Toponyms in Linear Texts: to

· Toponyms, Trade Destinations | de.di | ] | | |

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HT 117 (HT Scribe 9)

  • †ダネ口 (daneguchi) | †the Danube (river) as passage
    • | prob. from PIE *dānu | river
    • ku.ti | 口 (kuchi or guchi) | (1) entrance, exit; door, gate; (2) mouth, opening (i.e. beginning);  (3) †gateway, passage

[the Danube (Europe)]

Witzel [2005:93] states that “[it] is well known that place names, especially names of (larger) rivers, are very conservative. Even today they may reflect languages spoken many thousands of years ago.” His examples include the Danube, from L. Danubius < PIE *dānu. (river).  Cf. also the Eridanus (Gr. Ἠριδανός) in Italy.  Kuchi (or guchi) is a common Japanese suffix that is appended to river names. Ancient writers provide information about how the Danube delta has changed throughout history. While –ku.ti “gate” (i.e. mouth) is plausible, it is doubtful that the Minoans ended their journeys there. Dayton [1971: 60] states that the Danube and tributaries “constitute the shortest and easiest highway between Europe and the Near East. . . .” The Danube begins in Germany and passes though 10 countries before it enters the Black Sea on the Romanian coast. Among its principal ports are Belgrade, Budapest, and Vienna. McDonald [1967:378] confirms that “trade goods [have] emerged far inland in eastern and central Europe, generally north of the Danube and stretching from Hungary to Czechoslovakia.” Consequently, -ku.ti “gate” is more plausibly interpreted as the “gateway” (i.e. passage) to Europe.


  1.  Ret. on 08 Apr 2012.
  2. The Danube Delta in Ancient Writings. Ret. on 24 Feb 2012. <>.

Entry added on 8 Apr 2012
Updated on 16 Oct 2015 * 26 Aug 2016


HT 94 (HT Scribe 9)

  • 出路 (deji) | † a route for coming and going
  • デジ (deji) | Dej

Dej  [Romania]

Located in northwestern Romania, modern Dej lies at the confluence of the Somesul Mare and Somesul Mic rivers and at the crossroads of important highways.  The Romans are known to have mined the salt in the area.  However, the area’s significance to the bronze-aged Minoans is not clear. Nevertheless, the surname, 出路 Deji, underscores Dej’s importance as a major commercial crossroad.


  1. Dej.  Ret. on 09 Jan 13.

Entry added on 27 Jul 2013
Updated on 16 Oct 2015


] ► PH 1 (PH Scribe unknown) ► HT 98 (HT Scribe unknown)

  • | ジレ (jire) | Zile, Turkey
  • | 寺内 (jinai) | inside a temple

Zile, Turkey

Evidence suggests that Zile, located in north-central Turkey, has been inhabited since the neolithic age. Among Zile’s alternate names are Zela and Silla, which mean respected. According to Strabo, Zile was founded by the Assyrian queen, Semiramis, in the ninth-century BCE. Moreover, historians indicate that, by the end of the fourth-century BCE, Zile belonged to the ancient temple state of Pontus under Persian rule, which lasted for about 200 years. The Zela castle, which was built by Roman commander Lucius Cornelius Sulla, perhaps during the first-century BCE, houses the Amanos temple. Despite the historical record, the Minoan record seems to indicate that Zile’s temple history predates the city’s “founding” by 600 or more years.

It should be noted that PH 1 and the Phaistos Disk were concurrently discovered in Room 8 in the northeast corner of the Phaistos palace. The scholarly view that the Phaistos Disk is an import is supported by the manner of the disk’s storage and, perhaps, by the inscription on the accompanying tablet. It is possible that the disk was brought home as a “souvenir” during a trip that included a stop in or near Zile, Turkey, and that it was treated as little more than a curiosity.

  1. Lucius Cornelius Sulla. Ret. on 18 Oct 2011
  2. Phaistos Disk. Ret. on 06 Jan 2013.
  3. Pontus. Britannica. com. Ret. on 18 Oct 2011.
  4. Semiramis. Ret. on 18 Oct 2011.
  5. Zile. Ret. on 18 Oct 2011.

Entry added on 21 Dec 2011.
Updated on 07 Jan 2013.

HT 93, 102 (HT Scribe 5)

  • ジリナ (jirina) | Zilina

Zilina [Slovakia]

Situated at the confluence of the Vah and the Kysuca rivers in northwestern Slovakia, Zilina has been inhabited since the Stone Age; however, not much is known about its history before the fifth century CE.  The Vah River is a tributary of the Danube in southern Slovakia. Cf.  Albanian vau “ford”; see Dardan Leka’s comment below, as it pertains to de.di above. See also

Entry added on 5 March 2017


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  1. Je suis tout a fait d’accord; il est fort possible que ce nom corresponde au toponyme, Deji qui, je crois, signifie “le large”, une référence à une rivière ou à la mer. En Albanie, Vaû i Dejés est un toponyme qui signifie “le fleuve ce gonfle pendent les moisson”.

    Pour moi, les toponymes en Grèce sont de la langue Polonaise; par exemple, Thésprotie (Thesprotia), de “chez”+ sprotija “l’étage”; les montagnes elever comme si on monte dans les étages.

    I totally agree; it is quite possible that this name corresponds to the toponym, “deji”, which, I believe, means “the wide”, a reference to a river or to the sea. In Albania, Vaû i Dejés is a toponym that means “the river swells during the harvest”.

    For me, the toponyms in Greece are of the Polish language; for example, Thésprotia, from “chez” + sprotija “the floor”; the mountains rise as though we are climbing the floors.

    • Your observation regarding Thesprotia is interesting, especially in light of the phonetic similarity between Greek τέ and Fr. chez, which may be loosely translated as “at”. However, I believe that τέ should be treated as the article “the”, so that a reference to “the floor” may be regarded as “the foot of the mountain”.

      Also, compare Albanian vau “ford” to the Vah River of Slovakia; see above.

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