Ti'ras (Heb. Tiras', תַּיֹרָס, Sept. θείρας;Vulg. Thisras), the youngest son of Japheth (Ge 10; Ge 2). B.C. 2514. As the name occurs only in the ethnological table, we have no clue, so far as the Bible is concerned, to guide us as to the identification of it with any particular people. Ancient authorities generally fixed on the Thracians, as presenting the closest verbal approximation to the name (Josephus, Ant. 1, 6, 1; Jerome, in Genesis 10:2; Targums Pseudo-Jon. and Jerus on Genesis loc. cit.; Targ. on 1 Chronicles 1:5); the occasional rendering Persia probably originated in a corruption of the original text. The correspondence between Thrace and Tiras is not so complete as to be convincing; the gentile form θρᾶξ, however, brings them nearer together. No objection arises on ethnological grounds to placing the Thracians among the Japhetic races (Bochart, Phaleg, 3, 2; Michaelis, Spicileg. 1, 55 sq.). Their precise ethnic position is, indeed, involved in great uncertainty; but all authorities agree in their general Indo European character. The evidence of this is circumstantial rather than direct. The language has disappeared, with the exception of the ancient names and the single word bria, which forms the termination of Mesembria, Selymbria, etc., and is said to signify "town" (Strabo, 7:319). The Thracian stock was represented in later times by the Getae, and these, again, still later, by the Daci, each of whom inherited the old Thracian tongue (ibid. 303). But this circumstance throws little light on the subject; for the Dacian language has also disappeared, though fragments of its vocabulary may possibly exist either in Wallachian dialects or perhaps in the Albanian language (Diefenbach, Or. Eur. p. 68). If Grimm's identification of the Getae with the Goths were established, the Teutonic affinities of the Thracians would be placed beyond question (Gesch. d. deutsch. Spr. 1, 178); but this view does hot meet with general acceptance. The Thracians are associated in ancient history with the Pelasgians (Strabo, 9:401), and the Trojans, with whom they had many names in common (ibid. 13:590); in Asia Minor they were represented by the Bithnians (Herod. 1, 28; 7:75). These circumstances lead to the conclusion that they belonged to the Indo-European family, but do not warrant us in assigning them to any particular branch of it. Other explanations have been offered of the name Tiras, of which we may notice the Agathyyrsi, the first part of the name (Aga) being treated as a prefix (Knobel, Völkertafel, p. 129); Taurus and the various tribes occupying that range (Kalisch, Comm. p. 246); the river. Tyras (Dniester), with its cogominous inhabitants the Tyritf (Havernick, Einleit. 2, 231; Schulthess, Prad. p. 194); and, lastly, the maritime Tyrrheni (Tuch, in Genesis loc. cit.). SEE ETHNOGRAPHY.

Bible concordance for TIRAS.

See also the International Standard Bible Encyclopedia.

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