits and methods of production of the native Eneolithic culture, at least up to the end of Maliq Illb, at which time the Early Bronze Age culture at Maliq succeeded in establishing itself as an individual culture with strictly local traits. It is exactly from this autochthonous base that we see the uninterrupted internal process of the formation of Illyrian culture in the southeastern area of Albania. To sum up, we may recall that at the beginning of the Early Bronze Age (Maliq Ilia), when new Indo-European elements of a different race became fused with the native Eneolithic elements, a new ethnocultural base was created. On this base there developed in turn the beginning of the slow and very complex process of the formation of the Illyrian race which was to reveal clearly defined traits in the Late Bronze Age. Thus the Illyrians created and developed their culture in the course of the Bronze Age in Albania, in close liaison of course with neighboring countries, and in particular with the Aegean world.(p. 237)
    We know the Illyrians spoke a language of their own, but unfortunately no written record of it has been preserved. A logical conclusion would be that the people of this area, today’s Albania and former Epirus, must have spoken dialects of this language. Opinions that that southern fringes of this area was Greek speaking has no basis of support. Crossland concluded that “the phonetic characteristics of some place-names in central and northern Greece have been thought to prove that Illyrians or closely related peoples were settled there before the Greek language was introduced . If they were, Greeks must have migrated into southern Epirus early in the first millennium at the latest. (pp. 841-2, R. A. Crossland, The Cambridge Ancient History, Volume III, Part 1, 2008)
    Interesting read, hopefully we will get some DNA someday from this tumulus burials.


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    Professor Muzaffer Korkuti recalls his encounter with N.G.L Hammond where he discussed precisely how he had misunderstood Epirus Tumuli:

    In 1970, during the II Congress of Southeast European Studies in Athens I presented a study on “Illyrian-Aegean cultural connections.” I was 34 years old then, but I had quite an abundant material from discoveries at tumuli at Pazhok, Vajze, Vodina and other Albanian locations which revealed that the tumuli burial at Pazhok and Vajze was practiced not only during the Bronze Age 2,000 years before, but the practice continued during the Iron Age, indicating a continuous practice of the ritual, by the same population. The same burial grounds would not be used by people of different culture or area. Thus, I indicated that based on this evidence, it would be reasonable to conclude, that the same population that inhabited the area during the Iron Age, had inhabited the area previously, that is during the Bronze Age. (wb-This population came to be identified as Illyrian) Use of this parameter identify the population associated with this ritual at this historical period would be most appropriate.


    Professor N.Hammondi, a British scholar, had expressed the view that the buried people at Pazhok tumuli, belonging to the Middle Bronze period, 1,600 years before Christ, were Greek-speaking. He had been relying on insufficient data. I contradicted this speculative view, and at the Congress I indicated that the manner of the burial in these late Bronze Age tumuli had not changed and this ritual was practiced by people of the same cultural (or ethnicity), and the Illyrians during the Middle Bronze Age did not speak Greek. If there had been Greek writing in the weapons, these weapons had been bought through trade relations by tribal chieftains, while ceramic wares were of domestic production. The latter were their home wares, Illyrian products. Thus, I indicated that this population was not Greek-speaking, but an indigenous population who had its own language.

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    Distribution map of Illyrian helmets:


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    Quote Originally Posted by Johane Derite View Post
    Professor Muzaffer Korkuti recalls his encounter with N.G.L Hammond where he discussed precisely how he had misunderstood Epirus Tumuli:

    In 1970, during the II Congress of Southeast European Studies in Athens I presented a study on “Illyrian-Aegean cultural connections.” I was 34 years old then, but I had quite an abundant material from discoveries at tumuli at Pazhok, Vajze, Vodina and other Albanian locations which revealed that the tumuli burial at Pazhok and Vajze was practiced not only during the Bronze Age 2,000 years before, but the practice continued during the Iron Age, indicating a continuous practice of the ritual, by the same population. The same burial grounds would not be used by people of different culture or area. Thus, I indicated that based on this evidence, it would be reasonable to conclude, that the same population that inhabited the area during the Iron Age, had inhabited the area previously, that is during the Bronze Age. (wb-This population came to be identified as Illyrian) Use of this parameter identify the population associated with this ritual at this historical period would be most appropriate.


