Etruscan Calendar
Interpretation of the names

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In the last issue of the AAI Scroll online magazine we introduced a theory that the oldest alphabet used was Proto-Slavonic. We found the connection with the several script systems on the island of Crete, Minoan civilization and the ancient Macedonians. Today , you will notice that that Proto-Slavonic theory can be extended to the Etruscans, as well ! 

One can add the following parallels: Etruscan tin 'day' compares with Macedonian and Russian den' 'day';  Etruscan xu  'command' is close to Old Church Slavonic kazati 'to command which came from Old Indian ksayati 'he owns, predominates'; to order'; Etruscan santi 'water' compares with Old Indian sindhu- 'river', Sindian *sindu- 'river', Scythian Sad (Thagimasados) 'the god of the sea', Russian Sadko 'the character from the Russian traditional heroic poem of the same name who plays a role of the god of the sea'; Etruscan cilen  compares with Macedonian silen or Serbian silni 'strong'; Etruscan ne compares with Russian, Macedonian, Serbian, Croatian and other Slavonic languages ne 'not'; Etruscan Fufluns 'god of the wine' compares with Russian fufynit' 'to behave capriciously', fufyrit'sya 'to be angry', fuflo 'bad'.

Here is a chance to examine the connections between the Etruscan calendar , the names of the months and the Proto-Slavonic language.

 In his book Etruski: Ot mifa k istorii (1983, Moscow, Nauka), Russian scientist A.I. Nemirovsky, is describing the following names of the Etruscan calendar:

velcitna            -   March

capre               -    April

ampill               -    May

acall                 -    June

turane              -    July

herme               -    August

celi, masn          -    September

xuru, xurvar     -     October

S.V.Rjabchikov, in his book from  1998 - Drevnie texty slavyan i adygov. Krasnodar: Torgovo-promyshlennaya palata Krasnodarskogo kraya, claims that Etruscans definitely spoke a Proto-Slavonic language. Let's examine the connection:

Etruscan velcitna 'March' is split into vel and kit. The first component compares with the Slavonic word with the same spelling with meaning veil or it could be connected to the name of the old Slavic deity Veles, Volos. In the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia even today you can find one of the main cities with this name - Veles! This ancient god can be found under a mountain, under a tree and he represents the serpent and owns the cattle.  For the second component, kit, we have few interpretations: According to   S.V.Rjabchikov , kit is a Slavonic word, coming from Russian skot 'cattle' < s kot (kosh) 'near a carriage/military transport' but we should mention that the name Kyat was mentioned as a name of a goddess on the Phaistos disk. The words written down near the characters on an Etruscan mirror

are the variants of the months' names, and the character before March Uh 'February'. The latter term compares with Serbian, Croatian, Macedonian and Russian yug, Old Russian ug 'south', Latin jugo 'to harness to a yoke', so it correlates with the name velcitna 'March'.

Etruscan capre 'April' compares with Latin capra 'she-goat' and caper 'he-goat'. It is known that the star Capella 'She-goat' was a sign of the spring in the Indo-European beliefs from 4400 B.C. till 20 A.D. Computer calculations gave us the dates of the morning risings of the star Capella, and they are 11 April 4000 B.C. and 25 April 500 B.C. So the Etruscan word capre means 'April; goat; the star Capella'. Furthermore, the goat belongs to the small cattle, pacu in Old Indian, and Argimpasa was the name of a Scythian goddess and the symbol of the spring.

Etruscan ampill 'May' can be split into am and pill. The component am of the Etruscan name is comparable with the name of the Indo-Aryan god Yama 'the owner of the world of the dead' associated with the Indo-Aryan god Varuna (according to P.A.Grintser, Yama, 1992). Second part of the Etruscan name - pill is comparable with the verb pil - 'was drinking' and some scholars think that is comparable with the German Vampir and Russian upyr' 'vampire'. The common part of both words is the form pir, coming from Russian root bir: zabirat', brat' 'to take'. The latter term is related to Old Indian bharati 'he carries, takes away' (M.Vasmer  Etimologichesky slovar' russkogo yazyka. Vol. 1. Moscow: Progress-1986: page 159).

Etruscan acall 'June' is comparable with Slavonic kolo 'round; the sun'. On the other hand, the Indo-Aryan myths tell of the god Kala 'The time' (Grintser 1992: 683).

