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Pechenegs and Hungarians

Pechenegs and Hungarians


I am presenting this essay with grateful thanks to Volodymyr Bakus for the material support of the research being carried out


Among all the nations that played a big role in the Eastern European events of prehistoric time, the Pechenegs were the only ones not awarded by attention in the reviewed here research. In fairness, this omission should be amended at least in the sense of their enigmatic ethnicity. The starting material in searching for the origin of the Pechenegs may be available scanty historical information about their relations with the ancestors of today's Hungarians, whom we call the Magyars, as well as data onomastic data, often used by us in seeking a solution to similar problems.

Ethnicity of ancient peoples is determined by two factors – the anthropological look and language. Historians generally believe that the Pechenegs were Turks, anthropological prototype of which was supposed to be Mongoloid. If Pechenegs had evident Mongoloid features, their Turkic ethnicity would not cause any doubts. However, doubts arise precisely about their Mongoloid appearance. The fact that in the steppes from the Volga to the Danube in the burials of nomads of X – the first half of the XIII cent. were being found skulls as Mongoloid and Caucasoid type. During this period mainly the Pechenegs and Oguz (Guzes) could nomadize in this area, and thinking over the ethnicity of studied burials, S.A. Pletniova writes:


What kind of physical types belonged to the Pechenegs and what to the Guzes did? Obviously, in this case, you can only make a preliminary hypothesis on the forming of Pecheneg ethnic group beyond the Volga based on the lived and roamed there Sarmatians. As a result, there was formed Caucasoid steppe type with some admixture of Mongoloid. Mongoloid type, probably, was Oguzian, although clearly expressed their Mongoloid feature are not yet quite understandable for researchers, since, apparently, the two ethnic groups were cooked in one etnoproducibg pot (PLETNIOVA S.A., 2003: 128)


In other words, the Pechenegs were originally Mongoloids, but then somehow mysteriously transformed into Caucasians and thus, anthropology does not give us a clear answer to a question about ethnicity of the Pechenegs. As for the Pecheneg language, because it has not been preserved, it can only be judged by their own names, recorded in the Byzantine, Slavic, Hungarian chronicles and documents. However, it is assumed that numerous runic inscriptions on the territories populated ever Pechenegs, were left just by them. However, attempts to decipher them by the Turkic languages were in vain (PRITSAK OMELJAN, 1970: 98). Similarly, the majority of Pecheneg own names can hardly be correlated with any of the Turkic languages, although the right is stated in the Byzantine sources that the Pechenegs spoke the same language as Cumans (VASILIEVSKY V.G. 1908: 8). This statement means little in the case of a different ethnicity of Pechenegs and Cumans, as communication between people of different nationalities always premisses using a single language. And in this case – what is just it? If you put a specific question about the Pecheneg language, then you need to raise additional evidence. For example, it could be judged by place names left by the Pechenegs, but you need to be confident in their Pecheneg belonging. It is clear that such confidence can not be without knowledge of the Pecheneg language. A vicious circle, the output of which can only be found experimentally with an authentic conception of the dispersal of the various peoples in Eurasia at prehistoric times. However, the dominant idea of their spatial distribution is not valid. In particular this applies to the Turkic peoples, which include the Pechenegs. Omeljan Pritsak in his work on Pechenegs, their ancestral home placed "between the Aral Sea and the middle course of the Syr Darya River with the center near the city of Tashkent" (PRITSAK OMELJAN, 1970: 98). Why such accuracy remains unclear. L.N. Gumilyov, in his work on the ancient Turks, mentions the Pechenegs only two or three times, placing them randomly, without explanation, in the lower reaches of the Syr Darya River or in the lower reaches of the Volga River (GUMILEV L. N. 2003). Obviously, his ideas are based on data of ibn Fadlan and Constantine VII Porphyrogennetos. The last, in particular, reported that the Pechenegs first lived near the Volga and Yaik Rivers, and their neighbors were Mazara and Uzes. Subsequently the Uzes uniting with the Khazars, expelled Pechenegs from their own country (GOLUBOVSKIY P., 1884: 34).

