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Volume 1508

Den Valdron
Part of the Exploring Barsoom Series


Burroughs and the Barsoomian Language, is there any point?
Tribes of Barsoom
What about 'Tur'?
Yellow Man Mojo
Location, Location, Location

Theoretically, different words will have different meanings. In a practical sense, however, the English language is full of synonyms.  Words which have the same meanings but are different words. Alternately, English is also full of homonyms, basically, words which sound exactly the same, but have different meanings.

Further, words continually branch out and modify with context and usage. Thus, Herd gives us Shepherd.  Ward gives us Warden and Guard.  The fact is that over time, the meaning and pronunciation of a word may evolve so that it becomes a completely new word, with a use and a pronunciation quite different from its forebear.  For instance, the 'departure' word, Goodby is actually an evolution of the medieval phrase 'God be with you' or 'God-be'. Nowadays, we say Goodby all the time, and don't even think in religious terms about it.   English is just lousy with this kind of thing, and other languages have it too. There are several forms of humour, including Wit, Word-play and Punning that are based on exactly this.

As far as evolving language goes, consider the English word 'Car' which now refers to automobile. It also refers to a railroad conveyance.   Previously, 'car' referred to sort of wheelbarrow, a wheeled device, but that meaning is now almost antique and out of use.

It was rooted in the word 'Cart'   'Cart' gives us the name 'Cartman', remember South Park? It also gives us 'Carter' (Man who carts). And the French, Cartier. 

Similar to Cart is 'Carriage,' which has at least  three meanings. A form of conveyance, a manner of walking or posture and a machine part for holding and shifting another part.   Both versions of 'Car' and 'Cart' and Carriage seem related to the verb 'Carry'. 

And in fact, Carry may also relate to 'Carafe' which is a glass container.   And of course, your carry your carafes as cargo in a cart which is in a 'caravan.   Note that there are two separate meanings for the word Caravan. In England, it is a mobile home or trailer, in other usage, it is a sort of camel train.  Meanwhile, for exotic relatives of Car, there is Cartoon and Caricature, for the artistically employed, Carryon for the traveller or the jokester, cartography for the map makers.

Now, notice that all of these words seem in some way connected with transportation, with moving something or someone from one place to another. There seems to be a cluster of shared meaning around many words that start with 'car.'

Based on this, we might, hypothetically work our way backwards into the English, even to languages ancestral English and come up with the conclusion that at one point, there was a word named 'car' or containing ‘car’ as a critical root, that was used to describe, not an automobile, but a journey or action... and from which all these other 'car' words evolved.

But you can do this sort of exercise yourself.   Open up any dictionary. I opened a page randomly and started on Car.

A word about English though. Because there was not standardized spelling, because of different phonetic accents, and because of words coming in from different languages, working from the dictionary will ever only give you partial results. Related words can have inconsistent spellings or pronunciations.

Exactly which side of the argument are you on. Feast and Fast are both words which relate to eating, either in abundance or denial. From these two, we might infer a common origin. Rabies and Rabid comes from Rabbits. Hand and Abund relate to possession... and so on.

Accents may radically change the sound or pronunciation of words.   Hungarian, for instance, seems to have tended to transpose the ‘v’ and ‘w’ sounds, so Bela Lugosi went around saying things like,   ‘I am wery sorry, but I vant to drink the blood of wirgins.’

Closer to home, we have the American southern accent.   The phrase ‘you all’ in pronunciation becomes a word, ‘yawl’.   An ‘I’ is softened to an ‘Ah’ and often the ‘r’ or ‘t’ drops off the end of the word.  So what you get is, “If yawl don mind, ah would ratha be home.’

What this means, of course, is that comparatively simple words can mutate over time.  Consonants soften or harden, vowels elongate, the middle drops out or the end of a word drops off.   Things may be added on. 

Not only the pronunciation of a word may evolve, but that meaning can evolve as well.  Sometimes this leads to a new word.  Sometimes a word may be changed or added to or subtracted from in order to give it a new or a related meaning.

