Goths as a people and a subculture: find 10 differences

Table of contents:

Goths as a people and a subculture: find 10 differences
Goths as a people and a subculture: find 10 differences

Goths as tribes and Goths as a subculture - how are they different?


Experts of the German-Slavic Archaeological Expedition of KhNU named after V.I. V.N. Karazina Kirill Myzin and Marina Filatova.

Origin story

Goth tribes. The Gothic historian Jordan describes the legend of their origin as follows: "From the island of Skandza (South Sweden, Gotland island - NS), the forge of nations, or rather, as from the womb that gives rise to tribes, according to legend, the Goths once emerged …" Coming "from the womb" at the beginning of the 1st century AD, these warlike tribes moved to the mainland, and at the beginning of the 3rd century they were already on the territory of modern Ukraine. After the inevitable clashes with the Roman Empire, to the border of which they approached, the peace was signed only at the beginning of the 4th century. From this period the "golden era" of the Goths begins. They settle in Eastern Europe. However, in 375, as the legend says, the tribes of the Huns that appeared in these places forced the Goths to leave their "native" lands. In the 5th century, the Goths appeared in Spain, southern France and Italy, and after defeating the Western Roman Empire, they founded the kingdoms of the Visigoths and Ostrogoths. After that, the Goths gradually disappear from the historical arena.


Goth subculture. Frightening, compassionate old ladies, black-clad men and women are followers of a subculture that began in the 1970s in Great Britain. (For more information about the Goths and other subcultures, as well as about the future of informal movements, read the material “Pavel Goryunov:“Today, a huge number of informal groups exist only in cyber reality”- NS). The exact founder of this movement is, in fact, unknown. The Goths emerged from the punk movement. After the influence of punk in England began to wane, a fundamentally new musical genre appeared, which was called post-punk, and later - gothic rock. Over time, a youth movement was formed around this musical movement, which not only listened to gothic rock, but also imitated the musicians in clothing and style. July 1982 is considered the estimated date of the emergence of the subculture: it was on this day that the Batcave music club was opened.


origin of name

Goth tribes. In the written sources, there are many spelling options for the name of the ready. There are also many meanings of this word, the main of which are two: "pouring out" (either - living by the river, or - pouring out the generating seed) and "man" - this "self-name" is found among many peoples who call themselves simply "people", but in their own language, and therefore it seems to others that they are pronouncing the name of their people.

Goth subculture. The author of the name of this movement has not been established. However, for the first time this term in relation to music is used by journalists from Melody Maker and NME. Moreover, at first the name had a satirical connotation: with this word the journalists wanted to point to the grotesque gloom of Gothic melodies and their compositional simplicity (the word "gothic" in English means "barbaric, rude").


“It's another matter that the word“Gothic”itself is associated with most people not with the Gothic tribes, but with the Gothic architectural style - rather strict and gloomy,” the above-named authors of this article write. In turn, the origin of the very phrase "Gothic architecture" is also very vague. According to one version, it comes from the Italian gotico (literally "barbaric"), according to the other - from the German Gott ("God").


Goth tribes. The Roman officer and historian Tacitus describes them as follows: "Hard blue eyes, light brown hair, tall bodies … They grow up with such a physique and such a stature that amaze us."However, as the authors point out, the Goths are the common name for many Germanic tribes, so they hardly differed in such uniformity.

Goth subculture. Mostly Europodids, and they are of different ages: from 14 to 45 years old and older. The level of education of the "average" Goth is above average.

"Area" of distribution

Goth tribes. They changed their place of residence many times, which is why they were called “wandering people” (see above). However, all the wanderings of the Goths took place only on the territory of Europe.

Goth subculture. Mostly found in the West: in England, USA, France, Germany, Scandinavia, there are in Canada, Australia, not so long ago they appeared in Singapore and Estonia. Distributed in Japan, as well as in some other countries.



Goth tribes. The experts conclude: they were very aggressive. This is not surprising. The Goths have always fought with everyone. Even the omnipotent Romans often hired Gothic warriors, while paying them generously. But towards the end of their existence - by the middle of the 4th century - the Goths calmed down and became quite peaceful citizens, simply having their own squad. “There was simply no one to fight with. By this time, the Goths had already pretty much intimidated everyone … "- the experts conclude.