Etruscan turane 'July' (cf. Etruscan tur- 'to give') compares with Slavonic dar 'gift', Dazh'bog was one of the main Slavonic deities, lit. 'The giving god', and Greek Thargelion 'May-June' consisting in my opinion of the form thar connected with Greek dateomai 'to divide', daterios 'distributing, dividing', Russian dat' 'to give', dar 'gift' and of the form gelion connected with Greek elios 'the sun; east; heat'.

Etruscan herme 'August' may be compared with the Greek god's name 'Hermes'. This god was also connected with the cattle and the world of the dead .

Etruscan celi 'September' is comparable with the word celi in Serbian, Croatian, Russian etc... It is pronounced  tsely -'whole'. Besides, this Etruscan month's name has a variant, masn. Rjabchikov translated it as 'stone', cf. Latin massa 'lump, piece', German Masse 'thickness, layer', Circassian myzh''o and Old Circassian maza 'stone'. The term "stone" is associated with the name of the Scythian sky god Papaios 'the Beating (god)' also corresponding to September. This god is the  pagan god of the Slavs - Perun (cf. Hittite peruna- 'rock', Old Indian parvata- 'mountain') who kills the serpent in accordance with the Indo-European mythology. The Etruscan expression celi suth  could mean 'full court' or according to others means 'the Stone (the Indo-European Beating god) judges', with the word sud -'court' in use in almost all Slavic languages.

In Zagreb, Croatia there is a written  record on the shroud of a mummy which says: thunem cialxus masn unialti ursmnal , according to A.I.Nemirovsky, and S.V.Rjabchikov is reading it as thunem cialxus masn Uni alti urs mnal 'The Wind of the Sky-Stone (= the Beating god Perun or Papaios); (the earth goddess) Uni of the altar is the harvest (because) of the victims' !

The word thunem 'wind' is comparable with Croatian or Serbian dunem or Russian dunovenie 'breath of wind', dut' 'to blow', Old Indian dhamati 'he blows', Ossetic dumun 'to blow' and also the term tunu of Linear A.

The word cialxus 'sky' is comparable with Latin caelestis 'celestial'.

The word masn 'stone' is examined above.

The name Uni is comparable with Old Slavonic un 'young'.

The word alti is comparable with Latin altare 'altar' and altus 'high'. So the words Uni alti may mean either 'Uni of the altar' or 'the great Uni'. Moreover, the words alti urs may mean 'the great crops'.

The word urs is comparable with Russian urozhay 'harvest', rod 'family; mankind', rody 'birth', Old Indian vardati, vrdhati '(he, she, it) grows, increase' (Vasmer 1987b: 490-1).

The word m(e)nal is the Genitive of Etruscan men- 'to sacrifice' (Pallottino 1976: 378). Interestingly, the similar Russian mena , Serbian menja and Macedonian menuva -'exchange' is connected with Old Indian menis 'vengeance' and mayate 'he changes'.

Etruscan xuru, xurvar 'October' is comparable with Russian kur 'rooster' Macedonian kur 'cock' and Iranian hros 'rooster'. On the other hand, the component var resembles Russian varit' 'to boil', Old Russian var 'intense heat; fire; boiling water', and Etruscan verse 'fire'. The cock is a symbol of the sun, a designation of the death and resurrection . Interestingly, the ancient Russians killed roosters and took the killed hens when they visited churches on November 1.


by Sergei V. Rjabchikov

Kentauroi 'centaurs' (cf. Kentauros 'centaur') are semi-men and semi-horses in the Greek mythology (Takho-Godi 1991). In my opinion, the term Kentauros consists of Pelasgean (Proto-Slavonic registered in the writing of Linear A, and in its decorative version on the Phaistos disk) ken with obscure meaning and Greek tauros 'bull'. What does the word ken signify? It is equal to the word P1-P28 ke-no (1) 'horse' (the 11th and 17th words of the side A of the Phaistos disk). Besides, the word kon 'horse' (cf. also Old Church Slavonic and Russian kon' 'horse') is presented in the name of the Western Slavonic town Arkon. So the initial meaning of the word Kentauros was 'horse/bull'.

Panche Hadzi-Andonov , AAI
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Revised: April 19, 2001