method of dating RV, III

George Thompson thompson at JLC.NET
Wed Oct 14 17:10:34 UTC 1998

In response to the question of Erik Seldeslachts:
>I agree that the name kanIta may be Iranian, but can somebody explain me
>on what base
>it may be specified as being Scythian in such an early period as that of
>the RV ?
The suggestion that the name kanIta [inferred from the patronymic kAnIta'
at RV 8.46.21 & 24] was Scythian was first made by Karl Hoffmann
[Aufsaetze, 1975], on the basis of comparison with the Scythian name
kan'itEs, ka'nitos [attested in Herodotos?]. It has been cited several
times by Witzel, perhaps even on this list, in the extended discussion of
"methods of dating the RV" [I haven't been able to check]. See also
Mayrhofer KEWA under kAnIta'H. I agree with Mayrhofer that the suggestion
is "unsicher" [the assertion cited by ES is no doubt too strong], but given
the supporting evidence I think that the suggestion has a good chance of
being valid.

As for the question whether Scythians were contemporary with the RV Aryans,
see for example the chapter on the "Scyths" by T. Sulimirski in *The
Cambridge History of Iran*, vol 2 [1985]. There is no reason known to me to
think that they wouldn't have been contemporaries, likely to have had some
contact with each other.

Best wishes,


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