Talk:Basques/Archive 5

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No neutral article

Firstly say that my english is not good, so forgive my faults I think some of things in that article, are false First, if you are describing basques as "indigenous people" please don´t say there are 2.6 millions in Basque Country because is false; in Alava, there are not more than 100.000 alavese (basque) indigenous; and most of them didn't speak basque since XIV century. Vitoria is similar to Burgos than to Azkoiti.

I think all the article has strongly basque-nationalist view-point an consequently, no neutral, The "Clasification" part seem a legend more than a reality; and the idea of isolate basque country and basques nowadays is totally false, and really ridiculous.
--Ioritak 12:31, 13 January 2007 (UTC)
Hi, I must apologize, my english is very bad.
What have to be changed in your opinion?
You have problem with "indigenous people", so please, first you should read indigenous people. If you think and speak in spanish you can read [RAE: indígena.(Del lat. indigĕna). 1. adj. Originario del país de que se trata] or in the spanish wikipedia [[1]], but this is a english wikipedia. Then, we can read Ethnic and you'll see that ethnic it isn't people who speak a language. I think that mark this article as POV is a nosense if you only discuss the number of people who are basque, we could do the same with spanish language, spanish people or english or another ethnic group. Where are your references to say that there are only 100000 basques in Alava? Maybe this is POV-article, but why?
--anonimo 15 January 2007
Hi, first of all, there is only one basque people, and it´s the one you can find living in the basque country, so it is absurd the complete article.
It is not very enciclopaedic to speak of "desired" countries and/or "people". It´s said that Basque people were the remnant of a Preindoeuropen people, but there are very consistent theorys that say basque was "iberic" language, and the "vascones" a part of the "iberic" people, and Basque only a remnant of the "Iberic" tongue.
The entry must be changed from: "Basque people" to "Basque Nationalist Thinking", and better indexed in "Basque Nationalistm". —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 22:10, August 25, 2007 (UTC)

It's a common problem that the population of a country often does not match ethnicities. I haven't gotten round to doing it but I'm planning to take data from the census on identity and put that alongside the population figures i.e. that there are X people living in (for example) Gipuzkoa and that Y% describe their identity as "Basque", "Spanish/French AND Basque" or "Spanish/French" only. I'm just insanely busy at the moment! What we cannot do is "label" people who say they are Basque as "nationalist". The two are not the same thing. Akerbeltz (talk) 14:27, 2 March 2010 (UTC)

Non-Basque minorities in the Basque Country

Basque people#Non-Basque minorities in the Basque Country, which I've copy edited, looks like good material, if slightly undercited, but why is it in this particular article? This is an article on an ethnic group. The material is precisely not about this ethnic group. This material would make sense at Basque Country (autonomous community) rather than here. Barring well-reasoned objection in the next few days, I intend to move it.

Also, one statement seemed unlikely, and may have just been a matter of problems writing in English: "…there was some years ago a political party, Unión Alavesa, which pleaded for the secession of the Basque Country…" (emphasis mine). Shouldn't this be ""…there was some years ago a political party, Unión Alavesa, which pleaded for the secession from the Basque Country…"? They wanted their region to secede from the Basque Country, right? The current wording means that they wanted the Basque Country to secede from Spain. - Jmabel | Talk 17:01, 23 August 2006 (UTC)

I corrected the Álava statement. --Error 03:19, 24 August 2006 (UTC)
Thanks! - Jmabel | Talk 05:09, 25 August 2006 (UTC)
I have deleted the whole section with the politically biased claim that Encartaciones and Alava are "minorities". It was totally POV starting by the assumption that (implicit) Autrigones were of Celtic stock. That's very arguable and, in my opinion unlikely. Toponimy shows that at some point Basque was spoken in Enkarterriak and beyond. Those areas belonged to Pamplona-Navarre in the 10th and 11th centuries (and probably before).
The case of Alava (as long as not claimed that they are of different stock) can be argumented by the present (but not historical) linguistic and political situation. Anyhow Unidad Alavesa (always a very small party in Araba) is as dead as Neanderthals.
One could maybe argue that Basques that do not speak Basque are an ethnic minority in the Basque Country (a "minority" of 67% of the population in the Autonomous Community) but this is as much as saying that Irish who don't speak Gaelic are a "minority".
Whatever the case it was absolutely POV and the article is much better without it. --Sugaar 20:12, 7 October 2006 (UTC)


There is a reference for the maketo count, but the text I found in this article only mentioned Spanish-speaking people. Spanish immigration came from Castile, Galicia, Andalusia, Navarre, Cantabria mainly. Did the reference not mention Galicians (what seems quite wrong) or is our summary too brief? --Error 22:34, 3 September 2006 (UTC)

In fact Galicians and Castilians are the two main immigrant communities in the Autonosmous Community of the Basque Country. Navarrese are not considered immigrants neither by themselves nor by their hosts. Navarre may have more immigration from Aragon and the Northern Basque Country has few immigrants, rather losing population. There are very few immigrants from Andalusia. --Sugaar 20:16, 7 October 2006 (UTC)
There are Hogar Navarros in Baracaldo, Bilbao, Vitoria and Mondragón. [2]. --Error 22:58, 7 October 2006 (UTC)
So? A few people can create one of those: it's just a hostery local. The fact is that they are not any large group: immigrants to the Western Basque Country in the 20th century came basically from Castile and Galicia. Most of them are well integrated although, specially Galicians, keep their comunitarian identity and links to their homeland.
More recently immigration comes basically from outside Spain (Africa, Asia, some from Eastern Europe too), while some former immigrants are retiring in their home areas (back-migration). --Sugaar 08:38, 8 October 2006 (UTC)

Aranda's study

I wonder if this study is uncontested or what? It's known that many Spanish scholars are strongly biased when it comes to Basque questions. I can imagine this author caliming that surnames like Pérez de San Román or Salcedo are not Basque despite being deeply rooted in the Basque Country just because they have an obvious Castilian form. García, the most common Spanish surname has a Basque origin, for instance... I wonder if this author has had all that in account researching the roots of each family or just has taken the telephone gide and discriminated on his own feeling this is Basque and this is not.

I'd like to know the company doing the poll and the area sampled (it's not the same if they just sampled large towns, you know). Or better, I'd like to know if other studies are coincident with these data, that I suspect a little exaggerated, or divergent. Can anyone help?

Also, I'm very at odds with how the section treats the issue of immgrants. While it's clear that at the time of Arana (late 19th century) there was a xenophobic feeling, it's also clear that it has nearly vanished since then and the attitude today and for the last many decades has been of constructive assimmilation. In fact the ethnic divide is really a political one: are you nationalist or unionist, your surname doesn't really matter.

I think the sub-section needs a good cleanup but I'm uncertain on how to do it. --Sugaar 12:22, 12 October 2006 (UTC)

Odd removals

The following two paragraphs were recently removed:

The Navarrese cyclist Miguel Induráin (now retired) was the first to win the Tour de France five consecutive times, and has also won the Giro d'Italia and the World Cycling Championship in the discipline of individual time trial.
The world-famous run of the bulls (or encierro) in Pamplona's fiestas Sanfermines started as a transport of bulls to the ring. Bullfights are also popular in the Basque Country in spite of the unsuitability of the terrain for bull raising and a lack of local matadors.

At the same time, CA Osasuna was removed from the list of Basque soccer teams

Have the Navarrese ceased to be Basques? Or what? - Jmabel | Talk 21:39, 4 September 2006 (UTC)

  • I've given this two weeks. No one has responded. I am reverting. - Jmabel | Talk 01:09, 20 September 2006 (UTC)
I approve the revert. There seems to be many people around trying to artificially separate on political grounds. Indurain is not just a Basque surname of the purest type but it's also rooted in Navarre. The article is about the Basque Country as Euskal Herria (Basque People too), not about the autonomous community or the French or Spanish parts. --Sugaar 16:57, 3 October 2006 (UTC)

Placenames and Basque origins

I'm a PhD student in Linguistics. I remember reading a fascinating article somewhere about placenames and Basque origins. I will try to track it down. When I find it (if I find it), I will try to make it available (if possible) to someone who is dedicated to working on this page. If you want to see it (if I find it...) leave me a note on my talk page.--Ling.Nut 01:16, 11 September 2006 (UTC)

Recent emigration

From the article: "Lately, there has been a significant emigration from the Basque Country of about 200,000 former residents, that those opposed to Basque nationalism view as caused by ETA's violence."

  • "Lately" is vague. 200,000 in a decade? A year?
  • "Emigration" is vague. From Spain? or to other parts of Spain?
  • "those opposed to Basque nationalism" (this previously said "oppositors of Basque nationalism"; "oppositors" is not a word, but I assume this is what was meant). Several problems with this: (1) weasel words (2) This suggests that no Basque nationalists think ETA's violence is driving people out of the Basque Country; I would imagine that this opinion is widely held among the PNV, who are certainly Basque nationalists, and among many people who are neither for nor against Basque nationalism.
  • The entire claim about holding opinions is uncited.

Jmabel | Talk 05:17, 3 October 2006 (UTC)

While there may be some truth on this, there is basically no way to know. Someone could check the local municipality censa and count the number of people who moved out of the Basque Country. But obviously, there would be no way to deduct the reasons behind. Trying to do this on one's own is nothing but original research. Other thing would be to remove the arbitrary figures and quote instead any verifiable mention of particular individuals who have been forced out of the region due to threats or external pressure. Well, these are my two pences on this! Asteriontalk 06:37, 3 October 2006 (UTC)
Local press has mentioned the issue now and then (can't source, talking from memory, sorry). It's basically a slow paced back-migration of retirees to their original homelands (Galicia, Castile). In a time (70s, early 80s) there was some emmigration of affluent people trying to escape the revolutionary tax, but the rich are always few. There is also economic emmigration (out-migration), specially in Biscay, because unemployement used to be very high (still somewhat high), housing is impossible and things like that. Claims that people has fled for basically political reasons probably refer to very few. --Sugaar 12:30, 12 October 2006 (UTC)

Revamped all the Origins section

It was a mess, with too much attention given to obsolete or unlikely hypothesis. I've put the mainstream Aurignacian theory above but kept the other ones for the sake of plurality (but reduced and contrasted with facts).

Hope most like it better this way. I had to cut a lot and rewrite most but I've kept all references and some of the original text.

Now I'm going to write the absent Prehistory section. --Sugaar 18:24, 7 October 2006 (UTC)

Araba and Enkarterriak

There's some anonymous user ([IP:]) who seems to think that Araba and Enkarterriak are "ethnic minorities" and insists in stating that in the wrong place: the section of minorities of the article on Basque People (see the article's history: I have reverted).

Nobody in the Basque Country (or elsewhere) thinks that way. There was a small and short-lived Araban seccesionist party but this one only had real presence in the capital Vitoria-Gasteiz, not in the countryside and was a regionalist break-away fraction from the Spanish conservative party.

If anywhere, this issue(s) should be mentioned in the politics section of Basque Country (autonomous community) article, not here. And not tryong to pass this issue as a matter of "minorities".

Whatever the case. This is the place for discussion, not my talk page nor the article itself. If this anonymous user wants to reach an agreement he/she should come here and discuss with all interested people. That's what I did when I edited that section (see above). --Sugaar 22:02, 22 October 2006 (UTC)

Well, the Basque Antropologist Julio Caro Baroja doesn't agree with you. He states in his book "Los pueblos de España" that Encartaciones is "la parte no vasca de Vizcaya" (the non-Basque region of Biscay). If you want to describe the geographical distribution of the Basque People you should mention that facts: That not all the "Basque Country Automous Community" has euskara as its traditional language.
Encartaciones (at least its Western part) is not definitely a Basque region. Even the name of the country is Castillian: "Encartaciones" means, in Spanish language, "Land which was granted with a Carta Puebla (Population Chart)". The traditional language of the area is not Basque, but montañés, a transition dialect which has Astur-leonese and Castillian features. It is the Basque Government who tries to euskaldunise the area, imposing the Basque language and culture to the native population. An exemple of that is the deformation of the original Castillian placenames: "Valmaseda" (which has the Spanish prefix "Val-" (valley)) and Cadagua (which derives from the Old Spanish phrase "Ca del agua" -near the water) were transformed in Balmaseda and Kadagua. 13:01, 23 October 2006 (UTC)
And why is it that you think this belongs in the article about the Basque ethnic group? - Jmabel | Talk 05:36, 26 October 2006 (UTC)

Baroja is respectable but obsolete in some aspects. Are you Encartado? Doubt it. I know of o no Encartados (except my defunct fascist grandmother, whose locally rooted surname was Atxukarro, of clear Basque roots) who oppose their belonging to Biscay or the Basque Country or the process of linguistic recovery. In fact, rural Enkarterriak, like most of rural Araba, votes massively nationalist.
Basque nationalists are a minority in Encartaciones (which is a rural area, at least in its Western, non-Basque part). On the other hand, in some parts of Navarre, UPN (a party which denies Navarre's Basqueness), gains 70% of the vote. 22:34, 27 October 2006 (UTC)
You cannot deny that Lanestosa, for instance, the westernmost tip of Enkarterriak, is a Basque toponym. And there are many others, even if Castilian influence is also present. --Sugaar 11:29, 26 October 2006 (UTC)
Well, the fact is Lanestosa comes from the Spanish words henestrosa and hiniesta (retama sphaerocarpa) as this page will show you Even Euskaltzaindia has invented a new euskaldunized placename (Isasti) which is intented to replace the denomination Lanestosa: You can agree with me that this is not a recovery of the Basque tongue, but the imposition of a foreign tongue and a foreign culture in places where Basque was never spoken. 22:34, 27 October 2006 (UTC)
In any case this issue belongs best to those articles that deal with Basque territory as: Basque Country (historical territory) and Basque Country (autonomous community). I really doubt that any minorities should be mentioned at all here (they belong to territorial articles not this ethnic one) but I only deleted that part because it's clearly POV and politically intentional. --Sugaar 11:29, 26 October 2006 (UTC)
Try to reply under others' comments. Else it becomes messy. I can take that Lanestosa is a Castilian toponymic, though I must say I am at least surprised by its extreme transformation (and there's nothing of that in the oficial site
But it's absolutely false that unionist parties rule rural Enkarterri:
Balmaseda: PNV 8, Bertoko Kandidatura Independentea 4, PSOE 1 [3]
Karrantza: PNV 7, Iniciativa Carranzana 3, EA 1 [4]
Lanestosa: PNV 5, EA 2 [5]
Galdames: PNV 6, EA 1 [6]
Gordexola: PNV 5, PP 2, IU 1 [7]
Turtzios: PNV 6, Turtziosko Abertzaleak 3 [8]
Artzentales: PNV4, EA 3 [9]
Couldn't find info for the other two or three rural Enkarterri municipalities, but you can guess.
Notice also that in last municpal elections Batasuna nor any list claimed to be them could run, though it seems to me that some skipped the judicial blockade.
The situation in Araba is very simmilar with the current exception in Vitoria-Gasteiz and Arabako Errioxa that has traditionally been more like La Rioja or southern Navarre. But document it yourself.
--Sugaar 00:53, 28 October 2006 (UTC)


I've made some changes in the infobos. Please discuss:

  • Some days ago I changed the pictures of Daguerre (French) and Sor Juana de la Cruz (Mexican) for J.S. Elkano and Queen Joan III of Navarre.
  • I've now edited the demographic sections. Placing primarily the figure of 3 million (Basque Country historical territory) and in brackets "est. 7 million worldwide". The actual figure in the Basque Country could be of 2,933,000 (adding up the parts) but I have rounded it up to 3 million.
  • I've also edited the religious section: changed "predominantly Roman Catholic" by "traditionally Roman Catholic" and adding that "Atheism and Agnosticism are widespred nowadays". It's clear to me that religious practice and faith have sunk in the last decades but, please, confirm with statistic data, probably via Euskobarometro (I found above this link on all-Spain religiosity, that mentions statistics with only 22-27% of Catholics and 20-27% of atheist-agnostics, the situation is definitively not better for the Church in the Basque Country, that's clear). Notice that Basque Roma are now basically Evangelist but as they are a minority, I haven't mentioned it. Other minorities may be basically Muslim (recent immigrant wave).
  • In the related groups section I've placed Gascons primarily, as they are the only homogeneous ethnic group that actually shares history and even linguistic background (apart of genetics) with Basques. While some Northern Spaniards may be related to Basques I consider unrealistic to say that all Spaniards are, at least more than any other Western European group. Therefore I've added Western Europeans (getically, culturally and historically akin) and Latin Americans (that have some relevant share of Basque blood and surnames) in the other groups sub-area.

