Aryan Invasion Theory

Discussion in 'Religion & Culture' started by S.A.T.A, Apr 10, 2009.

  1. S.A.T.A

    S.A.T.A Senior Member Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2009
    Messages:
    1,804
    Likes Received:
    451
    Indo-Aryan migration

    The separation of Indo-Aryans proper from Proto-Indo-Iranians has been dated to roughly 2000 BC–1800 BC. The Nuristani languages probably split in such early times, and are either classified as remote Indo-Aryan dialects, or as an independent branch of Indo-Iranian. It is believed Indo-Aryans reached Assyria in the west and the Punjab in the east before 1500 BC: the Indo-Aryan Mitanni rulers appear from 1500, and the Gandhara grave culture emerges from 1600. This suggests that Indo-Aryan tribes would have had to be present in the area of the BMAC (southern Turkmenistan / northern Afghanistan) from 1700 BC at the latest (incidentally corresponding with the decline of that culture).

    The spread of Indo-Aryan languages has been connected with the spread of the chariot in the first half of the second millennium BC. Some scholars trace the Indo-Iranians (both Indo-Aryans and Iranians) back to the Andronovo-Sintashta-Petrovka culture (ca. 2200 BC–1600 BC). Other scholars like Brentjes (1981), Klejn (1974), Francfort (1989), Lyonnet (1993), Hiebert (1998), Bosch-Gimpera (1973) and Sarianidi (1993) have argued that the Andronovo culture cannot be associated with the Indo-Aryans of South Asia or with the Mitannis because the Andronovo culture took shape too late and because no actual traces of their culture (e.g. warrior burials or timber-frame materials of the Andronovo culture) have been found in South Asia or Mesopotamia (see Edwin Bryant 2001). The archaeologist J. P. Mallory (1998) found it "extraordinarily difficult to make a case for expansions from this northern region to northern South Asia" and remarked that the proposed migration routes "only gets the Indo-Iranian to Central Asia, but not as far as the seats of the Medes, Persians or Indo-Aryans" (Mallory 1998; Edwin Bryant 2001: 216). The best evidence, however, is linguistic, 'not' archaeological (see e.g. Hans Hock in Bronkhorst & Deshpande 1999)

    Other scholars see some relationship between the BMAC and the Indo-Aryans. But although horses were known to the Indo-Aryans, evidence for the presence of horse in form of horse bones is missing in the BMAC (e.g. Bryant 2001).

    Asko Parpola (1988) has argued that the Dasas were the "carriers of the Bronze Age culture of Greater Iran" living in the BMAC and that the forts with circular walls destroyed by the Vedic Aryans of the Rigveda were actually located in the BMAC. Parpola's hypothesis has been criticized by K.D. Sethna (1992) and others. Moreover, cultural links between the BMAC and the Indus Valley can also be explained by reciprocal cultural influences uniting the two cultures.

    The Indo-Aryan migration is often compared and associated with the Indo-European migrations, the Indo-Iranian migrations and with other Eurasian nomads. Many scholars also believe that the Dravidian speakers migrated to South Asia from the north-west. Other migrations that are connected with South Asia include the migrations of Ghandari/ Niya Prakrit, Parya and Dumaki speakers, the Indo-Scythians, the Indo-Greeks and the Islamic conquest of South Asia.

    The Vedic Corpus provides no evidence for the so called "Aryan Invasion" of India
    Koenraad Elst



    The dominant paradigm concerning the presence of the Indo-Aryan branch of the Indo‑European language family is the so-called Aryan invasion theory, which claims that Indo-Aryan was brought into India by "Aryan" invaders from Central Asia at the end of the Harappan period (early 2nd millennium BC). Though the question of Aryan origins was much disputed in the 19th century, the Aryan invasion theory has been so solidly dominant in the past century that attempts to prove it have been extremely rare in recent decades, until the debate flared up again in India after 1990. The main attempt to prove the Aryan invasion (presented in Bernard Sergent : Genlse de l'Inde, Paris 1997) uses the archaeological record, which, paradoxically, is invoked with equal confidence by the non‑invasionist school (e.g. B.B. Lal : New Light on the Indus Civilization, Delhi 1997). Here we will consider the sparse attempts to discover references to the Aryan invasion in Vedic literature, and argue that these have not yielded any such finding.

