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Thread: Is there any strong argument against a South Arabian origin of Ethio-Semitic?

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    Is there any strong argument against a South Arabian origin of Ethio-Semitic?

    Basically I saw elsewhere some people contesting the idea that Ethio-Semitic came to the Horn of Africa from South Arabia during the Bronze age or early Iron Age and they tend to either claim that Semitic was native(which is obviously wrong and I don't think worth entertaining) or claim that Ethio-Semitic came directly from the Levant, which is also weird but at the same time some genetic papers also said something like this.
    The question is whether there is actually any real argument that would support an origin outside of South Arabia(or even Arabia in general) in the fields of linguistics, archeology or genetics.
    Last edited by Granary; 09-26-2020 at 10:06 PM.

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    I'd be curious on this and also about the origin of Afroasiatic languages as a whole. I haven't kept up with the debates so not sure what the current line of thinking is.

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    Semitic languages came directly from Yemen to the Northern Highlands and there was probably another migration to the lowlands of the Horn aswell (Afar and Northern Somalia) that brought camels,lineages like T1a & J1 and very old Semitic loanwords

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    I have come across some Ethiopian nationalists on the internet who claim Semitic comes from Ethiopia. Usually they use flawed arguments like that Ethiopia has more diversity of Afro-Asiatic languages than the Middle East, despite this not being relevant to the origins of the specific subgroup Semitic. These are fringe views and often are only held by Ethiopian nationalists or some Afrocentrists.

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    Quote Originally Posted by drobbah View Post
    Semitic languages came directly from Yemen to the Northern Highlands and there was probably another migration to the lowlands of the Horn aswell (Afar and Northern Somalia) that brought camels,lineages like T1a & J1 and very old Semitic loanwords
    Do you have links for that? I was wondering why the Afar triangle was not Semiticized given it's geographically the closest of Yemen.

    Quote Originally Posted by NetNomad View Post
    I have come across some Ethiopian nationalists on the internet who claim Semitic comes from Ethiopia. Usually they use flawed arguments like that Ethiopia has more diversity of Afro-Asiatic languages than the Middle East, despite this not being relevant to the origins of the specific subgroup Semitic. These are fringe views and often are only held by Ethiopian nationalists or some Afrocentrists.
    I found people claiming that too but they don't seem to be nationalistic per se.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Granary View Post
    Basically I saw elsewhere some people contesting the idea that Ethio-Semitic came to the Horn of Africa from South Arabia during the Bronze age or early Iron Age and they tend to either claim that Semitic was native(which is obviously wrong and I don't think worth entertaining) or claim that Ethio-Semitic came directly from the Levant, which is also weird but at the same time some genetic papers also said something like this.
    The question is whether there is actually any real argument that would support an origin outside of South Arabia(or even Arabia in general) in the fields of linguistics, archeology or genetics.
    I have seen this, too actually... usually from very patriotic Ethiopians, but I'll have a look for some of the papers/books I've come across on the idea of a Horn origin for Semitic languages.

    Quote Originally Posted by davit View Post
    I'd be curious on this and also about the origin of Afroasiatic languages as a whole. I haven't kept up with the debates so not sure what the current line of thinking is.
    I would direct you to this thread, and to this post by Agamemnon in particular, https://anthrogenica.com/showthread....t=afro-asiatic. It seems likely that Afro-asiatic languages originated in Eastern Africa and spread from there, coming full circle with the return of Semitic to form the Ethio-Semitic languages of Ethiopia and Eritrea today.

    Quote Originally Posted by drobbah View Post
    Semitic languages came directly from Yemen to the Northern Highlands and there was probably another migration to the lowlands of the Horn aswell (Afar and Northern Somalia) that brought camels,lineages like T1a & J1 and very old Semitic loanwords
    I agree with you on the origin of Ethio-Semitic languages, but how certain are you that camels were brought (and by brought, I assume you mean first domesticated and then brought) from Arabia to the Horn? From what I've seen, people aren't entirely sure if camels were domesticated first in southern Arabia or the Horn (that is, when they consider the last one).
    Last edited by Atlas; 09-27-2020 at 11:43 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Atlas View Post
    I have seen this, too actually... usually from very patriotic Ethiopians, but I'll have a look for some of the papers/books I've come across on the idea of a Horn origin for Semitic languages.



    I would direct you to this thread, and to this post by Agamemnon in particular, https://anthrogenica.com/showthread....t=afro-asiatic. It seems likely that Afro-asiatic languages originated in Eastern Africa and spread from there, coming full circle with the return of Semitic to form the Ethio-Semitic languages of Ethiopia and Eritrea today.



    I agree with you on the origin of Ethio-Semitic languages, but how certain are you that camels were brought (and by brought, I assume you mean first domesticated and then brought) from Arabia to the Horn? From what I've seen, people aren't entirely sure if camels were domesticated first in southern Arabia or the Horn (that is, when they consider the last one).
    Archeogenetics have confirmed this in 2016 that all of the domesticated dromedary camels originated in South-Eastern Arabia around 3,000 years ago:
    https://www.sciencedaily.com/release...0509191839.htm

    Thus, we can say that the domesticated dromedary camels were indeed brought to Africa by Arabian migrants not long ago and so on, and it's not a coincidence that the earliest Arabs that were mentioned in written history was in the same time frame(Gindibu and his Arab troops in the battle of Qarqar around 853 BCE).

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    Perhaps the Levantine migration claim is related to the folklore around the Solomonic Dynasty ?
    Thanks to modern day tools like Y/mtDna and linguistics it is very clear that Ethio-Semitic languages and its speakers (but not only) are closely related to Southern Arabia.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Atlas View Post
    I have seen this, too actually... usually from very patriotic Ethiopians, but I'll have a look for some of the papers/books I've come across on the idea of a Horn origin for Semitic languages.



    I would direct you to this thread, and to this post by Agamemnon in particular, https://anthrogenica.com/showthread....t=afro-asiatic. It seems likely that Afro-asiatic languages originated in Eastern Africa and spread from there, coming full circle with the return of Semitic to form the Ethio-Semitic languages of Ethiopia and Eritrea today.



    I agree with you on the origin of Ethio-Semitic languages, but how certain are you that camels were brought (and by brought, I assume you mean first domesticated and then brought) from Arabia to the Horn? From what I've seen, people aren't entirely sure if camels were domesticated first in southern Arabia or the Horn (that is, when they consider the last one).
    Camels were domesticated in Arabia (no one sane would argue otherwise) and most of the camel related terms in the Somali/Rendille language including the word for camel is of Semitic origin

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    Quote Originally Posted by drobbah View Post
    Camels were domesticated in Arabia (no one sane would argue otherwise) and most of the camel related terms in the Somali/Rendille language including the word for camel is of Semitic origin
    What kind of Semitic? Ancient South Arabian?

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