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Päivi and Phoebe: A New Perspective

Giuseppe Collignon, Prometheus Steals Fire from Apollo’s Sun Chariot, 1814

At times, I’ve frustrated myself with how far I’ve gone in order to find comparisons – how I’ve complicated things which, at a later time, are revealed to be simple. The Finngreek project has been a tidal series of creating, erasing, and revising proposals, in order to build the ideal language from the proper etymologies. However, I’m getting to a point where not only vowels make sense, but consonants as well. As I gain experience and resources, establishing relationships has become an increasingly more relaxed task.

Regarding Päivä (day, sun), with which I had previously speculated on a connection with the Greek terms Pyr/Πυρ+Auos/Αύως or Auge/Αυγή (with now justified doubt, however), I see that it’s another situation involving words I had already known, but not thought to connect (As I had compared Puutarha with Πουλυβότειρα vs. the appropriate Φυταλιά<pu-ta-ri-ja). There are now two words (perhaps ultimately from the same source) which I am speculating on in regards to the following:

Päivä = Φοίβος/Φοίβη<bʰeigʷ- <(?) Φάος/Φαύος<bʰeh₂-

It is not my assertion that φοίβος<φάος, but the view of some entries found at LSJ. It is definitely an interesting relationship phonetically, if they are related. Looking into these terms:

Φοίβος/Φοίβη (Phoebus/Phoebe): Phoebus (Phoibos in the Greek transliteration) is a proper noun and epithet of Apollo (who was conlfated with Helios, the Sun God), from the word φοίβος (bright, pure, radiant), which then makes Apollo “The Bright One”. Phoebe is associated with Selene, Goddess of the Moon, and is the feminine counterpart to Phoebus (compare Selene and Helios with Artemis and Apollo).

Φάος/Φαύος (Phaos/Phauos) is, semantically, a near-perfect match with Päivä: It describes the sunlight in Homer’s Iliad and Plato’s Republic, and alludes to the day in Euripides’ Rhesus.

In regards to which term appears phonetically to be a potential cognate or ancestor of Päivä, there are a couple things to consider. Φοίβος/Φοίβη exhibits a presumed develarization from gʷ>b>v. It is realistic that η could manifest as either ä or i (eg: Päivä>Päivi = Phoibe/Fivi), given η<α. However, Ι’ve only recorded η>/i/ when in the final position, so η>ä in final would be unprecedented. In this case, while Φοίβη may be able to explain Päivi, it could not simultaneously explain Päivä. This could allude to Päivä having originally been a masculine word, which could be related with Apollo<~Helios as the charioteer of the sun. This would imply Päivä<Φοίβος.

*bʰeigʷ- > *bʰoigʷ-o- > Φοίβο- > Päivä
However, I have a reservation about o>ä. On a purely phonological basis, I prefer:
*bʰeigʷ-e > Päivä
The final -e represents vocative case (Φοίβε), which is a common feature in comparisons. This is in comparison with Proto-Samic *peajvē, which I believe may be the only other real descendant of Proto-Uralic *päjwä beyond Proto-Finnic *päivä, making is a word exclusive to the Finno-Samic contact area. The proposed absence of e>o ablautization is something I’m studying in a few of my proposals. However, if *bʰeigʷ- was the ultimate source of Päivä, but it was not through Hellenic, then it would have had to have been directly from PIE, as other IE descendants do not share these phonological shifts.

Meanwhile, Φαύος (the Aeolic form of Φάος/Φώς) contains the letter ypsilon, which can result in front-vowel harmony (a>ä: Αμαυρά>hämärä). However, while Φάος contains the initial pha- – which manifests in related word like Φαίνω and Φαεινά – as well as the plural -ta suffix (compare Päivät and Ta Phaea/Τα Φάεα, presumably Φαύεα in Aeolic) – it is unclear whether or not this phonology could better justify itself as cognate with Päivä, vs. Φοίβος/Φοίβε, Φοίβη, etc.

