4. The Ancient Peoples of the East and the Arithmetic of the Proto-Bulgarians
The question to be answered now, after the numerical system of the Proto-Bulgarians
was nearly clarified, is:
was there another ancient people that counted in a similar way. Regarding the names of the months, the Sumerian civilization has very interesting points of contact with the Proto-Bulgarian names. They refer, however, to individual isolated words, while in the Pamir the whole system was discovered, with specific endings EM and OM. But the problem is that there existed an older people, who had whole system. The examples listed in the table below are to clarify this difficult question.
Comparison of the names of the Months from the Nominalia and from
|Proto-Bulgarian example||Pamirian and Dardic analogies||Precursors|
|ALEM (first)||ALAM, OLAM (first) - Ishkash., Chuf.
ALEIN (frontal ) - Tal.
Sanskr. ALAM (initial, highest)
|TUTOM (second)||DU, TU (two); DUTA, DUDON (both) - Prasun||Sanskr. DU-TAMA; Pers. DUTOM (second)|
|CHITEM (third)||CHI, CHIT (three);
CHIIEM, CHITEM (third) - Jazgul.
|Old Pers. CHITIJA (third);
CHITEAM (month May) - Irish
|TVIREM (fourth)||ZFIR (four), ZFIREM (fourth)- Munj.
TIJREMA (month July) -
|Sanskr. TURIA, Avest. TURIA (tuyria), TUIRAM (fourth); TEOIR (four) - Irish|
|VECHEM (fifth)||VJUCH, VISH (five) - Prasun;
PJUCH, PINCH - Saryk.
|PENCHEM from PENDSHAMA - Sanskr.
PENCHEMA (fifth) - Avest.
|SHEHTEM (sixth)||SHEHT (six), SHEHEM (sixth)||SASTAMA (sixth) - Sanskr.|
|ALTEM (last, twelfth)||ALSAM - Vaynakh., ALD - Wakh.||ALSAM (rest, end) - Vaynakh,
AILT (limit) - Celt.
|ES (eight) (discovered in Murfatlar's inscriptions)||AZ (Torv.), AS (Bashk.), ASH, ASTE (Prasun), HESHT (Tal.)||ASHTAU - Sanskr.; ES (eth) - Celt., EIGHT - Engl.|
Old Sanskrit or Avestan, and in some to cases Sumerian and Accadian words are behind almost all Proto-Bulgarian and Pamirian words. The Accadian ALEN, which was changed to ALAM in Sanskrit is, corresponds to our term ALEM. Our TUTOM corresponds to the Sanskrit DUTAMA and the reconstructed Persian DUTOM (which was formed in the same way as the Old Persian EVAKTOM (first) from EVAK (one)).
CHITEM (third) corresponds to the Old Persian form CHITIJA (hyia) and to the Avestan CHITIJEM (cityiem); TVIREM (fourth) - to the Sanskrit double word TURIA-TURIAMA abd to the Avestan TUIRIA-TUIRIEM (tuiriyem); VECHEM (fifth) - to the Avestan PENCHA and PENCHEMA, changed in Pamir to VISH and VISHEM; SHEHTEM (sixth) - to the Sanskrit SASTAMA and the Gaelic SEATHAMH; ES (eight) - to the Sanskrit number ASHTA, which was transformed in the Pamirs into AST and ESHT (HESHT).
All Proto-Bulgarian cardinal numbers have analogies with Sanskrit and Avestan, i.e. with the peoples known today under the general term Indo-Iranians. The developments the Proto-Bulgarian numbers underwent were identical to the developments undergone by the Pamirian and Dardic numbers, they were marked by modifications of the same type. Both the Pamirian peoples and the Proto-bulgarians had the endings OM and EM in place of the former endings AMA and EMA, and in both of them in the cardinal number four appeared an intermediate sound V or F: TUIREM became TVIREM or ZFIREM. In both the word DU (two) became TU, and in the word PENCH the P changed to V. The Proto-Bulgarian and the Pamirian cardinal numbers not only possess a common source, but common modifications as well. It is a proof that these peoples had lived for a long time in close contact and had a long common development. The times, when the Proto-Bulgarians and the ancestors of the Pamir peoples had a common life are far in the past, now we could compare the Proto-Bulgarian cardinal numbers to that of the oldest settlers from the east - the Celts.
Among the Celts, who already in the fourth/fifth c. BC immigrated from the Pamir area, there were also a people named BOLGI, whose name in Old-Celtic generally sounded as BOLGAR. There are many similarities between the Proto-Bulgarian and the Celtic cardinal numbers - the word TU (two) from the British islands (once under a strong Celtic influence) corresponds to the former Sogdian and Proto-Bulgarian word DO (two), which survived partly in Pamir. The Celtic language is the only one which have preserved the old word TEOIR (four), derived from the Avestan TUIRIA, i.e. from the prototype of the Proto-Bulgarian TVIREM (fourth). The word PIMP (five) and FIFS (fifth) is similar to the Pamirian VISH and the Proto-Bulgarian VECHEM (fifth); ES and EIGHT resemble the Proto-Bulgarian form ES. If we add that in the Irish language the month of May, the third month of the spring, is called CHITEAM and the Old Irish form was CHEATAM, it becomes clear that the former Celts not only had a similar system as the peoples of Pamir, but that this system was also used for calendar purposes.
The list of the Proto-Bulgarian numerals and their Old Celtic analogies:
|Proto-Bulgarian word||Old Celtic analogies|
|EL (1), ELEM (first)||EL (one), from which - ELEVEN (11)|
|TE (2), TUTOM (second)||TU (two), from which the English TWO|
|CHIT (3), CHITEM (third)||CHITEAM (the 3rd month of the spring) - Irish|
|TVIR (4), TVIREM (fourth)||TEOIR (four) - Irish|
|VECH (5), VECHEM (fifth)||FIF, from which the English FIFTH|
|SHEHT (6), SHEHTEM (sixth)||SEAHT (seven) - Irish|
|ES (8), ESTEK (80)||ES (eight) - Cornish, ESDEK (eth, ethdek) - 80|
|ALT (11), ALTEM (eleventh)||EALTA (multiplicity), ALT (added to the end, old)|
The similarities with the Celts, the earliest settlers from the east, show that this type of counting was very old. It existed in an accomplished form already in the first millennium BC, at the time, when the first groups of emigrants from the Pamirs made their way to Europe, taking with them this special system of counting.
As this system was so old it is to be assumed that also the calendar, where it appears - the Proto-Bulgarian calendar, was quite old. It did not develop after their settlement in Europe, but much earlier. A proof to this are the Khotano-Saka handwritings from the IV-V c. BC found at the northern edge of the Pamir mountains, with cardinal numbers of the same type as that in the Proto-Bulgarian calendar, for example - PENCHEM (fifth) and PAMJEM with the specific ending "EM".
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