    Professor N.Hammondi, a British scholar, had expressed the view that the buried people at Pazhok tumuli, belonging to the Middle Bronze period, 1,600 years before Christ, were Greek-speaking. He had been relying on insufficient data. I contradicted this speculative view, and at the Congress I indicated that the manner of the burial in these late Bronze Age tumuli had not changed and this ritual was practiced by people of the same cultural (or ethnicity), and the Illyrians during the Middle Bronze Age did not speak Greek. If there had been Greek writing in the weapons, these weapons had been bought through trade relations by tribal chieftains, while ceramic wares were of domestic production. The latter were their home wares, Illyrian products. Thus, I indicated that this population was not Greek-speaking, but an indigenous population who had its own language.
    Hammond was an important scholar of the XX century, but he missunderstooded many things.
    From his book "Migrations and invasions in Greece and Adjacent Areas", the chapter "Origin of the Albanians":
    Albanian settlements in Greek lands maintained their own language and their own dialect of that language for many centuries. The great majority spoke the Geg dialect which is characteristic of Albanians north of the river Shkumbi and of the districts Metohija and Kossovo in southern Yugoslavia;
    The fact that most Albanians in Greek lands have spoken the Geg dialect during the last hundred years is an indication of their geographical origin; that is to say, the first settlers came predominantly from north of the Shkumbi river, i.e. from north of 'Arbana’ , as indeed the literary sources suggest.
    And we know that this is not true, because by all scholars Arvanitica is classified as a Tosk dialect. The question is: Why he said this?

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    Quote Originally Posted by LABERIA View Post
    Hammond was an important scholar of the XX century, but he missunderstooded many things.
    From his book "Migrations and invasions in Greece and Adjacent Areas", the chapter "Origin of the Albanians":


    And we know that this is not true, because by all scholars Arvanitica is classified as a Tosk dialect. The question is: Why he said this?
    According to his wiki he was fluent in Albanian, so such a mistake as basic as saying Arvanites spoke Gheg must be intentional or a mistake in print or something wrong.

    Also from his wiki:

    "He was also an operative for the British Special Operations Executive (SOE) in occupied Greece during World War II.

    These abilities led him to be recruited by the Special Operations Executive during World War II in 1940. His activities included many dangerous sabotage missions in Greece (especially on the Greek island of Crete) as well as in Albania. As an officer, in 1944 he was in command of the Allied military mission to the Greek resistance in Thessaly and Macedonia.[2] There he came to know those regions thoroughly"

    That he knew Albanian regions thoroughly is evident about the way he speaks of Alexander the Great in the link I posted in the other thread:



    34
    If we take the pursuit to have gone ‘as far as the mountains of the Taulantians’, which were north of Elbasan (see BSA LXI (1966) 247), Alexander and his companions rode for 90 or 100 kilometres and passed through some mountainous country in the latter part of the pursuit. The route is not in doubt: Goricë—Tsangon Pass—Korcë plain—Malik —Gramsh—Shtërmen—Elbasan (see Macedonia I. 98, map 10 and 236, map 20). The total distance is about 100 km and includes rough going and scrub-covered country in Gramsh. An alternative has been suggested to me by G. T. Griffith. This is that the words τῶν Ταυλαντίων should be taken not with τὰ ὄρη but with ἡ δίωξις. If this is done, then ‘the pursuit of the Taulantians’ went only as far as the mountains on the southern side of the Korcë plain, a distance of some 25 kilometres, and one would assume that the name of these mountains was in the original source but was omitted by Arrian. This suggestion reduces Alexander's pursuit to reasonable proportions. But it seems doubtful whether Arrian would have written μέχρι πρὸς τὰ ὄρη ρῶν Ταυλαντίων if he had wished to avoid the obvious misunderstanding inherent in his word-order. Moreover ἡ δίωξις used absolutely is a regular feature in Arrian's descriptions of Alexander's battles (see Arr. 1.16.2; 2.11.7; 3.15.5–6), and the pursuit was sometimes carried to a great distance, e.g. at 3.15.5 for 600 stades = 120 km. I have therefore adopted the former interpretation in my text. I am grateful to Mr B. Bosworth of the University of Western Australia for his advice on this matter.

