Talk:Vis (town)

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Etymology[edit]

I've added the theory that "Issa" meant "baths" on Illyrian on the article. What do you think about that theory? Do you know any other theory to explain the name "Issa"? — Preceding unsigned comment added by 89.201.184.66 (talk) 12:52, 15 July 2017 (UTC)

There are several problems with this:
  1. Forum posts are not reliable sources. A reliable source should be found for this claim.
  2. In Balissa (Balissae), -issa may be an Illyrian suffix that appears in proprial toponyms, just as it may be related to water (Šimunović, p. 149).
  3. Iasa (Aquae Iasae) is derived from *ias-a- ("boiling") (Šimunović, p. 183-4). That is related to water. However, both Balissae and Aquae Iasae are hot springs. There are no hot springs on the island of Vis.
  4. In an otherwise rather comprehensive Šimunović's list of pre-Roman placenames in Croatia, there is no entry for Vis; maybe that's because he doesn't believe its name is pre-Roman.
Sources: Šimunović, Petar (March 2013). "Predantički toponimi u današnjoj (i povijesnoj) Hrvatskoj" [Pre-Roman placenames in present-day (and historical) Croatia] (PDF). Folia onomastica Croatica (in Croatian). Zagreb: Croatian Academy of Sciences and Arts (22): 147–214. Retrieved 18 January 2016.  GregorB (talk) 22:57, 15 July 2017 (UTC)
  1. Why are forum posts unreliable when it comes to things like that? All we can do is make guesses.
  2. The only thing close to that I can think of is Certissia (the ancient name for Đakovo). But the suffix there is -issia, and not -issa. As far as I know, *-issia meant only "near" in Proto-Indo-European.
  3. I must say I am a bit confused now. How were the ancient baths there without hot springs?
  4. There is also no entry for, for instance, Incerum (the ancient name for Požega) and there is an entry for Tragurion (which is perfectly explainable using Ancient Greek). "Issa" doesn't mean anything in either Ancient Greek or Latin. The closest you can get, as far as I know, is ῐ̓́ση, meaning "flat", but this leaves the double-s unexplained.
Forum posts are self-published sources, and are as such not acceptable - see WP:RSSELF.
Are (or were) there actually any baths in the island of Vis? Surely, if there were some baths in that period, then the idea is at least plausible. But if there is no evidence of baths, and also no evidence of conditions that would make baths likely (such as the presence of hot springs), then the idea becomes highly implausible. Note that this is my "real world" argument (i.e. what makes sense or what is likely true); the "Wikipedia argument" (i.e. what we can back up with reliable sources) is however something else entirely, and, in this particular case the only thing that matters. GregorB (talk) 18:29, 16 July 2017 (UTC)
There were some baths in that period. Though they could maybe somehow get their water from Pizdice or some other stream on Vis, and then heat it up. I can't find the information on-line where did they get their water from, and the streams today are quite far from the remaining of the baths. Besides, *yos meant, as far as I know, "spring", and not "hot spring".
And I can't really see why it's bad to have self-published sources about etymology. Academic etymologies are even more unverifiable and presented with less arguments than what I've written. Like, for example, the statement that Dinara comes from Proto-Indo-European *dendhu, meaning "mountain". That's not a well-known Indo-European root, and they didn't even bother to show some word that comes from there. They could, for all I know, made that root up. Yet alone presenting the names of some other mountains from the supposedly same root.
Why self-published sources are bad? Here's what WP:RSSELF says: Anyone can create a personal web page or publish their own book and claim to be an expert in a certain field. For that reason, self-published media are largely not acceptable. Self-published books and newsletters, personal pages on social networking sites, tweets, and posts on Internet forums are all examples of self-published media. "Guesswork" may be acceptable, but only as long as it's peer-reviewed or otherwise subject to editorial review. GregorB (talk) 07:42, 17 July 2017 (UTC)
BTW: your knowledge on the topic is obviously greater than mine. (Oddly, as far as wiki is concerned, that's my advantage, as I have to rely on sources, and relying on sources is a good thing.) Would you consider creating an account (takes just a minute), equipping yourself with sources on etymology, and go about expanding etymology-related stuff? GregorB (talk) 07:47, 17 July 2017 (UTC)