    A first category consists of old but still commonly repeated cases of circular reasoning, e.g. the assumption that the enemies encountered by the tribe with which the Vedic poet identifies, are "aboriginals" (e.g. in Ralph Griffith's translation The Hymns of the Ŗgveda, 1889, still commonly used). In fact, there is not one passage where the Vedic authors describe such encounters in terms of "us invaders" vs. "them natives", even implicitly.

    Among more recent attempts, motivated explicitly by the desire to counter the increasing skepticism regarding the Aryan invasion theory, the most precise endeavour to show up an explicit mention of the invasion turns out to be based on mistranslation. Michael Witzel ("Ŗgvedic History", in G. Erdosy, ed.: The Indo-Aryans of Ancient South Asia, Berlin 1995, p.321) tries to read a line from the "admittedly much later" Baudhayana Shrauta Sutra as attesting the Aryan invasion: "Pr�n ayuh pravavr�ja, tasyaite kuru-panchalah k�sh�videh� ity, etad �yavam, pratyan am�vasus tasyaite g�ndh�rayas parshavo'ratt� ity, etad �m�vasyam" (BSS 18.44:397.9). This is rendered by Witzel as: "Ayu went eastwards. His (people) are the Kuru- Panch�la and the K�sh�-Videha. This is the Ayava (migration). (His other people) stayed at home in the West. His people are the G�ndh�r�, Parshu and Aratta. This is the Am�vasava (group)."

    This passage consists of two halves in parallel, and it is unlikely that in such a construction, the subject of the second half would remain unexpressed, and that terms containing contrastive information (like "migration" as opposed to the alleged non-migration of the other group) would remain unexpressed, all left for future scholars to fill in. It is more likely that a non-contrastive term representing a subject indicated in both statements, is left unexpressed in the second: that exactly is the case with the verb pravavr�ja "he went", meaning "Ayu went" and "Amavasu went". Amavasu is the subject of the second statement, but Witzel spirits the subject away, leaving the statement subjectless, and turns it into a verb, "am� vasu", "stayed at home". In fact, the meaning of the sentence is really quite straightforward, and doesn't require supposing a lot of unexpressed subjects: "Ayu went east, his is the Yamuna-Ganga region", while "Amavasu went west, his is Afghanistan, Parshu and West Panjab". Though the then location of "Parshu" (Persia?) is hard to decide, it is definitely a western country, along with the two others named, western from the viewpoint of a people settled near the Saraswati river in what is now Haryana. Far from attesting an eastward movement into India, this text actually speaks of a westward movement towards Central Asia, coupled with a symmetrical eastward movement from India's demographic centre around the Saraswati basin towards the Ganga basin.
     
  2.  
  3. Auberon

    Auberon Regular Member

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2009
    Messages:
    275
    Likes Received:
    3
    Give links when you post articles from other sites so that others can form an independent opinion.

    The article is clearly biased, no surprise given its from Koenraad Elst.
     
    sasum likes this.
  4. EnlightenedMonk

    EnlightenedMonk Member of The Month JULY 2009 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2009
    Messages:
    3,831
    Likes Received:
    21
    A thread to discuss the Aryan Invasion Theory...

    Maybe its true, maybe it isn't....

    We want you to post your views backed up by possible explanations and possibly research material about the topic...

    But, be ready to defend your points, because we sure will have people on both sides of the divide...
     
  5. Flint

    Flint Senior Member Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2009
    Messages:
    1,583
    Likes Received:
    24
    Aryan Invasion Theory is quite outdated, and no longer widely accepted among archaeologists and historians.

