From the scanty notices of Greek legend it may be gathered that an influx of tribes from the north contributed largely to its population, which was reckoned as Aeolic. It is probable that the country was originally of greater extent, for there was a tradition that the Phocians once owned a strip of land round Daphnus on the sea opposite Euboea, and carried their frontier to Thermopylae; in addition, in early days they controlled the great sanctuary of Delphi.
The northern Doris, for example, spoke Aeolic, while Elis, Phocis, and many non-Dorian districts of north-west Greece spoke dialects akin to Doric. Many Dorian states had additional " nonDorian tribes "; Sparta, which claimed to be of pure and typical Dorian origin, maintained institutions and a mode of life which were without parallel in Peloponnese, in the Parnassian and in the Asiatic Doris, and were partially reflected in Crete only.
The almost total absence from Homer not only of "Dorians " but of " Ionians " and even of " Hellenes "leads to the conclusion that the diagrammatic genealogy of the " sons of Hellen " is of post-Homeric date; and that it originated as an attempt to classify the Doric, Ionic and Aeolic groups of Hellenic settlements on the west coast of Asia Minor, for here alone do the three names correspond to territorial, linguistic and political divisions.
But these have also some forms in common with the " Aeolic " dialect of Boeotia and Thessaly, which in historic times was spoken also in Doris; Locris and Elis present similar northern " Achaean-Doric " dialects.
Arcadia, on the other hand, in the heart of Peloponnese, retained till a late date a quite different dialect, akin to the ancient dialect of Cyprus, and more remotely to Aeolic. This distribution makes it clear (r) that the Doric dialects of Peloponnese represent a superstratum, more recent than the speech of Arcadia; (2) that Laconia and its colonies preserve features alike, -n and -w which are common to southern Doric and Aeolic; (3) that those parts of " Dorian " Greece in which tradition makes the pre-Dorian population " Ionic," and in which the political structure shows that the conquered were less completely subjugated, exhibit the Ionic -a and -ov; (4) that as we go north, similar though more barbaric dialects extend far up the western side of central-northern Greece, and survive also locally in the highlands of south Thessaly; (5) that east of the watershed Aeolic has prevailed over the area which has legends of a Boeotian and Thessalian migration, and replaces Doric in the northern Doris.
All this points on the one hand to an intrusion of Doric dialect into an Arcadian-and-Ionic-speaking area; on the other hand to a subsequent expansion of Aeolic over the north-eastern edge of an area which once was Dorian..
Even in northern and westcentral Greece, all vestige of any former prevalence has been obliterated by the spread of " Aeolic " dialects akin to those of Thessaly and Boeotia; even the northern Doris, for example, spoke "Aeolic" in historic times.
SAPPHO (7th-6th centuries B.C.), Greek poetess, was a native of Lesbos, contemporary with Alcaeus, Stesichorus and Pittacus, in fact, with the culminating period of Aeolic poetry.
The explanation is possible, but it is not easy to see why, for example, the symbol 9 or cp = Koppa, the Latin Q, should have been utilized for a sound so different as p-h; nor, again, why the symbol for 0 (e) by losing its cross stroke should become 4), seeing that the sounds of o and outside Aeolic (a dialect which is not here in question) are never confused.
Of the poetical aorists in Attic the larger part are also Homeric. Others are not really Attic at all, but borrowed from earlier Aeolic and Doric poetry.
It has been thought indeed that the Homeric dialect was a mixed one, mainly Ionic, but containing Aeolic and even Doric forms; this, however, is a mistaken view of the processes of language.
There are doubtless many Homeric forms which were unknown to the later Ionic and Attic, and which are found in Aeolic or other dialects.
So too the digamma is called " Aeolic " by grammarians, and is found on Aeolic and Doric inscriptions.
The use of that dialect (instead of Aeolic) by the Boeotian poet Hesiod, in a kind of poetry which was not of the Homeric type, tends to the conclusion that the literary ascendancy of the epic dialect was anterior to the Iliad and Odyssey, and independent of the influence exercised by these poems.
The poems, which had originally worn an Aeolic dress, were transposed into Ionic. To this it is easily answered that such an event is not only unique in history, but contrary to all that we know of the Greek genius.
At the period in question an Aeolic literature, the lyrics of Sappho and Alcaeus, were in existence.
If it was found necessary to transpose the Aeolic Homer, why did the Aeolic lyric verse escape?
If, however, as is the view of some of Fick's followers, the transposition took place several centuries earlier, before species of literature had appropriated particular dialects, then the linguistic facts upon which Fick relied to distinguish the " Aeolic " and " Ionic " elements in Homer disappear.
We have no means of knowing what the Aeolic and Ionic of say the 9th century were, or if there were such dialects at all.
Certain prominent historical differences between Aeolic and Ionic (the digamma and a) are known to be unoriginal.
The nonDorian dialects, Ionic, Attic and the various forms of Aeolic, are regarded as relatively closely akin, and go by the common name " Achaean."
The Greek dialect of Cyprus points in the same direction; it shows marked resemblances with that of Arcadia, and forms with it a " South Achaean " or " South Aeolic " group, related to the " Northern Aeolic " of Thessaly and other parts of north Greece.'
Fagas), which was derived from Î¦Î¯Î¾, the Aeolic form of ÏƒÏ†Î¯Î³Î¾.
The Aeolic settlers of Lesbos and Cyme, pushing eastwards by Larissa and Neonteichus and over the Hermus, seized the valley of Smyrna.
It is therefore not surprising that the Aeolic element grew weaker; strangers or refugees from the Ionian Colophon settled in the city, and finally Smyrna passed into the hands of the Colophonians and became the thirteenth of the Ionian states.
The Aeolic form of the name, /piipva, was retained even in the Attic dialect, and the epithet "Aeolian Smyrna" remained long after the conquest.
Smyrna, originally an Aeolic colony, was afterwards occupied by Ionians from Colophon, and became an Ionian city, - an event which had taken place before the time of Herodotus.