Template talk:Gardariki

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The template represents Eastern Europe from the point of view of Norse sagas. It also includes specifically Norse sites in Europe, which were essential for the functioning of the Volga and Dnieper trade routes prior to the emergence of Kievan Rus. I don't think that Pechenegs, Mordvins and whatnot have a place here. They played no prominent part in the events of the 9th century. I don't even think they are mentioned in any sagas. Can't see why their inclusion into this template would be helpful for our readers. --Ghirla -трёп- 14:38, 22 November 2006 (UTC)

All of these people had EXTENSIVE contacts with the Varangians and (via trade) with Scandinania that are indisputable. In the case of the Pechenegs, Polovtsi, etc., they also greatly influenced (economically, militarily, etc.) the formation of early Russia. Others like the Mordvins were favorite targets of the slave trade. What is the problem with including them?
As for Rostov, it is referred to as Rostofa/Rauðstafa in the Hauksbók in connection with tenth and eleventh century travellers:
[í] því ríki er það er Ruzcia heitir. Það köllum vér Garðaríki. Þar eru þessir höfuðgarðar: Moramar, Rostofa, Súrdalar, Hólmgarður, Sýrnes, Garðar, Palteskja, Kænugarður. Þar bygði fyrst Magon sonur Jafets Nóasonar. Hjá Garðaríki liggja lönd þessi: Kirjalir, Refalir, Tafeistaland, Vírland, Eistland, Lífland, Kúrland, Ermland, Pulínaland, Vindland er vestast næst Danmörk. (Hauksbók, p. 155)
"Hauksbók udgiven efter de arnamagnæanske håndskrifter" no. 371, 544 og 675, 4o samt forskellige papirshåndskrfter, eds. Eiríkur Jónsson and Finnur Jónsson, Copenhagen, 1892-1896.
And what's the problem with Murom?

--Briangotts (Talk) (Contrib) 14:50, 22 November 2006 (UTC)

I have no doubt that the Pechenegs, Mordva, Burtas, Kvens, Estonians, and numerous other peoples interacted with Varangians, but does it make them a part of Gardariki? I created the template (as all templates are created) to keep our readers aware that we have articles about the major centres of the Norse settlement in Russia, which are otherwise linkless and easily lost in 1,500,000 articles that we have in this project. The template is not designed to include all the peoples inhabiting Russia at that time and all the settlements that possibly existed then. This would make it cluttered with visual garbage. In other words, the template is about Gardariki, not about Kievan Rus. Rostov and Murom have no relation to the term, as used in the 9th and 10th centuries, because they simply did not exist at that time. Rostov, for instance, is the place-name derived from the name of a Slavic chieftain/prince Rost, which is a hypocoristic form of Rostislav, composed of the Slavic roots for "grow" and "glory". In the very late source you cite it was ridiculously turned into Rauðstafa, which is a Norse term for rathaus. (In the same way the name of Kiev was metamorphosed into Kaenugrad, which is a "boat yard"). Rostov is clearly a late Slavic placename, which appeared after the land of the Merya was heavily Slavicized (the 970s at the earliest). The template deals with an earlier period, when the main centre of the area was Sarskoe Gorodishche, which is featured there. Why do you think lumping all the centres of the Slavic state of Kievan Rus into the template about the Norse history is such a good idea? --Ghirla -трёп- 17:49, 22 November 2006 (UTC)

