Getting dressed to go out is a ritual, a donning of armor. When you're in your finest, you stand a little straighter, raise your chin a little higher. You look good, you look yourself, and you know it.

You listen to music while you're getting ready, of course, it gets you in the mood. Most people would think it's depressing, but it fills you with joy and wistful longing as you sing:

Don't you worry
They won't find my body

I want you to know
I've found peace in another world
Don't keep digging
I want you to lean back
Away from the place
Where my ashes are buried...

You walk through the streets of your city, smelling hot metal and car exhaust and cheap Chinese food, and people you pass part around you like water, a tall, imposing figure in elegant black, either sharp like a Matrix hero or flowingly dramatic as a dead poet. They are the mundanes, the normals. They cannot even imagine the excesses you enjoy on a nightly basis -- drink, sex, intellect, conversation, whatever your drug of choice may be. They are a little afraid of you, and you smile and speak with consummate politeness to them even as they edge away from you, loving the effect you have.

Oh, yes, anything for effect. It's what you're best at. It's what you live for. You dress like this for a reason. You love attention, you love drama and pathos and playing part of a story.

And that's when you turn down an anonymous blind alley and find an unmarked door set into a wall. You can hear the thud of industrial bass through the building wall as you open the door and enter the club. You smile at the bouncer, who welcomes you and waves you past the line of supplicants. They all know you here; you're a respected regular, a member of the Scene, bright and sharp yet kind and friendly, always knowing just what to say and what to do, dancing on the knife-edge of etiquette and contempt.

And you walk into the great underground expanse of the place, you see the beautiful people dancing and talking and laughing, each playing their roles, each an otherworldly creature. You feel the eyes of girls and boys upon you, and you smile faintly, knowing you can take your pick... and do not choose to. A table of friends waves you over, and after getting a drink from the bar, you sit, and talk philosophy, or clothes, or books, or whatever strikes your fancy. And you dance, you dance until you can't move any more, weaving to melody in graceful tai chi motions rather than pumping to rhythm. You kiss the DJ through the razorwire and circuitry and go back and drink some more and chat up the pretty thing with huge dark eyes and long midnight hair, sweet and damsel-like in her corset and flowing skirt.

And when you go home, late that night, alone or in company, you know that you have lived the life less ordinary, and seen the secret places, and done the forbidden things. The mundanes, the norms, they will never know what it is to be part of an imaginary aristocracy: unacknowledged lords and ladies of the night, to be sure, but lords and ladies all the same.

You live for beauty. You are beauty, and pride, and power. And you love it, and that's why you do it again the next night. This is what it is to be a goth.

Among the more important migrations of Germanic people’s during the Völkerwanderungen (meaning basically "the migration of the peoples") was that of the Goths. Though the historical evidence of early Germanic history is rather light on the ground, there are some few things that history does know and some sources that one may look to in order to understand their migrations, movements and cultures better.

Besides the Germanic laws developed by the tribes, which settled areas and established kingdoms, there are a few books and other sources from which to glean some small knowledge of these peoples. Our understanding of the Germanic people’s comes from a few written sources, both seemingly biased in their very base. Tacitus’ "Germania" is a prime source and generally accepted as the best, though it is skewed towards the Roman view of the uncivilized barbarian. On the other hand one has the historian Cassiodorus who, as an advisor to the Ostrogoth king Theodoric the Great, wrote another history that some may call the world’s first work of propaganda. But his is almost a lost work and survives to this day mostly because of its abridgement, called “On the Origin and Deeds of the Getae” or the "Getica", which was written by Jordanes in 551 AD.

Tacitus gives us some idea of the Goths, stating that they were identifiable by their round shields, short swords and extreme obedience to their kings. Contrary to the popular misconceptions, the Goth tribe did not ride to battle on horses. In fact the first Goth tribesmen to ride horses into battle were probably those Ostrogoths in serving in the Hun armies, in the 5th century AD. The Goths were not the feared destroyers and pillagers that many know from the historical stories or myths. Instead they were quite apt at developing their own culture and at integrating other cultures within their own. They were a feared tribe though, but mostly due to the fact that they would often sacrifice their captives to their God (who was very much like the Mars of Roman mythology) by hanging arms in trees as offerings.

Their culture, especially where they interacted with the Mediterranean was quite advanced, but the Goths did not lack for their own culture even from the beginning. Priests and kings were said to come from a separate and distinct class and kings typically achieved a god-like status after death. They had a well developed system of laws, which are said to have been first given to the Goths by one Dicineus and would eventually be brought into written form later in history. Many of these laws were replaced over time by the Latin codes of law, but some, like the swearing of oaths and the judging of the truth of accused crimes remained. Metalworking was one of the prime Gothic, and Germanic in general, arts. Their skill in metalworking, in fact, was well above what much of the Roman peoples could do, and was probably a very large reason for the effectiveness of the Goth forces in their later conquests.

