Are Gypsies real?

22 Mar

When I was young… i remember my mom and grandmother telling me that if i was a bad child they would “sell me to the gypsies”…I always thought of Gypsies as being a thing in fairy tales… like vampires, werewolves, etc…In all of my world travels, I had never encountered this wonderful ethnicity…

“Romani” as they are called in a more politically correct way… The term Gypsy is used commonly in the USA. I have heard that the name gypsy is considered a rude word. They are also called CIGAN in Serbia. I Googled the word Gyspsy and found that it is the foundation of the common slang word “GIPP” in the USA. We use that term to describe someone being RIPPED OFF or paying too much for something. I never realized it had any correlation with the word GYPSY. They say the word “GYPSY” is a Greek word that means EGYPTIAN because they thought they came from Egypt.

The Romani ethnicity is very old! It is said that they originated in India. They  fled central India in the 11th century during the raids of  Mahmud of Ghazni. They have a large population in the Balkans and all over Europe but the largest amount is in Brazil……  They have very unique traditions and are known to travel from one location to another. In Serbia … many of them are singers, musicians or work in recycling. There is a large disparity of wealth in the Gypsy community. Many of them suffer from extreme poverty and lack of education … while others build BEAUTIFUL, LARGE and ORNATE HOMES…

They speak their own language called Romani or Cigani. Many of them also speak German, French and English.. The language is said to have over 2 million speakers worldwide.

My first encounter with this wonderful people was this summer in Zrenjanin Serbia. My friend and I were walking along this little lake. There was a family sitting in wagon and yelling something in Serbian. I asked my friend what they were saying. He said ” they are asking for goose feathers!” hahaha..I was amazed!! I also had the opportunity to record a guy this morning… He is driving around in a wagon and looking for things to recycle…. This is something you wont find in the USA!

I hope to befriend a few of them and learn more about their unique and beautiful culture!



Posted by on March 22, 2012 in Through my eyes


Tags: , , , ,

11 responses to “Are Gypsies real?

  1. Dario

    March 23, 2012 at 4:44 pm

    Wha i love about gypsies is that they can make money from gathering shit everyone throws.

    • Asshol

      May 6, 2013 at 2:49 pm

      Wires are shit?

  2. laura

    March 23, 2012 at 11:22 pm

    Yes, they are very real. I can tell you because I am one. I was taken away and adopted at the age of nine.I was given the opportunity of education that I would not have if the state did not get involved. I could answer many of your questions. Feel free to email me.

    • cather76

      March 26, 2012 at 2:43 pm

      Hi there…. how are you, Laura?? Thanks for your comment.. I would love to speak with you.. i have a lot of questions to ask you about it… if you have some time to message me I would love to hear from you…

  3. Priscilla

    June 11, 2012 at 9:48 pm

    Hi! im an 100% full blooded american gypsy! i would love to tell yous about our traditions and stuffs, and that guy in the wagon is not a gypsy. He’s a traveler. which are very different from us. 🙂 BTW, i live in Atlanta, GA,, lots of american gypsies do! we live in places like.. Atlanta, Miami, Chicago, New york, Los Angeles.. we’re VERY different from what people think. we’re just normal people like you! we dont steal stuff, act like whores, Drink a lot. That “My Big Fat American Gypsy Wedding” is totally fake! their not even realy gypsies! they’re giving bad name for us…

    • cather76

      June 13, 2012 at 12:03 am

      hi there…

      wow.. thanks a lot for reading.. i hope i didnt offend you.. i am very interested in your culture.. sorry for my stupidity.. what is the main difference between a traveler and a roma???

    • Bec

      March 4, 2015 at 5:57 am

      I have a friend who is Serbia gypsies…. What could I give her as a gift she is new to Australia?

      • cather76

        March 4, 2015 at 10:29 am

        Hi there.. ughh.. I really wouldn’t have a clue. I’m sure the thought will be the most important thing 🙂

  4. LaJuana

    September 18, 2012 at 2:29 am

    Charles, I have done a lot of work with the Roma in Serbia, especially in the villages around Prokuplje as well as Roma villages north of Novi Sad. They are an incredible people — very warm and hospitable, hard-working, and their music! Oh! Fantastic!

    • cather76

      September 18, 2012 at 3:47 pm

      that is fantastic.. id love to meet some of them… thanks for the info..i have been to a few villages around Prokuplje… which ones?? thanks for reading..

    • Jo Anna Reibel

      August 7, 2015 at 6:43 pm

      Hi, my grandmother was a Serbian Gypsy who came to America in 1915. She was beautiful and had a wonderful singing voice. Her maiden name was Molson, and she was Belgrade. Is it possible to find avenues to research, or find relatives?


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