Regardless, the words themselves allow for a variety of constructions:

Day, Light = Päivä/-i, *peajvē =
Pha/Phaia/Phaiva(-ta plural), Phaive/Phaivi/Pheive/Pheivi/Phoive/Phoivi (-es plural), Phoivo =
Φοίβος/Φοίβε, Φοίβη, Φάεα/Φαύεα, Φαίνω

Φοίβος/Phoebus/Sun = Phaiva(s)/Phoivo(s), Phaive/Pheive/Phoive
Φοίβη/Phoebe/Moon = Phaivi/Pheivi/Phoivi, Phaive/Pheive/Phoive

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Auri plus Phaiva = The sun is also the Sun
Kuukle plus Pheivi = The moon is also the Moon
Mja phaiva nyn? = What day is now?
Uros poljophaivakaa = The sky is with much daylight
Lavkophoivos yveilaa! = The white Phoebus is sublime!

Hungarian-Hellenic Affinity: Teljes = Τelḗeis (Τελήεις)

(This post is not written as an article, but just notes about my proposal of affinity between the following Hungarian [and thereby Uralic] and Hellenic terms.)

teljes (also **tele/teli** for ‘full’):

entire, full, total

complete

τελήεις/telḗeis:

(of sacrificial victims) complete, perfect, entire, without blemish

(of animals and humans) full-grown, adult

Related to, and largely synonymous with…

τέλειος:

having reached its end, finished

(of victims) complete, perfect, entire, without blemish

(of animals and humans) full-grown, adult

(of persons) absolute, complete, accomplished, perfect

(of things)

(of prayers, vows, etc.) fulfilled, accomplished

(of numbers) full, complete

(in arithmetic) those numbers which are equal to the sum of their divisors

the third bowl offered to Zeus

(of the gods) perfect, omnipotent, infinite

last

(neuter substantive) a royal banquet

(feminine substantive) a full stop, period

(adverb) at last

completely, absolutely

The Hungarian is ultimately from Proto-Uralic *täwde, with cognates like Nganasan ťerə, Inari Sami tievâs, Finnisη täydellinen (‘perfect’, which I compare with reduplicated τετελεσμένος/tetelesmenos, ‘that which has been perfected’); while the Greek is from PIE *kʷel-. Out of all IE descendants, only Greek presents *kʷ>t. Furthermore, the semantic value of “full, complete” in Greek Τελήεις/Τέλειος does not appear present in IE cognate terms (from what is available on Wikipedia) descended from *kʷel-, itself meaning ‘to move/turn’. This is also the source of *kʷékʷlos > κῠ́κλος/kúklos , which I believe is related to Proto-Uralic *kuŋe, with the listed descendants:

Samoyedic: *kïj

Kamassian: ки (ki)

Ugric:

Hungarian: hó, hold

Mordvinic:

Erzya: ков (kov)

Finnic: *kuu

In Hungarian, telihold is the full moon. I believe the Greek equivalent would be τέλειε κύκλε (or perhaps τελήεν κύκλε). If Τele/Teli=Τελή/Τέλει- are related, Hungarian is phonologically closer to the Greek term than any other IE or Uralic language (with Khanty [also Ugric] tel a close second).

This is another example of a term that does not exist “as-is” in PIE, but rather has developed into Hellenic and the Uralic languages with a higher phonological and exclusive semantic affinity.

Oikeia: Comparing Finnish and Greek through Finngreek poetry

My lyrical piece, titled “Oikeia”, will be the first of many songs and mantras in the Finngreek language. These comparative lyrics are meant to serve as an accessible learning tool, especially for Finns and Greeks, so that they can enjoy studying the language through listening exercises.

“Oikeia” is an homage to the relationship between the moon, earth, and sun, focusing on the benefits that the moon has given to life on earth through its theoretical impact, which physicists call the Giant Impact Hypothesis. From debris becoming a satellite in Earth’s orbit, to the tides created by lunar influence, the moon has impacted our lives, for the better, for billions of years.