One must mostly depend on archeological evidence for the migrations of the Germanic peoples. It is accepted that the Goths moved south from Scandinavia; some point to the island of Gotland as proof. The migrations were probably partially triggered by overpopulation of the Scandinavian region and partially that of expelled tribes; these being the same primary reason that would start the remarkably similar, if by water rather than land the second time, Viking migrations of later centuries. Whatever the fact that forced the Goths to move from their homeland, they did journey south and eventually made their way to the Black Sea area, centering on the northwest coast and the Crimea.

The original migration of the Goths would have reached the Black Sea by the mid-2nd century AD. Here they consolidated their power and pushed the lesser Germanic tribes before them; as well as subjugating the small Slavic populations of the areas they moved into. This push on weaker tribes was probably the cause of the increased raiding of the Roman Empire during the period, as the tribes fled south from the Goths and into Roman controlled lands. The first major raids by Gothic peoples on the Roman Empire came in the late 3rd century when they raided the Balkans, sacked Athens and were finally defeated, in the battle of Battle of Naissus, in September, 269.

It was around this time that the main Goth tribe became two distinct tribes. Those dwelling between the Dniester and Danube rivers would become a separate tribe from those still living around the Black Sea and in the Ukraine. These would become the Visigoths and the first major invaders of the Roman Empire. Striking south in the late 4th century, though they would be beaten back at first by the Roman legions; though they would prompt the Romans to abandon the province of Dacia. Their leader Alaric would sack Rome on August 24, 410, but the tribe would remain homeless for a short while afterward. Eventually they would be granted the position of federate in Gaul, becoming an independent kingdom that stretched from southern Gaul throughout most of Spain. The Visigoths were smashed by the Islamic invasion into Spain in 711 AD, but their example though would go on to inspire the Spanish reconquest of Iberia in later centuries.

The tribe which became the Ostrogoths remained in the areas reaching from the Black Sea and north into the Ukraine and Belarus. They would remain the unchallenged masters of this vast stretch for more than a century. Eventually though their dominance would come to an end at the hands of the Huns. Forced to become vassals, they fought with the Huns, under Attila the Hun, at the Battle of Chalons in 451 AD. Following the death of Attila they reclaimed their independence and would eventually become federates of the Roman Empire themselves, eventually being settled in the Pannonia area of the east. It would be Theodoric I who would lead the Ostrogoth’s to their own kingdom, by taking Italy for the Byzantium and creating his own throne. They would survive but a short time though, eventually being conquered by the Byzantine forces. The Ostrogoths, unlike their cousins the Visigoths, created no real lasting legacy among the people of Italy.


See:
Ostrogoth
Visigoth


Sources:

Cantor, N. F. (1993) The civilization of the middle ages. Harper Perennial, New York, NY.

Goth Encyclopædia Britannica. Retrieved September 16, 2004, from Encyclopædia Britannica Premium Service. (http://www.britannica.com/eb/article?tocId=9037486)

Goth. Retrieved September 16, 2004, from Wikipedia. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Goths)

Successors of Rome: Germania. Retrieved September 13, 2004, from the Friesian School. (http://www.friesian.com/germania.htm)

A Brief History of the Goth Music Scene

The Early Years: Goth! The Terror From Beyond Punk

"We'd say 'Make it a cross between The Velvet Underground and the scene from Psycho."—Steven Severin (Siouxsie and the Banshees)

Horror and dark, moody images have been entwined with music for a very long time. Even in the 1920s and 1930s, a time when upbeat fox trots and high-spirited big bands dominated popular music, some musicians made creepy songs with odd, macabre themes (Louis Armstrong, for one, has a wonderful song entitled the Skeleton in the Closet which is the charming tale of a shy little bag of bones who decides to get out on the dance floor and rattle those tarsals!). One of the first cartoons to feature sound was The Skeleton Dance, in 1929, which featured skeletons and other ghoulish party-goers, having a great graveyard time to some upbeat music.

The first embryonic glimmers of the musical and cultural movement that would become goth came into being around 1975-1976, in the dark and angry world of punk. Siouxsie Sioux, of Siouxsie and the Banshees, worked with Sid Vicious before he and John Lydon (Johnny Rotten) came together in the Sex Pistols. Siouxsie and other proto-goths joined the bizarre punk circus that surrounded the 'Pistols.