Language changes over time, and the way that words are pronounced varies in different areas. Consonants soften or harden, vowels elongate, the word may be recognizable, but sound quite different through different accents. Over time, the word itself may drift into two different versions from the original root.  Linguists look for similarities in words in different languages, to basically conduct archeology, working their way back to root words, and tracing the evolution of the culture.   So, let's apply it to Barsoom.

This sounds like game playing, but actually, it can be deadly serious.  There is an entire field of linguistic archeology which attempts to dig back to the roots of language, carefully examining words in different languages to discover relationships or similarities, and ultimately, to trace back to previous or root languages.

For instance, taking a leaf from Jared Diamond's ‘Guns Germs and Steel’ the word for ‘sheep’ is similar in many Indo-European languages:   ‘Avis’ (Lithuanian), ‘Avis’ (Sanskrit), ‘Ovis’ (Latin), ‘Oveja’ (Spanish), ‘Ovtsa’ (Russian), ‘Owis’ (Greek) and ‘Oi’ (Irish).  In English, a female sheep is a ‘Ewe’.   Comparison of sound shifts in other words over both time and locations suggest that there was an original word for sheep, ‘Owis’ from which the other words evolved.

So, what I propose to do here is to take Burroughs Barsoom, and conduct a similar exercise, in an attempt to deconstruct a little bit of the language.   In particular, since modern Barsoomian is helpfully translated into English by John Carter, we can assume that many of the non-English terms, such as place names, personal names, etc., may be archaic Barsoomian.   The prior language or languages of ancient Barsoom, and deconstruct that.   Along the way, we might be able to make a few guesses at the history and culture of ancient Barsoom, how different tribes or races emerged and moved.

Burroughs and the Barsoomian Language, is there any point?

Let me admit, this is really a pointless effort.  Barsoom is a fictional civilization.  Barsoomian is a fictional language.   And archaic or ancient Barsoomian is doubly fictional, it's a fictional backstory to a fictional present.   So obviously, there isn't that much to do.  Burroughs wrote what he wrote, he made it all up, so why go further.

Well...  Because its fun?

Actually, Burroughs seems to have been a bit of an amateur linguist. In Tarzan the Terrible, for instance, he actually wrote and appended a Pal-ul-don language glossary. Moreover, he used his terms and 'Don' language accurately and consistently through Tarzan the Terrible.

Of course, that's one novel, so that may not be saying much. On the other hand, Burroughs also used his Martian terms and martian language consistently through is Martian series. He didn't change his form of greeting from Kaor! to Kaboba! from one book to another. 

And similarly, through the fifty or so books of the Tarzan series, the language of the Mangani was consistent. The Mangani words and expressions that we heard were expanded upon, but not changed as he went along.

What does this tell us? Well, obviously, Burroughs made notes on Mangani and Barsoomian language, among other things. Given that he was writing over a 40 year span, he would have needed his notes in order to be consistent (or if he didn't need them, he was some kind of a genius). He made notes, used these notes to make his rules, and he used them consistently.

In fact, if you look at Burroughs, there's a fair bit of evidence that he didn't just sit at a typewriter and make it all up. We see signs that he put an impressive amount of work into world building in various books. In some cases, he draws maps, as in Caprona and Pal-ul-don. He includes a glossary for Pal-ul-don. When writing Beyond the Farthest Star he actually went to the effort of consulting with an astronomer to design his new solar system. His views of Venus and Mars were influenced by the state of thought of the time.

Now, given that Burroughs was probably a careful world builder, and given that on at least three, and possibly four or five occasions, he actually went out of his way to at least allude to or develop the rudiments of imaginary languages, I'd argue that there's something there to at least support speculation.

Burroughs was not a formally trained linguist. But he was an intelligent and fairly well read man. And he was working in a language, English, that is full of obvious and not so obvious linguistic peculiarities.   Its not out of the question that he actually was consciously applying some degree of known linguistic patterns and rules. And its quite likely that he was guided subconsciously by a subliminal awareness of language structure and history. He was, after all, a writer. Language was his bread and butter.

So, the bottom line is that Burroughs may, consciously or unconsciously, deliberately or simply by employing linguistic rules that he didn't even know he was using, may have put enough in here that we might actually get something interesting.