Proper/Fitting/Suitable = Oikea = Oikeia = Οἰκεῖᾰ

Perhaps the best-preserved word from the Finngreek contact period, Oikeia/Oikea is absolutely fascinating to me. Here is more information about this term:

Finnish: Oikea < *oikeda < *wojketa
Meaning: Right, Correct, Appropriate, Proper, Fitting, Real, True, Just, Fair

Greek: Οἰκεῖᾰ < Οἶκος < Woîkos < *weyk- (Proto-Indo-European)
Meaning: Domestic, Related, Friendly, Personal, Proper, Fitting, Suitable, Belonging (to)

The original Greek meaning re: Oikos is, quite simply, a house. The original Finnish meaning of *oikeda is constructed to have probably described something that is straight, right, or correct.

When looking into the derivatives (where Οίκος is considered the “original” Greek word, and Oikea the “original” Finnish word in regards to their respective etymological trees), some interesting terms and meanings can be observed. From Finnish Oikea is derived Oikeus, meaning “law, justice, court”, as well as “rightness, fairness”. From Oikeus, there is a compound word that, for obvious reasons, catches my eye: Oikeudenmukainen. I previously introduced the term ‘mukainen’ in this long rant about who the Greeks in Finland might have been. Basically, Mukainen means ‘consistent, compatible, compliant’, and the greater term Oikeudenmukainen describes something which is ‘just’ or ‘fair’.

Given that the Finnish derived terms focus heavily on law and justice, I focus my attention on Greek terms derived from Οίκος with similar meanings:

Οικέω: Inhabit, Colonize, Settle, Manage, Direct, Govern, Am Governed
Οἴκημᾰ: Home, Building, Chamber, Brothel, Temple/Shrine, Prison/Cell, etc.
Οἴκησις: Management, Administration
Δῐοίκησῐς: Housekeeping, Control, Government, Administration, (later) Diocese
Σῠνοικίζω: To make someone live with someone, To give someone to someone else in marriage, To combine/unite
Οἰκοδεσπότης: Master of a house, Native ruler (vs. foreign ruler)
Οἰκονόμος: Master of a house, Steward of an estate, Manager, Administrator
Οἰκονομέω: To manage, To dispense, To order, To regulate

The term Οικονόμος (source of the word Economy) is of interest to me, because Nomos/Νόμος (Noummos/Νούμμος in Doric) is defined as, among other things, a law or ordinance. In searching for a Finnish counterpart to Nomos, the only one I have so far in Finngreek is:
Pasture/Moor = Nummi = Nomii = Νομή
which is derived from Νόμος.

Whether Finnish Oikeus could be a semantic counterpart to Oἰκονομῐ́ᾱ is unclear, but it is clear that both roots of the compound Oikonomia can be found in some form in Finnish.

From these terms, the main question I have is how they might relate to inequality (eg: slavery) vs. friendship. In Ancient Greek, derived terms of Οίκος can describe anyone from a neutral inhabitant of a home, to a colonist, to a prisoner or slave (Οἰκεύς, ‘Inmate of a house, servant’; I am not certain how connected this word might be with Oikeus, despite phonological affinity, as they may have formed separately, which resulted in different definitions), to a domestic animal, to a builder (Oἰκοποιός, perhaps related somehow to the meaning of something ‘straight, not bent/crooked’?), to a friend or kinsman (Oἰκειόω, ‘to make someone one’s friend/kinsman’).

Further obscuring the power dynamic (or lack thereof) that these cognates may represent, the ‘manager’, or Oikonomos, “Often functioned as the “steward” of a household, and was generally a freedman – i.e. a slave released from forced, legal servitude… (whether free-born, or, as was usually the case, a freed-man or slave) to whom the head of the house or proprietor has intrusted the management of his affairs, the care of receipts and expenditures, and the duty of dealing out the proper portion to every servant and even to the children not yet of age (J. Thayer)”.

