Did the Franks originate from nowrthwestern Europe, or eastern (Eurasian) Europe?

Dreamhunter

Ad Honorem
Jun 2012
7,486
Malaysia
Most western history-related sites favour a Danish or thereabouts ultimate origin for the Franks. But the interesting thing is that the Persian rendition for Frank is Farangi, and even more intriguing, there is a Turanian princess named Farangis in Uzbek ancient legend. She was daughter of Afrasiyab, a legendary Turanian king, and she married Siavush, son of Iranian king Kay Cavush from a captive Turanian princess.

The Turanian region, BTW, was the ancient playground of those nomadic horsemen warriors the Saka, the Massagetae, the Sarmatians and the Scythians.

I was just wondering, if there cud be something more than this behind that legend.
 
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Nov 2016
1,107
Germany
But the interesting thing is that the Persian rendition for Frank is Farangi, and even more intriguing, there is a Turanian princess named Farangis in Uzbek ancient legend. She was daughter of Afrasiyab, a legendary Turanian king, and she married Siavush, son of Iranian king Kay Cavush from a captive Turanian princess.
The Persian word ´farangi´ is simply an adoption of the Frankish self-designation ´Franks´ and was indiscriminately applied to all European peoples, since most of the crusaders were Franks so that their self-designation became a Persian designation for Europeans, and subsequently a word for ´white people´ in many areas of the Orient, e.g. Thailand. In Malaysia, where you are writing from, the word ´ferringhi´ (rooting in ´farangi´) means ´foreigner´.

As to the princess, this figure had a lot of names, ranging from Vispanfrya (8th century at the latest) and Vasfafarid via Kasifari and Gisfari to Farigis and, in the end, Farangis in the Sahnama texts from around 1,000 CE. ´Farangis´ is seen as a corruption of the name ´Farigis´.

So it is more than improbable that her latest name refers to ´Franks´ and that it indicates a Persian origin of these people. It just phonetically coincides with the Persian adoption of the self-designation of the Franks.
 
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Nov 2015
1,747
Bye, bye
Around 580 A.D, the chronicler Gregory of Tours speaks of a people of Pannonia who would have gone up the Danube then would have settled on the banks of the Rhine, to then invade Gaul.
Therefore it would not have been impossible for part of the same people to migrate in the opposite direction, i.e. south-east.
The Said Germanic peoples emigrated a lot in the periods between 300 B.C and 500A.D.
Pannonia, region which would be that of the origin of the Franks:


Note that the Celts are supposed to originate from about the same region as the Franks (Halstatt) and that their presence is attested in Asia Minor well before the appearance or identification of the Franks by the Latin sources (from 254 A.D under the name of Francs) from the 3rd century B.C under the name of Galatians by the Greek sources.
In yellow in the 6th century B.C. (Halstatt), in light green around 275 B.C:



Another version of the origin of the Franks makes them descendants of the "Trojans" thus of population originating from Anatolia where were installed the Galatians (chronicle of Frederegaire and the Liber Historiae Francorum 725 A.D).
So one can speculate that an early identification or confusion between Franks and Galatians in Persia is not impossible and that it would go back to the 3rd century B.C.
One can also speculate a Galatian population movement from "Galatia" (Ankara region) to Pannonia or the survival of links between the original Celtic tribes, therefore from central Europe, and those who emigrated to Anatolia.
Galatan settlement area:


In addition, it is known that many Franks fought in the Byzantine armies and fought against the troops of the Persian Empire.
It could have fuelled some legends.
 
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Apr 2017
732
Lemuria
Most western history-related sites favour a Danish or thereabouts ultimate origin for the Franks. But the interesting thing is that the Persian rendition for Frank is Farangi, and even more intriguing, there is a Turanian princess named Farangis in Uzbek ancient legend. She was daughter of Afrasiyab, a legendary Turanian king, and she married Siavush, son of Iranian king Kay Cavush from a captive Turanian princess.

The Turanian region, BTW, was the ancient playground of those nomadic horsemen warriors the Saka, the Massagetae, the Sarmatians and the Scythians.

I was just wondering, if there cud be something more than this behind that legend.

