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November 24, 2020

 

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Roma and Travellers of Turkey

Turkey, 31.1.2007 19:00, (http://www.cingeneyiz.org)

There are Roma and Travellers for long years in the region where Turkish Republic has today. In the historical texts of Byzantine, members of a denomination called Athingano i are mentioned. These denomination members are used to support themselves by mysterious arts like fortune-telling and sorcery. They have some serious problems by the Church. Some claims that this group is not really Cingene (Cingene is a word which is used by turkish people to call both Roma and Travellers. And also many of Roma and Travellers use this word to identify themselves in Turkey ). As oppose to this claim, there is an agreement about that Turkish version of the word gypsy, namely Çingene, is originated from the word Athinganoi. The same word is used by different versions like Tsigan, Zingari in different languages. (1)

In the 11.century, a Georgian saint mentioned Athinganois in his biography. In this biography, an emperor called Monomakhus who has a problem with wild animals killing his own preys is narrated. As a solution to this problem the emperor wants helpings of a public which is called Adsincani and is famous with sorcery and soothsaying in Samiriye. (2)

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Ali Mezarcioglu
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