Regardless of what relationship Oikeia/Oikea describes during the period when Greeks and Finns would have prehistorically been in contact with each other, the modern terms, in both languages, signify something positive. Modern Greek Οικεία means ‘familiar, personal, intimate’, while Finnish Oikea describes, among other things, correctness and justice. However, the semantics ultimately connecting the two involves that which is “suitable, appropriate, fitting, and proper.” Because of this, the following is constructed in Finngreek:

Suitable/Appropriate/Fitting, Correct/True/Right/Just, Friendly/Intimate/Related/Belonging (to) =
Oikea = Oikea/Oikeia = Οἰκεῖᾰ
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Totopokoon oikeia = This garment is suitable
Tatabaita oikeaa = This shirt fits
Oikeontae? = Is this correct?
Worespoikimehenoikeande vena heiposukaa jon kravaaizdas vena kampolinde =
After (going) through the mountains, go to the right on your horse, if you need to go into town
Kinuothirviion oikeiaan emii = That deer belongs to me
Nomiiseon oikeathirves koju tso kluklada =
In the pasture, there are friendly deer which eat flowers
Oikeiaas favitoemperikle… = You are right about the food…











Finngreek Syntax

The word order of sentences in Finngreek is, like Greek and Finnish, very flexible. The structure is understood by the suffixes at the ends of words. Here are some examples of the free word order in Huve/Hypae:

What drink is this? / Mja pjoma an tåtå?
(å may be o/å/a: totoon/tåtåån/tataan)

Mja pjomaan tåtå?
Mja pjoma tåtåån?
Mjaan tåtå pjoma?
Mja tåtå pjomaan?
Tåtå pjoma mjaan?
Pjomaan tåtå mja?

The last one is pretty unusual, and I would probably never naturally think or say it, but it’s still understandable to read, which underlines the free word order. Let’s try a more complex sentence:

The fruit is made by the tree / Hedloba tehdontae phuthae (fruit made-is tree-from)

Hedloba tehdontae phuthae
Phuthae tehdontae hedloba
Tehdontae phuthae hedloba
Hedloba phuthae tehdontae
Phuthae hedloba tehdontae
Tehdontae hedloba phuthae

In each sentence, the same information is communicated, because Finngreek syntax relies on suffixes, instead of word order. We know that the Hedloba is made by the Phu, because it is Phuthae, with the -thae meaning ‘from’ (as Greek -θε and Finnish -lta). Also, we know that the Hedloba is the object instead of the subject (The fruit is made vs. The fruit makes [from the tree]), because the ending of the Tehd- root is -ontae, which is passive, instead of the active -an suffix.

Now, there is one situation where word order does matter in Finngreek: Simple SVO. Because Finngreek doesn’t have articles (a/the) with cases like Greek – nor a true partitive case like Finnish – direct subject>object in 3rd person may rely on the subject to be placed before the object.

The person eats the food = Ahrava tso rahito
Because the person and food are both in 3rd person, there is no way to determine who is eating whom. If it were “Rahito tso ahrava“, then the food is eating the person.

However, there is one way this sentence can be made flexible: With the -n accusative suffix.

I don’t often use the accusative -n suffix, but it is still useful in situations like this. By simply adding -n to the end of the object (think like -ontae), the sentence order can be free again:

The person eats the food = Ahrava tso rahiton

Ahrava tso rahiton
Rahiton ahrava tso
Tso rahiton ahrava
Ahrava rahiton tso
Rahiton tso ahrava
Tso ahrava rahiton

Now you can make any three-word sentence into 6 options. Poikilia poikitse!

Taking a Break…

Before I started on this journey, I didn’t have much of a goal in mind for what I wanted to do with my life. I was always making music, and that has given me a path to walk, but I never took it too seriously. I usually take a very long time to do things – but I want to be more diligent and ambitious.

For the last 9 months, I’ve been figuring out language patterns between Uralic and Greek, and making Finngreek from it. There have been a lot of sleepless nights trying to understand word relations – and a lot of revisions to the language. Finally, I have the foundation for an auxlang that I feel is (mostly) as etymological and efficient as possible. However, there is still so much left to create and comprehend. I probably only understand a small amount of how big the picture really is.
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My goal in comparing Uralic with Greek has been to establish reasoning for the contact period I propose. My goal in making this new language is so that Finnic and Hellenic peoples can have a new medium, which is unique to them, for enjoying and building a mutual culture. I hope that Finngreek can be used in both social and academic environments some day.