--Sugaar 11:44, 26 October 2006 (UTC)

Old Castillians and Aragonese

The fact is, Basques share a common heritage with the people of Old Castile (Castilla la Vieja). The Basque language was spoken in the 10-12th centuries in round 50% of the territory of the Logroño, Burgos and Soria. In this sense, not only there are many Basque toponims in Old Castile: Moreover, the Basque tongue was known by many medieval Castillians. Two examples: In the Cantar del Mio Cid poem, el Cid calls her nephew mio anaya, a Castillian-Basque form which means my brother. In Los milagros de nuestra Señora, the writer Gonzalo de Berceo gives one of the characters the name Don Bildur, which means, literally "Mr Fear". It is really really interesting to see how the early Castillian writers mixed in the Romance words of the Old Language that were understood by the audience.

On the other hand, many of the Castillian antroponimy has Basque origins, as this tables shows:

Basque-Castillian antroponimy
Basque name Castillian name
Otxoa Lope (López)
Artza García
Santxo Sancho (Sánchez)
Ximeno Jimeno (Jiménez)
Eneko Íñigo
Iñaki Ignacio
Vasco (Vázquez)

And, of course, the fact that most of people living in the Basque Country have Castillian names shows that their patrilineal ancestors came from Castile. In this document, dated in 1813, nearly all their signers have Basque names. Thus, we may deduce that most of the Castillian surnames that wear today the Basque Country citizens were brought by immigrants in the 19th and 20th centuries. Moreover, 40% of the Basque people have at least one parent born in other parts of Spain. 22:13, 27 October 2006 (UTC)

I agree with much of what you say. But that's notjustification to place all Spaniards as related. Some Castilians (those living NE of the Burgos-Santander line, including Bureba, La Losa, 1/3 of Cantabria, Miranda and La Rioja), in the territory that once was Navarre), some Aragonese (High Aragonese) are clearly related, I'd even say that as related as Gascons. But you cannot even extend that for all Castile or all Aragon.
Much less for all Spain. What do Andalusians or Valencians have in common with Basques? Not much more than Danish or Belgians.
And you are the one denying that Enkarterri and Araba are even slightly Basque? That's capricious double standards!
Regarding apparent Castilian surnames that are clearly rooted in the Basque country, I reject that all are of recent immigration, though they could belong to older smaller population movements in some cases. Many composed surnames Pérez de San Román, as Castilian as it may sound, are Araban surnames of deep roots. Araba has been bilingual for long and closer to Castile than any other Basque province. Other are less clear: my great-great-granfather's surname was Salcedo (that also looks Castilian or maybe even Galician) but he was sufficiently rooted in the country in the early 20th century as to become the major of Portugalete (in the 19th century there was very few immigration, except maybe for the last decade or so).
If with that part of your discourse, you're trying to justify Aranda's one-sided conclussions, I must say that I'm not convinced at all. Western Basque Country has been under Castilian rule for centuries, if those are immigrant surnames, they may have come earlier, if they are not, the linguistic influence of Castile is to blame.
In any case, we are a very welcoming country: we consider Basques those that live and produce in the Basque Country and/or those that can speak Basque. Many Basques have foreign roots (not just Spanish and Galician but German or other) but most feel Basque like anyone else. --Sugaar 01:17, 28 October 2006 (UTC)

Navarre again

"Navarre was never offered the opportunity to join the autonomous Basque region": I don't believe this is correct, I believe that the offer was made and they turned it down. No citation in article (I don't have one either). Does someone have something solid on this? - Jmabel | Talk 23:08, 23 November 2006 (UTC)

It's complex: the "Basque region" (autonomous community) was doubly constituted in the 30s and 80s.
In the 30s the Navarrese delegates had majority mandate of voting in favor but many were pressured to abstain, gaining the "no". (source: Mikel Sorauren, can check more if needed).
In the 80s all fundamental laws (Spanish constitution, Basque statute) provide for Navarre to join the Basque community at will. Despite promises and requests, the referendum on such possible union has never taken place. Some say that the will of Navarrese is represented by the Cortes (parliament) and others say that still the people must be asked, suggesting that a yes vote is likely (though I have no idea if that's true at this stage).
So the people of Navarre has never directly expressed itself in either sense directly. In 1932, the mandate was "yes" but the outcome was "no". Modernly the referendum has yet to be done, both on joining the BAC (in the federative manner that this community has) and on the very "amejoramiento del fuero" (Navarrese special statute). --Sugaar 00:13, 24 November 2006 (UTC)

Sounds like you know this in much more detail than I do. Would you have any interest in researching it further to get some citable details into the article? Because certainly, given what you've just written, I was correct to find our current quick remark dubious. - Jmabel | Talk 23:59, 25 November 2006 (UTC)

Yes at it's written it is confuse: the Western Basques do want/favor Navarre re-united with them and this has been contemplated as a possibility both in the 1930s and in the 1970s. But Navarrese never had the real opportunity of directly deciding themselves. When they did in 1932, their choice was apparently manipulated, since then they have never voted any proposal in this sense, despite the promises (always forgotten), specially by the PSN-PSOE.
I'll check for sources. --Sugaar 01:41, 26 November 2006 (UTC)
Found something: Nabarralde online magazine says:
Meanwhile in (residual) Nabarra, an alliance of the Left (PSOE, Spanish Socialist Party) and the Right (UCD, Union of the Democratic Center and UPN, Union of the Nabarrase People) negotiated an autonomy statute with the central government. Three members of parliament, including Herri Batasuna's, member parliament, were banned from the negotiating Commission. In 1982 the law of Amejoramiento del Fuero Nabarro (approved by the Nabarrese parliaments and not by referendum) provided Nabarra with its own autonomy statute thus further dividing Nabarra from its truncated territories of Araba, Bizkaia and Gipuzkoa. Article 145 of the Spanish Constitution states that: "[u]nder no circumstances shall the federation of Autonomous Communities be allowed."
In this way, the institutional division of Nabarra's territories in Spain was finally consolidated.
The source is politically biased (Navarrist-Basquist) but still explains well the issue as for the 1978-82 transition.
Also you can check this historical/opinion article regarding what happened in 1930s (in Spanish, too long to translate): Memoria histórica y desmemoriados by Gara's editor J.M. Esparza Zabalegi.

«El País Vasco integrado por las actuales provincias de Alava, Guipúzcoa, Navarra y Vizcaya constituye una entidad natural y jurídica con personalidad política propia y se le reconoce como tal el derecho a constituirse y regirse por sí mismo como Estado Autónomo dentro de la totalidad del Estado español», rezaba el primer Estatuto de la Sociedad de Estudios Vascos, aprobado por la aclamación de 427 municipios en la fiesta de Lizarra del 14 de junio de 1931. Los socialistas y republicanos que presidían la nueva Gestora de Diputación propusieron otro proyecto similar de estatuto, en el que participaron desde la izquierda a los monárquicos navarros. Fue votado en cada ayuntamiento y luego conjuntamente el 10 de agosto del mismo año. Conviene repasar las cifras: de 220 ayuntamientos navarros presentados, 200 apoyaron el Estatuto Vasconavarro; hubo tres municipios en favor del Estatuto navarro, y 15 por ningún estatuto. Lo decía hasta Rafael Aizpún: Navarra era euskaldun. Tras nueva Constitución Española, que obligó a modificar el texto, en la asamblea en enero de 1932 el 64,46% de los delegados navarros se mostró de nuevo a favor, aunque aumentaron las deserciones, no por el Estatuto Vasco en sí, sino por sus contenidos más o menos laicos o religiosos, que lo dejaron al pairo de los huracanes que sacudían la República. Al final, el tema religioso y el enfrentamiento con las directrices republicanas hicieron que, después de tres asambleas con el voto abrumadoramente favorable, Navarra quedara fuera del Estatuto por una mínima diferencia. Y trampeada, según demostró Jimeno Jurío en su libro “Navarra jamás dijo no al Estatuto Vasco”. Quedan para la historia las palabras iniciales de Constantino Salinas, el líder histórico del socialismo navarro, que muestran lo lejos que estaba de imaginar el resultado de la asamblea: «Quiero ante todo dar la bienvenida en nombre de Navarra, saludaros en nombre de esta provincia que, como dice el artículo uno del proyecto de Estatuto que va a someterse a vuestra discusión, tiene con Alava, Guipúzcoa y Vizcaya estrecho parentesco de orden étnico, cultural, político y económicoŠ los lazos que, a juzgar por estas incontenibles aspiraciones del País Vasco al promulgar conjuntamente por la autonomía, serán tan fuertes, que es de presumir que a lo largo de la historia venidera de las cuatro provincias no habrá vicisitudes que puedan quebrantarlas».

I think it's sufficient. Along with the already mentioned reference to Mikel Sorauren's Historia de Navarra, el estado Vasco. --Sugaar 02:24, 26 November 2006 (UTC)
Interesting. We might want to expand on this a bit, either here or in the article on Navarre. By the way their is one phrase here I don't know: al pairo de. I can work out the meaning from context, but what is the etymology? - Jmabel | Talk 06:53, 30 November 2006 (UTC)

Removed paragraph

Among other surely good edits, LSLM recently added this paragraph in the Culture section:

It should be noted though, that the majority of Basques have Spanish as their native tongue and not Basque, and are Roman Catholics, basic common features that they share with the rest of Spaniards. In fact the Spanish language developed in the north of Spain in close contact with Basque speakers, which is reflected in diverse features like the five Spanish vowels, which are of Basque origins. The oldest Spanish texts to be conserved are in the same documents that also contain the oldest Basque texts recorded, in the so-called Emilianenses and Silenses glosses. Besides, the Spanish Basque country has always been part of Spain, one of the oldest states in Europe, and even before that, it was part of the county of Castile first, and of the Kingdom of Castile, later.

I find it very confuse and rather POV:

  • Language: it doesn't make any mention to colonization and cultural genocide. It focuses in southern Basque Country, ignoring the North (where Spanish is irrelevant).
  • Religion: Catholicism is part of historical tradition (though there was a Calvinist epysode in the North too) but nowadays most Basques are not practicant Catholics anymore. Religion suffered a lot with Franco's fundamentalism and also later with post-modernity.
  • Oldest Basque texts: that info is obsolete it seems. Check Iruña-Veleia the oldest Basque texts seem to be a lot older, from at least the 3rd century CE.
  • The claim that "the Spanish Basque Country has always been part of Spain" is 100% POV and again ignore the North. I must remind LSLM that the County of Castile was an annex of the Basque Country (Kingdom of Pamplona) long before it was otherwise. That the Basque territories were annexed by force in 1199-1200 and 1512-22, not witout resistence. Also the resulting provinces were virtually independent for all civil and economic matters until 1833 (in the South) and the French Revolution (in the North). --Sugaar 03:26, 26 November 2006 (UTC)
I agree with you Sugaar, this is mostly irrelevancy. Insofar as they have Spanish as their native tongue, that is of some relevance but Catholicism? You have to go as far as Switzerland before you hit the next area that is not predominantly Catholic (other than a handful of cities in northwestern France). The vowels thing is true, to the best of my knowledge, but so what? By this sort of standard one could say that New York Puerto Ricans are some weird mixture of Irish, Italian, and Jewish by the form of English they speak. As for "always been part of Spain", I agree with how you've characterized it; until about 500 years ago (and arguably rather more recently) there was no nation state of "Spain" to be part of, and the fueros meant that in the case of the Basques that "arguably rather more recently" is particularly relevant. There may be a fact or two here that belongs, but putting them together like this amounts to the sort of synthesized polemic by juxtapostion that is specifically ruled out be WP:OR. It would be fine for the article to cite and discuss some ethnographer who has made the case that the Basques are more Spanish than not; it is not fine for a contributor to just string together a dubious argument to this effect. - Jmabel | Talk 07:02, 30 November 2006 (UTC)

Infobox: related ethnic groups

I have removed again "Old Castilians" and "Northern Aragonese". They are not any separate/homogeneous ethnic group as Gascons and it's more a matter of borders. While "Northern Aragonese" could be valid, depending where you place the border (Jaca and Ejea yes, Huesca very dubious, Zaragoza no way), Old Castilians are mostly not related to Basques significatively. Only the NE area (east of the Burgos-Santander line) that once belonged to Pamplona has a clear Basque background, but the people from Avila, Palencia, Aranda or Soria mostly don't. --Sugaar 03:34, 26 November 2006 (UTC)

Whoever took "Latin Americans" off the ethnic group section...kudos to you. - Anon

Revamped "origins" section

In order to give balanced weight to each theory.

Most affected:

  • Genetics:
    • Added material from Cavalli-Sforza's PCs, Y chromosome and X chromosome's microsatellites, all of which support Basque specifity/antiquity.
    • Reduced the space of the studies that claim otherwise based in Mitochondrial DNA, as I find them very dubious (in the conclussions claimed) and looked like real protests in the middle of the section.
  • Alternative theories: packed them all under a s ingle section.

