Date: Wed, 22 Nov 1995 09:19:15 -0800 From: Allen Maberry Subject: Re: Turkish Language - Melungeon question (fwd) Both words sound particularly un-Turkish to me, especially "melungeon". No native Turkish phrase, (or Arabic or Persian phrase borrowed into Turkish) meaning approximately "Abandoned by God" remotely approaches the sound of "melungeon". Neither can I find any Turkish word that would yield the pronounciation "gaumy" since there is no "au" diphthong in Turkish nor can I find anything approaching that meaning in Ottoman Turkish, which would assumedly have been spoken when these words were borrowed. Modern Turkish has replaced many common Ottoman words with reconstructed words based on native Turkish roots, so modern reference works will be of little or no use. Webster's 3rd Int. Dict. lists the origin of melungeon as unknown, and speculates that gaum and its relatives as deriving from a dialectical pronounciation of "gum". Both of these suggestions seem much more plausible than a Turkish origin of these words. Also, Mathews' Dictionary of Americanisms gives several interesting quotes on melungeons: 1889 "Boston Trav" 13 Apr. "They resented the appellation Melungeon ... and proudly called themselves Portuguese." 1891 "Arena" III, p. 240 "The Melungeons believe themselves to be of Cherokee and Portuguese extraction." 1940 "American Speech" XV, p. 46 suggests the word derives from the French melange. On gaum, etc., DARE v. 2 p. 642-4 Allen maberry[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE] On Tue, 21 Nov 1995, Daniel S Goodman wrote: > ---------- Forwarded message ---------- > Date: Tue, 21 Nov 1995 00:03:49 -0500 (EST) > From: William Albert Davis > To: Stumper-list > Subject: Turkish Language - Melungeon question > > > In a November 12th edition of the Louisville Courier-Journal there is an > article on the Melungeons (a people of dark complexion and uncertain orgin > from the Tennesee-Kentucky-Virginia border) and it quotes Dr. Brent > Kennedy, author of THE MELUNGEONS, as saying that the word Melungeon "is > Turkish, meaning "Abandoned by God." " > > Is there such an expression in Turkish, and how close is it to sounding > like "Melungeon?" > > He also says that "gaumy" meand "messed up" in Turkish, and that "guamed > up" is an old expression in areas where the Melungeons live. > > Thanks for any insight, > > > Bill Davis wmadavis[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE] > ****************************************************************************** > * William A. Davis * 1424 Arcade Avenue * Louisville * KY * 40215 * > * P.O.Box 337 * Ghent * KY * 41045 * (502) 363-4521 * > ****************************************************************************** >