As for me, I am finding the inspiration that was missing from my life, because of this project. When I talk and write in Finngreek, I feel more comfortable expressing myself. I have new ideas about what I want my future to be: And now, I need to devote some time to fulfilling a destiny, and take care of my roots, and create, which I think is my strength and purpose in this world. I hope this will mean I can share more with you all through music, because it is my happy place. I also don’t want to only make music in Finngreek: I want to make music in Finnish, Greek, and many other languages.
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What this means for the subreddit is that I will be posting more general content about Finland, Greece, and other related topics, perhaps more often than I’ll be posting content specifically about the Finngreek language (other than the music I intend to make and share with you all). For my website, posts will be less frequent – but I do encourage all of you reading this on finngreek.com to join the Finngreek subreddit, where there is daily content!

I hope you will all feel free to ask questions about the language, practice with the 21 lessons I’ve made (I will be making “Lesson 22: Animals” soon! The Family and Friends lesson will be online again after some revisions; and I will be making new example sentences for the advanced lessons), and enjoy yourselves in this community.

Our comfy Discord is also growing, so come hang out with us! We talk in Finngreek, Finnish, Greek, and English. Iketoivom otto idonimenete aiona! I hope that you all are always happy.

Variety Throughout = Poikilia Poikitse

I often proclaim “Poikilia Poikitse = Variety Everywhere!” whenever making lessons and posts about Finngreek. The premise is that there is a great amount of variety in the Finngreek language, due to proposed phonological shifts, as well as multiple source words for constructions (which probably ultimately derive from one shared root word between both languages).

In these photographs, we can see a visual reference to what I believe the root “poiki” originally represented: Colorful and changeful woven garments, with variety throughout. I believe that the hypothetical Finngreeks – the coexisting Mycenaean and Proto-Uralic peoples – would have been weaving and wearing garments similar to the outfits pictured in these frescoes. This article goes into detail about the fashion and customs of women in Mycenaean Greece – customs which I propose would have been synchronous with the Late Bronze Age Finngreek contact period.

At the end of Lesson 19, I go into a little more detail about the comparisons of the Finnish and Greek source words for this concept: Ποικιλία, Ποικιλτής<Ποικίλος, and Poikitse/Poikki-. They ultimately result in the Finngreek word Poiki, which describes a weave pattern; variety, change; and figuratively, evolution and metamorphosis. The -poiki case suffix also describes when something is across, or throughout, the suffixed word (eg: Pokopoiki, “through the garment”; Kotopoiki, “across the house”). From these pieces, we get a uniquely Finngreek word:

Poikipoiki = Change throughout

If someone tells you “Poikipoikisae” (You’ve [been] changed throughout), it is a compliment to the variety and evolution of who you are. Poiki always has a positive meaning in Finngreek.
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Poikipoikimae Hypaeklaessaethae = I’ve been changed throughout by the Finngreek language
Ode pokopoikipoikilia = There is variety throughout the garment/fleece
Poikiesiise poljonkaonii! = The change in(to) you is very beautiful!

Attire/Fleece = Puku = Poko = Πόκος

Attire, Fleece (suit, dress, costume) =
Puku = Poko(s)/Poke/Puku = Πόκος/Πόκε/Πόκου
To wear = Pokoo/Pukuu

Pokoom poko poljon = I wear fleece a lot
Pukuum pukumu phutaliase = I wear my attire in the treegarden
Pokoom pokemonepokebaita duulide = I wear a Pokemon shirt to work
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I believe that wool was the primary fabric worn by Finngreeks. According to Iamcountryside, Finland’s own breed of sheep, the Finnsheep, was brought to Europe 2,500 to 3,700 years ago, during the Bronze Age. In order to be synchronous with the proposal of Greeks living in the Finnic areas, sheep would have been living in the area for at least around 3,500 years, with some of them presumably having been brought to the area by Greeks, as sheep agriculture probably started in Mesopotamia between 11,000 and 8,000 BC.