Notes on the MtDNA studies:

  1. I strongly question who cares about U8 haplogroup? I mean: the most important western European haplogroup is H and Basques have plenty of it as far as I know. U is diverse but mostly a Mediterranean haplogroup.
  2. Also the other study is mono-focused in V haplogroup ("sister" of H), typical of the Saami (Lapp), for instance. The study finds contradictory that Guipuscoans have high level of V (c. 11%) and Iron Age remains have 0%. Yet the arhceological remains studied are all from out of Guipuscoa (Ebro Valley and Biscay) and for instance Biscayans have only 3% of that haplogroup - and ironically that is clearly stated in that same study.

Enjoy, --Sugaar 04:23, 26 November 2006 (UTC)

Related ehtnic groups.

The most obvious related ethnic groups are Spaniards and French. Or maybe not, in fact most Basques are Spaniards themselves, like me, about 2.750.000 of them. About 250.000 are indeed French. Veritas et Severitas 22:10, 1 December 2006 (UTC)

Besides, I think that statements like these are absolutely biased.

The Basques are clearly a distinct ethnic group in their native region. They are culturally and especially linguistically distinct from their surrounding neighbors, etc

Facts: The vast majority of Basques have Spanish as their mother tongue (in France French). Only a minority of them have Basque as their mother tongue and they all speak Spanish in Spain. To say that they are not a Romance speaking people is typical of the kind of extremists whose role is to try and exaggerate what suits their agendas and ignore the facts, even if those lies are gross. Spanish is the natural language of the majority of the people of the Basque country. I am Basque myself and like the majority of my people, do not speak Basque, even if I would like to. Basque is a minority language that now is being promoted by the Regional Government. It is more than fair than Basque is promoted. It is one of the languages of the Basque country and it is certainly the oldest, but not the only one and certainly not the most spoken language. It is because of this and other clearly biased statements that I am posting that the neutrality of this article is very much in question. Veritas et Severitas 23:44, 1 December 2006 (UTC)

We are not talking about citizenship but about ethnic afinities. Basques have since long been considered quite unique, mainly because of the isolate pre-IE language but also for other reasons such as some rather unique customs (sometimes shared with other Atlantic peoples: regattas, stonelifting, sometimes totally unique: Basque yoke for instance).
Being aculturized and forced to speak another language doesn't make Basques necesarily more akin to the genocidal nations (Spain and France), in my opinion. Saying that Basques are mostly related to Spaniards as you sustain, LSLM, is like saying that Kurds are mostly related to Turks, Chechens to Russians or Navajos to White Texans. It's totally misleading and politically motivated. Surely Chechens can speak Russian, most Kurds do speak Turkish and Navajos necessarily must know English... but they are not the same thing as their cultural and political invaders.
Btw, I didn't write that paragraph. It's been there since I arrived to this article for the first time. --Sugaar 01:41, 2 December 2006 (UTC)

Well Sugaar, I think your extremist position is clear. You call the Spanish and the French genocidal nations! Most Spaniards and Basques are believed to come from the earliest inhabitants of Spain, whatever you say!. The Basques have certainly maintained more ancestral links and have been more isolated, but they have been aculturized and forced to speak another laguage the same as the rest of the Iberians when they were Romanized. But as usual, I will let you concentrate on the 20% that they may be different and ignore the 80% that they have in common (and that without taking into account that probably 50% of the people in the present-day Spanish Basque country come from other areas of Spain, due to 19th and 20th century immigration). That is typical of the extreme nationalists that I mentioned before. You call the Spanish and the French genocidal, but the hard fact is that it is people who do not think like you who have been getting a bullet in the back of their heads by extreme nationalists, many of them with fathers, mothers or grandparents who are not even from the Basque country. I am one of those Spanish Basques(for me being Basque and Spaniard are one and the same thing) who can express their opinions freely in a place like this, but not in the streets of the Spanish Basque country, which have been taken over by a fascist minority that will not tolerate that others do not think like them. We have to speak at home, the same as during the fascist Franco dictatorship. The tragedy of the Basque country is that while the rest of Spain has freed itself from Fascim, we continue to be suffering from it. The Fascists changed names, that is all. And in the best fascist tradition they like to manipulate reality, exaggerate what suits them, downplay, ignore or just deny what does not suit them. But of course, it is people like me who have a political agenda.

Here people have some basic information about genetic anthropology or population genetics, for those who may come across it for the first time and may be fooled by propagandists:

Here you have some other links:

Look ate the incredible differences between Basques and the rest of Spaniards:

Or here, also huge, are they not?

This site is also very interesting, serve yourselves

Or this map about the distribution of the genetic markers known as R1b. What a profound difference between the Basque country and the Rest of Spain! See map C :

Or this one:

See the legend: CEE = Central Europe East. CEW = Central Europe West. EE = Eastern Europe. IberiaS = Spain. IberiaP = Portugal. ItalyN = North of Italy. ItalyS = South of Italy.See also this legend: Molecular (first row) = Different molecular DNA loci and frequency (second row) = Haplogroups. Av. = Average.

This study is from 2004 and has used up to 8 different genetic loci. Almost 75% of Spaniards are said here to share the same ancestry as Basques. But of course they all have political agendas. They are not scientists. See also the other Hapmaps above and continue concentrating on the minority differences and ignoring the majority similarities.

And that is just biological ancestry. Maybe we shall not say here that since Spain exists, the Basque country has been a part of it, or repeat that mosts Basques and Spaniards have inherited from the genocidal Romans the same basic cultural elements, like their Romance language and their religion. Let us continue our bunch of lies and make people believe that Basques and the rest of Spaniards are like Navajos and Anglos. Veritas et Severitas 02:45, 2 December 2006 (UTC)

Estoy profundamente de acuerdo contigo Veritas. ¡Arriba España y la Legión!--LaBotadeFranco 03:33, 2 December 2006 (UTC)

Well I do not want people like you to agree with me. Although I think that you must be joking. If you are not joking people like me are caught between two extremes, those who defend positions like Sugaar's and those who defend positions like your's. Veritas et Severitas 03:36, 2 December 2006 (UTC)

Don't misunderstand me: genocide by the UN criteria can well be cultural genocide, and it's clear that this the Basque people has suffered and is still suffering out of the BAC (i.e. in Navarre and the North).
On genetics, notice that Hg12 is also part of R1b (along with most but not all Hg1). Now, look again at the same map[10] and you'll notice that Basques still have some 25% more R1b than the average Spaniard. Aditionally it's worth mentioning (something I know you already know) that the cake posted in Eastern England is only about Norfolk people, who, as well as those of Yorkshire, are the most Nordic influenced of all Britons. If Spaniards show a good 60% R1b, English show rather 70% and Celtic peoples of the Atlantic are more in the line of 80-100%[11].
Other maps you posted just confirm what I say: that (re. Y-chromosmome haplogroups) Basques are closer to Western/Atlantic Europeans. And Spaniards are in that group, indeed, but not markedly closer to Basques or whatever.
You emphasize one study that says that Spaniards are 73-74% "Basque". Ignoring that the same study says that Portuguese are 64-71%, Britons 69-70% and Northern Italians 62-68%. What makes you emphasize Spaniards because of just 4 percentual points?
The other article does argue that British MtDNA is indeed closer to NW Europe. I agree, and I used it as argument against your Iberist viewpoints in the discussion in the English people article if you remember. I said that the differences of MtDNA are not as larger as those of Y-DNA and that this study shows (in my opinion) that Western Europeans were more homogenous in the Y-DNA side before IE migrations and that Britain was at least partly colonized from the Rhin area (and not exclusively from "Iberia" as yo claimed).
It is probably true that there were two related but somewhat separated populations in Europe before Neolithic and IE migrations: one centered in the Franco-Cantabrian region (i.e. primeval Basque Country) and the other centered at the Rhin and the Upper Danub. While Northern Iberians and Occitans would be better candidates to be closest to Basques in the genetic aspect just because of neighbourhood, the fact is that in some aspects (i.e. Y-DNA and some autosomal PCs[12]) Basques are closer to other Atlantic Europeans than Iberians. Why? Surely because, due to insularity, Britain was somewhat less affected by continental immigration and like Basques (but to a lesser extent) kept pretty well their ancient European aboriginal stock.
So the conclusion can only be that genetically (at least via Y-DNA) Basques belong to the same stock as Western Europeans in general. No reason to mention Spaniards specially as, at least in this aspect, they show no greater affinity with Basques than Britons and specially other isolated peoples like Gascons, Irish, Bretons or Welsh.
Nice "friends" you're making, btw. --Sugaar 03:59, 2 December 2006 (UTC)

I am not going to comment on some details of yours because people can read and see for themselves very well the links that I have provided. I think that you know that there is a hierarchy in genetic markers: The Y-Chromosome is the most reliable, then Mitocondrial DNA. Autosomal is the least reliable of the three. Still the more places you check the better. I have provided one study that includes the three of them plus up to 5 more genetic loci and is very recent, from 2004. In that respect it is the most reliable. According to that study Spain shows the highest concentration of Basque genetic markers, more than Britain. Still I think that it is not that important to argue about a few points, in any case it is clearly the majority population group in Spain. So, I did not say that genetically speaking other Western European peoples are not closely related. I said and continue to say that most Spaniards and most Basques belong basically to the same population stock and that most of them come from the earliest inhabitants of Spain. Besides I have said that Basques and the rest of Spaniards share a very long common history, a common language, a common religion etc. It does not mean that Basques do not have their own particular features and traditions, like many other areas in Spain. I am particularly proud of the Basque language, although I do not speak it, as a Basque and as a Spaniard. But all Spaniards have more things in common than things that separate them, including Basques. The problem lies, probably, in the fact that some people think that peoples have to be absolutely monolithic. That is a provincial, Romantic and dangerous concept. In any case I respect those who think differently but do not play along a version of the Basques as being clearly separated from the rest of the Spanish, in the same way as the Welsh are not clearly separated from the rest of the English. That idea has to do more with myth and politics than with reality. By the way, I insist on Spain because the Basque country is basically an area in Spain. I know that a lot of people like to emphasise that it is also in France. It is true that there are also French Basques, about 250.000. But about 2.750.000 live in the Spanish Basque country, in other words, more than 90 per cent of Basques live in the Spanish Basque Country and Navarre, so we are speaking basically of an area in Spain. I am not mentioning Spain arbitrarily. Veritas et Severitas 04:22, 2 December 2006 (UTC)

I'm not going to discuss genetics more either. It's relatively irrelevant in any case: what defines an ethnic group is culture, often language and specially identification as such.
But I am going to question your reasoning that because a majority of Basques live in lands annexed by Spain (arguably against our will) that makes us "ethnically Spaniards" (whatever that means). I strongly disagree that "all Spaniards have more things in common than thing that separates them" and I'd say that's particularly clear in the Basque case if anyone: Spain is an amalgamation of peoples and the only thing that it has in common is an imposed Castilian culture, language and law. As you know well, the Basque people is not the only nation that wants to break apart nor the only country that Castile (aka Spain) has doblegated by force of arms and assimilated by means of cultural genocide. Spain has a constituent essential problem but that's politics anyhow.
Let's discuss culture and ethnic markers. And really: Basques have many things that are just plainly unique, specially the already mentioned language but not only: law, democratic tradition, music (most Basques strongly dislike Flamenco, naturally), traditional sports, original mythology, lack of militaristic/imperialistic drive, cuisine, mentality... all that (and many other things I forgot) is sufficiently different to make us a differentiated ethnicity (or nation).
Are Spaniards (Castilians) related to Basques? Surely in some levels. Are Basques related to Spaniards? Not really: not so much and only for recent colonization aculturation really. If Spain would not exist that would not affect the existence of the Basque people/country. The opposite I really don't know - but anyhow it's not my problem.
Your rationale is basically political, as I said: the same that makes Navajos "Texans", Sorbians "Germans" and Uygurs "Chinese". It's not a valid argumentation.
You can't just say: Tibetans are primarily related to Chinese because most of them live in RPC. That's not an ethnological argumentation - only a political one. --Sugaar 05:28, 3 December 2006 (UTC)

Note: I have restored the infobox to the state before your changes, that I consider POV-pushing, much more as it's only based in a political rationale (not an athropological one). If you wish, I'm willing to open an RfC on the issue. --Sugaar 12:08, 3 December 2006 (UTC)

Minor issue: source

Error just deleted a source that is clearly relevant with the comment "(→Roman rule - The Bagaudas article does not mention post-Imperial war between Visigoths and Basques)".

Sorry but that's not that way, the article says:

Ya en el s. III habían tomado importancia las sublevaciones galas contra los romanos y la nobleza. Continúan bajo Claudio II y durante el reinado de Diocleciano, pero es ahora, hacia 435, cuando los bagaudas propiamente dichos provocaron un levantamiento, dirigiéndose hacia los Alpes y llegando a los Pirineos. Los vascos luchan ahora por su libertad. pasando a cuchillo un cuerpo de romanos cerca de Calahorra. Entre visigodos y romanos nacen diferencias y suspicacias que culminan en el asedio de Tolosa aquitana, sede de Recaredo, en 439. Se aproxima la independencia definitiva del reino godo de Tolosa. Los bagaudas galos, perseguidos y vencidos, habían ya entrado en la Península, probablemente por la costa y por Roncesvalles a lo largo de la calzada romana Astorga-Burdeos. El año y combaten al general Asturio; en el 443 el conde Merobaundes les combate cerca de Huarte-Araquil (Aracaeli). El 449 el general romano Basilio combate a los bagaudas, aliados de Requiario, cerca de Turiaso (Tarazona), en la frontera vascón-céltica. Todos los refugiados en la iglesia, entre ellos León, su obispo, mueren. Silvano, obispo de Marsella, defiende a los bagaudas en su obra Gobernatione Dei.

Translation: The Gaulish revolts against Romans and aristocracy were already important in the 3rd century. They continue with Claudius II and in the reign of Ciocletian, but it is now, near 435, when the Bagaudae proper caused an uprising, taking the way of the Alps and reaching the Pyrenees. Basques fight now for their freedom, slaughtering a corps of Romans near Calahorra. Differences arise between Visigoths and Romans that would culminate in the siege of Tolosa, seat of Recaredo, in 439. The definitive independence of the Gothic Kingdom of Tolosa is near. The Gaulish Bagaudae defeated and persecuted had already entered the Peninsula , probably by the coast and by Roncevaux along the Roman road Astorga-Bourdeaux. In the year "y" [typo] they fight general Asturio; in the year 433 count Merobaundes [a clear Visigothic name] fight them near Huarte-Arakil (Aracaeli). In 449 Roman general Basil fight the Bagaudae, allied of Rechiarius, near Turiasu [Tarazona], in the Basque-Celtic border. All the people refuged in the church, among them Leon, its bishop, die. Silvanus, bishop of Marseilles, defends the Bagaudae in his work Gobernatione Dei. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Sugaar (talkcontribs) 11:59, 3 December 2006 (UTC).