Where Did you get the Danish origin? That's for tribes such as the Burgundians. The Franks originated East of the Danube. Not all Germanics were the same or of the same ultimate origin. Germania is a region where different barbarian tribes mingled and eventually formed a more or less common culture. The barbarians could range from Nordic type, Celtic/Gallic type (probably the majority), Hunnic (partly mongoloid), even Iranic (Allans) and others. The Franks origin is more mysterious. All we know they were a very adaptable people that usually integrated into their host culture. Originated somewhere East of the Danube, mixed with the Germanics and ended up as the founder of the French ethnic group.
 
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Dreamhunter

Ad Honorem
Jun 2012
7,486
Malaysia

Dreamhunter

Ad Honorem
Jun 2012
7,486
Malaysia
Another version of the origin of the Franks makes them descendants of the "Trojans" thus of population originating from Anatolia where were installed the Galatians (chronicle of Frederegaire and the Liber Historiae Francorum 725 A.D).
One suggestion that I hv come across is that they were were descended from the Phrygians, who were allies of the Trojans, and kind of migrated (back) to mainlandic Europe after Troy fell. The story was, the Greeks then called them Fraggoi, and that in turn gradually evolved into Frank, as they went further northward & westward. A related tribe called Hatti (likely Hittite, or a close cousin) who migrated along with them then evolved to become the Chatti (which in a Germanic language wud hv quite possibly been pronounced Khatti).

While Galatia is of course a splendid example of how a tribe most widely considered as European, i.e. the Celts, kind of developed a branch in Asia.
 
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Dreamhunter

Ad Honorem
Jun 2012
7,486
Malaysia
So it is more than improbable that her latest name refers to ´Franks´ and that it indicates a Persian origin of these people. It just phonetically coincides with the Persian adoption of the self-designation of the Franks.
Well, very unlikely Persian, becos there was yet no Persia at the time of Afrasiyab. But possibly the regions of the Saka, Massagetae, Sarmatian or Scythian, or an ancestor tribe of either of them, if like Phil1904 suggested a southeastern origin cud be possible.

Yes, Farang is the term still used by Thais to refer to all White foreigners.

The name Feringhi, BTW, is used in older Malay language literature to refer to only the Portuguese (who were the first Europeans to hv reached our shores), but not to any other European people, AFAIK. It might hv been something borrowed from the initial Arabic form for Frank, i.e. Farangi or Faranji.
 
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Nov 2016
1,107
Germany
Well, very unlikely Persian, becos there was yet no Persia at the time of Afrasiyab.
I mean the Persians from the time of the crusades, as I mentioned in my post.

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

Frangistan literally means "Land of the Franks", from Farang which is the Persianized form of Frank plus the suffix -istan coming from the Persian language.

The name of the princess, Farangis, is, as I wrote, a later modification (corruption) of her name ´Farigis´ in a precedent source, and appears only in Persian texts (´Shahnameh´ or ´Shahnama´) from around 1,000 CE:

Shahnama: 1000 Years of the Persian Book of Kings| Explore and Learn | Freer and Sackler Galleries

The name Feringhi, BTW, is used in older Malay language literature to refer to only the Portuguese (who were the first Europeans to hv reached our shores), but not to any other European people, AFAIK. It might hv been something borrowed from the initial Arabic form for Frank, i.e. Farangi or Faranji.
Apart from your insider knowledge, I can only rely on some hints in the net. There it says about the village Batu Ferringhi in the north of Penang Island/Malaysia that its name means "Foreigner´s Rock".

 
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Chlodio

Forum Staff
Aug 2016
4,579
Dispargum
Merovingian scholars consider the Pannonian origin story told by Gregory and the Trojan origin story told by Fredegar to be origin myths. The archealogical record of northwest Germany shows no sudden arrival of new technology or art forms. The Franks emerged as a new ethnic or political identity from among previous peoples who had lived in Northwest Germany for thousands of years.
 

Rodger

Ad Honorem
Jun 2014
6,171
US
Merovingian scholars consider the Pannonian origin story told by Gregory and the Trojan origin story told by Fredegar to be origin myths. The archealogical record of northwest Germany shows no sudden arrival of new technology or art forms. The Franks emerged as a new ethnic or political identity from among previous peoples who had lived in Northwest Germany for thousands of years.
My understanding as well. Linguistically, they spoke Germanic. There would have to have been some kind linguistic shift if the myths reflected history, which means they Franks would have had to have been in NW Europe for some time, similar to the Celts' story.