On Mon, 16 Jun 1997 15:06:59 +0000 Raimund Karl
<[log in to unmask]> writes:
>> Date: Sat, 14 Jun 1997 05:04:22 -0400
>> From: Susan Harris <[log in to unmask]>
>> Ah, now, we're getting somewhere. You say those 'Welsh forts'
>>turned out to be Native American mounds. Conclusively? What's your
>On the contrary, what's the source for them being Welsh forts? Which
>were excavated and what finds that could be linked to Welsh finds
>were made? And how similar in construction and layout were they
>to Welsh forts? To Welsh forts of which date?
>The point is that the likelyhoood for these allegedly "Welsh" forts
>to be Native American constructions of some kind is much more likely
>then them being actually Welsh forts. So the conclusive evidence
>should be brought forward to show that they are Welsh forts, and not
>the other way round.
>Even more, what are Welsh forts? By the time Madog allegedly left for
>America, in the late 12th century, the Welsh built castles, at least
>if they were nobles. Castles which at least had been influenced by
>early Norman castle architecture. Madog would have been a
>contemporary of Henry II. and Richard I.. He probably would have
>known, maybe would even have been a relative of Giraldus Cambrensis,
>who travelled through Wales in 1188 and left us an extant document
>about Wales and the Welsh.
Excellent points. Just to play devil's advocate, though, would Madoc and
his merry band build Norman-styled/influenced castles, or, like most of
the colonists did...in the 16th Century...build out of earth and wood?
Having said that, I yield to your points above...because they make a very
necessary point. I am reading Richard Allan Fox, Jr.'s "Archaeology,
History, and Custer's Last Battle". I quote from that book because his
point is germane to this discussion..."A disturbing reaction to
archaeological investigations at the Custer battlefield (and to other
historical archaeological endeavors) has been the use of archaeological
data as mere appendages to history. Some Custer battle historians...have
attempted to find reflections of the historical record in archaeological
findings. In doing so, they have tended to use the material selectively.
This...guarantees that archaeology will serve merely as endorsement to
one's favorite interpretation over another's. Furthermore, such an
approach is inherently faulty because it misuses archaeological data by
failing to consider the contextual significance of material remains. In
archaeology, context is paramount; the meaning of one fact, one artifact,
cannot be fully understood without reference to all others."
Fox's caution applies equally well to both the language and the "physical
evidence" elements here I think.
> >I think probably all languages have borrowed words and made them
>Yes, and would any of such loanwords exist in Mandan, doubtlessly some
>linguists would already have detected them. You know, you can become
>famous as a linguist if you detect such a connection.
Again, major good point.
>And what cultural features are those the Mandans borrowed from the
>Welsh? Anything specifically Welsh, which is really typical for Wales
>In fact, I'd rather be surprised if Madoc's people joined with the
>Mandan and still there wasn't found a single piece of good evidence,
>like, say, a 12th century spearpoint from Iron, a longsword, a piece
>of pottery, a piece of jewellery, anything. Such an object would
>be that extremely different from anything to be found in America that
>it could not simply be ignored. But nothing. I mean, if Madoc moved
>there with some hundred armed men, they should have left at least a
>little bit of their equipment to find for us. Or did they throw away
>all their earthly posessions when they left Wales?
Okay...the story, as I've heard it has Madoc's merry band essentially
wiped out in a major battle somewhere in the Ohio Valley...perhaps
Northern Kentucky...and the survivors joining with the Mandan.
Too...it's possible that the Mandan were at this point in the Ohio
Valley. So the evidence...12th century spearpoint from iron, longsword,
etc....would probably be there. Still, there is that improbable scene in
"Dances With Wolves" [Improbable, though, only because the People in the
film were changed from the People in the book...had these still been
Comanche, rather than Lakotas, the scene would have not been
improbable.The Comanche met the Spanish...the Lakota didn't.] where Ten
Bears, the chief, takes out a treasured object, a Spanish morion [crested
helmet]. One would expect that, as an addition to Ray's postulation
above, some similar object would have found its way into Mandan
hands...especially if they were taking in the survivors of a particularly
fierce battle that essentially annihilated their party.
But...went to the library today and asked them to get Richard Deacon's
book...also a book titled "Madoc: the making of a myth..." published in
the mid to late 80's...and a publication from around the turn of the
century titled "Madoc; and the discovery of America...". Let's see what
they have to say.