Most of these punctual references mention clearly that the Vascones Bagaudae were fighting the Visigoths, near Tolosa (Toulouse). While its not really clear who is "Roman" and who "Visigoth", it is clear that as the Empire declined, both were fighting together against the Bagaudae.

If you consider that the refeence is misplaced, please move it to a more proper place (maybe the sentence before) but please do not remove valuable references in any case. --Sugaar 11:49, 3 December 2006 (UTC)

Check the next reference. It goes to the same article. As a secondary point, let's try (me too) to set the idi parameter of Auñamendi to idi=en instead of idi=eu or idi=es. Also, you blindly reverted valuable information. --Error 02:37, 5 December 2006 (UTC)

Related ethnic group fundamentalist point of view pushing

My friend Sugaar, with whom I agree on many other issues, is accusing me of POV pushing while he is not only pushing an extreme point of view very well know by some sectors of Basque society, but a fundamentalist point of view:

1. I find it even ridiculous to discuss the fact that the Basque country is a Spanish region including 90 per cent of Basques.

2. It has always been part of Spain since Spain exists, about half a millenium.

3. An important percentage of people come from other parts of Spain, and that is close to 50%.

4. If it comes down to feelings, we have the following situation.

5. While there are people who support Basque independence there are people who do not.

a) In the Spanish Basque territory there are people who feel only Basque and people who feel both Basque and Spanish. In the French area the same situation, but the Frech feeling is much greater.

b) In Navarre the Spanish feeling is even stronger.

Conclusion: The extremist position that I am pointing out, is not only the one of an independentist who says that Basques are not Spanish, but that they are not even related!. I know that fundamentalism knows no boundaries and responds to no reason. But fundamentalism should not be allowed in this place.

In the best tradition of the most radical Basques he wants to impose his fundamentalist point of view on all Basques in this place, in the same way as these extremists do in the streets of the Spanish Basque country. I am a Basque, and like me, about 50% of Basques in the Spanish Basque country feel both Basque and Spanish, like the vast majority of Navarrese. Do not insult me and millions of Basques by saying not only that we are not Spanish, but that I we are not even related to the Spanish. Veritas et Severitas 13:27, 3 December 2006 (UTC)

It doesn't matter, LSLM. The point is not if some Basques feel Spaniard, if Uygurs or Tibetans feel Chinese, if Kurds feel Turkish or if Evenks feel Russian. When you go to these peoples' articles you don't find but the ethnological tags:
  • Uyghurs: "Uzbeks, other Turkic peoples" (not Chinese)
  • Tibetans: "possibly other Tibeto-Burman speaking peoples, Uyghurs. Other Himalayan peoples: Sherpas, Bhutias, Ladakhis. Other followers of Tibetan Buddhism: Mongols, Buryats, Manchus, Tuvans, Kalmyks" (not Chinese)
  • Evenks: "other Tungusic peoples" (not Russians)
  • Kurds: "Other Iranian peoples (such as Talyshs Baluchs Gilaks Bakhtiaris, Persians)" (not Turks or Arabs)
I ask you to be less political and more ethnological. I ask you to search for other examples if you don't feel satisfied with the ones I provided quite randomly or even to ask for neutral opinions, either via RfC or asking in the wikipedia:WikiProject Ethnic groups.
In our case, I feel it's very clear that the only homogeneous group that shows a clear relation with Basques are Gascons. If you feel so inclined I can take Riojans, as they are a relatively homogeneous group of Romance-speaking Basques, as Gascons, sharing many customs (and history) with Basques. But Spaniards or French are just too wide and impossible to find more relation than other Western European groups.
And try to stay away from personalizing this. Comment on content, not on contributors, please. --Sugaar 13:59, 3 December 2006 (UTC)

I cannot silence fundamentalist positions and the attempts to exaggerate differences while at the same time try to downplay, ignore and deny the basic similarities. I have already expressed my points in the comments above and in the links that I provided. The genetic connections among all Spaniards are clear, but if you knew better you would know that language, culture, shared history, etc. are even more important than genetics for ethnicity. I have said that Basques are a group with their own peculiar and important unique characteristics, but from there to jump to the conclusion that Basques and Spaniards are not even related surpasses all boundaries of common sense and can only have a strong political motivation.

You are defending an extremist position that is very well known in Spain. In fact we have two similar positions:

1. The one of the Spanish Fascists that say that Spaniards are a monolithic group. They are all Spanish an that is it..

2. The ones of extreme regional nationalist who do the same. Example: Basques are all a monolithic group. They are Basques and that is it.

If we call the former Fascists I see no reason why we should not call the latter the same way. Veritas et Severitas 14:14, 3 December 2006 (UTC)

I just can't believe it! You are accusing me of political motivation? It's ethnological: what's the ethnic languages of Basques? Spanish? A romance? It's not even Indo-European!
I am now realizing why you claimed that English are "Iberians" (using so frequently the term "Spanish" but disregarding the Basque connection). You seem to have a strong Spanish nationalist viewpoint and you are trying to impose that nationalist viewpoint over any ethnological or linguistic rationale.
You have stepped down from discussing ethnology and you are now trying to make this politics, because that's the only argument you have left. I feel very disappointed at your stand.
Do not start an edit war, please. Let's look for mediation, RfC, peer review... let's discuss this in rational terms, not political ones. --Sugaar 14:19, 3 December 2006 (UTC)

Look for all the mediation that you want. Your positions are extreme and fundamentalist. You know that we Spaniards have a more politically incorrect but sincere way to call things. Oops, I forgot, we are not even related!.

And sorry, but your positions, not you, have all the ticks of the Fascists in Spain. If they do not agree with them they say: you are all communists. If people do not agree with your positions you say: you all have a Spanish political agenda. Veritas et Severitas 14:23, 3 December 2006 (UTC)

My position, sorry, it's merely ethnological. You have been unable in many paragraphs to bring forward a single argument in favor of a special ethnical vincle between Basque and Spaniards other than the political one.
And then you dare to accuse me of politizing the issue, falling in what I can't but start to consider ad hominem attacks, for lack of arguments.
Please reconsider your attitude. You can't impose a POV just because you think so and bring out of your sleeve arbitrary political rationales and equally arbitrary disqualifications.
Sorry, but the only one that is disqualified with that for of faulty reasoning (and continued imposition of a non-fundamented POV) is yourself.
And, by Basque standards, Spaniards are not generally considered sincere. You should know that. --Sugaar 18:22, 3 December 2006 (UTC)

RfC: Related ethnic groups at infobox

Basically the points are two:

  1. Related peoples are: Gascons (Riojans maybe) and, in general, Western Europeans.
  2. Related peoples are: Gascons, Spanish, French and, in general, Western Europeans.

Rationale in favor of (1)

  • Linguistic: Basque language is unrelated to Romance and, in general, IE languages. Gascons and possibly Riojans are only somewhat homogeneous ethnic groups that can be considered as Romance-speaking Basques.
  • Genetic (look for sources above): while some aspects of genetic research may appear to give greater closeness between Basques and Iberians, most of it rather points to give more closeness to other Atlantic peoples like Celtic-speakers. In general all these groups (Basques, Gascons, modern Celtic peoples) are less diluted remnants of what once was the standard of Western/Atlantic Europe.
  • Other ethnic groups' infboxes follow all an ethnological and not political rationale, i.e. Uyghurs are not claimed as related to Chinese, Kurds are not claimed as related to Turks, etc. --Sugaar 14:50, 3 December 2006 (UTC)

Rationale in favor of (2)

1. Most Iberians (Most Basques and most other Spaniards and Portuguese) and Britons and other Europeans seem to have all a prehistoric common ancestry, but Iberians and Britons are not related ethnic groups. They have been isolated from each other for thousands of years.

2. Spaniards have all a common history. A common language (Basques are more a Romance people than anything else. The vast majority of us have Spanish as our native language, although we are also proud of our Basque language, spoken by about 25% of us, although very few have it as their first native language). A common religion and a common feeling of identity as Basque and Spaniards, that is shared at least by 50% of the population in the Spanish Basque country and by the the overwhelming majority in the Basque Spanish region of Navarre.

By the way, in the capital of the Basque Spanish region of Navarre, Pamplona, the most celebrated bullfighting festivals are held, as everyone knows: the Sanfermines. Although I am myself against bullfighting, one cannot negate that it is a very traditional festival deeply related to Spanish culture.

3. Spaniards are not a monolithic group. They are diverse, like the Basques themselves.

4. Even if we ignore the ancestral relationships among Basques and the rest of Spaniards, close to 50% of them come from Castilians, Calicians, Andalusians, etc who immigrated into the Basque country during the 19th and 2oth centuries for economic reasons.

5. Basques (well more thatn 90% of them) are Spanish citizens and have always been since Spanish citizens exist. By the way, before that they were part of the Castilian county, first, and of the Castilian Kingdom, later.

6. This is not about negating Basque identity. If someone tried to negate Basque identity I would be even more tough. This is about a simple concept: "related". Since I think that we all understand English, it can be clearly understood. Veritas et Severitas 15:09, 3 December 2006 (UTC)

7. There has, for at least two centuries, been significant intermarriage and, in various places, assimilation (including assimilation of people with ancestry from elsewhere in Spain into Basue culture after moving there. - Jmabel | Talk 19:43, 8 December 2006 (UTC)


Please post comments here

Yes, I would like to comment on this. First of all, Sugaar's statements about the Basque people's relationships are correct. Of course that is my opinion (and Sugaar's), and also that of a great many other people, but there will also naturally be individuals who entertain different opinions, and if that were really the issue we could probably just have a quite civilised discussion and sort the business out. But obviously that is not really the issue, and it is not the reason why Sugaar has had to ask for help here. What is really the issue is that Sugaar is being attacked by somebody representing an extremist position in the Spanish nationalist camp. As an outsider with a lot of inside knowledge about this situation and therefore some credentials for playing an "ambassadorial" role, I feel it is my duty to clarify for the benefit of observers less acquainted with this affair that for generations, right-wing Spaniards have invariably been obsessed with the need they perceive to deny the facts about ethnic diversity that are intrinsic to the makeup of the present-day political entity called Spain. That is what is being played out here (once again). It is quite unjust for Sugaar to be accused of pushing a "point of view" here. I repeat: what he is saying is objectively the case. Whoever insists on denying the obvious is the only one pushing a point of view in this instance. Doing so by accusing others of POV-pushing is intolerable, and Sugaar is quite right to complain and request assistance. Please support him! --A R King 20:47, 3 December 2006 (UTC)

Although the issue is complex because of the concept of ethnicity and relatedness between peoples is impossible to define in a sensible way I will support the first viewpoint - mostly from a linguistic point of view. My opinion is that if we have to say which peoples are related then we have to do it on a basis that makes sense and that doesn't dilute the concepts of ethnicity and relatedness into something uninformative. Language is often the best way to define ethnicity and in the basque case it seems to be the only unequivocal way. Think about it this way american indians have lived together with europeans for 500 years - does that make them ethnically related to europeans? Mixing of ethnicities, linguistic borrowing etc has taken place in all cases but native american ethnicity remains intact and distinct from the european ethnicity. In my opinion the same is the case for Basque although basque and romance have coexisted for a longer time. Saying that basque and spanish people are relaed is simply not informative - while it is the case on at least two levels (intermixing and prolonged coexistence) it does not tell us anything useful about the roots of the basque ethnia. I say that the infobox should say "gascons, riojans and, in general, Western Europeans." Or a pehaps even better alternative solution: leave out the related peoples field in the infobox altogether.Maunus 08:55, 4 December 2006 (UTC)
I would agree that this underlines the fact that ethnicity is a mushy category. While there are people whose ethnicity is clear (many generations of people from within a group, speaking the same language, practicing the same relition, etc.) there are many whose ethnicity it is not (someone living in Bilbao whose family is mostly Galician, but who speaks good Basque and has one indisputably Basque ancestor, for example). - Jmabel | Talk 19:47, 8 December 2006 (UTC)

Spaniards, Gascons, Creoles

I'd propose Spaniards (maybe just Castilians), Gascons (I am not so sure about the influence in France) and Creole peoples (such as Konyo Filipinos (the Konyo English page says: In part because many of these Creole Filipinos (sometimes of unmiscegenated Basque descent) appear completely Caucasian and could therefore be mistaken for foreigners.; the page on Spanish-Filipinos distinguishes nothing, though)). On Castilians and Basques, check the distribution of the Aguirre Basque surname. It is not working as I write but in my earlier tests, there is a significative presence of people with the most common Basque surname (García is a patronymic) in Madrid and Barcelona. I take that as a sign that a relevant part of Spaniards have some Basque ancestry, enough to be mentioned in this article. This EITB article however seems wrong when it says: En Madrid hay más Aguirres que los que encontramos en Gipuzkoa, Álava y Navarra.. Check it when the INE server works again. --Error 02:23, 5 December 2006 (UTC)

Some comments:
  • Why Castilians specially? Aragonese have at least as much influence from Basque. Catalans are closer genetically and Galicians share some usages +/- common to the the northern strip and sometimes beyond to the British islands (the "pseudo-Celtic" connection that is actually pre-Celtic). Extremadurans, Andalusians, Murcians and Canarians are Castilians in the historical sense, yet they are not very much related to Basques, almost the same for Leonese and all Castilians strictu sensu south of Burgos). What does Ávila or Segovia (Old castile) have to do with the Basque Country/people? Not more than Venezuela or California.
  • Creole peoples. The same as above: while some of them may have a noticeable Basque apportation basically this is diluted enough and can't be clearly differentiated from other European inputs. It's much better dealt with in the Basque diaspora article that needs a lot of attention and expansion.
  • Agirre is basically a Biscayan surname (though also found in the north in the form of Daguerre or even Guerre). Basque surnames are generally very localized in origin: one baserri or village maybe. Anyhow, Madrid has 6 million inhabitants, all the Basque country only 3 million or so. Additionally Madrid as "imperial capital" since some 4 or 5 centuries ago has attracted many immigrants and can't be considered representative of Castile. It's like defending the Indian-ness or Irish-ness of England because there are so many people of these origins in some of its major cities... Not serious, really.
  • García (and other Castilian surnames of Basque origin, like Velasco, Vélez, Velázquez and Vela, all derived from Bele/a, attested since the Aquitainian slabs) are very interesting. García is the most common Spanish surnmae (like Chang or Smith in other languages) but having that surname is not guarantee of Basque-ness, considering the medieval cultural interactions that gave these first names and corresponding patronimics their disffusion. Surely when dealing with the identity of Castilian people you can't help talking of Basque influences but the opposite is not so clear. In other words: the Castile (or Aragon for the case) we know would not have existed without Basques but Basques did indeed exist long before the very idea of Castile existed at all. To each one what is his/her own. --Sugaar 04:47, 5 December 2006 (UTC)

I saw the ETB report mentioned above on the TV news, including the assertion that En Madrid hay más Aguirres que los que encontramos en Gipuzkoa, Álava y Navarra. I'm not sure what the (political?) agenda behind the report was, or if it was just the usual journalistic sloppiness at work, but it struck me at the time as a very muddled and confusing report. To start with, the statement we are quoting doesn't tell me anything significant, except to remind me that there are a lot of people in Madrid. If there are more Jews (and also more people) in New York than in the state of Israel, does that mean that New York is "more Jewish" than Israel? Does it tell me anything at all about Israel? If there are more Basque speakers in Bilbao than in Ondarroa, can I draw any conclusion from that fact about the presence of the Basque language in Ondarroa? I don't think so. So what does this fact (about Aguirres in Madrid) tell us? Does the journalist who wrote the report even know? I certainly don't.