    The more well-developed Indo-Aryan migration theory is generally accepted as of today.
     
  6. ShyAngel

    ShyAngel Founding Member

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2009
    Messages:
    454
    Likes Received:
    6
  7. S.A.T.A

    S.A.T.A Senior Member Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2009
    Messages:
    1,804
    Likes Received:
    451
    The Aryan Invasion theory postulated for the expansion of Indo-Aryan group of languages through the Indian subcontinent has been more or less abandoned by its proponents, in favor of a more sedate theory of gradual migration of Indo-Aryan speakers.......

    However we must remember that most of arguments and inferences presented for the Aryan migration theory(AMT) follow the same contours as the older Aryan invasion theory(AIT),except for the fact that the later concurs that textual and archaeological evidence for the previously proposed invasion theory is glaringly lacking.

    However many Indologists have also rejected the idea that the early Indo-Aryan culture and society represented in the Samhitas and other Vedic literature could have evolved in its extant form outside the Indian subcontinent and brought here to India by various migrating groups.This group,increasing in number,postulates a indigenous origin to the early Vedic culture and authors.

    However one of the biggest obstacles for the indigenous theorists is answering the question that is the genesis of the the great Aryan debate that has dominated the discourse of scholars ,scientists and archaeologists of Eurasia for well over 200 years.How did the number of languages of Asia and Europe,in their antiquity, came to share remarkable similar philology and grammatical structure that today is scientifically represented as the Indo-European group of Language families........

    There is no doubt that ancient languages such as Sanskrit,Latin, Greek and Avesta Iranian had a common origin, which explains their shared philology,but does the common origin of the languages suggests that its speakers too had a common origin and perhaps common ancestral homeland,if yes where was it.

    The migrationists(earlier the invasionist)propose that the Indo-Aryan speakers migrated out of the northern central Asian steppes.While the Indigenists do not yet propose a migration from India,but its obvious that if the Indigenous Aryan theory is to proven true then it must be based on the premise that Aryan language speakers moved out of Indian to other lands that speak the Indo-European languages.........

    The Migration/invasion theory had long run,for well over 100 years,and for non academic layman an established fact and the indigenous theory is only few decades old,but they must be granted the benefit of doubt for the sheer amount of study and material they have been able to present for the case.

    P.S:i had started a similar thread sometime back in the debate section
     
    Kharavela and The Little News like this.
  8. Vinod2070

    Vinod2070 मध्यस्थ Stars and Ambassadors

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2009
    Messages:
    2,553
    Likes Received:
    96
    I read during my early student days that India was called "Aryavrata" during the earlier days and that was mentioned as a "proof" against the AIT!

    True or not, it has been lapped up by some who try to equate the Aryans with the other invaders like Turks, Arabs etc. and claim that they have the same claim to the land as the earlier Aryan "invaders"!
     
  9. Daredevil

    Daredevil On Vacation! Administrator

    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2009
    Messages:
    11,613
    Likes Received:
    5,669
    India Acquired Language, Not Genes, From West, Study Says

    Though this might be relevant to the Indo-Aryan migration theory.


    India Acquired Language, Not Genes, From West, Study Says


    Brian Handwerk
    for National Geographic News
    January 10, 2006

    Most modern Indians descended from South Asians, not invading Central
    Asian steppe dwellers, a new genetic study reports.

    The Indian subcontinent may have acquired agricultural techniques and languages—but it absorbed few genes—from the west, said Vijendra Kashyap, director of India's National Institute of Biologicals in Noida.

    The finding disputes a long-held theory that a large invasion of central Asians, traveling through a northwest Indian corridor, shaped the language, culture, and gene pool of many modern Indians within the past 10,000 years.

    That theory is bolstered by the presence of Indo-European languages in India, the archaeological record, and historic sources such as the Rig Veda, an early Indian religious text.

    Some previous genetic studies have also supported the concept.

