Bohemia is the westernmost and largest historical region of the Czech lands in the present-day Czech Republic. In a broader meaning, Bohemia sometimes refers to the entire Czech territory, including Moravia and Czech Silesia in a historical context, such as the Lands of the Bohemian Crown ruled by Bohemian kings. Bohemia was a duchy of Great Moravia an independent principality, a kingdom in the Holy Roman Empire, subsequently a part of the Habsburg Monarchy and the Austrian Empire. After World War I and the establishment of an independent Czechoslovak state, Bohemia became a part of Czechoslovakia. Between 1938 and 1945, border regions with sizeable German-speaking minorities of all three Czech lands were joined to Nazi Germany as the Sudetenland; the remainder of Czech territory became the Second Czechoslovak Republic and was subsequently occupied as the Protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia, In 1969, the Czech lands were given autonomy within Czechoslovakia as the Czech Socialist Republic. In 1990, the name was changed to the Czech Republic, which became a separate state in 1993 with the split of Czechoslovakia.
Until 1948, Bohemia was an administrative unit of Czechoslovakia as one of its "lands". Since administrative reforms have replaced self-governing lands with a modified system of "regions" which do not follow the borders of the historical Czech lands. However, the three lands are mentioned in the preamble of the Constitution of the Czech Republic: "We, citizens of the Czech Republic in Bohemia and Silesia…"Bohemia had an area of 52,065 km2 and today is home to 6.5 million of the Czech Republic's 10.5 million inhabitants. Bohemia was bordered in the south by Upper and Lower Austria, in the west by Bavaria and in the north by Saxony and Lusatia, in the northeast by Silesia, in the east by Moravia. Bohemia's borders were marked by mountain ranges such as the Bohemian Forest, the Ore Mountains, the Krkonoše, a part of the Sudetes range. In the 2nd century BC, the Romans were competing for dominance in northern Italy with various peoples including the Gauls-Celtic tribe Boii; the Romans defeated the Boii at the Battle of Mutina.
After this, many of the Boii retreated north across the Alps. Much Roman authors refer to the area they had once occupied as Boiohaemum; the earliest mention was by Tacitus' Germania 28, mentions of the same name are in Strabo and Velleius Paterculus. The name appears to include the tribal name Boi- plus the Germanic element *haimaz "home"; this Boiohaemum was isolated to the area where King Marobod's kingdom was centred, within the Hercynian forest. Emperor Constantine VII in 10th century De Administrando Imperio mentioned the region as Boïki; the Czech name "Čechy" is derived from the name of the Slavic ethnic group, the Czechs, who settled in the area during the 6th or 7th century AD. Bohemia, like neighbouring Bavaria, is named after the Boii, who were a large Celtic nation known to the Romans for their migrations and settlement in northern Italy and other places. Another part of the nation moved west with the Helvetii into southern France, one of the events leading to the interventions of Julius Caesar's Gaulish campaign of 58 BC.
The emigration of the Helvetii and Boii left southern Germany and Bohemia a inhabited "desert" into which Suebic peoples arrived, speaking Germanic languages, became dominant over remaining Celtic groups. To the south, over the Danube, the Romans extended their empire, to the southeast in present-day Hungary, were Dacian peoples. In the area of modern Bohemia the Marcomanni and other Suebic groups were led by their king Marobodus, after suffering defeat to Roman forces in Germany, he took advantage of the natural defenses provided by its forests. They were able to maintain a strong alliance with neighbouring tribes including the Lugii, Hermunduri and Buri, sometimes controlled by the Roman Empire, sometimes in conflict with it, for example in the second century when they fought Marcus Aurelius. In late classical times and the early Middle Ages, two new Suebic groupings appeared to the west of Bohemia in southern Germany, the Alemanni, the Bavarians. Many Suebic tribes from the Bohemian region took part in such movements westwards settling as far away as Spain and Portugal.