    35
    It seems likely that Alexander had already been through the Gryke e Ujkut, so that he knew the ground well enough to make his plan in advance. If so he had either come that way to find Cleitus at Pelion, or he had been there either with his father on a campaign against the Illyrians or during the period of estrangement, when he was ‘among the Illyrians’.

    36
    Arrian's concentration on Alexander leaves some points obscure. For example, we are not told what the cavalry as a whole did during the withdrawal into the Gryke e Ujkut. We may surmise that they formed the rear-guard and so prevented the enemy in Pelion from sallying out across the plain to attack the Macedonians or join their friends


    LINK:
    https://www.cambridge.org/core/journals/journal-of-hellenic-studies/article/alexanders-campaign-in-illyria/400BDC6872BE8F8BFD485AA4FB4F34CF



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    Quote Originally Posted by Johane Derite View Post
    According to his wiki he was fluent in Albanian, so such a mistake as basic as saying Arvanites spoke Gheg must be intentional or a mistake in print or something wrong.
    Also from his wiki:
    "He was also an operative for the British Special Operations Executive (SOE) in occupied Greece during World War II.
    These abilities led him to be recruited by the Special Operations Executive during World War II in 1940. His activities included many dangerous sabotage missions in Greece (especially on the Greek island of Crete) as well as in Albania. As an officer, in 1944 he was in command of the Allied military mission to the Greek resistance in Thessaly and Macedonia.[2] There he came to know those regions thoroughly"
    That he knew Albanian regions thoroughly is evident about the way he speaks of Alexander the Great in the link I posted in the other thread:
    34
    If we take the pursuit to have gone ‘as far as the mountains of the Taulantians’, which were north of Elbasan (see BSA LXI (1966) 247), Alexander and his companions rode for 90 or 100 kilometres and passed through some mountainous country in the latter part of the pursuit. The route is not in doubt: Goricë—Tsangon Pass—Korcë plain—Malik —Gramsh—Shtërmen—Elbasan (see Macedonia I. 98, map 10 and 236, map 20). The total distance is about 100 km and includes rough going and scrub-covered country in Gramsh. An alternative has been suggested to me by G. T. Griffith. This is that the words τῶν Ταυλαντίων should be taken not with τὰ ὄρη but with ἡ δίωξις. If this is done, then ‘the pursuit of the Taulantians’ went only as far as the mountains on the southern side of the Korcë plain, a distance of some 25 kilometres, and one would assume that the name of these mountains was in the original source but was omitted by Arrian. This suggestion reduces Alexander's pursuit to reasonable proportions. But it seems doubtful whether Arrian would have written μέχρι πρὸς τὰ ὄρη ρῶν Ταυλαντίων if he had wished to avoid the obvious misunderstanding inherent in his word-order. Moreover ἡ δίωξις used absolutely is a regular feature in Arrian's descriptions of Alexander's battles (see Arr. 1.16.2; 2.11.7; 3.15.5–6), and the pursuit was sometimes carried to a great distance, e.g. at 3.15.5 for 600 stades = 120 km. I have therefore adopted the former interpretation in my text. I am grateful to Mr B. Bosworth of the University of Western Australia for his advice on this matter.

    35
    It seems likely that Alexander had already been through the Gryke e Ujkut, so that he knew the ground well enough to make his plan in advance. If so he had either come that way to find Cleitus at Pelion, or he had been there either with his father on a campaign against the Illyrians or during the period of estrangement, when he was ‘among the Illyrians’.

    36
    Arrian's concentration on Alexander leaves some points obscure. For example, we are not told what the cavalry as a whole did during the withdrawal into the Gryke e Ujkut. We may surmise that they formed the rear-guard and so prevented the enemy in Pelion from sallying out across the plain to attack the Macedonians or join their friends


    LINK:
    https://www.cambridge.org/core/journals/journal-of-hellenic-studies/article/alexanders-campaign-in-illyria/400BDC6872BE8F8BFD485AA4FB4F34CF
    He knew Greece and Albania better than 90%of greeks and Albanians. He spoke Greek, Albanian and there is an story of how he passed in the middle of German soldiers and their Greek collaborators dressed as a Vlach shepherd. So probably he spoke even Vlach language.

