Beneath the Dust of Time: A History of the Names of Peoples and Places

Beneath the Dust of Time

Battlebridge Publications, London & Colombo
(Sri Lanka), 2009

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Beneath the Dust of Time is an unconventional combination of history and the etymology of names. It was inspired and guided by two new paradigms. The first is the “Sahara hypothesis” which postulates a historical migration from North Africa to Europe, the Middle East and Central Asia thousands of years ago, when the end of the last Ice Age led to the emergence of the Sahara Desert in North Africa and to a retreat of the glaciers in Europe. The second is a radically new view of the history of the languages conventionally classified as Indo-European and Semitic. Almost all studies of ancient history ignore the origins of the names of the peoples and places that determined its course. This book is different. It aims to explain the origin and meaning of the names of peoples (e.g. Greeks, Germans), countries (e.g. Spain), continents (Europe, Africa), seas (Baltic), mountains (Alps, Pyrenees), rivers (Nile, Rhine, Danube), and cities (Rome, Babylon). These names are generally extremely old, and many can be traced back to migrants who had fled from their desertifying homeland in North Africa and who spoke non-Indo-European languages such as Etruscan. “Pauwels has written a book for the general public, but historians, geographers, and linguists will also benefit from reading it (…). [He] is a scholar who knows how to tell an intriguing story. Too few of his colleagues possess that talent.” Wim de Neuter, Uitpers Webzine.

One comment

  1. Dr. David Lewis- Baker, retired associate professor of politics at University of Warwick, and former visiting professor at the University of Cincinnati.

    I have just finished your excellent Beneath the Dust of Time, and I must congratulate you on sustaining such a complex and original narrative across so many millennia! It is an astonishingly eclectic work and you display a fine grasp of linguistics and European history.

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