Onomastic material in the description of the Caucasus by Józef Chodźko – a nineteenth-century Polish scholar and surveyor
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Keywords

Józef Chodźko
the Caucasus
geographic names in Chodźko’s manuscript

Abstract

Józef Chodźko (1800–1881) was one of the first explorers of the Caucasus and an experienced Polish surveyor and cartographer who surveyed the trans-Caucasian and the Caucasian regions. Thanks to the method of triangulation, he made precise measurements of that region which subsequently enabled the preparation of the maps of the Caucasus. During his survey in the Caucasus region, Chodźko prepared a description of the places surveyed in manuscript form entitled “Orografia Kaukazu Józefa Chodźki”.
The aim of this paper is to call attention to the multidimensional value of this handwritten work. This previously unknown manuscript by the Polish investigator of the Caucasus not only includes valuable descriptions of the geography of the Caucasus but also very valuable onomastic material which may be interesting for linguists working on the geographic names of the trans-Caucasian and the Caucasian regions. His work includes many geographic names: oronyms, hydronyms, macro and micro-toponyms and other names of objects the author described in his work. In respect of the etymology the onomastic material recorded by Chodźko represents various linguistic families, such as: Altaic, Indo-European, Caucasian. In the present paper, as an example, some geographic names which seem to be Turkic are shown. The onomastic material included in Chodźko’s work constitutes a valuable source for research on the history and etymology of geographic proper names from the region of the Caucasus. Therefore, linguists, especially those who are engaged in onomastic studies, should take a keen interest in Chodźko’s “Orografia Kaukazu”.

https://doi.org/10.17651/ONOMAST.65.1.20
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