The Latin Origins of Romanian Nation. Project realised by: Ion Malina Aursulesei Cosmin Tulcan Mihaela Maioru Radu. Latin elements (Architecture and Paintings).
The Latin Origins
Project realised by:Ion MalinaAursulesei CosminTulcan MihaelaMaioru Radu
No matter what it’s said, in terms of architecture, Romans were the only nation that left their mark on numerous countries in Europe such as France or Spain. In Romania, the Latin influence can be easily recognized from the wide variety of monasteries. The Romanic style was formed in the 10th century and has initially appeared in Cluny, France .What characterizes it, is the massiveness of the buildings, the sober aspect and also the absence of light. For example “Dragomirna Monastery”, as well as the “Catholic Cathedral of Saint Michael’’ are some of the best examples that show the influence of the Romanic style in our country.
Even in the ancient times, we can find different elements that belonged to other Italian nations. However, the Romanic art used the artistic Greek language for design and theories. The “Mosaic’’ is one of the most interesting and used art by the Romans and it was quickly spread in the whole Roman Empire. Until the 2nd century, the mosaics were paint in black and white, but 100 years after, colorful mosaics have started to appear more and more and the whole Empire was covered by special and unique mosaics. These were mainly used for the decoration of buildings or temples. The themes may vary from mythological subjects to scenes from everyday life, also from ornamental to floral design. Some examples of mosaics paintings are: The Venera’s house, the Nero’s gold house located nearby the Colosseum.
The House Iulia Felix, Pompei
Latin elements (Ancient Roma music)
Undoubtedly, there are few things known about the Roman music and its influences. The Romans were not very creative and original when it came to music but they left a wide variety of music instruments, such as: blown instruments and here we can find: the tuba and the cornu. An interesting and unique instrument of the Romans was the cithara, which was played in popular music. From cithara comes our word guitar. For the Romans, listening to music was a sign of education therefore, there were organized a lot of music contests, where even Nero (the 5th Roman Emperor) had once participated. The Romans music influenced most of the countries in Europe such as Spain for example. Nowadays, the Romanians use the term of “Latino music’’ to emphasize the influences of Spain music over the Romanian one.
Playing a cithara
Latin elements (Roman religion)
The traditional religion of the Romans was initially focused on the family, but after few contacts with the Greeks, their customs and beliefs were changing little by little. Romans had strongly believed in Gods, so their life was guided by the wide variety of Gods, considered one of the most essential and vital things for the Romans. The Romans influence in terms of religion in Romania is that, nowadays there are groups of people who belong to the Roman-Catholic religion. The differences between the Roman Catholics and the Greek Catholics are obvious, one of them being the way that the ceremonies are held as well as the difference between the times when the religious holidays take place.
A Roman- Catholic Church
The responsibilities of the central administration were given to the governor of the province and to the provincial gathering. One of the measures that was taken to divide the territory was splitting it into “ager
publicus”, known as public property and “posessio”, known as private property, system which is still valid today. There were also “ager stipendiaris” which were parts of land that were given to the native population in exchange for taxes and services. This form of dividing can be associated with the rental in our days.
Another form of dividing was into large areas of
interest like cities.
Ten people with juridical and administrative rights were given the responsibility of the local administration, or the settings. There were various types of settings, very similar to the form of organization that we still have in Romania:
The colonies (coloniae): Sarmizegetusa, Apullum, Napoca, Drobeta, Romula, Aque, etc.
The cities (“municipii” today): settings with less rights than colonies, where romans with full rights were living.
The villages (vicii & pagii)
Culture and Civilisation
The roman administration was a very rigorous one; its purpose was the quantification of all sources of income in the province. The existence of a public institution “Numeris” permitted the immediate urbanization of the population and the establishment of specific associations of merchants and artisans.
There were two forms of administration: The central administration (or the general one) and the local administration (referred to the administration of small regions like cities, villages, etc, which nowadays remained with the name of “municipii”)
The base of the economy were the ancient economical activities like agriculture, shepherd, apiculture or viticulture, activities which are put in good use in Romania, especially in the high land (mountains) and villages from the low land (planes). The mining, one of the greatest industries of Romania, known for the richness of the underground, was developed in roman times because of their interest in silver, gold, iron, copper, marble, limestone, crude oil and salt. Of course they needed to develop other activities in order to process the extracted materials, so construction industry, smith’s trade, joinery (carpenter), coopery, pottery, leather goods, weaving mill, tailoring, shoemaker’s and so on have appeared. It is known that dacians where masters of these skills.