As for Error's phrase 'I take that as a sign that a relevant part of Spaniards have some Basque ancestry', I'm sorry but I have to ask in this context: 'Who are the Spaniards?'

If we're going to start counting Aguirre's in Spain then we must also count the Basque surnames in Latin America, where they are all over the place. For all I know there might be more there than in Spain. Meaning what?

By the way, for those who do want to play this game, counting Basque surnames no doubt gives too conservative a figure for "Basque presence" (or whatever we're supposed to be measuring here, I think I've forgotten), because not all Basques have always had Basque surnames (the ETB told us that) and because, futhermore, people with Basque-origin surnames living in Spain have at times been forced to register a hispanicised version of their names. I am told that a lot of people in northern Castile with the surname Palacios were originally Jauregis whose real names were censored by local government officials.

Anyway, to get back to the point: are New Yorkers listed as an ethnic group closely related to the Jewish people? And if they are not, then I ask (with Sugaar): why Spaniards? --A R King 09:26, 5 December 2006 (UTC)

French basque < Gascon basco??

It is suggested in the article that the French term basque (from which the English Basque has been borrowed) comes from a Gascon word basco. Although I don't know very much Gascon, what I do know leads me to question the historicity of this. While in modern Gascon a Basque is apparently referred to by the word basco, this looks very odd as an originally Gascon word. I would have expected it to be basc (the same as in Catalan). In Occitan (and Catalan), masculine nouns do not normally end in an -o. So Gascon basco, to my unexpert eyes at least, looks suspiciously like a loan from Castilian, and the question then arises: how long has this word been in Gascon (in the form basco)? And was it already in Gascon when French borrowed it? If not, than French basque would not come from Gascon basco, although it might have come from an older Gascon *basc, of course. I wonder if there is anyone out there who knows enough about this to resolve the matter (or throw some more light on it, at least). Or perhaps someone can explain where the idea came from in the first place that French basque < Gascon basco? --A R King 20:07, 4 December 2006 (UTC)

I can't help much here -- I don't have any sources at hand. As you may already know, Alain Rey's recent Dictionnaire historique de la language française (1998 compact edition, vol. 1 p. 343) says that French Basque comes ultimately from Latin Vasco. It adds, non-committally, "le passage du v au b signale probablement un emprunt à l'espagnol ou au gascon". I agree with you that basco does not look like a native Gascon word; moreover, if Rey and collaborators thought this form basco likely to be the origin of French Basque, they would have said so. Andrew Dalby 21:56, 4 December 2006 (UTC)
Totally guessing, where is the Gascon accent? Occitan dialects are very variated and it wouldn't surprise me that what troubadours may write as *Bascón some dialect pronounces today as baskú or baskó. Catalan for example loses final -n in the singular. What is the Gascon feminine and plural for Basco? Online Etymological jumps from Latin to Middle French. - Error 01:37, 5 December 2006 (UTC)
I forgot to check the obvious article:
Basque: 1817, from Sp. vasco (adj.), from vascon [I guess it should be vascón] (n.), from L. Vascones, [...]. Earlier Basquish (1612).
It gives no sources, though.
--Error 02:22, 5 December 2006 (UTC)

As mentioned in Auñamendi claims that the term vasco migrated north->south, because the prefered terms in Castilian usage were vascongado and vizcaino. the article is long, so I'm just quoting a single paragraph:

La introducción del vocablo vasco en el País Vasco peninsular es tardía y "parece, pues, venir de Norte a Sur, lo que se confirmaría con el uso francés y acaso por el occitano" (Michelena, 1984) "bascou", "basque". "La forma basque --coincide Tovar, 1987-- yo creo que hay que ponerla en relación con la declinación del antiguo francés y de muchos de los dialectos de Galia". Basque emigra de la mano de los escritores francófonos prenacionalistas de finales del s.XVIII, principalmente Bela, Sanadon (1785) y Dominique Garat, prendiendo en el exiliado J.A. Zamacola (1818). La guerra carlista será su mejor pasaporte, introduciendo también las versiones alemana e inglesa. Como adjetivo referido a todo el País, separando a veces a Navarra como entidad jurídica diferenciada, englobándola de forma expresa otras, aparece en los siguientes autores al tratar la primera carlistada: (...)

In old authors like Ameyric Picaud we find a soemwhat casual distinction between Basques (northerners) and Navarrese (southerners). It's quite curious because it may be one of the oldest mentions of "navarrese". It's not clear though in which category would Western Basques fall in. In general it does seem that the term Basques and its equivalents was first used to refer to the Northern Basques, so I suspect that the Gascon-Occitan trail is the correct one. --Sugaar 05:08, 5 December 2006 (UTC)

Error asks a good question above which had already occurred to me: is the Gascon form really basco (which looks anomalous for Occitan), or might it not really be *bascó? I didn't mention this doubt when writing my original query because I checked it out ahead of time and found out that it is in fact basco, accent on the a. You can see an example of this word in use in the article on Pirinèus Atlantics in the Occitan Wikipedia.
(Note: Gascon is a dialect of Occitan. There is no Gascon Wikipedia, but the article I cite here is written in Gascon, Bearnese variety, i.e. in the form of Occitan spoken in the Occitan-speaking part of the administrative territorial unit that forms the subject of the article. It therefore provides a sample of present-day written Gascon and it discusses the Basques.)
The plural of basco in this article is bascos, I'm afraid. Derived word forms also occurring are:
  • Bascoat for the Basque Country: eth Bascoat Nòrd 'the northern Basque Country, Ipar Euskal Herria'
  • bascosas feminine plural adjective: deras tres províncias bascosas (Labord, Navarra Baisha, i Sola) 'of the three Basque provinces (Lapurdi, Low Navarre and Zuberoa)'
However, basco(s) is used as an adjective in the expression eth País Basco 'the Basque Country', as well as as a noun referring to either the people (poblat peths Bascos 'inhabited by (the) Basques') or the language (eth basco (euskara en basco) 'Basque (euskara in Basque)'; eth basco qu'ei ensenhat ens collègis 'Basque is taught in the schools'. No feminine form occurs in the text.
The Occitan Wikipedia article on País Basc, which is in general Occitan (not Gascon), is explicit about the form of the name: 'Lo gentilici es basc basca (plural sensible basques -cas) o basco basca (o fòrça rarament bàscol basca).' Other articles in the Occitan Wikipedia (mostly not in Gascon) employ the form basc (which I predicted in my first comment above, before checking into this).
Conclusions: (1) Occitan does indeed show the expected "regular" form basc. (2) The unexpected Gascon form basco is confirmed as far as present-day usage is concerned. (3) The origin of this Gascon usage remains unexplained. The hypothesis that it is borrowed from a Romance language/dialect from the southern side of the Pyrenees (Castilian or Aragonese) would seem to be an option, but of course this assumes that the word existed in the source language at the time of the hypothetical borrowing, which would be unlikely if the entry of basco into Gascon were not recent and if the spread of the term 'Basque' took place in the north-south direction, as is suggested by some sources quoted. (4) On the face of it (looking at the linguistic evidence), French basque could have been borrowed from Gascon basco, or just as easily from Occitan (and perhaps earlier Gascon) basc. (5) There is no reason why Gascon might not have borrowed basco from the south after French had borrowed basque from Occitan (including Gascon) (*)basc.
Final conclusion: None of this really affects the issue of who borrowed from whom. The only part of the text of the article that is affected is the assertion that the source of the French term is the Gascon form basco (with an -o). That is the part that I was questioning (and still am). --A R King 08:58, 5 December 2006 (UTC)
Just a note: Gascon is not so clearly just a dialect of Occitan. Many consider it should be dealt with as a separate Romance and that Catalan is much closer to Occitan than Gascon. For what I know: I've read the "Parabole of the prodigal son" in several Occitan dialects [13] and are all about the same and not very different from Catalan but quite different from Gascon. Unlike Occitan or Catalan, Gascon is numbered among the romances with strong Basque influences, along with Aragonese and Castilian (Spanish). Among them it seems to be most strongly influenced by Basque (somewhat loically). Krutwig considered it was "the national Romance". --Sugaar 13:54, 5 December 2006 (UTC)
To quote the article Gascon in Wikipedia: "The Gascon language ... is an Occitan dialect mostly spoken in Gascony." With a background like that, obviously no matter whether I call it a dialect or language, someone like Sugaar is sure to pull me up on it :-) (Only joking.) Personally I don't care whether we call Gascon a language or a dialect, and fortunately for me, as far as I can see it is so irrelevant to the present disucussion that I can't imagine why Sugaar wants to bring it up here. But since he has... Sugaar, if you have read several Occitan dialects, then perhaps you are also aware of the sociolinguistic context of Occitan and how different it is from that of Basque (or even Catalan). It is my understanding that all of Occitan (include Gascon or here or not, as you wish) is more a cluster of closely related dialects than anything else, and that Occitans are on the whole quite happy for it to be this way, notwithstanding any lower-level ideological differences among its proponents. Historically, Occitan dialects (and Gascon) have consolidated at their respective regional levels rather than doing so at a national level. Thus there is no dialect or variety of Occitan that is not, in a sense, "different from Occitan" understood as an abstract ideal. And in that sense, Gascon is very much like all the (other) "Occitans", although we might want to add that within Gascon too there has been a notable crystalisation of (sub)dialects, e.g. that of the mountain valley of Béarn/Biarno, to the east of Zuberoa. Now it is obvious, it doesn't prove anything, that each form of Occitan (and Gascon) has acquired some linguistic traits of its own (otherwise they wouldn't even be distinct dialects) and that each has been subject to and influenced by different language contact phenomena, including substratum influence. I agree with Sugaar (and so does the whole scholarly community) that Gascon displays what appears to be evidence of Basque-like substratal features (unless we just want to call them areal features and leave it at that). It also seems to be the case that in some sense the Gascons can be thought of as being, in origin, Romanised Basques (or Aquitanians, perhaps). As a linguist, none of that stops me from calling Gascon an Occitan dialect if, in the context of the discussion, such a phrase is coherent. Indeed, in some contexts it is coherent to speak of Castilian as a Romance dialect. --A R King 15:57, 5 December 2006 (UTC)
It's an irrelevant discussion but really Gascon is to Occitan what Castilian to Galician (Galaico-Leonese): they have a connection but they are also very disconected. --Sugaar 17:36, 5 December 2006 (UTC)
I disagree, but as you say, it's irrelevant. --A R King 18:37, 5 December 2006 (UTC)

Basque Fascism

With fundamentalists and radicals it is not possible to reason but they can be denounced. Watch out for Basque Fascism. People who do not live in the Basque country have no idea how horrible it is. Here you have some of the ticks that betray them.

1. Obsession with blood dilution to refer to ethnicity.

2. Refer to entire peoples as having one quality that can be applied to all of them: Spaniards are not sincere, by Basque standards.

3. Radical views: Other Spaniards are as related to Basques as Venezuelians or Californios.

Serve yourselves and read the previous contributions in the related peoples sections here. The drama is how badly Basque Fascism is ignored outside of Spain, and how Basques have to suffer from it every day. Spanish Fascists are horrible, but Basque Fascists have even a more sinister face. Veritas et Severitas 17:28, 6 December 2006 (UTC)


I propose that we should just ignore posts such as these, rather than being fooled into replying. They speak for themselves, so leave it at that. Ez erantzun, mesedez! --A R King 17:56, 6 December 2006 (UTC)
You're right. I will reply in his talk page. It's not worth degenerating like that in an article's discussion. WIKIPEDIA IS NOT A FORUM, nor a soap box, nor whatever LSLM wants to make it. --Sugaar 18:03, 6 December 2006 (UTC)


People can read for themselves and draw their own conclusions. I just wish that some people would know better what is going on in the Basque country and how this fact is affecting these pages. These comments are highly important to uncover some of the people who are participating here and their points of view.

And by the way, Sugaar, regarding your comments in my talk page, I am not from Madrid. I am more Basque than you. That is another tick that betrays you all. If we do not agree with you, we are not Basques. I think people here know well that the identification of an ideology with an entire people is another of the most genuine characteristics of Fascism.

And I am not going to give any more personal information. I would be crazy to identify myself as a dissident of Basque Fascism, in the Spanish Basque Country.Veritas et Severitas 18:30, 6 December 2006 (UTC)

And as to R. King, an Englishman who is so interested in endangered languages and peoples and independence for other peoples, according to his personal page, why don´t you try your own country!. Basque is much healthier than Welsh, by the way, or Scottish or Irish, and Basque people or any other people in Spain and their languages have been granted much more autonomy and respect than any region in the United Kingdom can ever dream of. Why don't you support Welsh or Scottish independence or the return of Northern Ireland to Ireland or say that the Irish, the Scots, the Welsh and the English are not even related people. Another Spain-hater we have here!Veritas et Severitas 19:58, 6 December 2006 (UTC)

"Basque is much healthier than Welsh"...please, inform yourself before dragging other countries into your political arguments. Basque and Welsh are spoken by about the same percentages...20-25% And Welsh was allowed a freedom in the 60s and 70s that Franco certainly didn't allow Basque! Vauxhall1964 (talk) 16:21, 11 March 2009 (UTC)

Basque Fascism is of course particularly heinous because it threaten to tear asunder the Spanish homeland. ¡Arriba España!--SanIsidro 19:28, 6 December 2006 (UTC)

No, Basque Fascism is heinous because it is Fascism and because it is influencing this article. Anyway, this is my last contribution here. I just hope that some intelligent people will read this and will not be fooled my demagogues: veritas in re res ipsa est. Bizi Gara! Veritas et Severitas 21:37, 6 December 2006 (UTC)

By the love of God, if Wikipedia is predicted to be as an important educational tool for futture generations, I must say it is frightening the degree of ideological contamination present in this text.

History section: separate article?

(I'm moving this section to the bottom of the page sothat people can see it. --A R King 20:12, 8 December 2006 (UTC)

I've revamped all the Ancient and Middle Ages history section. Anyhow it's probably too long and surely deserves its own article Basque History or History of the Basque Country. Please discuss.