Because of its close ties with punk, the goth sound was heavily influenced by the punkers' high-energy, bass-heavy music. The poetic musings of Jim Morrison and David Bowie also captured the imaginations of the early goths, lending their fascinating lyrical stylings to the genre. The bands were fascinated with melodramatic theatricality, such as pioneered on the rock stage by Alice Cooper. A few other influences worth noting are the glams, such as T. Rex, Mott the Hoople and Roxy Music and the New York downtown scene bands and poets: Nico, the New York Dolls and the Velvet Underground for example*. As many of the New York artists were in turn heavily influenced by the beat poets, such as William S. Burroughs, Allen Ginsberg and John Giorno, and the poets' influence is strongly felt in some of the goth lyrics (I am reminded of the beats every time I listen to the Sisters of Mercy).

As the cultural dust of punk began to coalesce in 1976-1977, a bewildering array of fashions and ideas quickly came into being. The first goths, the so-called "positive punks" traded influences with other movements—cross-pollinating with industrial music, such as Throbbing Gristle, early new wave bands like Talking Heads and the general hard rock scene of the later years of the 1970s. The L.A. death rock movement (with bands such as .45 Grave and Christian Death) also lent their hardcore, frequently surrealist and dadaist-influenced sounds to the early movement.

Siouxsie and Joy Division were the initial trendsetters of this new musical styling, establishing a much darker and moodier sound than their punk forebears. The goth sound relied more heavily on bass and less on distorted guitar, mixing hollow, lonely sounds with wailing, plaintive vocals. Synths were also used, although nowhere nearly to the extent that they were favored by the new wave and new romantic movements. The lyrics were highly stylized with a poetic feel. Goth was far less concerned with politics than punk, concentrating on romantic, dark and often fantastical images frequently drawn from (or at least inspired by) the creepy symbolism of Victorian horror stories and the very large body of cinema that these tales had inspired.

The clothing was usually old-fashioned and usually black or presented in dark, muted colours. Siouxsie dressed in goth-type style and Dave Vanian, of the Damned, a punk band, was dressing as a vampire as early as 1977. Goth visual art was dark and often disturbing, with a love of the monstrous and freakish, but a strange undercurrent of humour—often a rather silly, Monty Pythonish humour.

Bauhaus Blazes Trails: Bela Lugosi Meets a Brooklyn Gorilla

"Nico** was gothic, but she was Mary Shelley gothic to everyone else's Hammer horror film gothic."—Peter Murphy (Bauhaus)

In 1979, a small group of art school musicians created the band Bauhaus 1919 (soon shortened to Bauhaus). Even though lead singer Peter Murphy said that they "...never consciously focused on or identified with any movement or any dialogue..." they were among the trendsetters for goth. Bauhaus' edgier, hard-rock inspired sound fundamentally changed the audiences' expectations about goth music and paved the way for such second-generation goth bands as UK Decay, Danse Society, Play Dead and the Sisters of Mercy.

The name positive punk crept into existence around 1979. By then, punk had lost much of its edgy, rebellious nature and had largely turned nihilistic, nasty and crude (there are exceptions, of course). Positive punks, while not exactly light-hearted, were far less angry and aggressive. The musicians and bands, however, did not like the positive punk label***.

Thus uninspired by the sound and fury of the punks and disenchanted by the commercialism associated with the new romantics, these so-called positive punks searched for a distinct identity of their own. Their stylings were elegant, dark and romantic, far moodier than the emerging new wavers, influenced heavily by Edwardian and Victorian fashion.

In the days before his turn at art rock, Adam Ant also had a hand in the stylings and music of goth. His eccentric, antique fashion sense and tribal-influenced music left a big mark on the underground music scene, especially the goth and new romantic movements. Appropriately, Adam and the Ants guitarist Marco Pirroni started out with Siouxsie and the Banshees.

Around 1981, these dark souls began to have their own distinct lifestyle and subculture.

The Goth Explosion: London After Midnight

"Suddenly there were all these bands with shaven eyebrows."—Daniel Ash (Bauhaus)

In 1981, Abbo from UK Decay said "We're into this whole Gothic thing," (Bowie had used the term as early as 1974, and people had said this about the Doors in 1967) but many still called it positive punk for a couple more years. In 1983, Andi (from Sex Gang Children) got dubbed "Count Visigoth, the Gothic Goblin" (there is that goofy, gothy sense of humour again), and his fans were called the "gothics." That name, shortened to goths, caught on.

