THE NAME OF ‘KARA DENİZ’: A VIEW FROM THE SIDE OF CASPIA AND BULGARIA TITLE IN ENGLISH

Osman KARATAY

In searching for roots of the denomination ‘Black Sea’, which today has a universal popularity, researchers immediately refer to the Anatolian Turks as the main and easiest source, and explain this thalassonym on the fiction that the Turks call the North as ‘balck’ and the South as ‘white (cf. Akdeniz ‘The Mediterranean Sea’). However, elaboration of first hand sources does not permit such a thesis. The Anatolian Turks were not first to use the ‘black’ form, and could not be source for other nations for chronological and historical reasons. Source of this name, which was spread as far as Iceland at the very beginning of its occurence in sources,is again Turks, but we need to have a glance at Bulgar and Khazar worlds. This essay claims that the ‘black’ in the Black Sea is likely included in the Bulgar legacy of the region.