Look, if something passes a peer-review, that just means it's not OBVIOUSLY wrong. And that's more about the language used than about the substance. Computer-generated nonsense quite often passes a peer-review (see SCIgen, a computer program that does that). Plus, in Croatia, if you want your paper to pass a peer-review, you mustn't state the obvious fact that Serbian and Croatian are the same language (and your paper would probably be valued more if you explicitly deny that). I'm not a linguist, and I don't think I need to be. Someone who is not a linguist but tries to analyze the Croatian toponyms with some basic knowledge of Proto-Indo-European knows way more about the topic than a linguist, and most of the Croatian linguists know almost nothing about Proto-Indo-European or about the ancient Croatian toponyms, knows. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 5.43.170.254 (talk) 08:39, 17 July 2017 (UTC)
If you want to regurgitate academic etymologies of Croatian toponyms on Wikipedia, here is another relatively rich source of them: http://hrcak.srce.hr/file/152502 — Preceding unsigned comment added by 5.43.170.254 (talk) 08:54, 17 July 2017 (UTC)
I mean, seriously, do you need to have some special qualification to say that "Izvori" means "springs" in Croatian? Then why would you need to have some special qualification to say that *yseh2 (pronounced "issa") or *yoseh2 (pronounced "iosa", or, in some dialects, "iasa") would be a collective form of the noun *yos (spring) in Proto-Indo-European? I can't see a big difference there. What I see a big difference between is what I've written and writing etymologies that are basically trying to convince people they don't know how to speak their own language. "Krk comes from Croatian 'krš' (karst) and the adjective-forming ending 'k'. Vis means 'hill' in Croatian. The same root is seen in the word 'visok' (high). Bosut means 'stream' in Croatian. The same Indo-European root that gave the German word 'Bach', if reconstructed as *bheh2kj, would give 'bos-' in Croatian." I guarantee you, that's how many, if not most of the, academic etymologies of the Croatian toponyms would sound to a native Illyrian speaker.
With full respect to what you have outlined above, I'll take the liberty of suggesting that you take a look at WP:NOR too.
BTW I've always thought "Vis" was actually derived from "Issa". Highest peaks of neighboring islands of Hvar and Korčula's are as high or higher, and all of these islands look fairly flat. Just saying... :-) GregorB (talk) 17:02, 18 July 2017 (UTC)
No original research policy makes sense when there are reliable sources about some topic. When it comes to Croatian toponymy, there is no such thing. Have you studied Indo-European linguistics before looking into the supposed etymologies? I have, and I can safely tell you, most of them are shaky at best. Which is also why the sources are so often contradictory. Look, in natural sciences, perhaps it does make sense to talk about which source is more credible (you shouldn't accept the Flat-Earther's arguments no matter how convincing they seem to you). So does maybe in well-studied branches of social sciences. But Croatian toponymy isn't one of them. Also, on Wiktionary, very few etymologies are actually cited. It's a custom there to cite only when you make an extraordinary statement (and the claim that an island with ancient baths was called "springs" isn't one of them). And it doesn't really seem that Wiktionary is less reliable than other sources about etymologies (I would argue that it's actually the most reliable source we have). So, I don't really see why Wikipedia policies make sense here. Again, do you think you need to cite a linguist when you claim that "Dugi Otok" means "Long Island" in Croatian? — Preceding unsigned comment added by 185.18.63.201 (talk) 19:35, 18 July 2017 (UTC)
Do you actually believe WP:RS and WP:OR are there for no reason? Absent these policies, what would prevent everyone and his sister's favorite theories from flooding Wikipedia? GregorB (talk) 19:57, 18 July 2017 (UTC)
Flooding Wikipedia with fringe theories would be writing "Issa comes from the Hebrew word 'ish' (people)." or "Issa comes from the Basque word 'its' (water)" or something like that. Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence. I don't really see why my claim would be that extraordinary. If there was an island today called "Izvori", and it was well-known for its springs, would you ask me to cite a linguist if I claim that its name means "springs" in Croatian? — Preceding unsigned comment added by 89.201.184.222 (talk) 06:37, 19 July 2017 (UTC)
If there was evidence that it was a folk etymology (like that the name of the river Vuka existed before the Slavs arrived there, so it couldn't possibly be derived from the Croatian word "vuk" or that Korana is way more sensibly derived from the Celtic word "karr-an-a" [of the karst] than from the Croatian word 'kora'), that's fine. But, as far as you and I know, there isn't such evidence here. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 89.201.184.222 (talk) 06:58, 19 July 2017 (UTC)