With them were tribes who had pushed from the east, such as the Vandals, Alans. Other groups pushed southwards towards Pannonia; the last known mention of the kingdom of the Marcomanni, concerning a queen named Fritigil is in the 4th century, she was thought to have lived in or near Pannonia. The Suebian Langobardi, who moved over many generations from the Baltic Sea, via the Elbe and Pannonia to Italy, recorded in a tribal history a time spent in "Bainaib". After this migration period, Bohemia was repopulated around the 6th century, Slavic tribes arrived from the east, their language began to replace the older Germanic and Sarmatian ones; these are precursors of today's Czechs, though the exact amount of Slavic immigration is a subject of debate. The Slavic influx was divided into three waves; the first wave came from the
Urartu, which corresponds to the biblical mountains of Ararat, is the name of a geographical region used as the exonym for the Iron Age kingdom known by the modern rendition of its endonym, the Kingdom of Van, centered around Lake Van in the historic Armenian Highlands. The written language that the kingdom's political elite used is referred to as Urartian, which appears in cuneiform inscriptions in Armenia and eastern Turkey, it is unknown what language was spoken by the peoples of Urartu at the time of the existence of the kingdom, but there is linguistic evidence of contact between the proto-Armenian language and the Urartian language at an early date, occurring prior to the formation of Urartu as a kingdom. The kingdom rose to power in the mid-9th century BC, but went into gradual decline and was conquered by the Iranian Medes in the early 6th century BC; the geopolitical region would re-emerge as Armenia shortly after. Being heirs to the Urartian realm, the earliest identifiable ancestors of the Armenians are the peoples of Urartu.
The name Urartu comes from Assyrian sources. Shalmaneser I recorded a campaign in which he subdued the entire territory of "Uruatri"; the Shalmaneser text uses the name Urartu to refer to a geographical region, not a kingdom, names eight "lands" contained within Urartu. "Urartu" is cognate with the Biblical "Ararat", Akkadian "Urashtu", Armenian "Ayrarat". In addition to referring to the famous Biblical highlands, Ararat appears as the name of a kingdom in Jeremiah 51:27, mentioned together with Minni and Ashkenaz. Mount Ararat is located 120 kilometres north of its former capital; the name Kingdom of Van, is derived from the Urartian toponym Biainili, adopted in Old Armenian as Van, because of betacism, hence the names "Kingdom of Van" or "Vannic Kingdom". Other Urartian toponyms and words went through the same sound change as the Armenian language spread throughout the region and absorbed them. In the 6th century BC, with the emergence of Armenia in the region, the name of the region was referred to as variations of Armenia and Urartu.
In the trilingual Behistun Inscription, carved in 521 or 520 BC by the order of Darius I, the country referred to as Urartu in Akkadian is called Arminiya in Old Persian and Harminuia in the Elamite language. The mentions of Urartu in the Books of Kings and Isaiah of the Bible were translated as "Armenia" in the Septuagint; some English language translations, including the King James Version follow the Septuagint translation of Urartu as Armenia. The identification of the biblical "mountains of Ararat" with the Mt. Ararat is a modern identification based on postbiblical tradition; the name Ayrarat, used to describe lands located in the central region of the Kingdom of Armenia seems to have been of local usage as no known classical works use this word to refer to Armenia. The Ararat Province of modern Armenia is named after Mount Ararat, which itself receives its name from the biblical Mountains of Ararat. Scholars such as Carl Ferdinand Friedrich Lehmann-Haupt believed that the people of Urartu called themselves Khaldini after the god Ḫaldi.
