It is no coincidence that several years ago, the outstanding Ukrainian historian academician Petr Tolochko absolutely rightly noted that “at the present time, when history has become largely the lot of amateurs, not burdened either by historical knowledge, or by the method of scientific criticism of sources, or by responsibility for said, overthrow of scientific authorities and textbook positions in historical science has become their most favorite occupation. "
Moreover, as Boris Mironov, a well-known contemporary historian, absolutely rightly noted, recently, on the basis of the modernist methodology, which replaced the “notorious” history, the scale reflection on the “special tragedy” and “bloody drama” of the Russian historical process has already grown, its “cycles”, endless “inversion turns”, etc.
At the same time, along with the well-known Western Russophobes of the type of Alexander Janov and Richard Pipes, homegrown russophobes, obviously suffering from the complex of the famous “noncommissioned officer widow”, hit this pseudoscientific game.
Suffice it to say that fluent Komsomol journalist Mr. A. Yanov, suddenly turning over the cordon to an authoritative professor of Russian history, in a number of primitive fakes - “Russia: at the root of the 1480 – 1584 tragedy” (2001), “Russia vs. Russia: 1825 – 1921 ”(2003),“ Russia and Europe ”(2007), abounding in a huge amount of factual errors, put forward an anti-scientific theory of the cyclical nature of Russian history.
The essence of this theoretical “masterpiece” that the backstage architect of “Gorbachev perestroika” and court academician Alexander Yakovlev so admired, is that the history of Russia is the history of the alternation of liberal and pro-Western reforms with reactionary and conservative nationalist counter-reforms. And these "historical cycles" over the past 500 years, this newly-born theorist counted as many 14 pieces.
In my book for teachers, which was published this fall, I was forced to repeatedly refer to numerous examples of this kind of “controversy”, which are quite consciously thrown into the scientific and especially near-scientific environment with one single purpose - to deform the consciousness of a nation, to sow chaos. in the fragile minds of the young Russians, overthrow the national heroes and impose, including at the school desk and in the university audience, “new historical knowledge”, which they succeeded in realizing on the territory of a dying Ukraine.
In order not to be unfounded, let us give some of the most vivid and characteristic examples of this kind of discussion, which have long gone beyond pure science and turned into an element of a broad social consciousness and ideological struggle on the historical front.
It is well known that since the end of the 1980s, in the face of the collapse of the communist system and the state of Marxist ideology, the alleged Soviet anti-Normanists left the trenches and began a desperate campaign to introduce their views into a wide public consciousness.
At the same time, according to the Normanists themselves, the "Ultranormanism of the Schlozer type" was adopted, which Professor Lev Klein and his ideological followers, irreconcilable fighters against "great-power chauvinism" and "Russian nationalism" began to implant.
Moreover, the pillars of modern Normanism chose a rigorous scientific controversy with their opponents to obscenely unleashed a tone that is replete with all sorts of, even obscene, insults and pasting labels of the most low-grade poshiba.
Moreover, it was modern Normanists who, not finding any new arguments, put forward the Jesuit thesis that the Norman problem does not exist at all, since it is precisely proved that the "Varangians" are Normans, and therefore a long time has come to this discussion. In other words, with their inherent modesty, they themselves hoisted the laurels of the victors and a priori reject any other opinion.
This cohort of the most active preachers of "European liberalism" was opposed and opposed by the school of Professor Apollo Kuzmin, his students, who with facts in their hands convincingly refuted many mossy "arguments" of their scientific and ideological opponents.
For nearly three hundred years, Normanists and anti-Normanists have argued among themselves on a whole range of problems, among which the most significant are:
1) the question of the ethnic nature of the Varangians and the origin of the princely dynasty and
2) the problem of the origin of the term "Rus".
In ancient Russian and foreign written sources there are completely different ideas about the origin and ethnicity of the Vikings. As established by Kuzmin, the largest specialist in the history of ancient Russian chronicling, in the Tale of Bygone Years alone there are three different and different versions of the origin of the Varangians.