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    Quote Originally Posted by LABERIA View Post
    Hammond was an important scholar of the XX century, but he missunderstooded many things.
    From his book "Migrations and invasions in Greece and Adjacent Areas", the chapter "Origin of the Albanians":


    And we know that this is not true, because by all scholars Arvanitica is classified as a Tosk dialect. The question is: Why he said this?
    Arbanitika is a geg dialect,
    Arbanitika is the language of the early settlers from around 13 century AD that moved from Albania to Sterea by the Latin rulers of the Duchy of Athens.

    the rest are not Arbanitika,
    Neither every Albanian that migrates to Greece is Arbanites
    ΟΘΕΝ ΑΙΔΩΣ OY EINAI
    ΑΤΗ ΛΑΜΒΑΝΕΙΝ ΑΥΤΟΙΣ
    ΥΒΡΙΣ ΓΕΝΝΑΤΑΙ
    ΝΕΜΕΣΙΣ ΚΑΙ ΤΙΣΗ ΑΚΟΛΟΥΘΟΥΣΙ ΔΕ

    When there is no shame
    Divine blindness conquers them
    Hybris (abuse, opprombium) is born
    Nemesis and punishment follows.

    Εχε υπομονη Ηρωα
    Η τιμωρια δεν αργει.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Yetos View Post
    Arbanitika is a geg dialect,
    Arbanitika is the language of the early settlers from around 13 century AD that moved from Albania to Sterea by the Latin rulers of the Duchy of Athens.

    the rest are not Arbanitika,
    Neither every Albanian that migrates to Greece is Arbanites
    Can you quote some scholars to support your claim, that arvanite dialect is Geg? Because all scholars classify the Arvanite dialects as Tosk.
    All the Albanians who invaded and colonized Greece during the middle ages are called Arvanites.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Yetos View Post
    Arbanitika is a geg dialect

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    Quote Originally Posted by Johane Derite View Post


    Laugh as you like,

    ARBANITIKA ARBANITE ARBERIST ARE BEFORE 15 CENTURY
    and are a dialect of their own,
    After 16 Century are just like Shqip and Tosk

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    Quote Originally Posted by Yetos View Post
    Laugh as you like,

    ARBANITIKA ARBANITE ARBERIST ARE BEFORE 15 CENTURY
    and are a dialect of their own,
    After 16 Century are just like Shqip and Tosk
    It's normal that people laugh with you.

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    Quote Originally Posted by LABERIA View Post
    It's normal that people laugh with you.

    offcourse, I am,

    some consider Arbanitika more ancient than modern Albanian


    from wiki


    Áti ýnë që jé ndë qiéjet, ushënjtëróft' émëri yt.
    Ati ynë që je qiell, u shënjtëroftë emri yt
    Ati ynë që je qiell, shejtnue kjoftë emni yt

    árthtë mbëretëría jóte; ubëftë dashurími ýt,
    arthtë mbretëria jote; u bëftë dëshira jote,
    ardhtë mbretnia jote; u baftë vullneti yt,

    si ndë qiél, edhé mbë dhét;
    si në qiell, edhe mbi dhe.
    si në qiell ashtu dhe.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Yetos View Post
    offcourse, I am,

    some consider Arbanitika more ancient than modern Albanian


    from wiki


    Áti ýnë që jé ndë qiéjet, ushënjtëróft' émëri yt.
    Ati ynë që je qiell, u shënjtëroftë emri yt
    Ati ynë që je qiell, shejtnue kjoftë emni yt

    árthtë mbëretëría jóte; ubëftë dashurími ýt,
    arthtë mbretëria jote; u bëftë dëshira jote,
    ardhtë mbretnia jote; u baftë vullneti yt,

    si ndë qiél, edhé mbë dhét;
    si në qiell, edhe mbi dhe.
    si në qiell ashtu dhe.
    Yetos, you're not informed or familiar with what you're talking about. Arvanitika is not nor was not gheg. You just made it up. You don't even speak Albanian so you don't even know what your copy pasting to understand what the differences are like and sound like.