For the ancient Greeks, sheep were the primary livestock, providing wool, dairy, and meat. The significance of wool to the Greeks is well-known in the myth of The Golden Fleece. As for how fleece would have been culturally viewed in the Finngreek times, I can’t say – but I imagine it was a welcome textile during the northern winters. Fleece may have also been the fabric involved in poiki (discussed at the end of Lesson 19), which as a root term, probably originally described weavers making colorful, variegated patterns.

Mind = Mieli = Μielo = Μυαλό

Mind = Mieli = Mielee/Mielii/Μielo, Mielino = Μυελέ/Μυελοί>Μυαλό, Μυέλινος

In Greek the word for “mind” comes from μυελός, which means “marrow.” The original pronunciation was like mueloo/myeloo, but the sound shifted to mialoo in Modern Greek. Variants of this phonology can be seen in the Uralic languages. Finnish mieli is cognate with Moksha mjal’, Komi-Zyrian myl, and Northern Sami miella.

Something else I find interesting is the original meaning of “marrow” for this word. Another word shared by Finnish and Greek, Finngreek (f)Yriin (Ydin+Πυρήν: Core/Kernel/Nucleus), has a Uralic semantic source which likewise means “marrow”. It seems that marrow was mutually identified as the “innermost part” of a being (albeit reconstructed in separate words), and may have held a (pseudo)medical, or even spiritual significance to the peoples of that time, which is not known.

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Mieliiemii ravikaa kluvvase = My mind is colorful in the picture
Kluvvasemieliiemiiravikaa = My mind is colorful in the picture
Mielomu helo tsero poljon ezoeemperi = My mind wants to know a lot about life

Treegarden = Puutarha = Phutarjá = Φυταλιά (Myc. pu-ta-ri-ja)

Tree = *puwe>Puu = PuuluPhu/Fy, Phute, etc. = Φυτή <*phut (Mycenaean pu-te)

Forest, Garden =
Puulubuutara/Buutara/Phutarjá/Fytalia/Phutere/Futaerae/Phutalha, etc… =
Πουλυβότειρα (many-nourishing), Φυταλία/Φυταλιά (tree-garden)
(from Myc. pu-ta-ri-ja and pu-te-re “*planted/cultivated with trees”. See page 86)

In Finngreek, “Forest” and “Garden” are the same word on multiple levels, in the Finngreek spirit of Poikilia Poikitse: Variety Everywhere, with these words perhaps having the most variety anywhere in the language. “Treegarden” is a general translation for a forest and/or garden.
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A friend on the Finngreek Discord server brought the paper linked above to my attention, which was very helpful for me, because up until now, I’ve been using “Puulubuutara” for a comparison, when in reality, there is a much more accurate term with better phonological parallels. In times like this, I am amazed how well the Finnish language (and other Uralic languages) has preserved Mycenaean Greek phonology, oftentimes better than the Greek language itself. Finnish and Greek are both truly amazing languages: And it brings me elation to know that such a positive word – Treegarden – can be such a multitudinous word in the Finngreek language. I have edited Lesson 14 to reflect this “new” information, as well as updating many of the word equations therein, so check it out!

I want to thank everyone who is going on this journey with me. I am so inspired by not only the language itself, but its mysterious history – not to mention the modern-day people who are helping to make this language as etymological and interesting as possible!
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Phutarjáse morjapoikilia poikitse = In the treegarden (is) berry-variety all over the place
Fytaliakluklada raviká! = The treegarden flowers are colorful!
Sympidaem mejeenem phutarjáde hjae kotso psikláphutá =
I like to go into the treegarden and see the tall trees
Poljon aksvi aksvá aiona phutǽmperikle phutarjáse =
Many plant(s) always grow around the trees in the treegarden