In fact, K. Porphyrogenitos told about the Geikh and Atil Rivers, which can be justly assumed the Volga and Ural (Yaik) by the names, but you can not be sure whether he imagined the location of these rivers and correctly used the names he had heard, as the names of the Volga and Ural were changed repeatedly. He himself was never in these places and his informant is unknown. The message of ibn Fadlan should be the more accurate. He participated in the Embassy of the Abbasid Caliph al-Muqtadir in Volga Bulgaria in 921-922 years, so you should first of all refer to him:


Then we crossed after that the river Djam (ie the Emba River, Kazakh Djem,– V.S.), also in the road bags, then we crossed Djahash (ie Yaik, Kaz Djayiq – V.S.), then Adal (ie. Volga, Chuv. Atăl – V.S.), then Ardan, then Varish, then Akhti, then Ardan, then Varish, then Ahti, then Vabna, and all these are big rivers. After that we came to Bajanaks (Pechenegs – V.S.), and they stayed by the water similar to a sea, not flowing, and they are dark brunettes with completely shaved beards, they are poor in comparison with Guzzes. In fact I saw some Guzzes that owned ten thousand horses and hundred thousand heads of sheep. (ibn Fadlan TRAVEL TO BULGARIA)


From the report it is clear that the Embassy met the Pechenegs already going Volga, although there is no way to identify the river called forth. Poverty of Pechenegs, said Ibn Fadlan, can only be explained by the fact that they did not have a sufficient number of pastures, it would be completely incomprehensible if they were resident in the endless steppes of Kazakhstan. However, a further description of the journey is somewhat contradictory:


We stayed with Bajanaks for one day, then we went and stopped at the river Djayh, and it is the biggest river what we saw, the widest and with the strongest current (Ibid)


Since ibn Fadlan told about a "biggest river", it would have to be the Volga, but he called to Kazakh name Djayiq of the Ural River and this brings to fallacy. Researchers assumed that the Pechenegs definitely had to be beyond the Volga, take into account only this message, withou mentioning crossing the Adal at all (MAGIDOVICH I.P., MAGIDOVICH V. I. 1970, 1970: 126-127). Thus, to understand the writings of Ibn Fadlan is impossible without arbitrary assumptions, as well as in many other messages of the ancients, all the more any source should be treated critically. Even today, it is believed that the homeland of Turks was in the Altai, where from they settled in a large area in Asia and periodically massively invaded Europe (Huns, Avars, Pechenegs, Cumans, Tatar-Mongols, etc.) From behind of the Volga allegedly came also Scythians, but they were referred to the Iranians. Research ethnogenetic processes using the graphic-analytical method (STETSYUK BALENTYN, 1998) forced to change this picture significantly.

In the beginning the first mill. BC. Bulgars, who inhabited the Western Ukraine, returned to the steppes of the Black Sea, and became known in history as the Scythians. Ancient historians attributed to the Scythians, that not knowing, except the Bulgars, also Cumans and some Iranian tribes, and peoples, who spoke on the Abkhaz-Adyghe and Northeast Caucasian languages and inhabiting as the Cumans, the North Caucasus.

The ethnic composition of the population of Great Scythia is confirmed by place names, deciphering which with the help of different languages it was found that some geographical names can be deciphered only with the help of the Chechen language. They are quite a few and they are not arranged randomly, which could indicate an erroneous interpretation, and with a certain regularity. The following is a partial list of them


Bezhin Lug, locality in Chern district of Tula Region, described in the eponymous story of Ivan Turgenev – Chech. bezhan "pasture grazing". The semantic proximity of the two words of the toponym (Rus lug "meadiw") confirms its Chechen origin. Many other names originate from the same appellative: Bezhanovka, a station in the town of Kirovsk in Lugansk Region, Bejan, forest reserve and the village, Bezhan-Târnăviţa in the south-west of Transylvania in Romania, Bežanijska kosa, a district of Belgrade, Bezhanovo, two villages in Bulgaria, Bezhan', a town in Briansk district of Briansk Region, Russia, Bezhanov, an abandoned village in the Naur district of Chechnya. Although Slavic origin of some of these place names is possible, some of them were definitely left by the Chechens, that is, by the Pechenegs.

Haysyn (Gaysyn), a town in Vinnytsia Region – Chech. gIaysin "apricot" ( – a voiced velar fricative, corresponded the Arabic sound Ghayn).