Boris Piotrovsky wrote that the Urartians first appear in history in the 13th century BC as a league of tribes or countries which did not yet constitute a unitary state. In the Assyrian annals the term Uruatri as a name for this league was superseded during a considerable period of years by the term "land of Nairi". Shupria, believed to have been a Hurrian or Mitanni state, subsequently annexed into the Urartian confederation. Shupria is mentioned in conjunction with a district in the area called Arme which some scholars have linked to the name of Armenia. Linguists John Greppin and Igor Diakonoff argued that the Urartians referred to themselves as Shurele, a name mentioned within the royal titles of the kings of Urartu; the word Šuri has been variously theorized as referring to chariots, the region of Shupria, or the entire world. Assyrian inscriptions of Shalmaneser I first mention Uruartri as one of the states of Nairi, a loose confederation of small kingdoms and tribal states in the Armenian Highland in the 13th to 11th centuries BC which he conquered.
Uruartri itself was in the region around Lake Van. The Nairi states were subjected to further attacks and invasions by the Assyrians under Tukulti-Ninurta I, Tiglath-Pileser I, Ashur-bel-kala, Adad-nirari II, Tukulti-Ninurta II, Ashurnasirpal II. Urartu re-emerged in Assyrian inscriptions in the 9th century BC as a powerful northern rival of Assyria, which lay to the south in northern Mesopotamia and northeast Syria; the Nairi states and tribes became a unified kingdom under king Aramu, whose capital at Arzashkun was captured by the Assyrians under Shalmaneser III. Contemporaries of the Uruartri, living just to the west along the southern shore of the Black Sea, were the Kaskas known from Hittite sources; the Middle Assyrian Empire fell into a period
Japheth, is one of the three sons of Noah in the Book of Genesis, where he plays a role in the story of Noah's drunkenness and the curse of Ham, subsequently in the Table of Nations as the ancestor of the peoples of the Aegean and elsewhere. In medieval and early modern European tradition he was considered to be the progenitor of European and East Asian peoples; the meaning of the name Yafet/Yefet is disputable. There are two possible sources to the meaning of the name. From Aramaic root פתה. In which case, the name would mean may He extend. From Hebrew root יפה. In which case, the name would mean beautiful. Japheth first appears in the Book of Genesis as one of the three sons of Noah, saved through the Ark, they are always in the order "Shem and Japheth" when all three are listed, but Genesis 9:24 calls Ham the youngest, Genesis 10:21 refers ambiguously to Shem as "brother of Japheth the elder," which could mean that either is the eldest. Most modern writers accept Shem-Ham-Japheth as reflecting birth order, but this is not always the case: Moses and Rachel appear at the head of such lists despite explicit descriptions of them as younger siblings.
Following the Flood he features in the story of Noah's drunkenness. Ham sees Noah drunk and naked in his tent and tells his brothers, who cover their father with a cloak while avoiding the sight. Chapter 10 of Genesis, the Table of Nations, tells how the entire Earth was populated by the sons of Noah following the Flood, beginning with the descendants of Japheth: The Book of Genesis is the first of the five books of the Torah, that contains the account of Israel's origins as a people. Scholars see this as a product of the Achaemenid Empire, although some would place its production in the Hellenistic period or the Hasmonean dynasty; the story of Japheth and his brothers may be more recent: none of the persons and stories in the first eleven chapters of Genesis are mentioned anywhere else in the Bible, leading scholars to suppose that the history is a late composition, attached to Genesis to serve as an introduction to that book and to the Torah. Japheth is a transliteration of the ancestor of the Hellenic peoples.
His sons and grandsons associate him with the geographic area of the eastern Mediterranean and Asia - Ionia/Javan, Rhodes/Rodanim, Cyprus/Kittim, other points in the region of Greece and Asia Minor - approximating to one of the three kingdoms into which the generals of Alexander the Great divided his empire on his death. As the point of the "blessing of Japheth" seems to be that Japheth and Shem would rule jointly over Canaan. From the 19th century until the late 20th century it was usual to see Japheth as a reference to the Philistines, who shared dominion over Canaan during the pre-monarchic and early monarchic period of Israel's history; this view accorded with earlier understanding of the origin of the Book of Genesis, seen as having been composed in stages beginning with the time of Solomon, when the Philistines still existed. However, Genesis 10:14 identifies their ancestor as Ham rather than Japheth. For those who take the genealogies of Genesis to be accurate, Japheth is believed to be the father of Europeans.