So, Kiev chroniclers called “Varangians” all the inhabitants of the Volga-Baltic trade route. Novgorod chroniclers called the "Varangians" and a certain tribe, and all the Baltic tribes, highlighting especially the "Varangians-Rus". At the same time, both those and other chroniclers were understood by the name of the "Varangians" simply Pomorian, that is, the tribes that lived on the southeastern coast of the Baltic (Varyazhsky) Sea.
Bargaining in the country of the Eastern Slavs. Hood Sergey Ivanov. Illustration from the book "Pictures on Russian history" by Joseph Knebel. 1909 year
Nevertheless, for all Normanists, the Vikings are, without a doubt, the Norman-Vikings, that is, the inhabitants of ancient Scandinavia. And for the anti-Normanists, the Varangians are one of the Slavic, Baltic or Celtic, but long ago Slavicized tribes that lived on the southeast coast of the Baltic (Varangian) Sea. At the same time, there is an original hypothesis of Professor Lev Gumilev, that “Varangians” is only a term that means professional, and not ethnicity of its carriers to the military craft, but this version of the very popular now “Eurasian” is not taken into account by serious specialists. Although a number of modern Normanists (for example, Vladimir Petrukhin) also tried to present the Varangians as “mercenaries who swore an oath of allegiance,” but it is not clear who.
As proof of their correctness, modern anti-Normanists cite a number of rather weighty arguments of an archaeological, historical, and religious nature:
1) Among the burial grounds of druzhny kurgans in Kiev, Ladoga, Gnezdovo and other graveyards and cities to which L. Klein and Co. constantly refer, Scandinavian burials proper make up less than 1% of the total number of burials found.
Even a number of decent Normanists (Anatoly Kirpichnikov) had to admit that the famous chamber burial grounds, which, “with a light hand” by the famous Swedish archaeologist T. Arne, were declared Norman, turned out to be a very common form of burial throughout continental Europe, and not just Swedish Tags opened to them in the 1930's.
2) All Scandinavian burial grounds found are dated not earlier than the second floor. X century, that is, when the princes of the Rurik dynasty ruled the Old Russian state for at least several decades.
3) According to the data of the largest Soviet anthropologist, academician Tatyana Alekseeva, who studied in detail the craniological series of the Kiev and Gnezdovsky burial grounds, all the burials here are very different from the German anthropological type.
4) Among all the Scandinavian burial grounds no significant tombstones were found, which convincingly shows that the warriors buried in them could in no way constitute the ruling elite of ancient Russian society.
5) From the rather meager Scandinavian artifacts found on the territory of our country, it is rather difficult to determine how they turned out to be among the Eastern Slavs, either as a result of a trade exchange, or as military booty, or together with their owners, etc.
By the way, many foreign experts, in particular, the largest English archaeologist Peter Sawyer and the Norwegian researcher Anne Stalsberg, speak about this.
1) All the authors of the Byzantine chronicles have always distinguished the Vikings and the Normans as different ethnic groups.
2) Judging by written sources, the Varangians appeared in Russia and in Byzantium only at the beginning - middle of the ninth century, and the Normans recognized Russia and its southern neighbor not earlier than the second floor. X century, since the Scandinavian sagas do not know the earlier rulers of Byzantium and Ancient Russia than the Byzantine emperor John Tzimiskes (969 – 976) and the great Kiev Prince Vladimir the Holy (978 – 1015).
3) The Scandinavian sagas are well aware of the founder of the Norman dynasty Duke Rollon (860 – 932), who conquered Normandy and became a vassal of the French king Charles III the Simple (898 – 922).
However, they stubbornly remain silent about the “Norman” king Rurik (820 – 879), which causes legitimate surprise, because, according to our homegrown science fiction writers, he was the founder of a huge state in the lands of the Eastern Slavs.
4) Varygs, who came to the lands of the Eastern Slavs, were already (or always) Slavonic, as the cities of Novgorod, Ladoga, Izborsk, and others founded by them had Slavic etymology.