In the early 1980s, a tidal wave of influences hit the nascent goth scene, threatening to boggle the fragile little minds of rock critics and record company PR people—blues, jazz, campy horror, dance music, Funk, Native American, Middle Eastern, Asian music and more. By the mid '80s, some people began to apply such distinctions as 'gloom' (dark, serious, horror-influenced) or 'ambient' (No words, very understated background music), to try to make sense of the hodgepodge that was the goth scene.

Goth bands began to surface in many parts of the world: Christian Death and .45 Grave from the United States, Virgin Prunes from Ireland, Clan of Xymox from the Netherlands, X-Mal Deutschland in Germany, and too many to name from the UK. The bands often found huge legions of fans, and suddenly this new phenomenon was showing up everywhere.

As more bands began to appear, the folks at Beggars Banquet caught the wave, starting up the 4AD label. Such luminaries as Bauhaus, The Birthday Party, Dead Can Dance and Lydia Lunch (another of the New York downtown crowd–there's that connection again) recorded on this label. 4AD became one of the most important independent record labels in the '80s and '90s and a driving force in the world of goth.

1982 was a year of increased visibility for the goths. It was in July that the Batcave, the first predominantly goth club, opened. Goth culture got a lot more media exposure that year.

Goth Gets Noticed: the Gothy Horror Picture Show

"The children of the night, what music we make!"—Roky Erickson (from the song Burn the Flames, but borrowed from Bram Stoker)

The Batcave opened in London with the idea of reinventing glam rock with a darker mood. As it happened, this was exactly what many of the goth bands were doing at the time. As the news spread, more goth clubs sprang up, first in England, but soon around the world.

The Batcave was home for Specimen, a campy glam-rock band and this fun, Rocky Horror vibe spread throughout the goth culture. Many bands played at the Batcave: Alien Sex Fiend, Flesh for Lulu and Danielle Dax to name but three. As such gathering places will do, the Batcave attracted a fascinating tribe of mutants: artists, bohemians, fashion designers, fetishists, and, of course, musicians. Numerous goth bands emerged from that strange little tribe.

In 1983, the Hunger was released. This brooding and sexy vampire film starred Catherine Deneuve, Susan Sarandon and David Bowie and its soundtrack featured Bela Lugosi's Dead by Bauhaus. Here was big exposure for the goths, also further cementing in place Bowie's status as a goth cult icon. A few movies in the 1980s had Goth music in their soundtracks, mostly horror pictures like Return of the Living Dead and the Lost Boys (both also had a touch of that morbid silliness that characterized so much of goth culture as well).

This Mortal Coil, created by 4AD founder Ivo Watts Russell, was the original goth collaborative project, featuring players from Cocteau Twins, Dead Can Dance, X-Mal Deutschland, Modern English and many more. The goth supergroup got together for several projects, starting in 1984 and spanning many years.

The Sisters of Mercy: Dr. Goth Rises Again

"The Sisters represent goth in the same way as the Rolling Stones represented rock."—Brian Perera (Cleopatra Records)

Around 1985, observers of popular culture began to write the obituaries for goth. It had a very long run, as Rock music movements go, few rock styles survive more than about four years. Many of the bands, such as Bauhaus, The Birthday Party and Southern Death Cult split up and some, such as the Cure, Danse Society and Theater of Hate, went in more commercially viable directions—leading to choruses of disenchanted goths screaming "Sellout!"

Many bands, such as Siouxsie and the Bansees and Sisters of Mercy never cared for the label "goth" at all and distanced themselves from the culture as a whole. Another group that tried hard to avoid the label goth were Dead Can Dance, described by one noder as one of the finest "we're not goth, we just dress weird and sing ethereal, frequently morbid things in Latin and made-up languages and have the word Dead in our name and most of our audience are goths" bands of all time.

The epitaphs proved to be premature, however.

Goth moved out of the spotlight. Worldwide sales of black hair dye and black lipstick dropped precipitously. Clubs closed or began catering to an entirely different crowd (one, in the author's hometown went from goth to hair-band heavy metal almost overnight). Goth was not dead, though. Bands such as the Cure, Fields of the Nephilim and Gene Loves Jezebel kept the sound alive and Tones on Tail emerged from the ashes of Bauhaus.

It was, however, the Sisters of Mercy that brought goth music back from its underground hibernation into the view of a somewhat wider audience.

Formed in 1980 in Leeds, England, the Sisters of Mercy took their name from the Leonard Cohen song of that title—hoping to reflect the ambiguous nature of the rock band as part-saints and part-prostitutes.

The band balanced lead singer Andrew Eldrich's intricate lyrics and melodious baritone voice with remarkably complex guitar, bass and drums. Their work also sometimes incorporated sound effects and choral vocals for an overall feel that was highly effective. Their singles had been underground successes through the early '80s, but it was the Sisters' debut album First and Last and Always, which broke into the UK top 10 chart, that brought them to the attention of the world.

