Article published in:Advances in Gothic Philology and Linguistics
Edited by Alexandra Holsting and Hans Frede Nielsen
[NOWELE 71:2] 2018
► pp. 223–235
Gothic graffiti from the Mangup basilica
For more than a millennium there have been reports testifying to the presence of Goths in the Crimea. However, until a few years ago, the only evidence of a Gothic or Germanic idiom spoken in the peninsula stems from the list of words recorded between 1560 and 1562 by Ogier de Busbecq. Significant new evidence, however, has become available through the recent discovery of five Gothic graffiti scratched on two reused fragments of a cornice belonging to the early Byzantine basilica at Mangup-Qale in the Crimea. The graffiti, datable to between about 850 and the end of the 10th century, exhibit words in Gothic known from Wulfila’s Bible translation, the script used being an archaic variant of Wulfila’s alphabet and the only specimen of this alphabet attested outside Pannonia and Italy. There would seem to be evidence for assuming that, among educated Crimean Goths, Gothic served as a spoken vernacular in a triglossic situation along with a purely literary type of Gothic and with Greek in the second half of the 9th century.
Published online: 21 June 2018
Marchand, J. W.
Stearns, MacDonald Jr.
Vinogradov, A. & Korobov, M.