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Thread: How Germanic Are the Croats?

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    How Germanic Are the Croats?

    This question may seem weird, but it's just about something I noticed in Hitler's Table Talk (a book that has been verified by David Irving, and that I find pretty accurate). At one point, Hitler says that the Croats are more Germanic than Slavic (which is what I thought they were). I've never met a Croatian person in real life, so I'm not sure how Germanic they are or aren't. So that's why I'm starting this thread, to get responses from people who know better.

    Here are the quotes from Hitler's Table Talk:

    The conqueror of a country is forced to adapt himself to the local language. That is why language is not the immovable monument on which a people's characteristics are inscribed. A people's way of eating, for example, is racially more typical ā€” for every man remains persuaded in his heart that his mother is the best cook. When I tasted the soup of the people of Schleswig-Holstein, it occurred to me that the gruel of the Spartans cannot have been very different. In the time of the great migrations, the tribes were the product of ceaseless mixtures. The men who arrived in the South were not the same as those who went away. One can imagine two hundred young Frisians setting out for the South, like a tank setting out across country, and carrying with them men belonging to other tribes. The Croats are certainly more Germanic than Slav. The Estonians, too, have a lot of Germanic blood...
    Here and there, one meets amongst the Arabs men with fair hair and blue eyes. They're the descendants of the Vandals who occupied North Africa. The same phenomenon in Castille and Croatia. The blood doesn't disappear.
    If the Croats were part of the Reich, we'd have them serving as faithful auxiliaries of the German leader, to police our marches. Whatever happens, one shouldn't treat them as Italy is doing at present. The Croats are a proud people. They should be bound directly to the leader by an oath of loyalty. Like that, one could rely upon them absolutely. When I have Kvaternik standing in front of me, I behold the very type of the Croat as I've always known him, unshakeable in his friendships, a man whose oath is eternally binding. The Croats are very keen on not being regarded as Slavs.

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    Interesting. I generally have a good impression of the Croats. They seem to be sort of the 'odd ball' among the former Yugoslavian nations (and I mean that as a compliment). In my opinion, they resemble the Czech (who themselves are Germano-Slavic) more than they do Serbs, for example.
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    When reading that, one should keep in mind their historical relation to Austria-Hungary and their alliance with the Axis in WWII.
    All that is necessary for Evil to triumph is for good Men to do Nothing. ~ Edmund Burke

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    Senior Member Sigyn's Avatar
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    Hitler was very sentimental and sometimes prone to bizarre emotional ideas, that is no news. He liked the Croats and the Croats liked him (they are Catholic and were historically always Austria's allies in the Balkans), so that probably made them "more Germanic" in his mind.

    Fortunately, we at Skadi are more unsentimental and scientific, which is why there is no "Hrvatska" subforum on here, and we do not have to deal with anger-filled Balkan posts.

    Quote Originally Posted by Žoreišar View Post
    In my opinion, they resemble the Czech (who themselves are Germano-Slavic) more than they do Serbs, for example.
    Czechs are Western Slavs. Croats and Serbs are both Southern Slavs.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sigyn View Post
    Czechs are Western Slavs. Croats and Serbs are both Southern Slavs.
    Those classifications are merely based on linguistics, not genetics.

    Take this genetic map, for example;


    Didn't the Ostrogoths settle around present-day Croatia?
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    If one is talking race/blood-affinity, rather than cultural-/linguistic-affinity, then the historical evidence would seem to suggest there are significant pockets among particularly the west slavs and baltic peoples whose majority ancestry could be held common to that which became associated as being & looking 'Germanic' but predated the current or even the historic language borders, as well as groups like the Goths & Gepids in more recent historical times having left remnants in the east who were neither destroyed nor migrated during the Slavs westward & southward push, but instead assimilated to the local dominant language over time.

    I don't have a source handy while mobile, but remember reading there were still little Sprachinseln in the Balkans & SE Europe using Gothic as a church language until it was supplanted by Slavonic, Greek, or Romanian (this is aside from the Crimean Goths, which is a separate case)

    So I'd say the answer to your question could vary a great degree on how you are defining the relevant ethnic & cultural terms & metrics, to some, both Slavs & Germanics however, calling any Slav 'Germanic' would be problematic without a great deal of perceived prevarication - of course I'd have been prone to accepting agreement on the general thrust of his observation & not debating semantics with Hitler

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    Senior Member Sigyn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Žoreišar View Post
    Didn't the Ostrogoths settle around present-day Croatia?
    They settled mostly in Italy (and ruled the place for a while), if I remember right. But there were also large populations in Croatia, yes.

    However, I find the argument from various Balkan nationalists that they are "pure Goth descendants" to be rather absurd (I've heard this from Muslim Bosnians on the internet as well). Most of their genetic stock is native to the Balkans, which is why the South Slavs are predominantly Dinarid and don't visually resemble Poles or Russians.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sigyn View Post
    Most of their genetic stock is native to the Balkans, [...]
    But they also share a lot of ancestry with Scandinavians, according to genetic mapping, no?

    Quote Originally Posted by Sigyn View Post
    [...] which is why the South Slavs are predominantly Dinarid and don't visually resemble Poles or Russians.
    Russians and Poles have assimilated their own share of non-Slavic immigrants. I would hardly use either of them as a reference point for 'pure Slavic' peoples, save for perhaps a few isolated populations.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Žoreišar View Post
    But they also share a lot of ancestry with Scandinavians, according to genetic mapping, no?
    It's certainly not visible if that is the case.
    Please don't confuse the terms "nordid" and "nordic".

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    Senior Member Sigyn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Žoreišar View Post
    But they also share a lot of ancestry with Scandinavians, according to genetic mapping, no?
    That genetic map only shows one Y-DNA strain, and not the entire extent of genetic relationships. I don't doubt that the Balkans have absorbed some Gothic genes, but if one took your map as the entire truth, that would mean I'm more closely related to Croats than to Dutch and Germans.

    Russians and Poles have assimilated their own share of non-Slavic immigrants. I would hardly use either of them as a reference point for 'pure Slavic' peoples, save for perhaps a few isolated populations.
    True, the Russians have absorbed lots of Finn-Ugric genes. Maybe I shouldn't have used them as an example. However, general consensus is that the Western Slavs are the "most Slavic" of all the peoples that belong to this cultural group, with the South Slavs being the "least Slavic" (in fact, I'd place the Balkans in a category of their own). Poles/Czechs/Slovaks are certainly a better reference point for what Slavs are like, than Serbs and Croats.

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