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    Quote Originally Posted by Johane Derite View Post
    Yetos, you're not informed or familiar with what you're talking about. Arvanitika is not nor was not gheg. You just made it up. You don't even speak Albanian so you don't even know what your copy pasting to understand what the differences are like and sound like.

    It`s not the problem that he is not familiar or not informed. Because he posted a small part from the Lord prayer. But he intentionally edited it. Here is the source from Wiki:
    Arvanitika

    Here is what Yetos posted:

    Quote Originally Posted by Yetos View Post

    from wiki


    Áti ýnë që jé ndë qiéjet, ushënjtëróft' émëri yt.
    Ati ynë që je qiell, u shënjtëroftë emri yt
    Ati ynë që je qiell, shejtnue kjoftë emni yt

    árthtë mbëretëría jóte; ubëftë dashurími ýt,
    arthtë mbretëria jote; u bëftë dëshira jote,
    ardhtë mbretnia jote; u baftë vullneti yt,

    si ndë qiél, edhé mbë dhét;
    si në qiell, edhe mbi dhe.
    si në qiell ashtu dhe.
    And here is the original from wiki:
    The Lord's Prayer in Arvanitika Compared with Standard Tosk Albanian (second row),
    and Gheg Albanian (third row).

    Áti ýnë që jé ndë qiéjet, ushënjtëróft' émëri ýt.
    Ati ynë që je qiell, u shënjtëroftë emri yt.
    Ati ynë që je qiell, shejtnue kjoftë emni yt.
    Our father who art in heaven hallowed be thy name
    árthtë mbëretëría jóte; ubëftë dashurími ýt,
    arthtë mbretëria jote; u bëftë dëshira jote,
    ardhtë mbretnia jote; u baftë vullneti yt,
    thy kingdom come thy will be done
    si ndë qiél, edhé mbë dhét;
    si në qiell, edhe mbi dhe.
    si në qiell ashtu dhe.
    on earth as it is in heaven
    búkënë tónë të përdítëshimen' ép-na néve sót;
    bukën tonë të përditëshme jepna neve sot;
    Bukën tonë të përditshme epna neve sot;
    give us this day our daily bread
    edhé fálj-na fájetë tóna,
    edhe falna fajet tona,
    edhe falna neve fajet tona,
    and forgive us our trespasses
    sikúndrë edhé néve ua fáljmë fajtórëvet tánë;
    sikundër edhe ne ua falim fajtorëvet tanë;
    sikur edhe na ua falim fajtorëvet tanë;
    as we forgive those who trespass against us
    edhé mos na shtiér ndë ngásie, shpëtó-na nga i ljígu;
    edhe mos na shtjerë ngasje, po shpëtona nga i ligu;
    e mos na shti në t' keq, por largona prej t'keqit;
    and lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil
    sepsé jótia është mbëretëría e fuqía e ljavdía ndë jétët jétëvet.
    sepse jotja është mbretëria e fuqia e lavdia jetët jetëvet.
    sepse jotja âsht mretnia e fuqia e lavdi jetët jetëvet.
    for thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever and ever.
    Source: Η Καινή Διαθήκη στα Αρβανίτικα; "Christus Rex" website
    As you can see, he intentionally removed from the text of Wiki this sentence:
    Compared with Standard Tosk Albanian (second row),and Gheg Albanian (third row).

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    Tumulus Burials in South Albania

    Tumulus burial ceased in Mycenaean Greece before 1400 b.c., yet when Achilles honours Patroclus in Iliad he uses a method of burial than used only in Albania and farther north. It is likely that Homer here reveals the origins of heroic practice, and very probably the origin of oral epic. The dramatic date of the poem was 200 years after the end of tumulus burial in Mycenaean Greece and Homer himself lived 600 and 700 years after that time. But he went correctly to the north-west for the origin of Achilles, tumulus burial and heroic practices. For Albania was and is the homeland of heroes.

    Tumulus-burial in Albania and problems of Ethnogenesis
    Iliria Année 1976 4 pp. 127-132

    Nicholas G. L. Hammond

    Sent from my iPhone using Eupedia Forum

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