The link between Japheth and the Europeans stems from Genesis 10:5, which states: "By these were the isles of the Gentiles divided in their lands." According to that book and his two brothers formed the three major races: Japheth is the father of the Japhetic race Shem is the father of the Semitic race Ham is the father of the Hamitic raceWilliam Shakespeare's play Henry IV, Part II contains a wry comment about people who claim to be related to royal families. Prince Hal notes of such people...they will be kin to us, or they will fetch it from Japhet. In the Bible, Japheth is ascribed seven sons: Gomer, Tiras, Meshech and Madai. According to Josephus: Japhet, the son of Noah, had seven sons: they inhabited so, beginning at the mountains Taurus and Amanus, they proceeded along Asia, as far as the river Tanais, along Europe to Cadiz. Josephus subsequently detailed the nations supposed to have descended from the seven sons of Japheth; the "Book of Jasher", published by Talmudic rabbis in the 17th century, provides some new names for Japheth's grandchildren not found in the Bible, provided a much more detailed genealogy.
In the seventh century, Isidore of Seville published his noted history, in which he traces the origins of most of the nations of Europe back to Japheth. Scholars in every European nation continued to repeat and develop Saint Isidore's assertion of descent from Noah through Japheth into the nineteenth century. Ivane Javakhishvili associated Japheth's sons with certain ancient tribes, called Tubals and Meshechs (Meshekhs/Mosokhs, Gre
Canaan was a Semitic-speaking region in the Ancient Near East during the late 2nd millennium BC. The name Canaan appears throughout the Bible, where it corresponds to the Levant, in particular to the areas of the Southern Levant that provide the main setting of the narrative of the Bible: Phoenicia, Philistia and other nations; the word Canaanites serves as an ethnic catch-all term covering various indigenous populations—both settled and nomadic-pastoral groups—throughout the regions of the southern Levant or Canaan. It is by far the most used ethnic term in the Bible. In the Book of Joshua, Canaanites are included in a list of nations to exterminate, described as a group which the Israelites had annihilated. Biblical scholar Mark Smith notes that archaeological data suggests "that the Israelite culture overlapped with and derived from Canaanite culture... In short, Israelite culture was Canaanite in nature; the name "Canaanites" is attested, many centuries as the endonym of the people known to the Ancient Greeks from c. 500 BC as Phoenicians, following the emigration of Canaanite-speakers to Carthage, was used as a self-designation by the Punics of North Africa during Late Antiquity.
Canaan had significant geopolitical importance in the Late Bronze Age Amarna period as the area where the spheres of interest of the Egyptian, Hittite and Assyrian Empires converged. Much of modern knowledge about Canaan stems from archaeological excavation in this area at sites such as Tel Hazor, Tel Megiddo, Gezer; the English term Canaan comes via Greek Χαναάν Khanaan and Latin Canaan. It appears as in the Amarna letters, knʿn is found on coins from Phoenicia in the last half of the 1st millennium, it first occurs in Greek in the writings of Hecataeus as Khna. Scholars connect the name Canaan with knʿn, Kana'an, the general Northwest Semitic name for this region; the etymology is uncertain. An early explanation derives the term from the Semitic root knʿ "to be low, subjugated"; some scholars have suggested that this implies an original meaning of "lowlands", in contrast with Aram, which would mean "highlands", whereas others have suggested it meant "the subjugated" as the name of Egypt's province in the Levant, evolved into the proper name in a similar fashion to Provincia Nostra.