Dakhno, a village in Berdiansk district of Zaporozhie Region, Dakhnivka, prior a village, now a district in the city of Cherkasy, Dokhno, a village in Chechelnyky district of Vinnytsia Region, Dokhna, a river, rt of the Southern Bug, Dokhnary, a village in Polotsk district of Vitebsk Region, Belarus, Dokhnovy and Dokhnovychi, villages in Starodub district of Briansk Region, Russia, Dokhny (Bel. Dakhny), a village in Smorgonsk district of Grodno Region, Belarus – Chech. daükhny "property, cattle" ( – a front vowel). However, one or two names could be given by Trypillians, which language had a similar word in the meaning of "millet".

Kairy, villages in Hornostayevka district of Kherson Region and Komintern district of Odessa Rerion – Chech. g²ayrē "an iseland".

Kerch, a city on the Kerch Peninsula in the east of the Crimea – Chech. kkherch "hearth, stove".

Kobolchin, a village in Sokiriany district of Chernivtsi Region – Chech. qoboldan "to approve".

Massandra, a part of the city of Yalta – Chech. massakhāra "verywhere". Inconsistency in one sound compensated by the full likeness of the other. The motivation of the name can be interpreted in different ways.

Mozdok, a village in Uvarov district of Tambov Region and a town in Kursk Region, Russia – Chech moz "honey" and dog "a heart, core". This deciphering is confirmed by the location of the city of Mozdok in North Ossetia near Chechnya.

Sabynino, a village in Yakovlev district of Belgorod Region, Russia – Chech. sābin "soapy".

Tuskar', a river, rt of the Seym River and Lake Tuskar' near – Chech. tuskar “basket”.

Yalta, a city on the Black Sea coast – Chech. yalta "crop".

The possibility of Chechen origin of each of the names can be discussed, but there is a particularly questionable cases that are given just not to lose sight of them:

Berda, a river flowin into the Sea of Azov, the city of Berdiansk on it, villages Berdianka in Lugansk, Kharkov, and Kursk Regions – Chech. berd "a bank, steep". It is doubtful that all these names originated from a particular Slav. berdo "a detail of the loom," or similar words meaning "hill, mountain" because all of these place names are located in flat terrain, but it may be appropriate for names of rivers with steep banks and settlements on them

Lugan', Luganka, several rivers and settlements in Ukraine and Russia – the names of Slavic looks, but the suffix -an' is more suitable for the name of a place, it is not typical for hydronyms. For the interpretation of place names can be considered Chech. logan, an adjective from the log "neck".

Sudzha, a town in Kursk Region, Russia and a river, rt of the Psel River – similarity to several names of settlements and rivers Sunzha suggests their common origin. The Sunzha River in Ingush, akin Chechen, is called Sholzha khiy that is translated as "ice water" (Ing. sha "ice", shiyla "cold", Chech. Shēlō "colgness", Ing. khiy, Chech. khi "water"). That is the origin of the name is clearly Nakh and the original name of the river had to be exactly Sholzha khiy and the forms Sunzha and Sudzha were evolved from it.

Despite the fact that the possible origin of the given above names given was carefully checkeded by available sources, errors in interpretation are possible, but their abundance can not be accidental and indicates the presence on the territory of the spread of these names some people, at least akin to the modern Chechens. However, a question immediately raises of time of their presence. The assumption of the Scythian-Sarmatian period should be rejected, because the Black Sea epigraphy practically gives no names, which could be decrypted with the help of the Chechen language. Considering an earlier period has no reason, therefore, we should seek to a later time.

The territory of the spread of alleged Chechen place names is largely coincides with the territory populated by the Pechenegs at a certain time:


At the end of IX century Pechenegs, as it is known, dominated the whole space of the Black Sea steppes from the Don River to the area Etelköz, ie approximately till the Dniester (RASOVSKIY D.A., 2012, 41)


It is characteristic that just direct evidences of settlements of the Pechenegs can be found in places of multitude of Chechen place names. Some of them lead in this work Omeljan Pritsak:

Pechenegy, a town in Kharkiv Region.

Pechenezhets, a forest near the Rosava River, lt of theRos', rt of the Dnieper.

Pechenezhin, a town in Kolomia district of Ivano-Frankivsk Region.

Pechenihy, a hill near the town of Bibrka in Lviv Region.

Pecheniky, a village in Starodub district of Briansk Region, Russia.

Pecgenia, a village in Zolochiv district of Lviv Region.

Pecheniuhy, a village in Novhorod-Siverski of Chernihic Region.

These place names together with the decrypted above Chechen ones were placed on the Google map (see. below).