Where to begin?   Well, its difficult to say.   We need to find a common feature that will likely figure prominently in a name, and then look for objects having that common feature with commonalities in their names. 

Tribes of Barsoom

Tribal or racial names are very important and offer a starting point of sorts.  On or near Barsoom, we have three varieties of white race:

I'll include the Tarids because of their proximity to Barsoom, and based on a theory that the Tarids are actually relics of an Orovar age of space flight.

These three names have a very similar root:
Oro - var - ... 
.... - ther - n
..... - tar - id

Note that Therns are referred to with a 'holy' prefix.   So it should be
Oro - Var - ....Holy - Ther - nnn ..... - Tar - id

So there is a Var or Ther or Tar sylable which seems to be at the root of all three names. Essentially the 'v' has hardened to a 'th' or ‘t’, but we can see that they're related. 

Now, let's look a little further afield. Gulliver Jones encounters a White Race, the Hither  Broken down, that's:  Hi - Ther - ....Definitely linguistically cousin to Thern  Hi - Ther - ....  Holy - Ther - nnn. Is it fair to look at Gulliver? Possibly yes, since  Burroughs may well have been inspired or influenced... 

Now, look at Otis Adelbert Kline's White Martian nations, as seen in Outlaw of Mars and Swords of Mars...   Xancibar  Khalsifar (mixed race, but conquered by and ruled by whites) Kline was definitely influenced by Burroughs, this is unquestionable.  In his Venus novel, Port of Peril, he even makes a direct reference to John Carter. His two nations break down into three component roots:  Xan - ci - bar  Khal - si - far. Both of them share a ci or si syllable, which we can regard as identical, and a very similar 'far' and 'bar' syllable.  The 'far' 'bar' sylable is not too far from 'var' or Orovar, and 'ther' of Thern and Hither, and the ‘tar’ of Tarid    Essentially, they all seem to be accented variations on the same root word. Which we'll call, 'far'.

Now, we don't actually need either Kline or Gulliver Jones to make this work.  But it is worth noting that the tribal/racial/nation names found therein seem to fit the pattern we find with Barsoom. I'll submit that 'far' may be the original tribal name for the white race of Mars.  As they spread and diverged, this led to the 'white' tribe splitting into other nations or subgroups, which simply added suffixes and prefixes. Thus, we could establish a tentative ethnography based linguistically:
Oro - Far - .... (Orovar)
Hi - Far - .... (Hither)
Khal - si - Far - .... (KhalsifarXan - si - Far - .... (Xancibar) Holy - Far - nnnn (Thern) ....   - Far - ids (Tharid)

The Therns and Tarids are the most divergent of the group, both physically (baldness/blue hair) and being the only ones to add a suffix.   All of the other white tribes define themselves with prefixes. Khalsifar and Xancibar obviously began as a single tribe, the 'Si-Far' and split off much later into Xanand Khal tribes, so they are distinctive in compounding their name. Barsoom may actually be an artifact of the white language.   We know that the Martian name for Earth is Jasoom, and for Mercury it is Cosoom.  We can easily assume that the word ‘Soom’ means planet or world. 

However, note the resemblance to Xancibar, which shows that under some pronunciations 'far' may broaden to a 'b'. In which case, 'Barsoom may actually be: 'Far - Soom' (World or land of the ‘Far’ people?). Having the ‘nation’ or ‘tribe’ first, and then the ‘world’ or ‘place’ after, indicates that a suffix may be a geographical designation. Which may suggest why the Therns and Tarids have the  'nnn' and ‘id’ suffix. It's referring, not to their tribe, but to where they live. 

This makes a little bit of sense given Thern outlook.  If they saw themselves as the truest expression of humanity, the most pure of the 'far' people, they wouldn't need a prefix. Thus, nothing goes in front of their 'far' because as far as they're concerned, they're the purebloods, the root stock. They'd  identify or modify with their location. Thus "pure blood white people of the holy land". Of course, etymologically, there's no relationship between the 'nnn' and the place names Iss, Otz, Dor or Korus. So there may be a further linguistic artifact or two at work.   Obviously, if ‘nnn’ ever referred to a geographical designation, that ‘nnn’ designation is no longer applying to the geography.