An alternative suggestion put forward by Ephraim Avigdor Speiser in 1936 derives the term from Hurrian Kinahhu, purportedly referring to the colour purple, so that Canaan and Phoenicia would be synonyms. Tablets found in the Hurrian city of Nuzi in the early 20th century appear to use the term Kinahnu as a synonym for red or purple dye, laboriously produced by the Kassite rulers of Babylon from murex shells as early as 1600 BC, on the Mediterranean coast by the Phoenicians from a byproduct of glassmaking. Purple cloth became a renowned Canaanite export commodity, mentioned in Exodus; the dyes may have been named after their place of origin. The name'Phoenicia' is connected with the Greek word for "purple" referring to the same product, but it is difficult to state with certainty whether the Greek word came from the name, or vice versa; the purple cloth of Tyre in Phoenicia was well known far and wide and was associated by the Romans with nobility and royalty. However, according to Robert Drews, Speiser's proposal has been abandoned.
Canaanite culture developed in situ from the earlier Ghassulian chalcolithic culture, which pioneered the Mediterranean agricultural system typical of the Canaanite region, which comprised intensive subsistence horticulture, extensive grain growing, commercial wine and olive cultivation and transhumance pastoralism. Ghassulian itself developed from the Circum-Arabian Nomadic Pastoral Complex, which in turn developed from a fusion of their ancestral Natufian and Harifian cultures with Pre-Pottery Neolithic B farming cultures, practicing animal domestication, during the 6200 BC climatic crisis which led to the Agricultural Revolution/Neolithic Revolution in the Levant; the Late Bronze Age state of Ugarit is considered quintessentially Canaanite archaeologically though its Ugaritic language does not belong to the Canaanite language group proper. A disputed reference to Lord of ga-na-na in the Semitic Ebla tablets from the archive of Tell Mardikh has been interpreted by some scholars to mention the deity Dagon by the title "Lord of Canaan" If correct, this would suggest that Eblaites were conscious of Canaan as an entity by 2500 BC.
Jonathan Tubb states that the term ga-na-na "may provide a third-millennium reference to Canaanite", while at the same time stating that the first certain reference is in the 18th century BC. See Ebla-Biblical controversy for further details. A letter from Mut-bisir to Shamshi-Adad I of the Old Assyrian Empire has been translated: "It is in Rahisum that the brigands and the Canaanites are situated", it was found in 1973 in the ruins of an Assyrian outpost at that time in Syria. Additional unpublished references to Kinahnum in the Mari letters refer to the same episode. Whether the term Kinahnum refers to people from a specific region or rather people of "foreign origin" has been disputed, such that Robert Drews states that the "first certain cuneiform reference" to Canaan is found on the Alalakh statue of King Idrim
Ashkenazi Jews known as Ashkenazic Jews or Ashkenazim, are a Jewish diaspora population who coalesced in the Holy Roman Empire around the end of the first millennium. The traditional diaspora language of Ashkenazi Jews is Yiddish, developed after they had moved into northern Europe: beginning with Germany and France in the Middle Ages. For centuries they used Hebrew only as a sacred language, until the revival of Hebrew as a common language in Israel. Throughout their time in Europe, Ashkenazim have made many important contributions to its philosophy, literature, art and science; the term "Ashkenazi" refers to Jewish settlers who established communities along the Rhine river in Western Germany and in Northern France dating to the Middle Ages. Once there, they adapted traditions carried from Babylon, the Holy Land, the Western Mediterranean to their new environment; the Ashkenazi religious rite developed in cities such as Mainz and Troyes. The eminent French Rishon rabbi Shlomo Itzhaki would have a significant influence on the Jewish religion.