The map shows place names decrypted with the Chechen language or contain a root pechen (red asterisks). Red line marks the boundary of the settlements on the Pechenegs by data of A.M. Shcherbak (FEDOROV-DAVUDOV G.A. 1966; 140, Fig. 20). Green asterisks indicate place names decrypted using the Hungarian language or having other traces of the Magyars.


It is known from historical sources that in the 9th cen. the Magyars populated Levedia which was somewhere between the Don and the Dnieper Rivers. Forced out by the Pechenegs, they settled in the country Atelkuza, Etelköz which location is debatable, but presumably it should have been in the area between the Dnieper and Dniester Rivers. There are ib the middle reaches of the Southern Bug River a compact cluster of names that can be decrypted using the Hungarian language:

Holdashivka, a village in Bershad district of Vinnytsia Region – Hung. hold "moon".

Holma, a village in Balta of Odessa Region – Hung. holmi "a thing".

Kidrasivka, a village in Bershad district of Vinnytsia Region – Hung. kiderül "to emerge".

Konceba, a village in Savran of Odessa Region – Hung. konc 1. "a peace of meat", 2. "gain, spoil". The Hundarian word was borrowed from a Slavic tribe of Ulichi or Tiverthsi populated this area (Sl. kąs "a piecxe)".

Savran, a town in Odessa Region – Hung. sarv "horn".

Salkovo, a town in Hayvoron district of Kirivohraf Region – Hung. sálka 1. "a splinter", 2. "fish bone".

Just here could be locatd Etelköz. Farther Hungarian place names interspersed with Chechen goes along the Dniester River to the Western Ukraine, including such as Vendychany (Hung. vendég "guest"), Korman' (Hung. kormány "rudder"), Kelmentsi (Hung.kelme "textile"), Boryshkivtsi (Hung. borús "cloudy, morose") a.o.

The presence of the Magyars in Western Ukraine is confirmed by names containing the roots of Ugr (Uhr), Uger (Uher) from Ukr. Uhor "Hungar": the villages of Uhryniv in Sokal district, Lviv Region, in Horokhiv district of Volyn Region, in Tysmenytsia district of Ivano-Frankivsk Region, the village of Uhryn Chortkiv district, the village of Uhrynkovtsi in Zalishchyky district of Ternopil Region, the village of Uhersko (formerly Ugriny) in Stryi district, the village of Ugry in Gorodok district of Lviv Region. In addition, the villages of Green Guy in Gorodok district and Nagirne in Sambir district of Lviv Region, previously having the names Uhertsi Vinyavski and Uhertsi Zaplatinski respectively.

There can be found in the area of these place names such ones which can be decoded by means of the Hungarian language. For example the villages Libohory in Turka and Skole districts of Lviv Region have good Hungarian match in the name of the plant Stellaria media (Hung. libahúr). The following place names also can have Hungarian origin:

Tershakiv, a village in Horodok district of Lviv Region – Hung. térség "space, area".

Tsykiv, villages in Busk and Nostyska districts of Lviv Region, The village of Tsykova in Chemerovets district of Khmelnytski Region – Hung. cikk "a thing, commodity". The origin of this word is supposed German (Zaicz Gábor. 2006) from infrequent Ger. Zwick "a wedge (clothing)". This is a very questionable parallel according the sense. Perhaps the Hungarian word, as well as Rus.tiuk orinate from Turk. tüg "a bundle".

Cherlany, a village in Horodok diatrict of Lviv Region – Hung. czere "change", leany (lány) "a girl". When dominant exogamy in ancient times a custom to marry a girl of another tribe was practised. The village of Cherlany could be a place where Hungarians and Ukrainians of neighboring villages exchanging girls for marriage.

The surname Telefanko is very common in villages of Popovychi in Mostiska district and Drozdovychy in Gorodok district of Lviv Region. It can be found also in other villages and towns nearby. This name stands for good with the help of the Hungarian language – Hung. tele «full, filled up» and fánk "a donut". This is additional evidence that the Magyars remained in these areas before the arrival of the Ukrainians, and then they were assimilated by them. There is a possibility of Hungarian origin and the name of the city of Sambor. Although we have no reliable decoding for it (relationship of Hung. sam "number" and bor "wine" is questionable ), such assumption is not without foundation, since the cities Old Sambor Sambor are located among clusters of other Hungarian place names.

