ROMEIKA: Revival of a Disappearing Language

Throughout the history, geography of Turkey has contained many different cultures and languages. Even though devastating effect of modernism on the multiculturality at this geography, we can still find a lot of cues from different cultures. On the other hand, some of them has already become extinct. Fortunately, Romeika will not share this destiny with the forgotten languages in Anatolian geography.

Romeika is a dialect of Greek but it has some untypical features. This dialect is used in the Eastern Black Sea coasts of Turkey, mostly in the borders od Trebizond. Approximately 5,000 Muslim Republic of Turkey citizens people which live in the mountain villages still use this Greek dialect. This amount of speaker to keep a language alive is so inadequate. Also, it is clear that an uncodified language is more inclined to disappear in time; right now, ‘Romeika’ is not an uncodified language. Vahit Tursun, who spent 20 years to prepare the first Romeika Dictionary, published the first ‘Romeika’ dictionary from Hayamola Publishing House. By doing so, he aims to keep Romeika alive and making a cultural revival about Romeika.

This dialect is 3000 years old and some linguistics claim that Romeika is the most resembling Greek dialect to the Ancient Greek, meaning that the speakers of Romeika are the best people to easily communicate with Socrates. The isolated geographic structure of Eastern Black Sea or historical Pontus region may have caused to preserve the original linguistic features of this dialect. To sum up, I want to say thank you to Vahit Tursun for his efforts.