    But Kashyap's findings, published in the current issue of the Proceedings of the National Academies of Science, stand at odds with those results.

    True Ancestors

    Testing a sample of men from 32 tribal and 45 caste groups throughout India, Kashyap's team examined 936 Y chromosomes. (The chromosome determines gender; males carry it, but women do not.)

    The data reveal that the large majority of modern Indians descended from South Asian ancestors who lived on the Indian subcontinent before an influx of agricultural techniques from the north and west arrived some 10,000 years ago.

    Most geneticists believe that humans first reached India via a coastal migration route perhaps 50,000 years ago.

    Soon after leaving Africa, these early humans are believed to have followed the coast through southern India and eventually continued on to populate distant Australia.

    Peter Underhill, a research scientist at the Stanford University School of Medicine's department of genetics, says he harbors no doubts that Indo-European speakers did move into India. But he agrees with Kashyap that their genetic contribution appears small.

    "It doesn't look like there was a massive flow of genes that came in a few thousand years ago," he said. "Clearly people came in to India and brought their culture, language, and some genes."

    "But I think that the genetic impact of those people was minor," he added. "You'd don't really see an equivalent genetic replacement the way that you do with the language replacement."

    Language, Genes Tell Different Tales

    Kashyap and his colleagues say their findings may explain the prevalence of Indo-European languages, such as Hindi and Bengali, in northern India and their relative absence in the south.

    "The fact the Indo-European speakers are predominantly found in northern parts of the subcontinent may be because they were in direct contact with the Indo-European migrants, where they could have a stronger influence on the native populations to adopt their language and other cultural entities," Kashyap said.

    He argues that even wholesale language changes can and do occur without genetic mixing of populations.

    "It is generally assumed that language is more strongly correlated to genetics, as compared to social status or geography, because humans mostly do not tend to cross language boundaries while choosing marriage partners," Kashyap said.

    "Although few of the earlier studies have shown that language is a good predictor of genetic affinity and that Y chromosome is more strongly correlated with linguistic boundaries, it is not always so," he added.

    "Language can be acquired [and] has been in cases of 'elite dominance,' where adoption of a language can be forced but strong genetic differences remain [because of] the lack of admixture between the dominant and the weak populations."

    If steppe-dwelling Central Asians did lend language and technology, but not many genes, to northern India, the region may have changed far less over the centuries than previously believed.

    "I think if you could get into a time machine and visit northern India 10,000 years ago, you'd see people … similar to the people there today," Underhill said. "They wouldn't be similar to people from Bangalore [in the south]."
     
    The Little News likes this.
  10. johnee

    johnee Elite Member Elite Member

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2009
    Messages:
    3,474
    Likes Received:
    466
    sanskrit is the oldest lang. spoken at a time when many european lang.s perhaps didnt even have proper grammer. the theory that india acquired lang from europe is difficult to fathom.

    PS: I havent read the entire report. just replied after reading the heading.
     
  11. Flint

    Flint Senior Member Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2009
    Messages:
    1,583
    Likes Received:
    24
    Nobody is saying that India acquired any language from Europe (except perhaps some neo-nazis)
     
    spikey360 likes this.
  12. EnlightenedMonk

    EnlightenedMonk Member of The Month JULY 2009 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2009
    Messages:
    3,831
    Likes Received:
    21
    In fact, a lot of people are saying that a lot of the European languages can trace their roots back to Sanskrit...
     
  13. Daredevil

    Daredevil On Vacation! Administrator

    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2009
    Messages:
    11,613
    Likes Received:
    5,669
    Johnee, studies tell us that Sanskrit and European languages have evolved from a common Proto-Indo-European language and till date no body knows what language it is.
     