Aditionally, I'm thinking that, in the context of the Basque WikiProject, a template of Basque history could be made pointing to the different articles, that are starting to be quite a few. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Sugaar (talkcontribs) 28 November 2006.

I support the suggestion to move the historical section to a separate Basque History article. I rather doubt anybody is likely to object, but we could wait a few days longer, and if there is no further discussion, I propose we go ahead. --A R King 20:12, 8 December 2006 (UTC)
Thanks, Alan.
I'd like also to discuss the possible name. I haven't found anything in WP:TITLE but still all history articles I know ow start "History of...". So I'd rather discard "Basque history" as title and choose between: "History of the Basque Country", "History of the Basque people" or "History of the Basques". The two late ones refer to the people or nation/ethnicity, the first one refers to the peopled land (country). It's a somewhat subtle difference but maybe other users find it relevant. --Sugaar 21:53, 8 December 2006 (UTC)
I don't see anything wrong with Basque History. But another good title would be History of Basque. ==Taxico 14:40, 9 December 2006 (UTC)
It would have be History of the Basques, there's no Basque (sing.) but the/a Basque (person, country, song, language). Personally I'd call it History of the Basque people (history of an ethnic group, rather than a territory with its changing borders and disputes on them). But on the other hand the closest references would be entries like History of Scotland (not of the Scots), History of Wales (not of the Welsh people), etc. Following that logic it should be History of the Basque Country - but that would somehow ask to exclude the areas that once were Basque and are no more, specially Aquitaine-Gascony and the strip of lands around the Southern Basque Country (from Santander to Jaca passing by La Rioja). And that's not realistic. --Sugaar 18:41, 9 December 2006 (UTC)
Also History of Hawaii (to which Hawaiian history redirects)... Okay, if there's a vote I think I'll support History of the Basque Country. --A R King 08:12, 10 December 2006 (UTC)

Related ethnic group box

Well, user King has deleted it altogether. I must admit that it is probably a good solution. This part seems to be always controversial in the people´s articles. Still I cannot help reading between lines. In line with some very radical view points in the Spanish Basque country, which obviously do not represent all Basques, although some people would like to impose their ideas on all of us, some people would go to all lengths to avoid some concepts related to the Basques like Spanish or Spaniard. This is not a place for an extension of that political propaganda, although some people with a clear political agenda use these pages and then accuse others. I think that this is another example of what I said, and I feel it is my moral duty to denouce it. In any case, let it be like that. On the whole I am not in favour of those boxes myself anyway.

Still I would like to congratulate both King and Sugaar. Altough it is already clear that I do not agree at all with some of their view points that are influencing this article, in other respects they are also doing a good job with the article, in my opinion. You see, that contradictory I am!. Veritas et Severitas 17:26, 9 December 2006 (UTC)

Well, thanks for reconsidering and thanks for the compliments. --Sugaar 18:43, 9 December 2006 (UTC)
Aditionally I think it was a bad solution, not because it's not a valid option but because the POV-pusher (i.e. LSLM) has forced that by ilegitimate means: edit warring against consensus. Really disappointing. --Sugaar 18:56, 9 December 2006 (UTC)

In case anybody didn't see it, I'll put my earlier comment here, with the one I was responding to, where I announced my intention to remove the relatedness parameter from the infobox and my reason. Just for the record. --A R King 22:40, 9 December 2006 (UTC)

Let's see some sources for all these claims of relatedness. Please organize your sources and claims clearly and with concision. ==Taxico 14:55, 9 December 2006 (UTC)

I don't see why that's necessary, the reasons, explanations and arguments have already been laid out quite explicitly enough on this page, surely we're not going to start all over again (I hope not)? Secondly, "relatedness" as a general concept is only an approximative and highly relative concept anyway, and as for more specifiable or "scientific" notions such as linguistic relatedness (whether "genetic", typological, areal or via other contact phenomena), I think these have mostly already been discussed but there will always remain the debatable issue of how much relevance these have, or how decisive they are, for the general ethnic relatedness referred to in the infobox, so there is not much more to be said on that score; in consequence, unless there is a will on all parts to reach a balanced consensus, which there obviously isn't here at the moment, we can all go on arguing for ever and never reach a satisfactory solution. Therefore, at this point I would like to second the proposal made by somebody earlier in this discussion (I forget by whom) that the "relatedness" parameter be omitted from the infobox. I'm sure it isn't really necessary anyway, at least in the Basque case, but at least one good thing about this solution is that it does not force us to keep trying to reach an all-round agreement that we're not getting any closer to. As a matter of fact, at this stage it looks like those who keep wanting to bring the subject up are practising an obstructionist strategy that is damaging for the article. I would strongly suggest that if anyone doesn't like this way of resolving the problem they take their gripes to some other, better suited forum and let us get on with our serious, constructive, encyclopaedic work here, thank you very much. --A R King 15:50, 9 December 2006 (UTC)
The logic of each viewpoint is above in Talk:Basque_people#RfC: Related ethnic groups at infobox. If you are looking for a discussion on genetics it's in: Talk:Basque_people#Related ehtnic groups. The logic for "Gascons, Riojans and (in general) Western Europeans" is consensual, what is not consensual at all is that Spaniards (and French) merit a sepecial mention, as LSLM tried to POV-push.
FYI, Gascons and Riojans (and other smaller and not easily describable Spanish groups of the border stripe around the Basque Country (historical territory)) are generally percieved as mostly or exclusively romanized Basques. See the history section and the articles on Aquitani, Duchy of Vasconia and Kingdom of Navarre for more details. --Sugaar 23:03, 9 December 2006 (UTC)

Sugaar, I am not going to get into a discussion which I think is being absolutely arbitrary. Now, suddenly, we have here a new ethnic group, Riojans. In the opinion of some people, it seems that all ethnic groups are possible, except for using the term Spanish or Spaniard. Now everything exists except Spain or in the mind of the extreme regional nationalists Spaniards are the others, maybe, but not us.

OK, I am not going to discuss these things that belong to some arbitrary and agenda-like dogmas, therefore I agree with King here. Continue with the article, you are not doing a bad job after all. I just hope that you will maintain an objective head and will not try and distort facts in one direction. I should repeat: Veritas in re res ipsa est, which in a free translation here is something like: Things are the way they are, not they way they should be or the way some people would like it to be. In other words, the Basque country is what it is, now, in 2006, not what it should have been, according to some people or what we would like it to be.

Personally I want it to be just what it is now and what it has been since Spain was created about half a millennium ago, following an idea that was much older than that, just Spain (well about 90 per cent of us, again). In fact I am an Iberist Socialist (I am a weird guy, aren't I), then of course an Europeist. I believe that all Spaniards (including the Basques of course) and Portuguese are basically the same people, the Iberian people, diverse of course, not monolithic, and I think that Lisbon would make a much more beautiful capital than Madrid, even Barcelona would. Iberism is by the way much more popular in Portugal than in Spain. Interesting, is it not?. We seem to have forgotten them.

You probably want the Basque country to be independent and even include many more territories than the present Basque country. All that is politics. all of them respectful ideas, if we do not want to impose them on others, but all that should neither negate nor distort objective facts. Unfortunately for me, Portugal is what it is and will probably continue to be like that.

In short, I hope that you do a good job and are capable of distinguishing between your desires and subjective view of the world and the objective facts that are required in an Encyclopaedia. Veritas et Severitas 02:20, 10 December 2006 (UTC)

What do you mean, "we're not doing a bad job"? Why, we're doing an excellent job!! ;-) --A R King 08:15, 10 December 2006 (UTC)

I mean you are doing a good job. If you want, an excellent one. As said, I just hope that politics and subjective and personal leanings do not interfere with the article, as have interfered in the issue that we have discussed, in my opinion. But I do not think it is necessary to repeat it. Veritas et Severitas 14:21, 10 December 2006 (UTC)

Map colours

Sugaar, I noticed that the caption under the new tribe map you put in yesterday says "Red...", but the names are in black (at least on my monitor). By the way, I've slowed down the pace a bit on the cleanup of the article, but I'll get back to it. --A R King 07:17, 13 December 2006 (UTC)

They are dark red (and it's quite clear) you must have a really low resolution monitor.
Take it easy, well done jobs require their time. (Have you noticed they are asking for a cleanup also in the Basque Country (historical territory) article? --Sugaar 13:06, 13 December 2006 (UTC)
I've changed the bakground to a lighter color so it's more easily readable. Is that better? --Sugaar 22:46, 15 December 2006 (UTC)


Splitted history

I have just splitted the history section. Someone could make maybe a brief (2-4 paragraphs excerpt) to replace it. --Sugaar 00:33, 16 December 2006 (UTC)

What is the name of the history article page? We will also need to put references to it in this article (unless that's already been done, but I can't find them).--A R King 20:35, 16 December 2006 (UTC)
It's been done, worry not. The name of the article is History of the Basque people (so we don't have to feel constrained about a territorial or political frame). --Sugaar 22:35, 16 December 2006 (UTC)

Still too large

The recommended size for an article is of about 32 Kbs, yet this still has some 48 Kbs (80 Kbs before the split). I'm pretty sure that some sections may be cut to shorter but equally substantial versions or split again into separate articles. I'd look for a size of about 30 Kbs, so it can still be expanded confortably if needed. --Sugaar 00:33, 16 December 2006 (UTC)

Moved much to Basque Country (historical territory)

I just moved:

  • Universities (to Education - stub section)
  • Sports (except traditional ones)
  • Politics
  • Most of the Political conflicts and violence (check this out because I'm pretty sure it can be improved)
  • Non-Basque minorities (to Demographics - stub section)

But it is still some 37 KBs!!! (closer to the ideal max. size of 32 KBs)

I wouldn't sweat it. Remember, that's 32 KB of visible text (not, for example, piped links), it doesn't count foootnotes, etc.; also, it's a very loose guideline (and one that, on the whole, seems continually to have less support), not a rule. - Jmabel | Talk 03:17, 28 December 2006 (UTC)

Diaspora information removed from geography section of article

As part of the cleanup of this section, I have removed the following material because it seems out of place, considering that the article's previous section is specifically about the Basque diaspora (but shorter than the text copied below) and, furthermore, that there exists a main article on the same subject of the Basque diaspora.

Please note that I have not had time to check whether the information contained in the following paragraphs is already covered by the Basque diaspora main article, or whether information from here needs to be integrated there. I would appreciate it if someone else (perhaps the original editor of the diaspora article?) could worry about that, so that I can be free to carry on working on the cleanup and improvement of the Basque people article, where there is a lot of work to be done. And notice that I haven't finished with the geography section yet: some missing information still needs to be added. There can also be a short reference (one phrase) to the diaspora, referring readers to the appropriate place for more information.

This is what I have removed from that section:

There is at least some ethnic Basque presence in many countries of the Americas, including Bolivia, Mexico, Argentina, Chile, Ecuador, Peru [14], Uruguay, Venezuela and a community in Idaho, eastern Nevada, south Texas, and throughout California who first came over to herd sheep. It was said [who?] California is home to 15,000 of Basque descent, perhaps more than the states of Idaho and Nevada.

The destination of the majority of Basque emigrants was Argentina, with Basque culture contributing much to Argentine culture. There are Basque cultural centres in most large cities, as well as pelota courts and Basque language schools. Many places have been given Basque names, including the main international airport, Ezeiza. Several of Argentina's Presidents have been of Basque descent, including Irigoyen, Aramburu and Urquiza, not to mention other figures, notably Che Guevara. There are an estimated 15,000 surnames in Argentina of Basque descent.

Chile also received many Basque emigrants. For example, Augusto Pinochet is of Basque descent (via his mother's maiden surname, Ugarte).

The largest community of Basques in North America exists in the greater Boise area. Boise is home to the Basque Museum & Cultural Center. The area around the center includes a variety of stores and restaurants featuring Basque culture in a so-called "Basque block." The current mayor of Boise, David H. Bieter is Basque. Another large community of Basques live in the Central Valley of California, primarily in the city of Bakersfield. In Bakersfield you will find several Basque restaurants and the Basque hall, which annually holds a major Basque picnic. Many early immigrants went to Bakersfield for the agricultural and sheep herding opportunities. Another area is in the deep of South Texas along the Rio Grande River. The area surrounding the Rio Grande River near the current Texas Starr County, Zapata County, and Hidalgo County as well as areas within the Mexican states of Nuevo Leon and Tamaulipas, Spanish surnames of Basque descent show up as Spanish Land Grant owners in historical documents. Most of these grants were used for ranching and agriculture in much the same way sheep herding was used in the Basque land. This part of Texas boasts some of the largest ranches in Texas today. Some of these surnames, such as the surname Garza, show up in many political ballots as well as hold high offices in politics. One of the richest families in the world and of Mexico carries this Basque surname. One city with a Basque name in Mexico, San Pedro Garza García, has the highest income per capita in all of Latin America and Mexico. In the Caribbean, Basque descendants exist in the hills of Esperón in the province of Habana, where many originally settled during the Spanish colonial period.

--A R King 12:23, 19 December 2006 (UTC)

Well done. Much of that info is already in the Basque diaspora article, I think, though it would be interesting to check and add any lacking details of some relevance. The example of Pinochet was discussed in List of Basques and removed because we decided that something more than a Basque surname was necessary to be listed as Basque (recent ancestry or residence in the Basque Country, continued connection with the Motherland...). That article also needs a good cleanup anyhow. --Sugaar 18:19, 19 December 2006 (UTC)

"Basque feeling" paragraph removed

I have also removed the following paragraph from the geography section:

There is also a substantial Basque feeling among the population of the adjacent Spanish autonomous community and province of Navarre, and in nearby parts of France — see Basque Country for more information. Parts of La Rioja were repopulated with Basques in the Middle-Ages. Today only surnames and placenames remain, however towns like Ezcaray have become a popular second residence for Basques. East Cantabria is also the residence for many Biscayans who prefer the safer political climate or the cheaper housing.

