Geographical sites:

  • Zagros (click here to focus in map) (see also Pleiades #29816)
    Pleiades_icon Zagrus M. mountain Geocontext: Zagros range
    Description: The Zagros Mountains.
  • Armanu (click here to focus in map) (see also GeoNames #112380)
    Geonames_icon Armanū farm Geocontext: Asia/Tehran
    Description: IR

Citations:

Text #9358

"Gutian people", in Wikipedia.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gutian_peop...

The Guti or Quti, also known by the derived exonyms Gutians or Guteans, were a nomadic people of the Zagros Mountains in ancient times. They are often regarded as precursors of the modern Kurds.

Conflict with Gutium or Qutium (Sumerian: Gu-tu-umki or Gu-ti-umki) has been linked to the collapse of the Akkadian Empire, towards the end of the 3rd millennium BCE. The Guti subsequently overran southern Mesopotamia and formed, for several generations a royal dynasty of Sumer.

Sumerian sources portray the Guti as a barbarous and rapacious people from the mountains, presumably the central Zagros east of Babylon and north of Elam (on the border of modern Iran and Iraq). The Sumerian king list represents them as ruling over Sumer for a short time after the fall of the Akkadian Empire, and portrays Gutian rule as chaotic.

Little is known of the origins, language and material culture of the Guti, as contemporary sources provide little information and no artifacts have been positively identified. Gutian names, recorded in a list of Sumerian kings, suggest that Gutian was not closely related to other languages of the region (including Sumerian, Akkadian, Hurrian, Hittite and Elamite). According to the linguists Tamaz V. Gamkrelidze and Vyacheslav V. Ivanov, the Gutian language belonged to the Indo-European language family and was most closely related to the Tocharian languages found later in eastern Central Asia.

The Guti appear in Old Babylonian copies of inscriptions ascribed to Lugal-Anne-Mundu of Adab as among the nations providing his empire tribute. These inscriptions locate them between Subartu in the north, and Marhashe and Elam in the south. They were a prominent nomadic tribe who lived in the Zagros mountains in the time of the Akkadian Empire. Sargon the Great also mentions them among his subject lands, listing them between Lullubi, Armanu and Akkad to the north, and Nikku and Der to the south. According to one stele, Naram-Sin of Akkad’s army of 360,000 soldiers defeated the Gutian king Gula’an, despite having 90,000 slain by the Gutians.

The epic Cuthaean Legend of Naram-Sin of a later millennium mentions Gutium among the lands around Mesopotamia raided by Annubanini of Lulubum during Naram-Sin’s reign. Contemporary year-names for Shar-kali-sharri of Akkad indicate that in one unknown year of his reign, he captured Sharlag king of Gutium, while in another year, “the yoke was imposed on Gutium”.

The Guti appear in Old Babylonian copies of inscriptions ascribed to Lugal-Anne-Mundu of Adab as among the nations providing his empire tribute. These inscriptions locate them between Subartu in the north, and Marhashe and Elam in the south. They were a prominent nomadic tribe who lived in the Zagros mountains in the time of the Akkadian Empire. Sargon the Great also mentions them among his subject lands, listing them between Lullubi, Armanu and Akkad to the north, and Nikku and Der to the south. According to one stele, Naram-Sin of Akkad’s army of 360,000 soldiers defeated the Gutian king Gula’an, despite having 90,000 slain by the Gutians.

The epic Cuthaean Legend of Naram-Sin of a later millennium mentions Gutium among the lands around Mesopotamia raided by Annubanini of Lulubum during Naram-Sin’s reign. Contemporary year-names for Shar-kali-sharri of Akkad indicate that in one unknown year of his reign, he captured Sharlag king of Gutium, while in another year, “the yoke was imposed on Gutium”.

In the first millennium BC, the term “Gutium” was used to refer to the region between the Zagros and the Tigris, also known as western Media. All tribes to the east and northeast who often had hostile relations with the peoples of lowland Mesopotamia, were referred to as Gutian or Guti. Assyrian royal annals use the term Gutians to refer to Iranian populations otherwise known as Medes or Mannaeans; and as late as the reign of Cyrus the Great of Persia, the famous general Gubaru (Gobryas) was described as the “governor of Gutium”.

According to the historian Henry Hoyle Howorth (1901), Assyriologist Theophilus Pinches (1908), renowned archaeologist Leonard Woolley (1929) and Assyriologist Ignace Gelb (1944) the Gutians were pale in complexion and blonde. This identification of the Gutians as fair haired first came to light when Julius Oppert (1877) published a set of tablets he had discovered which described Gutian (and Subarian) slaves as namrum or namrûtum, one of its many meanings being “light colored”. This racial character of the Gutians as blondes or being light skinned was also claimed up by Georges Vacher de Lapouge in 1899 and later by historian Sidney Smith in his Early history of Assyria (1928)

Ephraim Avigdor Speiser however criticised the translation of “namrum” as “light colored”. An article was published by Speiser in the Journal of the American Oriental Society criticizing Gelb’s translation and consequent interpretation. Gelb in response accused Speiser of circular reasoning. In response Speiser claimed the scholarship regarding the translation of “namrum” or “namrûtum” is unresolved. Modern scholars now don’t regard the Gutians as fair skinned for lack of any proof as the only proof was the translation of a word.

The historical Guti have been regarded by some as among the ancestors of the Kurds. However, the term Guti had by late antiquity become a “catch all” term to describe all tribal peoples in the Zagros region, and according to J.P. Mallory, the original Gutians precede the arrival of Indo-Iranian peoples (of which the Kurds are one) by some 1500 years.

In the late 19th-century, Assyriologist Julius Oppert sought to connect the Gutians of remote antiquity with the later Gutones (Goths), whom Ptolemy in 150 AD had known as the “Guti”, a tribe of Scandia. Oppert’s theory on this connection is not shared by any scholars today, in the absence of further evidence, but it persistently shows up in so-called Pro-Aryan media.

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