With the Tarids of course, you can't possibly get more remote, on Barsoom, than Thuria.  So the geographical designation works.   The Tarids call Thuria ‘ladan’.

But if suffixes contain geographical information, then what about the capital of the Orovars, Horz?  Why doesn't Horz describe the tribe?   Think about it. Horz may actually break down as follows:
(f)ar - zzz

The already soft consonant sound that begins the name of the 'Far' race is inadvertently or deliberately  lost, softened so far it's inaudible. And you've got a geographical suffix "zzz". So, this gives us a few clues to both the language and the social outlook of the 'white' barsoomians of antiquity. In particular, we've got a race name, 'far', tribal names, 'oro, hi, si xansi and kalsi' and geographical designations 'nnnn', ‘id’ and 'zzz'.

Finally, there are a few other racial names.  We don't ever get to hear a racial name for the Red men of Mars, probably because as far as they're concerned, they're the only humans left.  We don't hear a racial name for the blacks, they are simply called the ‘First Born.’   But we do get a couple of other racial or tribal names outside of the white tribes, inside and outside Burroughs.

There are the yellow Okar of the north pole, in Burroughs' Warlord of Mars.  And there are the hairy red ‘Thither’ of Gulliver Jones.  Thus, these racial or tribal names have similar roots to the white tribes:
O...  - Kar - ....
Thi - Ther - ....

Both feature prefixes modifying their names.  The yellow race seems to have a distinctive hard ‘k’ consonant.  The hairy red race has a root phonetically similar to both the Therns and the Hither.  So it doesn't quite fit.

So perhaps ‘far’ or some variant like ‘bar’ is simply the generic racial name for human?  If so, then it might be expected that tribes, as they diverge would modify that racial name.  We might have a linguistic evolution tree that goes as follows:
Bar (human) -----> Far (white human)        -----> Kar (yellow human) 

Now, these are tentative assignations for now.  But keep them in mind, because its time to go and look at a few other words, and try and break things down from a different direction.

What about 'Tur'? 

We start off with "Tur" (God).   I've argued in Religion on Mars, that originally, during the Orovar period, that the Tur cult was the dominant religion on Barsoom.   If indeed, the Tur cult dominated much of the planet, then we could expect that the archaic language would be  heavily laced with 'Tur' reference. If you look at the archaic place names, you find a lot of Tur references.
Thark (Tur - K) (dead city) Thurd (Tur - D) (dead city) Torquaas (Tur - Kas) (lost sea or gulf/mountains) Aanthor (An - Tur) (dead city)
Lothar (Lo - Tur)   (dead city/Orovar refuge) Manator (Mana - Tur) (red archaic city)
Ptarth   (P - Tur - th) (advanced red city)

Except for Ptarth, and Manator, which is an archaic society, these are all ancient dead cities. Most modern cities don't seem to have any particular affiliation with Tur in their names, which actually seems consistent with the vanishing of that religion.

There's also Thuria, the name of the moon.   Tur is a sky god living in the sun.   The suffix, ‘a’ or ‘ia’ in Barsoomian names usually denotes women or daughters.   Thus, ‘Thuria’ is actually ‘Tur - a’ or ‘daughter of Tur.’   This fits with a possible history of applying Tur or God's name to everything in sight.

We can see similar or identical patterns at work in Earthly languages. Thus, for instance, we have 'King' and 'Queen', and this leads to geographical names like 'Queensland' in Australia, or Kingston (Kings town) in Jamaica and Canada, Kings County in Canada and the US.

Note that what we see here is not just ‘Tur’ showing up everywhere, but the pronunciation of Tur evolving.   The ‘T’ has a tendency to soften to a ‘Th’ sound.   Meanwhile, the vowel mutates from the harsh ‘U’ to a softer ‘O’ or ‘A’.

If indeed the linguistic rules that we ferreted out earlier apply, then we can draw some conclusions.  Thark and Thurd, Torquaas and Perhaps Ptarth are places whose suffixes,   ‘K’, ‘D’, ‘Th’ and ‘Quaas’ may refer to their locations.    Lothar, Manator and Ptarth are cities whose prefixes refer to their tribes or perhaps some other feature, like kings or founders.

