Ah, it's sunny again, so understandably I will be making this blog brief as I enjoy the weather (and in Winnipeg, it's our prerogative to enjoy it considering that we only get hot summer weather for three months of the year).
Anyways, back to the topic of this blog, I always find it funny how something has to be published in a book before many people feel that it's "real" enough to believe. Of course, I'm not complaining about the great comments and feedback I'm getting back from this blog. However, there are times when things that, at least in my mind, seem to be so clear and well-known in published literature as to be virtually unquestionable are fought by some readers tooth and nail without careful rationale other than "it doesn't satisfy my skepticism", I have to admit it makes me roll my eyes at times. Again, I'm not complaining because when one decides to reach out of one's own bubble and blog to the world, this just comes with the territory.
Now, the reason why I mention this is because whenever I assert on this blog that Etruscan and Rhaetic are closely related languages, there's a tension in the air and I swear that I can hear vultures looming above me. There are evidently a lot of online die-hards who still scough at this view as though this were the most ludicrous idea they had ever heard of. (But then, these are sadly often the same people that have desperate need to believe that Etruscan is related to North-East Caucasian or some other highly dubious claim that I have no interest in.)
Roger Woodard writes on page 142 in The ancient languages of Europe (2008), published by Cambridge University Press (see link):
"To the same language family as Etruscan there belong only two poorly attested languages: Lemnian in the Northeast of the Aegean (sixth century BC; Agostiniani 1986) and Rhaetic in the Alps (fifth to first centuries BC; Schumacher 1992:246-248; Rix 1998). Lemnian and Rhaetic are so close to Etruscan that Etruscan can be used to understand them. The date of the common source language, Proto-Tyrsenic, can probably be fixed to the last quarter of the second millenium BC. The location of its homeland is disputed, however; possibilities include: (i) the northern Aegean, whence Proto-Etruscan and Proto-Rhaetic speakers would have come in the course of the Aegean migration westwards at the end of the second millenium (similarly Herodotus [I.94] identifies Lydia as the Etruscan homeland); (ii) central Italy, from which Proto-Lemnian speakers would have migrated eastwards and Proto-Rhaetic speakers northwards. A decisive judgment is not currently possible."Of course, I still maintain that the latter possibility (i.e. that these "Tyrsenic" languages are autochthonous to Italy, as per Dionysius of Halicarnassus) mentioned in the quote above is merely mentioned as a kind of diplomatic tip-of-the-hat to a historically vocal camp of thought that is destined to devolve into a new-age minority religion in the next century while the former (with perhaps some slight modifications) becomes the future standard view.