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In ancient lays, their only type of historical tradition, they celebrate Tuisto, a god brought forth from the earth. They attribute to him a son, Mannus, the source and founder of their people, and to Mannus three sons, from whose names those nearest the Ocean are called Ingvaeones, those in the middle Herminones, and the rest Istvaeones. Some people, inasmuch as antiquity gives free rein to speculation, maintain that there were more sons born from the god and hence more tribal designations—Marsi, Gambrivii, Suebi, and Vandilii—and that those names are genuine and ancient. (Germania, chapter 2)
Mannus again became popular in literature in the 16th century, after works published by Annius de Viterbo and Johannes Aventinus purported to list him as a primeval king over Germany and Sarmatia.
In the 19th century, F. Nork wrote that the names of the three sons of Mannus can be extrapolated as Ingui, Irmin, and Istaev or Iscio. A few scholars like Ralph T. H. Griffith have expressed a connection between Mannus and the names of other ancient founder-kings, such as Minos of Greek mythology, and Manu of Hindu tradition.
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- The Phonology/paraphonology Interface and the Sounds of German Across Time, p.64, Irmengard Rauch, Peter Lang, 2008
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- Mitra-Varuna: An Essay on Two Indo-European Representations, p. 87, by Georges Dumézil, Zone, 1988, "An Essay on Two Indo-European Representations Georges Dumézil. the Sanskrit Manu (both the name and the common noun for "man"), has given, in particular, the Germanic Mannus (-nn- from *-nw- regularly), mythical ancestor of the Germans."
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- William J. Jones, 1999, "Perceptions in the Place of German in the Family of Languages" in Images of Language: Six Essays on German Attitudes, p9 ff.
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- "A Classical Dictionary of India: Illustrative of the Mythology, Philosophy, Literature, Antiquities, Arts, Manners, Customs &c. of the Hindus", p. 383, by John Garrett, Higginbotham and Company (1873)
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