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    Connection between the Cimmerians and the Celts !

    I do not think that it is not a hazard that the Conan of the hyborian world had this first name, howard had to be interested in the historical cimmerians …

    Historical cimmerians are a people of antiquity, supposedly of Indo-European origin, perhaps related to the Iranian peoples, settled in Taurida and around the Sea of Azov before disseminating in the 8th and 7th centuries BC . J.- C. on all the circumference of the Euxine Bridge and especially in Asia Minor.

    They are known in ancient Greek as Kimmérioi, which could come from Kimế, “end, edge, margin, shore”: as an example, in the time of Ptolemy, the present Denmark was called Kimbrikế cheronesos, of the coast, of the shores “; In this case, their name would mean “those of the end / edge of the world”.

    But the Assyrian tablets mention a people called Gimirraya, and if they are the same, then the etymology might not be Greek.

    In the “Kimris hypothesis”, their names were compared to other denominations such as Kúmbrioi (Cumbria) given to the inhabitants of present-day Wales, Kímbrioi (Cimbrioi), Germanic or Celtic people rejected by the Roman general Caius Marius Near Aix-en-Provence, or the cities of Kumaïri (now Gumri in Armenia) and Kumế (Cymè in Italy), which led to the assumption of links between the Cimmerians and these peoples or places, but The phenomenon of “polynymy” (presence of the same denomination or of similar names, for several different peoples) is common in Antiquity, as Herodotus and Strabo testify: it is found, without being able to prove affiliation, Albans in Italy And in the Caucasus; Of the Iberians in Hispania and in the Caucasus and also of the Hibernes in present-day Ireland; Taurisci in Noricum (current Austria) and Tauris (present-day Ukraine); Of the Venetians in Armorica, in northern Italy, and in Germany (Wendes); Of the Volks in several places of Western and Central Europe …

    And we could multiply the examples; This polynomy can be explained in some cases by a common meaning of some denominations (Cymbrioi, Cimbrioi and Cimmerioi: “those of the margins”) but in most cases, it is Hellenization or latinization of the names of Peoples or places originally different, and coming from very varied languages, resulting in Greek or Latin ethnonyms very close phonetically, which originally did not have semantic relations, therefore ethnic.

    The Cimmerians were a nomadic cavalry people initially reported in the Pontic steppe, north of the Euxine Bridge (today the Black Sea), as it would also be the case, after them and successively, Scythians, Sarmatians, Iazyges, Roxolans, Alans, Huns, Avars, Bulgarians, Magyars, as well as many Turkish peoples (Khazars, Petchenegues, Kipchaks, Tatars …).

    The Cimmerians being the most ancient, the written sources (of the passages of Herodotus and Strabo, Assyrian tablets, etc.) are very succinct.

    This people has been brought closer to the Pontic Neolithic civilizations revealed in the same geographical perimeter by archaeological excavations: we are here more in the protohistory than in history, and almost nothing is known about their religious life, on which the information comes from Burial mounds containing representations of anthropozoomorphic deities, centaurs, chimeras, dragons ourobores.

    These artifacts show similarities to those of the Sintachte and Srubna cultures in eastern Europe, and to the culture of Novotcherkassk in present-day southern Russia.

    Only linguistic research can provide some additional data on their associations.

    In ancient times, the Chesoney (“peninsula” in Greek) was the Crimea.

    The Cimmerians probably settled there as early as 1200 BC, in the territory that Herodotus called the “Cimmerian Bosphorus.”

    About 700 BC, the riders of the steppes underwent the climatic crisis of the so-called Subatlantic period, and the Cimmerians were subjected to the pressure of the Scythians, who were themselves subjected to that of the Massagetes.

    The Cimmerian nobility tried to resist, but the people eventually dispersed, partly heading towards the center of Europe, another towards Anatolia.

    Herodotus reports that there were still cimmerian walls in the Scythian country, and that a region is called Cimmeria, which would be the Crimea.

    The main known difference between Cimmerians and Scythians concerns art, dominated by geometrical symbols among the Cimmerians, while the Scythian art is mostly zoomorphic.

    Presumably because of the climate of the so-called Subatlantic period, the Greeks of Antiquity called them “Peoples of the Night”.