We have identified the ancestral home of the Hungarians in the ethno-producing area on the left bank of the Don between its tributaries Choper and Medveditsa, that is near to Levedia. We can see on the map a quiate lot of Chechen place names in the space between the intended Levedia and Etelköz but Hungarian ones are almost absent. According to historical data, this area was occupied by the Pechenegs, forced out the inhabiting it Hungarians. It is logical to assume that the Pechenegs not occupy the places where Hungarian place names have survived to our time. They cluster on the right bank of the Volga gives doubt that Pechenegs, crossing the Volga, not occupied at the first its right bank, compeling the Hungarians to move beyond the Don. This fact gives grounds to assume that the Pechenegs moved not from the east but from the south, that is from the Caucasus.

Thus, there are enough evidence to suggest that the Pechenegs were one of the Chechen tribes who left their ancestral home in the North Caucasus, and for various reasons took a long hike from the Don to the Danube and beyond. Such hypothesis is confirmed by similarities between the roots of the ethnonyms pechen and chechen. The own name of the Chechens is Nokhchi therefore they bacame the name from neighboring peoples. The Greeks called the PechenegsΠατζινάκοι, but the Greeks learned this name from Slavs, as rightly pointed P. Golubovskiy considering different variants, met in the documents of those times (GOLUBOVSKIY P., 1884, 34). Therefore the Slavic name has to be closer to a first form, which can much explain. Many scholars advance considering Turkic ethnicity of Prechenegs, sought the first form of the name in the Turkic languages, and found it in bečanag "a son-in-law" (FEDOROV-DAVYDOV U.A. 1966: 136, PRITSAK OMELJAN, 1970: 95). This explanation is too tense, so try us to search another.

In the period preceding the invasion of Pechenegs the Chechens had to be a part of the Khazar Khanate, where dpminated Bulgarian languages, one of which is the Chuvash language. Searching the first form in the Chuvash language, we find the idiom pěchchen-ikkĕ "to one or two, in the small amount of" consisting of semantically related words ěchchen "lone, individual" and ikkĕ (ikĕ) "two". Phonetic matching is good, but the motivation of such calling some people is unclear. We can assume that this is either an ironic name, what often happens, or it characterizes a small people. In addition to the common name of the Pechenegs Constantine Porphyrogenitus uses the word kangar only for a part of their tribes. To decrypt such a name well suited Chech. qānō "an elder (of a kin)" and gāra "kin, clan", while they again are unsuccessfully searching an explanation for this word in the Turkic languages (FEDOROV-DAVYDOV U.A. 1966: 136,). To get out of the captivity of traditional ideas is not light, but we already have quite serious reasons to consider Chechen ethnicity of the Pechenegs.

Currently, the Chechens are quite small people, but the history of their alleged ancestors is rich in dramatic events from ancient times to the present day. According to V.O. Kluchevskiy, there is in some editions of Russian chronicles evidence that the Kievan princes Askold and Dir "beat a lot of the Pechenegs" in 867. Therefore, he concludes that "the Petchenegs about half IX cent moved close to Kiev cutting of the Middle Dnieper space from its Black Sea and Caspian markets" (KLUCHEVSKIY V.O., 1956: 131). The role of the Pechenegs in the further history of Eastern Europe is highly appreciated:


About half of the IX century Pechenegs crossed the Danube. This event, ignored by all new historical writings, had tremendous significance in the history of mankind. It is almost as important in its consequences as the transition of the Visigoths across the Danube (VASILIEVSKI V.G., 1908: 7-8).


Anyway, the Pechenegs "for quite some time exerted enormous influence on the fate of Byzantium» (VASILIEV A.A. 1998: 396). Accordingly you can find a lot of information about the Pechenegs in the Byzantine sources, in the same way as in Ruthenian annals. In particular, the are names of the Pecheneg khans and chiefs of lower rank, some of which, having no reliable deciphering by means of the Turkic languages, can be explained Chechen. However, some names have obviously Türkic character (Ildey, Kuchuk, Temir). This is not surprising, since the Pechenegs often acted in alliance with the Turkic tribes of the Uzes, Berendeys, etc .:


In these decades (40-60-ies of XI century – V.S.) it is impossible to determine exactly – what kind of nomads made their forays deep into Ugria or crowded the Byzantine frontier. Magyar sources mixed them calling as the Besses or Kunes, but Byzantine unite all them in the common classic name of Scythians. Sometimes, indeed, various nomadic tribes joined together to make any foray and so have made even more confusion in the terminology (RASOVSKIY D.A., 2012: 57)


Such attitude to the nomads was typical, Walter Pohl writes the same (POHL WALTER, 2002: 4). In addition, we can not exclude cases of borrowing personal names among the ruling tribal elite:


Let no one say that this name is quite foreign to the Gothic tongue, and let no one who is ignorant cavil at the fact that the tribes of men make use of many names, even as the Romans borrow from the Macedonians, the Greeks from the Romans, the Sarmatians from the Germans, and the Goths frequently from the Huns. (JORDANES, 1960, IX, 58).


With all this in mind, we take not too strictly the fact that only a few names of famous Pechenegs can be quite believable decrypted using the Chechen language. To those following can be assigned:

Gosta, the name of a Khan of Pechenegs, the first mentioned in the sources – Chwch. kost "assignment". Perhaps this was not a Khan, but only warlord runding Khan's errand.

Batana, one of Pecheneg rulers – Chech. betan an adjective from bat "mouth", "face"; bettan "lunar".

Kegen, a Khan, Tirakh's rival – Chech. qēgina "shining, flashing"

Kildar, Tirakh's father – Chech. gIeldar "öeakening, fatigue". The name is not very suitable for ō Khan, but it is necessary to analyze the context, if it is not a word for definition of an aging Tirakh's father Tirah.

Kuela, one of Pecheneg rulers – Chech. qulla "source, spring".

Kur'a, a Pecheneg Khan smashed the squad of Prince Svyatoslav in 972 – Chech. kura "proud, arrogant".

Metigay, a Khan, who was baptized by Prince Vladimir the Great– Chech. mettig "place", "case".

Tirakh, a Khan, in the service of the Byzantine at some time – Chech. tērakh "date, number".

Apparently, both toponymics and anthroponymics testify to the Chechen ethnicity of the Pechenegs. This assumption can be confirmed by further research as place names in the known places of the presence of the Pechenegs, and the possible matches between the Chechen language and the languages of other peoples inhabited Sarmatia. First of all, they need to be looked for in Hungarian and you can find them quite easily. Below is a list supplied by Chechen words which have matches found in the etymological dictionary of the Hungarian language (ZAICZ GÁBOR. 2006.), as uncertain or unknown origin.

Chech. aüsta "a mattock", akhka "to dig" (aü – a front vowel) – Hung. ásó "a mattock".

Chech. baqō "right, law" – Hung. bakó "an executioner". Exact phonetic matching, although the semantics is remote, but an executioner administers justice.

Chech. berch "a wart" – Hung. bérc"a rock".

Chech. bēzam "simpathy", "love" – Hung. bezalom "trust".

Chech. boddan "to be worn out", "to lose cheerfulness" – Hung. bódít "to drug".

Chech. bog "a bump, lump, knar" – Hung. bog "knot", boglya "stack, rick".

Chech. borc "millet", burch "pepper" – Hung. borsó "pea", bors "black pepper" (maybe, all words from Cuv. ļăšçą "pea").

Chech. borsh "bull-calf" – Hung. borjas "a cow with young" (from borjú "calf", borrowed from Chuv. păru "calf").

Chech. buürka "a ball" (the ergative case – įóüšźąķē) – Hung. burgonya "potatoes".

Chech. guüla "pack of dogs" – Hung. gulya "herd".

Chech. dac "no", "not is" – Hung. dac "obstinacy".

Chech. kert "fence", "yard" – Hung. kert "harden".

Chech. sākkhō "control, oversight, supervision" – Hung. szakács "cook".

Chech. khottar "connection" – Hung. hotár "border".

Chech. shayn "their" – Hung. sajat "own"

Chech. shach "sedge" – Hung. sás "sedge"

There may be other examples of Chechen-Hungarian lexical matches, but one should keep in mind that some of them may indicate contacts of the Khazar period or have a common source of borrowing. In addition to the above-mentioned Chuvash parallels, others can also be found that can also refer to Khazar times, but the links between the Chechen language and the languages ​​of peoples whose contacts with Chechens are not witnessed in history will be of great significance. This is the subject of research by specialists, but such a lexical match has already been discovered: other-English tulge "strong" – Chechen. tIulg "stone". In addition to Old English, some language matches must be found in Romanian, Bulgarian, Greek. The undoubted connections of the Chechen language with the Ossetian can have a different explanation.