I have seen materials on Rostov that contradict what you are saying, and you have still not explained why the Norse materials refer to Rostov as part of Gardariki. But I will have to look into it further, and in the meanwhile I won't restore it. The WP article on Murom says that it dates to the 9th century at least, and says that the Primary Chronicle mentions it as early as 862 - it is also in the excerpt from the Haukabok that I cited above. You also, incidentally, removed Tmutarakan, which certainly existed during the period, and which had a diverse population including Scandinavians. As far as the others, (Pechenegs et al) you treat Gardariki as if it were the name of a kingdom; but in fact as its used in the Norse materials it refers first and formost to a geographic region. Where it is used to describe a unified nation-state (such as it is) it almost always refers to the Kievan Rus (specifically, Kievan Rus' under Vladimir I). Taken as a geographic region, Gardariki was the vague region between the Northlands and the southern lands (Saerkland and Miklagardr) So the Pechenegs, Mordvins et al were located within its rough geographic scope or at least, at times, moved through its rather porous boundaries. Why, may I ask, do you acknowledge the acceptability of including the Khazars, Bulgars and Merya, who had (to my thinking) roughly similar relationships with the Norse/Slavic culture of Gardariki as some of the other folks I've mentioned? --Briangotts (Talk) (Contrib) 22:30, 22 November 2006 (UTC)

I would not mind removing all these peoples, limiting the list to Varangians, Ilmen Slavs, and Krivichi. Gardariki almost always refers to Northern Russia, with its capital at Holmgard. The southernmost town of Gardariki is Kaenugard. That's why I object to transferring the concept to Southern Russia, which is not documented in Norse sagas at all. Much of the northern geography is described in sagas apocryphally; Khazaria and its trade emporia (such as Tmutarakan) are not mentioned at all. I repeat that we need a separate navigational template for Khazaria-related themes, rather than pumping both subjects into one hypertemplate. One template for Northern Russia, another template for the Pontic region, something like "Khazaria and its neighbours". I would have made it myself, if I knew much on the subject. From my experience, the larger template is, the less helpful it is. Here's what I may suggest for the time being:
Khazar rulers: Karadach | Busir | Barjik | Bihar | Parsbit | Zachariah | Bulan | Obadiah | Hezekiah | Manasseh I | Hanukkah | Isaac | Zebulun | Manasseh II | Nisi | Aaron I | Menahem | Benjamin | Aaron II | Joseph | David | George
Byzantium-Califate trade route: Sambat | Kerch | Tamatarkha | Golden Hills | Sarkel | Atil | Samandar | Balanjar
Califate | Byzantium | Bulgaria | Burtas | Goths | Huns | Kabars | Levedia | Meshchera | Radhanites | Rus | Sarir

--Ghirla -трёп- 12:33, 23 November 2006 (UTC)

Your proposal is reasonable. May I suggest that the one people missing from the Gardariki template are the Rus', who definitely figure in Norse sagas. including them in both templates is a nice way to tie the two together. I also think that the Khazars and Volga Bolgars should remain in the Gardariki template, given the enormous economic and social influences they had on even the northern Rus' settlements. Briangotts (Talk) (Contrib) 05:03, 24 November 2006 (UTC)

Agree wholeheartedly, although the relation between the Rus and Varangians is difficult to pinpoint. At the earlier stages they might have designated the same group. --Ghirla -трёп- 09:52, 24 November 2006 (UTC)
The Hauksbók is a 14th-century source; it cannot be relied upon for documenting the 9th-century realities. The 9th century mentions of Rostov, Murom, Smolensk, Izborsk, Beloozero, etc in the early 12th-century Primary Chronicle are equally apochryphal. Archaeologists could not find traces of urban settlement on their present-day locations prior to the 11th century. On the other hand, they found ancient Norse-Slavic centres at a short distance from modern towns: Rurikovo gorodishche near Novgorod, Gnezdovo near Smolensk, Sarskoe near Rostov, Timerevo near Yaroslavl, etc. Once the earlier settlements decline, the modern-day towns emerge. In other words, there is convincing evidence for wide-spread transfer of major East Slavic centres towards the end of the 10th century, a large-scale process which was not recorded in chronicles. Historians dispute why this happened and propose different interpretations. I may enlarge on the subject if you wish. It is not clear whether the earlier (pre-urban) centres had the same names as the later towns. IMHO there is convicing names that the earlier centres were not known as Rostov, Novgorod, etc. --Ghirla -трёп- 12:39, 23 November 2006 (UTC)