In south-eastern Europe the extensive Eurasian belt of the steppe reaches to the Caspian or Black Sea; behind it mountains and highlands loom up: the Caucasus and Armenia; Pontic Mountains and Anatolia, the Rhodope Mountains, the Balkans, and the Carpathians. From the contrast between the northern lowlands with their restless pastoral peoples and the southern mountainous countries with unchanged population of peasants and shepherds arose the first urban and imperial cultures, with kings and priests, craftsmen and peasants, herdsmen and merchants, singers and beggars – all of them stirred into the whirl of the so-called Sea of hospitality (Pontos Euxeinos). The present volume wants to introduce from the many peoples that has been unfolding themselves in the hinterland of the Black Sea’s ports from time immemorial, the gypsies – little known from that area. That are small groups and families which have – for all their different occupations, languages, and habits – one thing in common: tense relations with the population of the majority.
Even if the Black-Sea-area was homogeneous formed under Greek, Byzantine, and Ottoman rules, and modern age levels the states around the sea once more, it, however, unites very different streams of culture. The gypsies who participated in all of those historical relations and solutions next to the intersection of the continents Asia, Europe, and Africa, reflecting this great variety in a very special way. They have been understanding to occupy the space between the blocs of power for centuries, and thus to link the dominant regions in times of peace and war. Gypsies have been settling in the circumpontic centre of the Old World ever since; they are in like manner West Asians as North-East Africans and South-East Europeans. Over all three continents they could spread; and since the 16th century they could migrate to the New World, too, belonging to world-civilization in each case as the opposite part to the villager, city dweller, and the political systems in the Orient and Occident.
2008, 184 pages, hardcover, illustrated book (150 coloured, 15 black-and-white illustrations), 30 x 30 cm;