Goth subculture. Despite the frightening appearance, according to most sociologists, the Goths are not at all aggressive - rather, expressive and "depressive". Black color and terrifying make-up are, apparently, a protective shell of "white and fluffy" by nature Goths.


Goth tribes. Tacitus, talking about the Germans of the 2nd century, wrote: “Everyone's outerwear is a short cloak fastened with a buckle, and if it is not there, then with a thorn. (…) The richest are distinguished by the fact that, in addition to the cloak, they have other clothes, but not fluttering like the Sarmatians or Parthians, but narrow and tight-fitting bodies. They also wear the skins of wild animals … The clothes of women are not different from those of men, except that women often dress in linen capes, which they paint with purple paint, and their sleeves do not come down from their shoulders, so that their hands are bared from top to bottom, as part of the chest near them is also open."


Of course, the fashion for almost six centuries of the history of the existence of the Goths has changed significantly. The invariable elements were a clasp or two (brooches) fastening the cloak, belt; men could hang a knife from their belts, and girls and women - pendants or bags with "female" belongings. The Goths wore various metal pendants and beads (amber, glass, or semi-precious carnelian), and a bone comb was stuck into their hair. Of course, the style of clothing was very dependent on the habitat of certain tribes of the Goths.


Goth subculture. Appearance is one of the main components of the Goth image, so we will not dwell on it for a long time: surely everyone already understands what it is about:

Image Image


Goth tribes. Unlike their seeming "brothers" of the modern Goths, very little is known about the music of the ancient German Goths, or rather, almost nothing. The same Tacitus writes about certain songs with which the warriors went into battle, and also about a special melody without words (the so-called "bardit"), which was a strong and continuous hum, serving as a deterrent to enemies.

Goth subculture. We have already mentioned above about the genre of gothic rock that shaped the Goths as a movement. Today there are many different styles of gothic music: death rock, darkwave, gothic metal, etc.


Goth tribes. Like any ancient people, the Goths had an extensive mythology, but little is known about Gothic mythology itself. Rather, it can be judged by the early medieval Scandinavian sources. She is seen as part of Germanic-Scandinavian mythology. And the supreme god of the Germans, as you know, was Odin (Wotan). His "retinue" included Thor, Balder, Tyr, Heimdall, Bragi, Hed, Vidar, Vali, Ull, Njord Freyr, Loki (you can read more about German-Scandinavian mythology here).


Goth subculture.It is very difficult to draw a parallel between the youth movement is ready and any religious and mythological movements, because the representatives of this movement can belong to completely different confessions, get carried away with the occult and magic, or even be atheists. Spiritual views of the Goths are manifested mainly in music.

Morals and customs

Goth tribes. Alas, almost nothing is known about their morals, as well as about many other things from everyday life. However, Tacitus tells us about the "severity of morals" and "the strength of family ties." It is also known that the ancient Germans were hospitable people, great hunters for drinking and gambling.


Goth subculture. “One of the psychological foundations of the Gothic movement is the 'passive' aesthetic protest against the established stereotypes, moral norms and culture of behavior, - the authors of the article write. “Representatives of the subculture are often characterized by isolation and laconicism.” Nevertheless, different representatives of the subculture have different worldviews. Most are ready to be successfully integrated into society. They respect other informal movements and are especially sensitive to representatives of sexual minorities, although they themselves are most often heterosexual. They have a peculiar understanding of masculinity and femininity and relationships between the sexes.

Relationships with others

Goth tribes. We have already spoken about the belligerence of this people. The main enemy of the Goths at all times was the mighty Rome. At the same time, the Goths probably quickly found mutual understanding with the Sarmatians and entered into an equal alliance, as well as with other related Germanic tribes, with whom the Goths successfully plundered the unfortunate Romans. The Goths had not the best relations, apparently, with the Slavs, whom they drove into the forests, taking Slavic women for themselves. Despite everything, the Goths were respected in the ancient world. Probably because they were afraid.

Goth subculture. The frightening look of the ready has done its job: the grandmothers in the metro are afraid of them, everyone else is mistrustful. Media and cinema have shaped the image of the Goths as aggressive and suicidal. Some religious representatives also accuse the long-suffering Goths of Satanism. All this, of course, is not at all true. It is not surprising that it is not those around them that suffer from the Goths more often, but the Goths from those around them.

Popular by topic