1) Thanks to the work of many Soviet scientists (Boris Rybakov, Apollon Kuzmin, Vladimir Toporov, Oleg Trubachev, Alexander Ishutin) it is well known that all Russ, Slavs and Finns, who became the core of the ancient Russian people, had their own pantheons of the pagan gods of the Indo-European, Hittite, Iranian or actually Slavic and Finnish origin, which included Perun, Khoros, Veles, Svarog, Stribog, Dazhdbog, Mokosh and other deities.
However, none of the thirteen Scandinavian deities, including the supreme god Odin and his sons Thor, Vidar or Balder, in Slavic, Russian or Finnish theonymism has never existed and could not be by definition.
2) In numerous written sources of various origins, the term "Rus" is used in a highly contradictory and ambiguous manner. In some sources we will find direct indications that the Rus are the Varangians, in others their direct connection with the Slavs will be asserted, and in the third they are called the original ethnic community.
According to a fair opinion of all the same Professor Kuzmin, in the Tale of Bygone Years alone there are two different concepts of the beginning of Russia: Polyansko-Slavic, which was directly connected with Norik-Rugiland, and Varangian, oriented towards Baltic Russia. This circumstance was one of the main reasons for the split among past and present historians, archaeologists and linguists.
Some authors (Serafim Yushkov, Vladimir Petrukhin, Elena Melnikova, Ruslan Skrynnikov, Igor Danilevsky) believe that the term "Rus" was originally of a social nature and, apparently, was used to designate a specific social layer of the Ancient Russian state, most likely for the princely squad. .
At the same time, all orthodox Normanists, with the exception of Professor S. Yushkov, insist on the Scandinavian origin of this term, putting an equal sign between the concepts of "Rus" and "Norman squad", which they call "rowers" or "navigators". Moreover, a completely absurd hypothesis was advanced that this social term was later transformed into an ethnonym, which has never happened in all of human history.
Other historians, of which the absolute majority, believe that the term "Rus" bore a purely ethnic nature and under this name hid some kind of ethnos, tribe or tribal union. Supporters of this approach, in turn, are divided into several currents.
The funeral of a noble Rus. Hood Heinrich Semiradsky
Most foreign and Russian Normanists (T. Arne, Richard Pipes, Lev Klein, Alexander Kan, Gleb Lebedev) believe that the term "Rus" had a purely Scandinavian etymology and was derived from the Finnish word ruotsi, which means Sweden.
However, as the largest Russian linguist Academician Andrei Zaliznyak correctly noted, modern Normanists in their linguistic constructions are guided by the techniques of “amateur linguistics”, which builds its conclusions “on the random similarity of words”, do not take into account the fact that “the external similarity of two words (or two roots) in itself is not yet evidence of some historical connection between them. "
Moreover, the well-known German philologist Normanist Gottfried Schramm in his latest work Altrusslands Anfang (“Beginning of Ancient Russia”, 2002) called this interpretation of the term ruotsi “Achilles' heel of Normanism” and proposed throwing off this ballast, from which Norman theory would only benefit.
A number of major Russian scientists (Oleg Trubachev, Alexander Nazarenko) took a similar position, who, while remaining convinced Normanists, still put the interests of science above the clan interests of Lev Klein and Co.
Aware of all the flaws in their previous interpretation of the origin of the term "Rus", some researchers have hit the other extreme, trying to find the origins of this term in the territory of Sweden itself in the coastal province of Ruden (Roden) or Ruslagen (Roslagen).
However, as a number of Russian and Swedish scientists convincingly proved (Lidia Grotto, Karin Kalissendorf), modern Ruslagen appeared on a geographical map of the Swedish kingdom only in the XIII century, and until then this coastal area was still under water, since the level of the Baltic Sea in the area was then on 5 – 7 m above modern.
A number of major modern scholars, including among the Normanists themselves (Oleg Trubachev, Valentin Sedov), are searching for the origins of the term "Rus" either in Iranian, whose speakers were Scythians or Sarmatians, or even sees a common Indo-Aryan basis in it.
The largest Soviet-style anti-Normans (Boris Rybakov, Mikhail Tikhomirov, Arseny Nasonov, Henrik Lovmyansky) believed that the term "Rus" was local, of Slavic origin and under this name was hidden one of the East Slavic tribes that lived in the middle reaches of the Dnieper, on the banks of a small river Ros , as mentioned in the "Tale of Bygone Years" itself.