    Homer writes that their country is “covered with clouds and mists” that “the rays of the sun never pierce”: Ephorus of Cymé attaches this legend of eternal night to their dwellings in caves connected by long galleries dug in the volcanic rock.

    The Subatlantic period has been correlated with massive eruptions in Iceland, with injection into the atmosphere of ash hiding the Sun for several years, and the eolian deposit of the same ashes which are interspersed between loess strata.

    Probably victims of the death of their herds and bad harvests, the Cimmerians had no choice but to move towards more southern regions, less affected by climatic disturbances.

    About 708 av. They cross the Bosphorus and / or the Caucasus and establish a colony in the Sinope region.

    They then live by piracy and pillage, and continue their progression to Assyria.

    They begin by attacking the kingdom of Urartu, in the region of Lake Ourmia.

    King Rusa I and his son Argishti II did not manage to contain them and suffered heavy defeats. The Cimmerians were then credited with a reputation for formidable warriors throughout the region.

    Arrested in Cappadocia by Assarhaddon in 679 BC. (Or -695 BC), they headed for the kingdom of Phrygia, where they beat King Midas, then to Lydia, where they battle about 660 BC. BC against King Gyges who must seek the help of Assurbanipal whose death in 644 BC. AD leaves them free.

    The Cimmerians then invaded the country, sacked the city of Sardis, burned the Temple of Artemis at Ephesus and devastated the countryside.

    Between 650 and 630 BC. AD, they are reported in Cappadocia, Cilicia and Pontus.

    After the death of the King of the Cimmerians Lygdamis, about 620 BC. There are fewer and fewer fighting relationships.

    So it would be the second last king of the historical cymmers who called Conan (Bizarre is not it?), would have died in battle against the Scythians in Mysia in 630 BC and not the last one as D.Hutchby and S.Clark write!

    Or Conan and Lygdamis would be the same king dead in battle in 630 or 620 against the Scythians ???

    Or in front of the Lydians, for according to the Greek authors, the Lydian king Alyatte II drove out the invaders and put a definitive end to the Cimmerian threat around 610 BC. AD

    Nevertheless in his fictions, the cimmerians would be very distant ancestors legendary of the Irish , Conan is a Breton first name not a Irish first name !

    So there were also five noble Bretons so called Conan:

    Conan Meriadec, legendary king of Brittany;
    Conan I of Brittany said the Tort († 992), Count of Rennes (970) and Duke of Brittany (990-992);
    Conan II of Brittany (1030-1066), Duke of Brittany from 1040;
    Conan III of Brittany called the Gros (1095-1148), Duke of Brittany from 1112;
    Conan IV of Brittany, known as Le Petit (1138-1171), Duke of Brittany (1156-1166);

    Bizarre is not it?


    It would be interesting to know what language the Cimmerians spoke. I think only a few personal names are known from the Assyrian records. “Teushpa” doesn’t sound particularly Gaelic. The later Scythian languages are Indo-European, but far removed from the Celtic languages of western Europe.

    R E Howard ransacked the historical sources for material for his Hyborian world. He is a towering figure to us wargamers – I think Howard inspired the WRG-Ancients style of tournament wargaming, pitting Greeks against Crusaders against Aztecs against Zulus, because they all fought with pointy sticks, but I would be cautious about citing him except as a writer of fiction. References to “Gomer”, as the eponymous ancestor of the Cimmerians, in Genesis, Ezekiel, Josephus and the Khazar Correspondence are not much more reliable.

    Finally, I offer for your consideration as a modern Cimmerian Jim Nabors’ character Gomer Pyle, simple and good natured, but a chaotic destructive force in the US Marine Corps.

    You'll shoot your eye out, kid!


    I was just wondering about the ethnic origin of the historical cimmerians and where Robert E. Howard went to fish the Conan name which was only used by the historical cimmerians and the Bretons …

    For me, the historical cimmerians certainly have a very ancient ethnic link with the Celts because they are very different from the Scythians …

    Obviously, they had to separate themselves from the Celts, in time immemorial and it’s a thing that has also happened also to many of the plain Indian nations, which have also sometimes split into two peoples …

    • This reply was modified 4 years, 3 months ago by Paskal.
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