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Nart sagas

Jack Campin 16 Sep 17 - 10:09 AM
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Subject: Nart sagas
From: Jack Campin
Date: 16 Sep 17 - 10:09 AM

This should light up anybody's "my god that's alien" meter.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hEv0Pt2V54I

I think it's Adyghean/Circassian, from the North Caucasus (I was linked to it by the folk instrument maker Anton Platonov, who is living in Adyghea at the moment and regularly posts videos of the place).

The Nart sagas of the Caucasian peoples are rather like the mythology of the ancient Greeks and the Maaori - highly structured stories about interactions between gods and heroes. Gogol used some of them in his "Tales from the Village of Dikanka" - I read that 40 years ago but never thought to place Dikanka on the map, and it didn't click just how un-Russian they were.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nart_saga

The words are enounced very clearly, but I doubt if there is even one syllable of it that doesn't contain a sound foreign to English.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Adyghe_language

And the singing style is weirdly incantatory with nothing that gets close to an identifiable tune. I can't think of any other idiom like it.


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