In the late Middle Ages, due to religious persecution, the majority of the Ashkenazi population shifted eastward, moving out of the Holy Roman Empire into the areas part of the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth. In the course of the late 18th and 19th centuries, those Jews who remained in or returned to the German lands generated a cultural reorientation; the Holocaust of the Second World War decimated the Ashkenazim, affecting every Jewish family. It is estimated that in the 11th century Ashkenazi Jews composed three percent of the world's total Jewish population, while an estimate made in 1930 had them as 92 percent of the world's Jews. Prior to the Holocaust, the number of Jews in the world stood at 16.7 million. Statistical figures vary for the contemporary demography of Ashkenazi Jews, ranging from 10 million to 11.2 million. Sergio Della Pergola, in a rough calculation of Sephardic and Mizrahi Jews, implies that Ashkenazi Jews make up less than 74% of Jews worldwide. Other estimates place Ashkenazi Jews as making up about 75% of Jews worldwide.
Genetic studies on Ashkenazim—researching both their paternal and maternal lineages—suggest a predominant amount of shared Middle Eastern ancestry, complemented by varying percentages of European admixture. These studies have arrived at diverging conclusions regarding both the degree and the sources of their European ancestry, have focused on the extent of the European genetic origin observed in Ashkenazi maternal lineages. Ashkenazi Jews are popularly contrasted with Sephardi Jews, who descend from Jews who settled in the Iberian Peninsula, Mizrahi Jews, who descend from Jews who remained in the Middle East; the name Ashkenazi derives from the biblical figure of Ashkenaz, the first son of Gomer, son of Japhet, son of Noah, a Japhetic patriarch in the Table of Nations. The name of Gomer has been linked to the ethnonym Cimmerians. Biblical Ashkenaz is derived from Assyrian Aškūza, a people who expelled the Cimmerians from the Armenian area of the Upper Euphrates, whose name is associated with the name of the Scythians.
The intrusive n in the Biblical name is due to a scribal error confusing a vav ו with a nun נ. In Jeremiah 51:27, Ashkenaz figures as one of three kingdoms in the far north, the others being Minni and Ararat corresponding to Urartu, called on by God to resist Babylon. In the Yoma tractate of the Babylonian Talmud the name Gomer is rendered as Germania, which elsewhere in rabbinical literature was identified with Germanikia in northwestern Syria, but became associated with Germania. Ashkenaz is linked to Scandza/Scanzia, viewed as the cradle of Germanic tribes, as early as a 6th-century gloss to the Historia Ecclesiastica of Eusebius. In the 10th-century History of Armenia of Yovhannes Drasxanakertc'i Ashkenaz was associated with Armenia, as it was in Jewish usage, where its denotation extended at times to Adiabene, Khazaria and areas to the east, his contemporary Saadia Gaon identified Ashkenaz with the Saquliba or Slavic territories, such usage covered the lands of tribes neighboring the Slavs, Eastern and Central Europe.
In modern times, Samuel Krauss identified the Biblical "Ashkenaz" with Khazaria. Sometime in the Early Medieval period, the Jews of central and eastern Europe came to be called by this term. Conforming to the custom of designating areas of Jewish settlement with biblical names, Spain was denominated Sefarad, France was called Tsarefat, Bohemia was called the Land of Canaan. By the high medieval period, Talmudic commentators like Rashi began to use Ashkenaz/Eretz Ashkenaz to designate Germany, earlier known as Loter, where in the Rhineland communities of Speyer and Mainz, the most important Jewish communities arose. Rashi uses leshon Ashkenaz to describe German speech, Byzantium and Syrian Jewish letters referred to the Crusaders as Ashkenazim. Given the close links between the Jewish communities of France a
In classical antiquity, Phrygia was a kingdom in the west central part of Anatolia, in what is now Asian Turkey, centered on the Sangarios River. After its conquest, it became a region of the great empires of the time. Stories of the heroic age of Greek mythology tell of several legendary Phrygian kings: Gordias, whose Gordian Knot would be cut by Alexander the Great Midas, who turned whatever he touched to gold Mygdon, who warred with the AmazonsAccording to Homer's Iliad, the Phrygians participated in the Trojan War as close allies of the Trojans, fighting against the Achaeans. Phrygian power reached its peak in the late 8th century BC under another, king: Midas, who dominated most of western and central Anatolia and rivaled Assyria and Urartu for power in eastern Anatolia; this Midas was, however the last independent king of Phrygia before Cimmerians sacked the Phrygian capital, around 695 BC. Phrygia became subject to Lydia, successively to Persia and his Hellenistic successors, Pergamon and Byzantium.