Tor appears as a number.   Now, assuming that Tor derives from Tur, then Tor as a number would probably be a holy or lucky number, equivalent to ‘seven’ on Earth.   In fact, Tor is four.  Barsoom is fourth planet from the sun, or number four away from the home of God...  In short, it seems to fit.  Even more interestingly, the first multiple of Tor (4) is Bar (8).   So Bar, in Barsoomian numbers, is related to, a derivative or multiple of Tor.   Hang onto that thought.

The word ‘Tor’ also appears among the First Born in the form of ‘Dator’, which refers to a prince or high status individual.   Given that Tor may be derived from Tur, the term should perhaps be ‘Da - Tur’.   Words frequently evolve as they change.   So Tur may have started off referring to God, but a derivative word like Tor may have begun to refer to status or high class.

Tur and Tor may have separate meanings, Tur being God and Tor being ‘high status’ or ‘close to god’.   Or there may be an overlapping meaning.  Tur may always refer to God.  But Tor might refer to either god or high status/close to god depending on circumstances.   Tor might have been a title for kings or high priests, for example.

‘Tor’ shows up frequently as a name.   There is, for instance:

Torkar Bar (Tur - Kar - Bar)
Tor Hatan   (Tur - Hat - An)
Sanoma Tora (Sanoma - Tur - A)
Dotar Sojat (Do - Tur - Sojat)

This indicates that there was probably a strong tradition of religious names, similar to our use of David, Paul, Jesus, Angela, etc.   Even though the religion is largely lost, the naming tradition continues, just as today, people use judaic names without any real awareness of the origin of the names.   Equally, ‘status’ or ‘noble’ names are also used in our language:   Rex, Earl, etc.

But here is something interesting:

Dejah Thoris.    (Dejah - Tur - Iss)

Iss of course is the current dominant Martian religion, so its perhaps not surprising that a Princess of Mars might incorporate that into her name.   But ‘Tur-Iss’?   Dejah Thoris incorporates the two holiest or most religious Martian names.   So  'Tur-Iss' (Thoris) may actually be a very holy name, roughly comparable to Angela in English or Jesus in Spanish.   Alternately, it might be Tor-Iss, which would probably translate to Princess of Iss, also fairly weighty.
Okay, now, lets circle around a bit.   Remember that Tur is the ultimate root word so far, which appears in both numbers, place names, personal names and at least a noun or too.   One of the offshoots of Tur is Tor as a number.   One of the offshoots of the number Tor is the number bar Bar.  Bar is a multiple, numerically.  Where Tor is a basic or root number, Bar is a multiple or offshoot of Tor.

Perhaps, instead of a racial designation, the original ‘Bar’ word was a religious one. Instead of 'white people' it may have originally meant 'worshippers of Tur'   Thus, the Thern would mean 'Tur worshippers in the 'nnnn' location, Horz would mean 'Tur worshippers in the 'zzz' location, Barsoom is really 'Tur's world', or ‘Tur's Worshippers World’.    Hither and Orovar, Xancibar and Khalsifar may be different tribes of Tur worshippers or 'Oro, Hi and Si (Kal and Zan) bands of Tur worshippers)

Of course, if that's the case, then the Okar or yellow folk of the north pole, are actually O-Kar, and Kar is another corruption of the root word that leads back to Tur or Tor. So their name originally was "O-Tur" or ‘O-Bar’ translating as  'O' worshippers of Tur'. 

And of course, Bar gets us to Barsoom and to the tribal names.   So perhaps we've gotten it wrong with all of our tribal names.   Instead, Bar may mean ‘worshipper’ or some variation on worshipper,  ‘followers’ ‘people’ ‘children’ ‘descendants’.   This makes sense.  Tur or Tor is the singular deity, there is only the one of him.   Bar is the multiple, or multitude that derives from Tor.  Thus, the multiple or multitude worshippers of the singular Tor will naturally call themselves Bar.