I don't know if it belongs somewhere else (and I am copying it here to "save" it in case it may), but I don't think it's right here. First, because I don't think anyone can define "Basque feeling" rigorously enough to clarify what this really means. Secondly, because of course the way Navarre and "nearby parts of France" are referred to is all wrong, and in any case, these areas are covered by the two paragraphs I have inserted in place of this one. The other information here, if it is important enough to be provided at all, can perhaps be fit in somewhere else. --A R King 15:31, 19 December 2006 (UTC)

Yes. It's too confuse. Obviously many Navarrese and nearly all Northern Basques feel Basque. The "Basque feeling" in La Rioja is probably not very strong though. Nevertheless some border towns like Miranda de Ebro and Castro-Urdiales used to have important political groups claiming (Izquierda Castreña, Izquierda Mirandesa) for incorporation into the BAC. Not sure if such groups exist anymore. --Sugaar 18:23, 19 December 2006 (UTC)

Just browsing through these articles, as a Frenchman quite critical about Basque nationalism. I happen to stumble on quite a number of very PoV formulations in some articles, I shall do some tidying myself ; but here I would like to underline there is certainly a problem of Basque identity on the territory of so-called « Basque country » proper. I notice the article here I am now commenting gives a number of "Basques" on the Basques territories proper as 3 million. But 3 million is the total population of the area called « Basque country », and people leaving there are far from all considering themselves as Basque. I had similar concerns about the article on fr and had a debate with a very competent editor there, who produced (sadly without sources) a very interesting image, that is fr:Image:Euskal identitatea.jpg (Question "Do you consider yourself as a Basque ?" Red = No ; Dark Green = Yes, more or less ; Light Green = Yes). As you can see on this image, significant numbers of people leaving in the area called « Basque country » do not consider themselves as Basque, especially in Navarra and in Bayonne area. This should be taken in consideration in the article contents, and especially the ethnic infobox. French Tourist 20:02, 21 December 2006 (UTC)

Actually, the danger of getting into this kind of discussion (which I don't think leads us anywhere useful as far as encyclopaedic writing is concerned) was one of the best reasons I could think of for my suggestion that we remove the paragraph that I left out. This doesn't mean that French Tourist is right about this, of course (does the article on France includes a section about how many people in France "consider themselves French"?...). I imagine the justification for there not being one is about the same: that to start with, an encyclopaedia is hardly the place for such a discussion. But of course it will help to avoid such a discussion if the article also omits references to how much "French feeling" there is in other parts of the world outside France. Personally, I believe that there is about as much of a consensus in the Basque Country about "considering oneself Basque" as there is in France about "considering oneself French" or in Spain about "considering oneself Spanish", but as can be seen here, we each tend to tell the story as it best suits us. Which is why sometimes it's best to just smile and walk on. --A R King 09:16, 23 December 2006 (UTC)
I disagree with your analogy. There seems to be very little about French ethnicity on the France article, which is quite reasonable since it does not parallel Basque people. An article French people, though, exists, completed by a quite sketchy French citizenship and identity. The article French people, however, does NOT try to give a number of « French people » but gives THREE different possible counts, precisely distinguished : French citizens (the count being totally unaccurate, but this is not a matter for the present discussion page), French speakers and people "claiming French ancestry". Here, paralelling the infobox with the text of the article introduction brings me to understand that the « 3 million » I read is an estimate of the people belonging to the Basque « ethnic group » (or « nation ») and leaving in the area known as « Basque country ».
If the "3 million" means something else, this should be clarified. If it means the number of ethnic Basque, it seems quite dubious to me, it should be sourced or replaced by something sourceable. French Tourist 18:27, 25 December 2006 (UTC)

Let's see Basque Country is a disambiguation page that leads to Basque Country (autonomous community), AKA Western Basque Country, to Northern Basque Country and to Basque Country (historical territory), that includes both plus (High) Navarre. Obviously the 3 million figure refers to people living in the historical territory or the Basque Country as modern Basques usually define it.

There's no way of defining "ethnic Basque" because censal data does not ask people for ethnic identification, yet it's clear that Basque identity is absolutely mainstream among Western and Northern Basques and surely a more confuse issue in Navarre. Basque identity does not mean nationalism, just feeling Basque: some feel Basque and Spanish/French and others exclussively or primarily Basque. In general the most accepted concept is that "Basque is who lives and works in the Basque Country", hence the 3 million figure is merely the adition of the population of the three administrative dvisions that adds up to 2.93 million.

The term Basque seems to have a northern origin by the way. The socio-political situation in the North is that virtually everyone feels Basque, that all majors claim a separate Basque department (something that is systematically ignored by Paris) and greater presence of Basque language in administration and schooling and that Basque nationalism is a growing trend despite the difficulties of the non-proportional representation system and lack of Basque-specific electoral circunscriptions. --Sugaar 13:44, 26 December 2006 (UTC)

"There's no way of defining "ethnic Basque" because censal data does not ask people for ethnic identification" -> I agree more or less ("more or less" because there seems to exist data due to various investigations outside the census sphere - see the fr:Image:Euskal identitatea.jpg ). This should be anyway a reason to give no data at all and not an irrelevant data.
"the most accepted concept is that "Basque is who lives and works in the Basque Country"" -> this assertion should be sourced, since I don't feel it as correct. My (now deceased) grand-mother, grand-aunt and uncle lived in the so-called Basque country, both in Bayonne, and would definitely not have felt themselves as Basque. This concept is not accepted outside Basque nationalist-friendly spheres. To me it seems as odd as definining as a Native Americans in the United States people "who live and work in the United States of America". Of course the proportion of ethnic Basque among "people living and working in the Basque country" is much stronger than the population of "Native Americans in the United States" in the American population, but it seems to me nonetheless as irrelevant to annex the total population of the Basque country (which would be of course a relevant information in the Basque country page) on the Basque people article.
"The socio-political situation in the North is that virtually everyone feels Basque" -> I strongly disagree on this precise assertion, but I don't think it is useful for the article to launch a discussion about this precise point. French Tourist 17:25, 26 December 2006 (UTC)
I consider there are three about million Basques simply because this is the figure given as a rule by authors and sources on this. I think there is a general consensus. I also understand that the figure reflects the population of the (whole) Basque Country. As far as I am concerned this is not controversial. Personally I'm not interested in fighting over something I believe is already consensual and about which I have no specialised knowledge or additional information, so I am not going to get involved in an argument and I won't spend my time looking for sources to back up what I have just said. If somebody else feels like doing that, go ahead. All I can and will say is that in the Basque Country it is generally known that this country has a population of approximately three million. --A R King 17:30, 26 December 2006 (UTC)

Totally agree with French Tourist, that paragraph was no neutral. I think sugaar comentaries are ridiculous. I am alavese (but I don´t consider basque myself), but I live in Castro-Urdiales and calling "Izquierda Castreña" important political group is pathetic, it has no political representation in the council and our mayor is from anti-basque party PRC, (he proposes "not more basques in Castro"), and he won the elections, Miranda also the same (0% basques); so please don´t be pan-basquists. I think, as French Tourist says, that the article has to get that many people (most in Navarre) and Bayonne didn´t consider themselves basques, and basque nationalists are high minority in Alava (they have 19 seats of the total of 51 in provincial parlament and 1 of 8 seats in spanish parliament) and in France. That´s autodetemination, isn´t it?

Uno de Castro

Editing Culture section

I have started cleaning up/rewriting the Culture section. I have considerably reworked the Language subsection, as well as moving it to the beginning of the section. The organisation of the rest of the section should be considered temporary, while I work through it. --A R King 11:03, 20 December 2006 (UTC)

The Reconquista in Aragon

All the villages in Aragon named "De Los Navarros" were settled with Basque people. Many village's names, toponymial names, and individual's surname are Basques. 23:27, 4 January 2007 (UTC)


Even in the twentieth century, some mountainous regions escaped Christianity.

I find this difficult to believe. Actually it should be big cities where you could find some atheist or Jew, but since it is attributed to Gimbutas, I don't dare to remove it. --Error 23:30, 3 March 2007 (UTC)

Are these Basques in the mountainous regions are...Neopagans rejected the Christian faith? Marranos or Spanish Jews in a syncretic Judeo-Christian sect? or even left over Moriscos who were Muslims after all this time? The unconstructive edit isn't well written, unless it's a grammartical mistake from translation into the English language from another (Wikipedia Basque language edition?) or the edit erroneously (or biased) refers to Roman Catholicism as "Christianity", but not Protestant churches that are thriving in some parts of 20th cenutry Spain. + Mike D 26 (talk) 20:58, 26 April 2009 (UTC)
That comment is long gone as it was wrong. Christianity came late to the BC, but not THAT late. Akerbeltz (talk) 22:22, 26 April 2009 (UTC)


unique social institutions startlingly different from those of feudal Europe. The Basques never developed an elitist culture, instead appointing a 'Lord of Biscay' by democratic election....

AFAIK, Navarre developed French-style feudalism. The Late Middle Ages were known by the battles between family leagues (Oñaz vs Gamboa, Agramont vs Beaumont). And until the 20th century, the jauntxos marked the life of each village. The election of a lord reminds me of Vikings and other Norsemen. So it is not the Chinese empire, but there have been social classes among Basques, see Agotes. Since it is attributed to Hadington, I don't know how to counteract it. --Error 23:46, 3 March 2007 (UTC)


I removed:

Also some words present in all Romance languages currently spoken in the Iberian Peninsula, such as "left" (Spanish "Izquierda", Portuguese and Galician "Esquerda", Catalan "Esquerra", but Latin and Italian "Sinistra", French "Gauche") are thought to be derived from a pre-Celtic and pre-Roman Iberian language similar to the current Basque language (in Basque left is "Ezker").

Summarizing Joan Corominas on izquierdo:

Spanish, Portuguese, Catalan, Gascon, Languedocian. Probably from a pre-Roman Hispano-Pyrenean language. You cannot assure that Basque ezker is not from Romance origin. Most probable is diffusion from a Basque-speaking area in Visigothic times.
Cid, Gonzalo de Berceo, Juan Ruiz and APal use siniestro.
Hugo Schuchardt (1900) says that it could not come diffuse from the limited Basque area, so the origin would be Iberian. Corominas counter-argues.
Corominas thinks that it is a case of a taboo word. Occitan ma senega, Italian mano manca, French main gauche, Latin sinister instead of the Indo-European laevus and scaevus. When Romance speakers nuanced sinister as "sinister, ominous", they took the Basque word (Basque was spoken then in Rioja, North Burgos, High Aragon, Pallars, Luchon and Aran Valley).

So this authority thinks that esquerda and cognates are not evidence for an old Basque substract. By the way (my original research), also Romanian coined stânga, while all the Romances keep a cognate of dextra or directa. --Error 22:00, 29 March 2007 (UTC)


Why is Basque listed as ethnic when they are white??? They are a minority meaning a small group of them left. White people of Europe (pure bloods) are a minority..that is why Celts..Indio-Europeans..Aryans..Persians..Eurasians whatever term you'd like to use..they too are considered white and have more "ethnic" blood than a Basque. -Mari —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 04:25, 10 April 2007 (UTC).

Basque are separate ethnic group from the rest of Spaniards and Catalans. They are not Indo-European by language group. Therefore basque (Eskal) are recognized as the separate ethnic group and nation. Euskera 13:59, 10 April 2007 (UTC)
Ethnicity is different from race. Ethnicity is about language and self-identification as a differentiated community. So, for instance the Cherokee are a different ethnicity than the Lakota (Sioux) or Iroquois, and the Dutch are a different ethnicity than the German. --Sugaar (talk) 01:28, 11 December 2007 (UTC)

ethnic does not mean race the basque are caucasian like all indigenous europeans,its like in america the irish are considered an ethnic group and so are italians anybody who is not of english decent and is not protestant is considered an ethnic group also you got a simlar group like the basque in scandinavia called the saami people,who dont speak indo european language and is an ethnic group and are caucasian--Wikiscribe (talk) 22:30, 9 March 2008 (UTC)

I've updated Navarre's population in the text, but I don't know how to change the number on the top

Thank you very much Euskera 15:04, 25 April 2007 (UTC)

Russia Dont the basque live in russia, too? i have a geography textbook that says they come from western europe and russiaTubyboulin 14:20, 29 May 2007 (UTC)

I never heared of any Basque community in Russia. They might be some basque business man or turists in Russia. Euskera 21:34, 1 August 2007 (UTC)

famous basques ?

the pictures of famous basques part is getting thinner and thinner what gives ?? —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 08:12, August 23, 2007 (UTC)

Solved (I think). Someobody added a contemporary famed footballer but I believe is kind of forced. After all it's just a small illustrative sample, not a comprehensive list of famous Basques. --Sugaar (talk) 08:32, 17 November 2007 (UTC)

Language to use for provinces in the infobox

There has been a small dispute between Dinosaur puppy and myself (following an IP), as to what language should be used in the Infobox, see this diff [15] for instance.

I copy/paste here the arguments we exchanged through comment boxes :

"article deals with Basque people so Basque spellings should be used"

"Why Basque rather than French or Spanish ? This is ENGLISH Wikipedia"

"Why change them to a foreign language Spanish/French if this is a Basque article?"

I dislike going into edit wars, so I don't modify the infobox myself one more time, but I think this should be discussed.

If Dinosaur puppy reads this, what does he mean in his last comment by "foreign language" ? Wikipedia is international, so I don't really see "foreign" relative to which country he means. Anyway, I do not see in any way how English may be considered as a "foreign" language on the :en Wikipedia (I don't see how this article can be considered as "Basque" either, in fact).

Other editors are invited to look after the matter. French Tourist 07:29, 18 September 2007 (UTC)

We should probably just use the article names no piped links. T Rex | talk 18:59, 18 September 2007 (UTC)
As the articles bear English names, this would mean that we already agree ??? What a quick deal, I cannot believe it. I don't move anything to get sure there has not be some misunderstanding, but I am of course OK for this solution. French Tourist 22:02, 18 September 2007 (UTC)
I agree that the names should be in English, indeed using the article names is a good solution. As I write this there are again in Basque, I'll now change them back to English and refer to this in my summary. Escorial82 13:14, 19 September 2007 (UTC)

No need of an edit war about two provinces. For them the problem seems to lie in the choice of the article name. As concerns Guipuscoa there seems to have been a discussion at Talk:Gipuzkoa - I have no opinion myself, as a French speaker. Oh and I see the redirection was moved, changing direction, just two days ago : see this diff. Conflicts about this choice should take place there, not here. As concerns Alava and though I am no English speaker, it seems quite obvious to me that "Álava" -with an accent- is a Spanish word and is unlikely to be used so by English editors (at least in French it would be uncommon). Hence I strongly suggest to modify the title of Álava (making it a redirection to Alava, not the opposite) but prefer to leave it to native English speakers. French Tourist 15:27, 25 September 2007 (UTC)

The issue of spellings is really becoming a serious problem. Recently Gipuzkoa was moved to Guipúzcoa by some (self-described) rouge administrator in spite of lack of consensus. It seems it doesn't matter that the Spanish spellings are not native and not English: some always seem to get away with their pretenses.
I would suggest to everybody interested to approach the Basque WikiProject and discuss this issue seriously in order to create a well pondered guideline. --Sugaar (talk) 08:38, 17 November 2007 (UTC)


Is "Physically, they are a tall ethnicity, muscular, high-shouldered, big ears and with a very high incidence of blond hair, fair skin and blue and gray eyes." this POV? It seems to be original research without a source. T Rex | talk 19:28, 24 October 2007 (UTC)

I agree. Eventually a comment of the type "traditionally they are considered to be...." is more acceptable. I'll make such change. Escorial82 20:16, 24 October 2007 (UTC)
Perhaps it should be taken out all together, considering Basques vary widely in appearance. Some look like a typical Southern European and some look as if they were from Northern Europe. T Rex | talk 20:33, 24 October 2007 (UTC)
It's a Spanish-centric perception. The same that Romans thought of Gauls as "blond and tall", Spanish think of Basques as such, no matter that many, maybe a majority, don't match the archetype.
It's possible that Basques are tall on average (I recall having read recently that the average was somewhat higher than English - not sure where) but, in any case, lacking sources that justify such claim, I think it's better to just delete it for sake of objectivity.
After all it is an encyclopedic article and not any dense ethnological book. Not everything needs to be in it, much less if it's unsourced and dubious. --Sugaar (talk) 08:44, 17 November 2007 (UTC)

Martial Art??

