Pre-Turkish Anatolia

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Pre-Turkish Anatolia

Post by Wend on Sun Jul 09, 2017 12:34 pm

What was pre-Turkish Anatolia like? Was it more Greek, more pre-Greek IE (like Hittite or Phrygian?), more Armenian? What was the culture and the people like there BEFORE the Turks arrived?
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Re: Pre-Turkish Anatolia

Post by ItsAGiraffe on Sun Jul 09, 2017 1:21 pm

It changed very, very often.  But, for a long time (starting in the 3rd century BCE), the interior of Anatolia was actually the home of Celts.  Yes, those Celts.  Tall, red hair, languages with lots of phlegm.  The ones the Romans called Gauls.  Same people.  That region of Anatolia was known to the Romans as Galatia, literally "Gaul Land".  Unrelated, but there's actually two other "Galatias" in Europe (one in northern Spain, another in southern Poland), which were named for the same reason.  Just something that I thought was pretty nifty.

But aside from Galatia, which was really only the central highlands, Anatolia was Hellenic.  It spoke Greek.  It acted Greek.  Sometimes it was ruled by Greeks.  But it would be wrong to say the Anatolians were Greek.  By the time the Romans started biting into Asia Minor, most of the people were still following their own local religions and customs that were very much not-Greek.  They had their own gods, for one, and their own food and dress, but they were also a completely separate group of people ethnically (not that this matters too much).  Still, with the Byzantines holding out for so long, eventually all the people in Anatolia were sort of absorbed into the Greek identity, even the Galatians.

Keep in mind, though, I'm only talking about Classical and Late Antiquity.  In the Ancient times it was completely different.
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Re: Pre-Turkish Anatolia

Post by Wend on Sun Jul 09, 2017 1:38 pm

ItsAGiraffe wrote:It changed very, very often.  But, for a long time (starting in the 3rd century BCE), the interior of Anatolia was actually the home of Celts.  Yes, those Celts.  Tall, red hair, languages with lots of phlegm.  The ones the Romans called Gauls.  Same people.  That region of Anatolia was known to the Romans as Galatia, literally "Gaul Land".  Unrelated, but there's actually two other "Galatias" in Europe (one in northern Spain, another in southern Poland), which were named for the same reason.  Just something that I thought was pretty nifty.


From what I read Celtic homeland was in Halstatt culture (S outh Germany and nearby areas), and Galatians were late migrants to Anatolia. But anyway if was Greek, then how strong would be Greek claim to this area nowadays? Also are present-day people living in Anatolia more of Turkish, or Greek, or pre-Greek origin? And what is the origin of the Kurdish people in Anatolia, and what was Anatolia under Persian (Achaemenid) control culturally? I know that Herodotus was potentially half-Greek, half-Anatolian living in Persian-controlled Anatolia, so was it region more Greek, more mixed, or under some Persian culture influence? Or if it was mixed, then what was the relation between Greeks and Anatolians living there?
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Re: Pre-Turkish Anatolia

Post by Jake Mapper on Sun Jul 09, 2017 1:50 pm

In Summary

Pre 3rd Century - Anatolia largely settled by non Indo European Tribes

3rd Century - 331 BC - Anatolia invaded by Indo Europeans (IE Celts). Different kingdoms arise including the Hittites who at a time dominate most of Anatolia but fall in the 1200s and Lydia in the West. On the Anatolian Aegean coast different Greek City states arise. Meanwhile on the western borders different empires battle for the region with the Assyrians first, then Babylonians, then Medians. Then finally comes the Persian Empire which gobbles up most of Anatolia. Greek and Persian cultures coalesce to a dominance in Anatolia and meanwhile their are Armenians in the east

331 BC - Around 70 BC - Macedonians invade Anatolia taking most of it and reestablishing Greek culture over Anatolia. The Macedonians soon collapse but in their wake Greek Like states form in Anatolia largely guided by Greek Culture. With Greek being widespread . Anatolia is a hotbed of wars during this time however is eventually put to a end with Roman Hegemony. Its not all Greek Influenced however as their are different groups including armenians and other native anatolians that refuse greek hegemony

70 BC - Around 1300 - The Roman Empire supplants Hellenic Culture on Anatolia. After the Roman Empire splits the Byzantine Empire continues this trend. It remains a Greek dominated culture for some time until the 1000s, 1100s, and 1200s when new and different groups arrive in Anatolia including the Arabs and Turks. The Seljuk Empire pushes more turks into the empire and by 1300 Turkish kingdoms were created throughout Anatolia
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Re: Pre-Turkish Anatolia

Post by Jake Mapper on Sun Jul 09, 2017 1:51 pm

Keep in Mind this is pretty broad.
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Re: Pre-Turkish Anatolia

Post by Ataturk Soldier on Sun Jul 09, 2017 4:35 pm

Actually asimiliation of Anatolia by Turks was easy because it quickly became the lingua franca there were different languages in all over Anatolia thanks to that people learnt Turkish to trade and because only Muslim people in Anatolia was Turks being muslim was equal to being Turk therefore Turks quickly became the dominant culture

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Re: Pre-Turkish Anatolia

Post by Wend on Mon Jul 10, 2017 3:51 am

Ataturk Soldier wrote:Actually asimiliation of Anatolia by Turks was easy because it quickly became the lingua franca there were different languages in all over Anatolia thanks to that people learnt Turkish to trade and because only Muslim people in Anatolia was Turks being muslim was equal to being Turk therefore Turks quickly became the dominant culture
That's an interesting theory.
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Re: Pre-Turkish Anatolia

Post by Cold War Communist on Tue Jul 11, 2017 10:25 pm

Wend wrote: But anyway if was Greek, then how strong would be Greek claim to this area nowadays?

Very weak. It would be as weak as a Turkish claim to Greek land based on Ottoman holdings.

Also are present-day people living in Anatolia more of Turkish, or  Greek, or pre-Greek origin?

Turkish. The Ottoman Turks swooped in and took over more recently than the rest and clamped down on the territory for many centuries, which has kept the ethnic line strong.
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