If indeed, Tur is the root of Bar, then actually, we should revisit some of the tribal names:

Therns   (Tur - n)   (Worshippers of Tur from ‘nnnn’) Tarid   (Tur - id)   (Worshippers of Tur from ‘id’)
Hither (Hi -Tur)   (Worshippers of Tur of the Hi people)

All of these are archaic or lost tribes, out of the Barsoomian mainstream.   This may also explain the name of Gulliver Jones other archaic tribe, the Thither who would be Thi - Tur, or worshippers of Tur of the Thi tribe.

It's likely, of course, that as the Martian tribes diverged, their language evolved, and thus their term for themselves as ‘bar’ or ‘thur’, Tur worshippers, diverged.   Among the Okar, the consonant ‘th’ or ‘b’ hardened into a ‘K’.   Among the Orovars and Khalsifar, the ‘th’ or ‘b’ hardened into a ‘v’ or ‘f’ sound.

Given that the Therns are closer to the ‘T’ than the Orovars who have softened it to a ‘V’, we can speculate that the Therns and the Orovars split off from each other very early in their history and developed separately. 

Extending on that, we might infer that the Therns and the Hither are actually related tribes on one side of the Thern/Orovar split. 

The Tarids may be more closely related to the Thern line than the Orovar line, although that might be debatable.  It's more likely that their tribal name regained the ‘T’ because they were living on Thuria, close to Tur.

The Khalsifar and Xancibar are clearly related tribes who split off from each other comparatively late.  Both share the middle ‘si’, so their root tribe was probably Sifar or Sivar or Sibar.   The softer consonant suggests that the Sifar descended from the Orovars.  And there is some support for this notion, given that these nations are relatively near Horz, a major city of the old Orovars.

So, we can map the evolution of language thusly:

Tur (God) ------>Tor (High/Holy)-----> Bar (worshipper/people) -----> Far (white)
-----> Kar (yellow)

Or it may have been parallel:

Tur (God) -----> Tor (High/Holy)
     -----> Bar (worshipper/people) ------> Far (white worshippers)
-------> Kar (yellow worshippers)

We can also roughly chart a partial tribal evolution as well:   We start with the Bar, who give rise to the Far and the Kar.   The Far split into the Ther and Var.   The Ther split further into Thern and Hither.   The Var become Orovar, who give rise to Sivar who then split into Xancibar and Khalsifar.

Yellow Man Mojo

Interestingly, Kar or its variant, Kor, appears several times as personal names:
- Kar Komak, the virtual bowman of Lothar
- Torkar Bar (there's a good one!), Dwar of the Kaolian road.
- Vas Kor (Kar?), Dusarian noble 
- TMOM-A-Kor, a prince of Manator-Kor-an, cavalryman of Gathol-Kor San, Jeddak of Duhor
- Lakor, a Thern
Now that's peculiar.  Why does Kar show up so often in people's names.   Is it a reference to yellow man descent?   But there aren't any obvious features in these people.   So perhaps it's a relic name.   After all, a name like Smith doesn't mean you or your immediate ancestors were blacksmiths, just that it's somewhere in your ancestry. 

On the other hand, perhaps it does not refer to the yellow worshippers, or perhaps it has a secondary meaning.   Both Bar, Far and Kar may refer to different kinds or classes of worshippers, so there may be additional meanings to these words.   Notably, Kar may refer to children or descendants.   Or Far might refer to older worshippers and Kar to new worshippers.   After all, people refer to themselves as the children of God.   There may be a similar operation here. 

Remember that as with ‘car’ in English, its likely that we may only be able to arrive at a rough category of meanings, rather than a precise single meaning.   Barsoomian words, particularly Barsoomian root words may have several potential meanings, depending on context, history and usage.

If Kar refers to son, then this may actually help us pull things together....

- Kar Komak, (son of komak)
- Torkar Bar (Tor - High / Kar - Son Bar - Tribe or High Son of Tribe, roughly:  Prince)
- Vas Kor   (son or perhaps father of Vas)

Of course, if you want something to blow your mind, consider this:

John Carter
Jon - Kar - Tur
Jon - Son of - God

Let's see.  He appears out of nowhere, he speaks an unknown language (and the belief is that another language is spoken in the Valley Dor, Barsoom's heaven), his skin and features are those of the extinct race of Orovars, he has superhuman strength, leaping ability that resembles flight, and the minute he can talk to them, he's telling them that he's the son of god.