Phrygians became assimilated into other cultures by the early medieval era. Phrygia describes an area on the western end of the high Anatolian plateau, an arid region quite unlike the forested lands to the north and west. Phrygia begins in the northwest where an area of dry steppe is watered by the Sakarya and Porsuk river system and is home to the settlements of Dorylaeum near modern Eskisehir, the Phrygian capital Gordion; the climate is harsh with cold winters. South of Dorylaeum, there is another important Phrygian settlement, Midas City, situated in an area of hills and columns of volcanic tuff. To the south again, central Phrygia includes the cities of Afyonkarahisar with its marble quarries at nearby Docimium, the town of Synnada. At the western end of Phrygia stood the towns of Aizanoi and Acmonia. From here to the southwest lies the hilly area of Phrygia that contrasts to the bare plains of the region's heartland. Southwestern Phrygia is watered by the Maeander and its tributary the Lycus, contains the towns of Laodicea on the Lycus and Hierapolis.
Inscriptions found at Gordium make clear that Phrygians spoke an Indo-European language with at least some vocabulary similar to Greek, not belonging to the family of Anatolian languages spoken by most of Phrygia's neighbors. One of the so-called Homeric Hymns describes the Phrygian language as not mutually intelligible with that of Troy. According to ancient tradition among Greek historians, the Phrygians anciently migrated to Anatolia from the Balkans. Herodotus says, he and other Greek writers recorded legends about King Midas that associated him with or put his origin in Macedonia. Some classical writers connected the Phrygians with the Mygdones, the name of two groups of people, one of which lived in northern Macedonia and another in Mysia; the Phrygians have been identified with the Bebryces, a people said to have warred with Mysia before the Trojan War and who had a king named Mygdon at the same time as the Phrygians were said to have had a king named Mygdon. The classical historian Strabo groups Phrygians, Mysians and Bithynians together as peoples that migrated to Anatolia from the Balkans.
This image of Phrygians as part of a related group of northwest Anatolian cultures seems the most explanation for the confusion over whether Phrygians and Anatolian Mygdones were or were not the same people. The apparent similarity of the Phrygian language to Greek and its dissimilarity with the Anatolian languages spoken by most of their neighbors is taken as support for a European origin of the Phrygians. Phrygian continued to be spoken until the 6th century AD, though its distinctive alphabet was lost earlier than those of most Anatolian cultures; some scholars have theorized that such a migration could have occurred more than classical sources suggest, have sought to fit the Phrygian arrival into a narrative explaining the downfall of the Hittite Empire and the end of the high Bronze Age in Anatolia. According to this "recent migration" theory, the Phrygians invaded just before or after the collapse of the Hittite Empire at the beginning of the 12th century BC, filling the political vacuum in central-western Anatolia, may have been counted among the "Sea Peoples" that Egyptian records credit with bringing about the Hittite collapse.
The so-called Handmade Knobbed Ware found in Western Anatolia during this period has been tentatively identified as an import connected to this invasion. However, most scholars reject such a recent Phrygian migration and accept as factual the Iliad's account that the Phrygians were established on the Sakarya River before the Trojan War, thus must have been there during the stages of the Hittite Empire, earlier; these scholars seek instead to trace the Phrygians' origins among the many nations of western Anatolia who were subject to the Hittites. This interpretation gets support from Greek legends about the founding of Phrygia's main city Gordium by Gordias and of Ancyra by Midas, which suggest that Gordium and Ancyra were believed to date from the distant past before the Trojan War; some scholars dismiss the claim of a Phrygian migration