Academician Boris Rybakov
Later, this name became associated with the whole Polyansky tribal union, which stood at the origins of the ancient Russian statehood on the southern tip of the East Slavic lands. Other Soviet “anti-Normanists” (Peter Tretyakov) also tended toward the southern ancestral homeland of the Rus, but they were not related to Eastern Slavs, but to Chernyakhovtsy or their descendants. At the same time, these historians did not exclude the fact that these particular Ruses were somehow connected with the Germanic or Western Slavic tribes.
Finally, modern and true anti-Normanists (Apollon Kuzmin, Vyacheslav Fomin, Elena Galkina) believe that the origins of the term "Rus" should be sought among various ethnic "Rus" living at least on the territory of the Baltic, Dnieper, Podon, Danube and Black Sea Rus.
At the same time, at the time of the emergence of the Old Russian state, these Rus were already Slavicized long ago, although initially:
1) Glade-Rus - descendants of northern Illyrians who lived on the middle Danube, on the territory of Norik-Rugiland;
2) Vikings-Rus were one of the Celtic tribes that lived on the southern coast of the Baltic (Varyazhsky) Sea and the nearby islands (Rugen);
3) Alans-Rus were descendants of Iranian-speaking Roksolans, who acted as the bearers of the famous Saltovo-Mayatsky archaeological culture. By the end of the 9th century, the representatives of these three branches of the Rus formed the so-called Russian clan, who then composed the ruling elite of the Old Russian state.
Thus, the question of the origin of the term "Rus" is associated not so much with the "Norman" or "Varangian" problems, as with the so-called Khazar problem, where there are even more speculations and speculations than the Normanists.
At the end of the 19th century, the famous Kiev jurist Herman Barats in several of his articles made a sensational statement that The Tale of Bygone Years was a remake of the Khazar-Judean writing, and the first Russian princes were the Khazar Jews.
Then this topic faded into the background for a long time, but from the end of 1950 the active study of the archaeological monuments of the famous Saltovo-Mayatsky culture, which a number of then archaeologists, primarily Mikhail Artamonov and Svetlana Pletneva, began, was not quite appropriately attributed to the entire Khazar kaganate, artificially expanded the very territory of this state is enormous.
Although even then, within the framework of this archaeological culture, two local variants were clearly delineated: the forest-steppe, anthropologically represented by the dolichocephalic population, and the steppe with the brachycephalic population, which, in turn, also consisted of several territorial variants.
Even then, a number of prominent Soviet archaeologists, in particular, Ivan Lyapushkin and Dmitry Berezovets, put under serious doubt many of the conclusions of their Moscow colleagues and said that the forest-steppe version of the Saltovo-Mayak archeological culture belonged to the Alanian population of Don region, which had never been a part of the Khazar kaganate.
Soon these quite reasonable conclusions were supported by major Soviet historians (Boris Rybakov, Apollon Kuzmin), and at present this promising hypothesis has been further developed in the works of Doctor of Historical Sciences Elena Galkina, which identifies the Don Alanian version of the Saltov Mayan culture with the central part of the Russian Kaganate mentioned in Byzantine, Western, and Muslim written sources of the 8th – 9th centuries.
At the same time, the mock hypothesis about the prevailing influence of the huge Khazar Kaganate throughout Eastern Europe is currently being actively developed by homegrown Normanists, Israeli Zionists (N. Gotlib), and Ukrainian nationalists (Omelyan Pritsak), and even “Eurasian patriots” (Leo) Gumilev, Vadim Kozhinov), who really want to find among the founders of the Old Russian state not only Swedes, but also the Jewish Khazars.
In recent years, this issue has acquired not just a sharp, but extremely painful and relevant character for various political forces.
In particular, the “frostbitten” Zionists began to make claims to possessing the “original historical ancestral home” of the Jewish people, and our “Eurasian patriots”, not appreciating the very essence of these “scientific” discoveries, hit the other extreme and began to talk about a special period “ Khazar-Jewish yoke "in the history of ancient Russia.