Well, this puts a different face on things doesn't it?   No wonder the Tharks were unwilling to kill him outright.

And to put the cherry on the cake, his girlfriend ends up being Dejah Thoris or ‘Tur-Iss’, literally, the daughter of the two dominant Martian deities.

Heavy Mojo.

Location, Location, Location

There might be some further evolutions of Tur.  Tur as noted, may be the original root for Horz.   The "T" goes silent or flattens, a recurring tendency in Martian phonetics. A suffix is a geographical designation. Thus, (T) Hur-Z or Horz. But "Hor" itself is a frequently recurring phoneme.  Amhor and Duhor. or Am-Hor and Du-Hor. So perhaps by this time, Hor was becoming an archaic word for City? 

Another potential root word, "Du", as in Dusar, Duhor and Dukar (Burroughs, Burroughs and Kline). These are three cities loosely within a broad region of the northern hemisphere that would have been the area of one of the lost Martian seas, one of the three big lobes of the polar ocean. So with 'Du' are we getting back to the primeval lost name of an ancient Martian sea? Like Throxeus, Korus and possibly Torquaas? The 'aas' or 'us' suffix reappears, possibly as a water designation. So our hypothetical sea might have been named the "Duquaas or Duxeus. Possible, but speculative. Note that the original tradition seems to be that suffixes represented geography, and prefixes represented something else, perhaps affiliation. If its affiliation, then we have the nation or people of Du, perhaps Du was a king.  Looking at the three cities, we find that their names are all variants of the Tur root. 

Du-Hor Du-KorDu-Sar (Far)
    Or as we've tried to deconstruct, these would translate to:
           Duhor - City of DuDukor - Children of DuDusar - People of Du

Which suggests they were founded in the later epoch, after the Tur root had diverged. The cities themselves were probably founded serially, one being colonized by a predecessor, rather than simultaneously. So, for instance, it may have been 'City of Du' originally. A colony gets founded, the subordinate city is called 'Children of Du', another city, further out, cis out of effective control, becomes 'Free People of Du' or 'People of Du.' We also have another ancient root, Mana, from the Mantor trio. No ideas on that...

Orovars in Space?   Let's get far out? "Thorth" the prophet of the white Zarovians of Venus.  In a previous essay, we've discussed the possibility that Amtor's 'Thora' is a descendent philosophy of Thorth.

But try this on for size.   We have some evidence that the Orovars were space faring.  We've theorized that they made it as far as Thuria and that the Thurian population are descendants of the ancient Orovar culture.  If we look at Kline's books, it's very definite that his white Martians were space travellers who were able to reach the Earth's moon, and thus the other inner planets.

So, perhaps Thor and Thorth on Venus are themselves originally derived from elements of the Tur cult.   And if we're looking for evidence of Tur worship spreading from Barsoom, consider the planetary name or name of the south hemisphere culture:   Amtor...  Am - Tur? 

Or consider the ‘royal title’ of the north hemisphere culture ‘Torrogo’ ....  Tur - Rogo?   Rogo is a chief or chieftain.   A Torrogo is a high chief or emperor.   So this suggests that ‘Tor’ in Torrogo may mean ‘high status.’   Or a very similar meaning as in archaic Barsoomian.

Consider the racial or planetary name of the northern hemisphere Venerians:   Zarovia.   ‘Zar’, possibly a variant on ‘Far’?   Was the northern hemisphere of Venus colonized by displaced or crashed Orovars?   That might explain other peculiarities like Thorth and Tor.

Also, in the north hemisphere of Venus, we have Ralph Milne Farley's Cupians and Vairking.  Vairking may reduce to Var-kin or Far-kin.   Although the Vairking are furred humans, this suggests they may have had contact or been influenced by Orovars.   More significantly, both the Vairking and Cupians have a religion, the ‘Priests of Kar’ who believe that their people came from another world.   ‘Kar’ of course, may be a significant religious/tribal/personal term in archaic Barsoomian.