For example the first coin had the inscription “DACIA CAPTA” (Dacia was conquered) reminding the end of the was with the victory of the Roman Empire, on the other side of the coin there was a woman standing on a cliff with a dacian curved sword beside her. Another type of coin had the inscription “DACIA AUGUST(I) PROVINCIA” proving the establishment of the province within the territory of Dacia. From the infrastructural point of view, Romans built great inventions for the 21st century in Romania. For example the aqueducts – the remaining of an aqueduct from roman times were found in Appulum, nowadays named Alba-Iulia. Another example are the amphitheatres were fights between gladiators and beats occurred for the entertainment of the citizens. Such buildings could be found in Tomis – Constanta or Porolossum – Mirsid, Salaj. Thermae, known as the roman baths, were found in Sucidava – the territory of the present Corabia, jud. Olt.
The greatest improvement in the economy that Romans brought was the monetary system. They were the ones to replace barter with trade. The coins were made of silver and illustrated great events that happened within the empire.
Roman Castra Apullum – Alba-Iulia
Roman Castra Potaissa – the most important monument of Turda city.
Prestigious Romanian and foreign linguists, historians and archeologists have highlighted throughout time dates and documents that place the origin and the character of the Romanian language.
As a result of the wars between the Dacians and the Romans, Dacia was turned into a Roman camp and it stayed like that for 165 years (106-271). The Romanization of the native people has produced quite fast and easy over 2600 inscriptions written in Latin and discovered on our land clearly show this fact. Besides the administrative measures, there are other factors that contributed to the Romanization such as:
The military service in which only young male could have been recruited
Marriages between Roman soldiers and Dacian women, and the babies resulted from their marriages benefited of Roman privileges.
Christianity was spread in Latin: as a certain fact there are keywords from Christianity that make a solid base in Romanian language such as: God (din domine deus), Christian ( din christianus), Church (din basilica), baptism( din baptism), prayer ( don rogationem), priest( din presbiterius), cross( din crucem), sin( din pecatum), angel( duiangelus).
The influence of farmers, workers, merchants, that came in Dacia before the time when Traian started to conquer the province, left us some other words that have a translation in Romanian such as: sat=village( fossatum), a planta=to seed(seminare), grau=wheat( granum), orz=barley( hordeum), legume=vegetables( legumen), in=linen( linum),aur=gold(aurum), argint=silver(aregentum), sare=salt(salem), cal=horse(caballus), vaca=cow(vaca), vita=beef( vitea)
We can speak of a period when people could have used both the Latin and the Dacian language. This was until the final decision of speaking on latin.
In “Dacia felix” the process of Romanization continued after the army and the administration of Rome left in 271 through intensifying the study of latin especially for rural areas. Our language care from a colloquial latin also called “latina vulgaris”. This aspect of latin stays at the beginning of the other romanic languages such as: Italian, Spanish, French, Portuguese and others.
The process stopped in the seventh century. The invasions of migrating populations: goths, gepidae, huns, slavs; influenced the language and modified the main background of vocabulary and grammatical structures of latin origin.
The history that studies the birth of words and structures is called etymology. Using this method, scientists were able to find out how phonetic rules and similarities between Romanian and Latin appeared. Here are some rules that explain the evolution of our language:
1.a “l” between two vocals becomes, in Romanian, a “r”:
lat. filium>fir(wire): lat. gula>gura(mouth): lat. parus>par(hair)
2.every “m”, ”n”, ”s”, and “t” from the end of the word disappear :
3.“b” between two vocals disappears:
The morphology of our language inherits in a good measure the normal latin. Nouns, the adjective with grades of comparison, numerals, verbs with his 4 conjugations
The main background from the Romanian vocabulary in in proportion of 60%-66% of Latin origin. To this percent we can add 100 more words that are isolated(abur=steam, brad=evergreen, barza=stork) and other 2200 words that represent names(Arges,Cris,Dunare=Danube, Motru, Mures, Olt) that came from Geto-Dacians.
The first well-known document written in Romanian is a short letter dating back from 1521 and it is called “The letter of Neacsu from Campulung”. After this date, we have a lot of letters, buying-selling documents, signatures, and from 1540 we have some books that were printed in Brasov