  14. Daredevil

    Daredevil On Vacation! Administrator

    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2009
    Messages:
    11,613
    Likes Received:
    5,669
    Indian Upper castes more similar to Europeans than Lower castes - Genetic Study

    For maternally inherited mtDNA, each caste is most similar to Asians. However, 20%-30% of Indian mtDNA haplotypes belong to West Eurasian haplogroups, and the frequency of these haplotypes is proportional to caste rank, the highest frequency of West Eurasian haplotypes being found in the upper castes. In contrast, for paternally inherited Y-chromosome variation each caste is more similar to Europeans than to Asians. Moreover, the affinity to Europeans is proportionate to caste rank, the upper castes being most similar to Europeans, particularly East Europeans. Analysis of these data demonstrated that the upper castes have a higher affinity to Europeans than to Asians, and the upper castes are significantly more similar to Europeans than are the lower castes. Collectively, all five datasets show a trend toward upper castes being more similar to Europeans, whereas lower castes are more similar to Asians.

    http://evolutsioon.ut.ee/publications/Bamshad2001.pdf
     
  15. jackprince

    jackprince Turning into a frog Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2009
    Messages:
    2,461
    Likes Received:
    2,533
    Location:
    Seema Andhra
    When I studied history in my school and college years I never heard of Indo-Aryan Migration theory, but of Aryan invasion theory. Any how what I've learnt is that Harappa and Mohenjodaro was NOT an Aryan civilization. The early indus-valley civilization didn't have horses, didn't know use of iron etc.

    So this sudden change of theory is tad confusing to me. I don't know much, but in today's india we find many people whose physical attributes are blend of many roots - Mongolic, Aryan, afro etc. Particularly in northern and north-eastern india, people have a very good likeness to aryan root, but in eastern india mongolic attributes and southern india others are more prominent.

    If Aryans were native of Indian sub-continent, wouldn't there have been more presence in other parts of india as well? If they migrated from India, why didn't they go south at all?

    Also, Veda, Upanishad etc has many resemblance to Old testament of Jews, which may indicate that there root can be same. Like Noah's ark to Matsavatar.

    Also, Veda doesn't speak about deities which was present in earlier indus valley civilization as different totems and likely blended with Aryan religion when Aryan's got in touch with Indus Valley civilization.

    Anyway these new theories in my opinion is same as the theory that Buddha's origin was in Ukraine (or something, can't remember properly).
     
    Waffen SS likes this.
  16. jackprince

    jackprince Turning into a frog Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2009
    Messages:
    2,461
    Likes Received:
    2,533
    Location:
    Seema Andhra
    So? It actually supports Aryan Invasion theory. 'cause the invaders , when they win and become rulers, naturally acquire the higher rank.
     
  17. Auberon

    Auberon Regular Member

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2009
    Messages:
    275
    Likes Received:
    3
    I believe the Aryan Invasion Theory to be most accurate, but to debate I'd have to go digging on old grad school notes ......
     
  18. S.A.T.A

    S.A.T.A Senior Member Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2009
    Messages:
    1,804
    Likes Received:
    451
    As a matter of fact extensive genetic studies in the recent years have more or less concluded that the subcontinent has not witnessed any major gene flow for a long time and certainly not in the middle of the bronze age,which is the period of the Indo-aryan contention...



    Please read the entire report Here
     
  19. tito

    tito New Member

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2009
    Messages:
    19
    Likes Received:
    0
    But its is quite interesting then, that they never went further south...
    As far as my knowledge goes, the Aryans who 'invaded' were Scythians tribes
     
  20. Flint

    Flint Senior Member Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2009
    Messages:
    1,583
    Likes Received:
    24
    I think the challenge will be to reconcile the linguistic theories with the genetic studies.
     
  21. Daredevil

    Daredevil On Vacation! Administrator

    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2009
    Messages:
    11,613
    Likes Received:
    5,669
    Any given day, I will give precedence to 'genetic studies' over other theories because they don't lie and cannot be manipulated, while on the other hand if one has to take into account 'linguistic theories' there is lot of scope for manipulation and hyperboles without any clinching physical evidence.
     

Share This Page