Let's look at Earth for a second:   Thor in scandinavia? A variant of Tur, renamed as a storm god because of the thunder and lightning of the space travellers vehicles and weapons?  Scandinavia is in the north. So if the Orovars did get that far, they might have also found Pellucidar. 

In Pellucidar, there is an inner moon.  The land and people beneath it are called Thuria.  This is the same name as Barsoom's closer moon.  Coincidence?   Or evidence of Orovar exploration and contact?

Of course, at this point, I'm getting a bit far afield.   But it is tempting to go looking for sets of known words, place names and personal names in the Pellucidarean, Amtor, Zarovian and Cupian/Vairking languages just to see whether there is further evidence which would support the notion of Barsoomian contact.

Going back to Otis Adelbert Kline's Doctor Morgan series, it is very clear form Maza of the Moon and Swordsman of Mars that the Orovars planted a colony on the moon, and that the Ma Gongi planted a colony on Mars as well as Earth.   Moreover, there's evidence that the Ma Gongi may have planted a colony on Venus as well as a second Earth colony in South America.

So, that leaves the door open for Kline's race of white martians, call them Orovars, to have been traveling the planets and leaving their own traces.   So, all we have to do is pore over approximately twenty or thirty novels by three different authors.   Maybe one of these days.   For now, I'm content simply to raise the possibility.

A few random thoughts. By the way? Tars Tarkas? Tur(s) Tur-kas?   Religious name.  Or possibly a status name: Tor(s) Tor-kas. Or perhaps an Ethnic name Far(s) Far-Kas.   Or possibly a combination Tor (High) (s) (geographic designation) Far (people)-kas. There's about a dozen different ways to interpret that name, almost all of  which suggest significant status. And Tardos Mors? Tur-dos? God's warrior? God's servant?   Alternately, ‘Tor-dos, or Prince or King.  What does the root 'dos' signify? 

Kar Komak...  - Son of Komak?   Where Komal the banth is worshipped.  - Perhaps Kom or Komal is an ancient root word for  Banth?  - In which case, Kar Komak may translate to 'Son of the Lion'? 

Also, deconstructing Barsoomian language in this way, Carthoris becomes an elaborate Barsoomian pun.    Phonetically, the name is Kar-Tur-Iss, which produces three simultaneous layers of meaning....

1) Kar (son) (of) Tur (god) (and) Iss (goddess) Big  Mojo indeed.
2) Also, Kar-Tur (Carter) he takes his father's name, and to the extent that there's some trace of heretical 'tur' worship implied, its neutralized by invoking the feminine, Iss. Essentially, he is Carter and Iss, the Earth hero united with the Martian Goddess, whose avatar is obviously intended to be Dejah.
3) And, he takes his mother's name, Kar (son of) Thoris.

Here's another root word: Vak, as in, Invak and Onvak. What does it mean? Don't know. Another possible root word. Kan. As in Kantos Kan.   Perhaps the equivalent of Bob Robertson. Another possible? Dak, as in Jeddak (Jed-Dak) and Dak Kova. Obviously, its a modifier of Jed (Chieftain) making Jeddak (High Chieftain). So it may be the contemporary Barsoomian replacement of the word Tor.  At this point, we may be sledding into contemporary Barsoomian and away from the ancient language.

Turn to Kline's Khalsifar version of Tur, the Sun God 'Sarkiss' or 'Sark-Iss'.   Sark? Tur? Well, they share an internal proto-syllable 'ar/ur'. Its possible that changing pronunciations mutated a T sound to a Zh sound and then a S sound. Perhaps the 'k' sound is a linking  device. Or perhaps a truncated version of the Khal from the Khalsifar nation.   Working backwards, the original name probably came across as Tur Khal Iss. Or Tur (God) ruler of the Khal (people) and Iss (lesser goddess) Was this like Thoris (Tur-Iss) another fused name, and perhaps a failed attempt to perpetuate the cult of the sun god by incorporating the attributes of the Iss God? I've previously written that Tur probably incorporated a lot of lesser gods, and this was part of his MO (See Religions of Barsoom). 

It's a bit farfetched, but what the hell.

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