If we agree with the Chechen ethnicity Pechenegs, the question immediately arises whether only the Chechens were among many peoples of the North Caucasus, who left inhabited places and set out to find new ones. It remained in the annals information about the peoples who participated in the historic events in Eastern Europe together with the Pechenegs. This is primarily the Polovtsy, and then the so-called Chorni Klobuky ("black hoods") including the Berendei, Torki, Kovui oand others. Constantine VII Porphyrogennetos also named the Kawars or Kabars. He pointed out that the Kawars "derived from the genus of the Khazars", which can speak not about the origin but the place of their previous stay. Then they can be referred to modern Kabardinians and assume that not only Chechens but also other peoples of the Caucasus took part in the campaigns over a wide space of Eastern Europe.


Constantine Porphyrogenitus notified that all the Pechenegs are divided into eight tribes: Ertim, Tzour, Gyla, Koulpeï, Haraboï, Talmat, Hopon, Tzopon. Their hypothetical settlement by the data of A.M. Shcherbak are shown on the fragment of his map left.

More or less satisfactory, we can decipher by means of the Chechen language only some of them:

Tzour – Chech. chūra "inside".

Gyla – Chech. gyla "slabsided".

Tzopon – ÷å÷. chopanan "foamy"

Such rulers stan at the head of these tribes: Baïtzas, Kouel, Kourkoutai, Ipaos, Kaïdoum, Kostas, Giazis, Batas. Their names also can not have a good decoding. Obviously, other languages of the peoples of the North Caucasus, as Turkic as Dagestan and Abkhazian-Circassian should be involved for this.

Epigraphy Northern Black Sea coast may indicate that the Chechens remained among the Sarmatian³ long before they became known in history as the Pechenegs. There are in the list of Sarmatian personal names (ABAYEV V.I. 1979) which have no reliable interpretation, except by the Chechen language:


Δαλοσακοσ (dalosakos), Tanaida – Chech. dālō "to bring, deliver", sākhō "supervision".

Θιαγαροσ (thiagaros), Midakhos' father (see. Μιδαχοσ), Tanaida – Chech. thæghara «the last, past»

Μιδαχοσ (midakhos), the inscription in Phanagoria, the son of Thiagar (see Θιαγαροσ); the father of Sturan (see. Στυρανοσ) – Chech. mettakh, the derivative of mettig "place". The names of all relatives are deciphered with the help of the Chechen language.

Οξαρδωζισ (oksardo:dzis), Tanaida – Chech. (oghara «low» and dōza «border».

Οχοαρζανησ (okhoardzane:s), Tanaida – Chech. œkhu "flying", æerzu «īšåė», æerzun «eagle» (adj).

Πατεσ (pateis), Okhordzan' father (see Οχοαρζανησ), Tanaida – since the name of Okhordzan is well explained by the Chechen language, his father's name should also be of Chechen origin. In this case, you can keep in mind Chechnya. pott "tree block" in the oblique case with ending. –e.

Στορανη (storane:), the wife of the princeps of Ad, Panticapaeum – the name derived from Chech. stu «princess». Cf. Στυρανοσ

Στυρανοσ (sturanos), Gorgippia – the father of Midakh (see Μιδαχοσ), Phanagoria; Sozomon's father Gorgippia – Chech. steran – g. of stu «bull».

Χοαργαρος (khoargaros), Tanaida – Chech. khoar – noun of v. khoa «to contain» gara «kin, genaration».


The presence of Chechens in Sarmatia also has historical evidence. In the "Armenian Geography", which was apparently written by A. Shirakatsi, who collected data from Ptolemy, some Nakhchmatyans are mentioned (PATKANOV K.P. 1877). This name should be referred the ancestors of modern Chechens, who call themselves Nokhchi, while Chech. mott means "language" and -yan is the Armenian suffix. This fact was not ignored by historians, but was considered doubtful as the ancestors of the Chechens couldn't reside at the mouth of the Don River in the 7th cent. AD, because at that time they were supposed to inhabit modern Chechen-Ingushetia. (KRUPNOV E.I. 2008). However, taking into account the analysis of onomastics and other historical evidences, this fact has to be accepted.







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