araphael saidI've always been a little curious about gypsies actually. Based on my reading of archealogical history, I understand that their origins go back to black african ancient egypt (kemet). I wonder if they know that? I would like to learn more about them actually.
I'm afraid that your information is incorrect. My mother is one of the Roma or Romani people, which is the proper name for the Gypsies. They are not connected ethnically with Egypt. The Gypsies originated in India, where they were an enthic group in the north near where Pakistan is today. They were physically dark but not black, lighter than the people of Southern India. The Gypsies were driven out by the Aryans from the Northwest in about the 10th century. From there they spread to Russia, Eastern Europe, Egypt, Palestine and Britain.
The Gypsies were not accepted because they did not suscribe to local religions and ways of life. They became wanderers without a homeland for centuries. They developed a culture of great secrecy and oral tradition. In Gypsy customs, oral family history has a great prevelance and elders are held in great respect.
Eventually, the Gypsies developed into three distinct groups. The Roma in Russia and Eastern Europe. The Sinti in Palestine and the Middle East. And the Yeni in France and Spain, who are very light skinned.
During World War II, Hitler targeted the Gypsies because they were a dark skinned ethnic minority that he considered inferior. Unlike the Jews, the Gypsies consider the Holocaust as a great shame on their history and do not speak of it and have tried to blot it from memory. As a result, we are unsure of the extent of their extermination, but of the 1.5 million prewar Gypsies, at least a third of their number perished in Treblinka and Auschwitz, and many more were shot by Nazi killing squads. My mother's family managed to escape their homes along the Volga in the early 20th century and the Germans from Russia smuggled them to London and eventually Belfast were my grandparents and mother was born. A couple of decades later, their village was eradicated, along with every family member they left behind.
Today the Gypsies exist in a diminished and more social form. Gone are the days of traveling camps, about 70% of the Roma people are simply citizens of their nation and happen to be of a different ethnicity. While generations of abuse and prejudice have diminished in Europe, they are by no means eradicated. I myself have been called "Gypo dog" on occasion by people who knew my ancestry, even though I do not identify with my mother's people as I didn't grow up in that community.
The stereotypes of mystic seers, traveling wagons, fortune tellers and Gypsy carnivals are mostly romanticized with little truth behind them. The Gypsies are for the most part a tragic people.