Is it true that there is a traditional Basque martial art simular to Karate?--Nemissimo 13:08, 14 November 2007 (UTC)

  • I have never even heard of a traditional basque martial art, do you have any sources?--Joebengo 13:40, 14 November 2007 (UTC)
Someone has created an article on Zipota but I doubt of its reality. Compare with Savate, a French martial art. --Sugaar (talk) 00:07, 7 December 2007 (UTC)
Hm, I just check some of my older Basque dictionaries (Azkue (1905), Lhande(1926)). The word zipote certainly exists, translated as 1 huraño, testurado (revêche, têtu) and 2 atropello (bousculade), zipotek joan with a reference to Duvoisin as ir por sobresaltos (aller en bousculant). Not saying that that's proof it doesn't exist (neither dictionary is good on Basque sports) but it does look a little odd.
Different point, does anyone know this weird porizaijlaza in the sports section? It must be a typo but of what? Akerbeltz (talk) 16:47, 14 April 2008 (UTC)


The figures for the diaspora are obviously incorrect not only being that there are no citations, as well as the figure for Mexico is so high that it would suggest that half of the people of Spanish decent in Mexico were Basque. Another factor suggesting that these figures are incorrect or made up is the lack of a figure for Argentina. Argentina received the largest amount of Basque immigrants then any other country in the Western Hemisphere. Vivaperucarajo (talk) 03:46, 23 April 2008 (UTC)

1 million basques are not a half of the people of Spanish decent in Mexico, if you consider that at least 10%-15% of mexican population are caucasian (principally from Spain), the equivalent of 10 or 15 million people, it should be a higher spanish decendant in Mexico than you suggest. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 07:07, 23 February 2010 (UTC)
I personally am unsure of most of those figures. Well, a couple are ref'd but the others have needed refs for a long time and none appear to be forthcoming. There undoubtedly *were* a lot of Basque emigrees but this business of estimating their numbers by looking at surnames to my mind is not a good idea. I would propose we actually take those figures off and replace them with the numbers of people that emigrated from the Basque provinces. Akerbeltz (talk) 09:22, 23 February 2010 (UTC)

Deletion of Feminist/Gimbutas Rhetoric

I have redeleted the clearly NPOV Gimbutas-inspired paragraphs from the article. Keeping these in is the historical equivalent, of, say only quoting right-wing or left-wing authors in an article about the US involvement in the Iraq war. I will continue to delete these sections unless (i) someone can lucidly explain why only Gimbutas' anthropological theories are being expounded, as if they were fact (which is far from the case - in fact here more well-known theories, such as the Kurgan hypothesis, are considered somewhat "fringe" or (ii) someone reworks this section so that Gimbutas' views are presented as merely one "theory," along with the theories of others in the field.Narsil27 (talk) 20:49, 15 May 2008 (UTC)

It may be that whoever inserted these sections has used Gimbutas as a reference and that a few bits (like the "belief in the living goddess") are in need of editing but it remains a relevant fact that christianity was a later arrival in the BC (try Trask, L The History of Basque or Collins, R The Basques) and that Basque law/society was traditionally more egalitarian than Romance law/society. Again, these sections could be reworded somewhat to sound less like a quote from Gimbutas but they're not POV. You wouldn't dare delete a section on , say, the christianisation of Ireland and the role of women in Roman law just because you didn't like the author used as a reference (unless universally disproved or contested of course), would you? Akerbeltz (talk) 09:42, 16 May 2008 (UTC)
I would absolutely dare (and will continue) to delete sections in a supposedly NPOV article that quote verbatim only from a semi-discredited anthropologist. My point is that the article should synthesize knowledge from multiple, credible sources, not merely cut and paste from an author at one end of an ideological debate.Narsil27 (talk) 13:45, 16 May 2008 (UTC)
Might I suggest that next time you suggest on the talk page that a re-write or additional sources are needed instead of just deleting the section in question? If every wiki editor used that policy, wiki would just shrink, rather than improve through discussion and editing of weak sections? Unless anyone else disagress, I will revert the deletes and edit the two sections in question. Akerbeltz (talk) 15:16, 16 May 2008 (UTC)

(unindent) I have undid the deletions while a consensus is formed. No need to go into an edit war if we can reach some sort of agreement, right?

Now, my viewpoint. The contentious paragraps are:

“Christianity arrived late to Basque country. The populace was only superficially Christian in remote rural areas during the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries. Even in the twentieth century, some mountainous regions escaped Christianity. There, belief in the goddess remains a living reality.” (Gimbutas 2001: 173).

Surely this is arguable but trying to discredit a prestigious shcolar like Marija Gimbutas on grounds of (oh my!) "feminism" sounds fundamentalist.

The reference could be better placed (as a footnote, with title of the book and ISBN) and contrasting opinions could be added. The phrasing may be changed somewhat to make it clear it is an opinion, even if authoritative. But I am pretty sure there are many other authors apart of Gimbutas who agree with that, more or less. A reference I have handy over here is J.I. Harstuaga Euskal Mitologi Konparatua (Compared Basque Mythology, Kriseilu 1987, ISBN 84-7728-042-0 Parameter error in {{isbn}}: Invalid ISBN.).

The Basque possessed “unique social institutions startlingly different from those of feudal Europe. The Basques never developed an elitist culture, instead appointing a 'Lord of Biscay' by democratic election.... [W]omen held significant power at least as far back as 7 A.D., when the Greek geographer, Strabo, wrote ... of 'a sort of woman-rule - not at all a mark of civilization.'" (Hadington 1992).

The democratic or quasi-democratic organization of Basque society is documented by other authors as well. For instance M. Sorauren when dealing with Navarrese (Basque) right (Navarra, el Estado Vasco, Pamiela 1998, ISBN 84-7681-299-X). The Basque "republics" existed until the 19th century, pre-dating nearly any other European democracy.

Historically the Basques have been egalitarian: “Women could inherit and control property as well as officiate in churches. This enraged the leaders of the Spanish Inquisition. One of its most savage mass witch-burnings was staged at the Basque town of Logroño in 1610”

This looks like an interpretation to me. Certainly women could control property and Basque society was maybe somewhat more egalitarian than its neighbours. But I don't have clear if that was the only or main reason behind the Inquisotorial madness.

It is a valid authored reference but maybe there are others with somewhat different opinions.

The striking uniqueness of Basque society and culture continued up into the twentieth century: “Goddess religion, the lunar calendar, matrilineal inheritance laws, and agricultural work performed by women continued in Basque country until the early twentieth century. For more than a century, scholars have widely discussed the high status of Basque women in law codes, as well as their positions as judges, inheritors, and arbitrators through pre-Roman, medieval, and modern times. The system of laws governing succession in the French Basque region reflected total equality between the sexes. Up until the eve of the French Revolution, the Basque woman was truly ‘the mistress of the house,’ hereditary guardian, and head of the lineage” (Gimbutas 2001: 172).

Probably this is a somewhat romantic perception of Gimbutas (my opinion anyhow). But still...

... the key issue is that NPOV does not mean that all stated is 100% uncontroversial but that if controversial both viewpoints should be stated. (See WP:NPOV for details).

So what materials can you add to make this description of Basque society less unilateral, Narsil? --Sugaar (talk) 19:30, 16 May 2008 (UTC)

Ok, I've started with the re-edit of the two sections in question, added two more references in addition to the Gimbutas one (Trask and Collins, both reliable). I think that should be acceptable now but feel free to tweak.
I agree that Gimbutas wasn't the best choice of reference perhaps but I agree with Sugaar that she's broadly reasearched the topic well, even if her phrasing is somewhat "romantic". I'll have a look at the other section later, gotta go do some work ;) Akerbeltz (talk) 19:45, 16 May 2008 (UTC)
PS We could keep the Gimbutas bit as a quote but I'd loose the "living belief" as that (at least according to everything I've ever read about Basque religion seems a long conjectural shot. Akerbeltz (talk) 19:48, 16 May 2008 (UTC)
I think that Akerbeltz's edits so far are fair and well-done. In the "Society" section, might I suggest the following edits/deletions:
1. Delete the following sentence in the first paragraph of the "Society" section: "This enraged the leaders of the Spanish Inquisition. One of its most savage mass witch-burnings was staged at the Basque town of Logroño in 1610." Sounds like something straignht from an article on the Wiccan "burning times" to me. Also, the footnote doesn't really match (and in some ways seems to contradict) the sentence itself. I have no view on whether or not it's true that Inquisition was active in the area (the Church and temporal rulers were certainly very active in suppressing heresies in that area in centuries past - e.g., Catharism a little to north), but the sentence seems vague and bombastic - i.e., How many people were burned? What do you mean by "witches"? Are you saying they were being burned for being egalitarian and having unique social institutions? In any event, comments about alleged witch burnings seems to be a little tangential to the article as a whole.
2. Delete the following sentences in the second paragraph of the "Society" section: (i) "The striking uniqueness of Basque society and culture continued up into the twentieth century: “Goddess religion, the lunar calendar, matrilineal inheritance laws, and agricultural work performed by women continued in Basque country until the early twentieth century." and (ii) "Up until the eve of the French Revolution, the Basque woman was truly ‘the mistress of the house,’ hereditary guardian, and head of the lineage." This sentence I reference in clause (i) is the more clearly ridiculous statement, similar to the "living belief" delete that Akerbeltz has already performed. The sentence seems to suggest that John Q. Tourist could backpack into the remoter areas of the Basque Country and see skyclad women dancing around a grove with their Scott Cunningham and Margot Adler books in hand. The sentence I reference in clause (ii) is overly romantic and schmaltzy, and doesn't really add anything substantive. Narsil27 (talk) 21:35, 16 May 2008 (UTC)

Ok on point one the wording should be easy enough to adapt. There certainly was a large witch-burning in Logroño in 1610. I'm not sure if the inquisistion bothered to specify the exact stats of a burning-level witch but since colloquially most cases of burning at the stake are referred to as "witch-burnings" I think we can keep the sentence in reworded for. I'll see if I can find any further details about 1610 over the weekend, I think Hauser has a reference.

LOL I agree about the shmaltzy wording of the second paragraph. Basque society is fascinating but calling it unique is OTT. I think we could agree on a re-wording along the lines of the various characteristics of Basque society/law being unusual from a Romance perspective for the time (as aspects of matrilinearism, women's rights etc are documented). I'll look up a few things and do an edit some time this weekend and we can take it from there, ok? Akerbeltz (talk) 21:57, 16 May 2008 (UTC)

Narsil said: This enraged the leaders of the Spanish Inquisition. One of its most savage mass witch-burnings was staged at the Basque town of Logroño in 1610." Sounds like something straignht from an article on the Wiccan "burning times" to me.
Sadly the Inquisition and regular justice in the case of France acted that way against the Basques. If anywhere you can find such "burning times" it is certainly in the Basque Country. I have a couple of books over here if necessary, both by José Dueso. This not only happened under foreign occupation but it is also documented under Navarrese rule and within the autonomous Basque administrations, provincial or local. But the large persecutions happened all under foreign rule, specially after the conquest of Navarre. The Inquisition anyhow was initially more worried about Jews and Muslims that certainly were protected by the state of Navarre than by exotic ill-known pagan rituals.
Major processes are:
    • 1500 - Durango: documented the Black He-Goat myth that would survive both in European and Basque imaginary. 9 women and 1 man burned on the stake. Other six women killed in the torture chamber were burnt on effigy.
    • 1507 - 29 or "more than 30" Basque witches are burnt at Calahorra by the Inquisition
    • 1525 - 15 witches burnt in Saraitzu valley, 8 in Roncal, an unknown "very high number" in Auritz (Burguete).
    • 1527 - The infamous persecution by Inquisitor Avellaneda (believer in all kind of witchcraft, apparently because he experienced it himself - drugs make miracles!). The number of executed is not clear but was very high in any case.
    • 1609 and following years - Bourdeaux Judge Pierre de Lancre begins his infamous persecution., killing 70 people, including many priests, and being evenually deposed, as he believed nearly every Basque was a witch, threatening with a true demoocide.
    • 1610 - Large persecution in Zugarramurdi (and other places). After much tortures against 84 accused, the religious tribunal of Logroño finally declared them not guilty.
    • 1612 - Process against 5 presumpt witches of Arraiotz (Baztan). They are declared not guilty but one died because of tortures.
In the 17th century, after the processes of Labourd and Zugarramurdi, apparently the authorities of both sides of the border became more lenient (rationalist?) and the persecutions rare (with no culpability sentences).
Still the motivation for such persecutions is not clear cut. Often it was local authorities who carried their own processes (normally with trivial effects such as playing the bells all day "disuassorily") or even asked the Inquisition to intervene. Other times the persecutions were sparked by local rivalries. And in some cases the accusers ended being charged themselves. Torture was anyhow normal.
I guess the sentence is somewhat inaccurate or arguable as per the motivation of the persecutions. But the witch-hunts did exist in the Basque Country and probably were among the largest ever in all Europe, influencing the continental imaginary on the issue somewhat.--Sugaar (talk) 05:09, 17 May 2008 (UTC)
Ok, I've redone (and added to) the Society section now. Feel free to tweak but I think it reads better now. The bit about the witch burnings you added, Sugaar, looks interesting - maybe it warrants it's own section under the religion bit? I've also edited the bit about Urtzi and the way the paganism part leads into Mari/Sugaar.
Does anyone know who this Hadington chap is? I tried to find more infor on him but it seems to be a misspelling and there's thousands of Haddington's... Akerbeltz (talk) 13:04, 17 May 2008 (UTC)
It's fine for me. Surely it can be improved but...
No idea who's Hadington. Maybe searching the history you can find the author of those quotes. --Sugaar (talk) 09:10, 18 May 2008 (UTC)
Rewrites look very good, Akerbeltz. I think you did an excellent job. Narsil27 (talk) 16:27, 19 May 2008 (UTC)

Thank you :) Akerbeltz (talk) 17:09, 19 May 2008 (UTC)