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Thread: bad wording in the province description for Ikoranda Piktonis

  1. #1
    Member Member magnificent walrus's Avatar
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    Default bad wording in the province description for Ikoranda Piktonis

    Each province has a building whose only purpose is to show a description of the province in its building description. The building descriptions display text from .../ebii/data/text/export_buildings.txt
    The first two paragraphs of the "History" section of the province description for Ikoranda Piktonis are
    The history of this region is long, stretching as back to its first settlement by the genus Homo by Homo neanderthalisensis, almost 200 000 years ago. But the arrival of Indo-European languages and farming marks the beginning of the history of Ikoranda Piktonis.

    Indo-Europeans are the source of the majority of modern European and Asian languages, with the exception of Basque and Finnish in Western Europe. They are reputed to have migrated from an area around Iran and Northern India to travel as far west as Ireland, leaving behind both language and belief systems that would evolve into Celtic by 1000 BCE. These languages were driven into extinction by the Roman conquest of Western Europe, delivering the killing blow to Gaulish, Galatian, Celto-Iberian among others. Only in the far western strongholds did these languages survive, leaving Welsh, Gaelic and Irish to survive into the present.
    which I would like to criticize.

    What does it mean by marking the beginning of the history of the region? It's not that their arrival brought farming or writing (and hence the end of prehistory of the region) and my guess is it only means that the author wants to fast-forward to that time, which is understandable but it should've instead explained that it is fast-forwarding because the region's inhabitants were Celtic farmers in the game's time frame.
    By the way, also including the time of the earliest arrival of Homo sapiens that have living descendants today would be nice.

    The first sentence of the second paragraph was my main concern, actually. Does it say that Indo-Europeans are the majority in Eurasia or in both Europe and Asia separately; because I think they are not the majority in Asia (and perhaps not even in Eurasia). If it means the number (variety) of languages instead of the number of speakers, then I have to say that dialect/language distinctions and dialect continuums pose problems to this comparison and it is not clear from the text that this is meant.
    Another thing is I believe that using the word "majority" implies that you can find Indo-Europeans in most places in Europe and Asia, whereas in most places they are either the vast majority or virtually nonexistent among the natives (in East and Southeast Asia). A better wording would be "Indo-Europeans comprise the majority of Europe and the western half of Asia (both today and in the game's time frame), ...".
    Also, the exceptions provided are not exhaustive but it is worded to this effect. And Finland is far from Western Europe, while a much more prominent and westerly example would be its cousin Hungarian. If the list is meant for the whole of Europe (hence the inclusion of Finnish), then other Uralic languages and perhaps the ones in Caucasus should be mentioned, too.

    I strongly believe in the Kurgan hypothesis, that they spread from the Pontic steppe; I'm not even sure the place of origin mentioned in the text is supported by any of the mainstream hypotheses. Or, does the word "reputed" here means that the people of Western Europe in the game's time frame believed that their origin was there (and that they were aware of the wider language family)?
    "leaving behind" is a strange wording, isn't Celtic just one of the main subdivisions of Indo-European? And the text reads like the whole of Indo-European evolved into Celtic (Again, because the wording is bad.), while only Proto-Celtic evolved into Celtic and then spread around.
    Also, I believe that using phrases like "driven to extinction" and "delivering the killing blow to" gives the impression that the process of language change was solely by military force, which is not how socio-political forces of change generally work.
    Again, due to bad wording it gives the impression that Galatian was spoken in Western Europe.
    "far northwestern" instead of "far western" would be more accurate and descriptive.

    Sorry if this post was unnecessarily long, I certainly could keep it shorter but I usually try to give all the details I can think of from the get-go in written communication.
    Last edited by magnificent walrus; 04-29-2017 at 03:27. Reason: correction

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  2. #2
    master of the wierd people Member Ibrahim's Avatar
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    Default Re: bad wording in the province description for Ikoranda Piktonis

    Don't be sorry about being detailed.

    Actually, I have to agree with you on this one: the Indo-Europeans likely did originate from the Yamnaya culture on the Pontic Steppes--the essence of the modern Kurgan hypothesis. The presence of Indo-European words for domesticated horses would support that, when combined with the estimated age (~5-6000 years old).
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  3. #3
    COYATOYPIKC Senior Member Flatout Minigame Champion Arjos's Avatar
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    May 2010
    Prisoners upon this rock, flying without wings...

    Default Re: bad wording in the province description for Ikoranda Piktonis

    All was written by a fan helping the team in the province descriptions' thread, Brennus our Keltic coordinator reviewed it, but he isn't focused on indo-european studies tbh...

    Editing eventually will be needed for such entries. Overall it isn't even a given that IE migrations went so early as far as Ireland, at least as far as I know archaeology there doesn't support such large movements. In the case of Brythonic it seems more likely that acculturation by the locals caused them to adopt Keltic languages, either due to trading or a small change in the elite...

    And yes the homeland near Iran and Northern India is a better candidate for the Indo-Iranian (the infamous Aryans) group, but not for the whole IE languages and peoples...


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