Goth Fades and Returns ... Again and Again: Return of the Living Goths, parts 1, 2, 3 ...

"We never got a new David Bowie, we got a Morrissey instead. We'll never get another Sisters either–so why don't people stop trying to be one?"—Johnny Indovina (Human Drama)

Appropriately enough, goth began to emerge from its cave soon after the announcement of its death. Goth fanzines such as Permission and Propaganda in the UK and Phantasmagoria in the US fed news to the fans and a new crop of bands began to spring up—bands like Attrition, Red Lorry Yellow Lorry and D.H.I. are examples of the late '80s wave of goth bands that followed in The Sisters' footsteps. In good goth tradition, most of the bands absolutely refused to be identified with the goth movement, or any movement, really.

Goth mutated and the fashions and bands got more commercialized. Many of the bands moved closer to the popular trends of the time, further smudging the lines between pop and goth. Anne Rice's vampire novels became mainstays of goth culture. Much of the alternative rock scene in the late '80s UK was heavily influenced by the goths, but that influence died down with the dawning of the 1990s.

There was a lot of musical crossover and counter-influence at this time with the re-emerging industrial music scene of the late '80s. Bands like Nine Inch Nails, Dog Pile and Meat Beat Manifesto had an eerie yet dynamic sound which fit in well with what the bands in the second wave of goths were doing, and both sides borrowed from one another.

The Mission UK and the Cult (which evolved out of the remains of Southern Death Cult) were both important in defining the goth sound at this time, as was Love and Rockets (formed by members of Bauhaus), even though they were more straight-ahead rockers. Nick Cave of The Birthday Party went on to a very artistically successful career.

The wave crested and goth began to pale into the background of the constant buzz of popular culture. It was not gone, but it became a barely noticeable blip on the cultural radar. Goth-influenced music gave way to rave music, world beat, grunge and the myriad different styles of alternative rock in the early '90s. Below the eyeline of popular culture, bands like the Marionettes, Rosetta Stone, Terminal Power Co, Every New Dead Ghost, Nick Cave, Nosferatu, Dominator X and Black Atmosphere kept the Goth sound going during the early '90s, even as it moved out of the public eye and into the side lights.

Goth and Pop Culture Finally Meet: the House of Whacks

"There's nothing grey and dreary about [goth] ... it hums and burbles with life."—Mick Mercer (author, Gothic Rock)

The increasing popularity of the world wide web in the latter half of the 1990s brought with it a revival of interest in goth music and the attendant subculture. Fanzines, catalogues and band literature had been traditionally disseminated by poorly photocopied cut-and-paste artwork. The net allowed for a much higher-quality look (in most cases) and greater ease of distribution.

Discussion groups, websites and newsgroups appeared for every conceivable subject and goths, especially dilettantes and wannabes, were delighted to be able to discuss such matters as the works of Neil Gaiman and the intricacies of Vampire: the Masquerade with like-minded people around the world without having to break out the mascara.

Projekt Records started by Sam Rosenthal of Black Tape for a Blue Girl in 1983, had been a small label, producing a handful of talented goth bands. In 1993, they started the Projekt: darkwave mail order branch, supplying music on CD and cassette to their fans around the world. Two years later, they started their website (www.projekt.com) and they have since grown into a major force in the resurrection and persistence of the goth sound.

Consumer culture caught on to the trend quickly (having largely missed goth in its past incarnations). Stores catering to goth and alternative fashion appeared in malls and shopping centers. Goths appeared as characters in movies and television shows (admittedly, they were usually the 'kooky' character with an interest in necromancy or something like that). There is even a web site called Gothic Babe of the Week (project of Industrial Gothic http://industrialgothic.com/gbotw/) which features photos of a pretty goth woman each week.

Recent Times: Children of the Porn and Children of the Corny

"People tell me I'm an influence, but I don't want to take too much responsibility. Now, it's so strange, it's become a way of life for so many people."—Rozz Williams (Christian Death)

The death knell was sounded for goth in about 1985, then again in 1987, 1990, 1992 and several times since then. It is incredibly befitting for a movement which grew up around the macabre works of such authors as Bram Stoker and Edgar Allan Poe that the movement should vanish underground every so often, only to rise from the proverbial crypt, inspiring a new crop of kids to wear black eyeliner and ankh necklaces.

As the '90s wound down, goth spawned a dozen or more splinter groups, then moved out of the center stage once again. Darkwave (a term which some enthusiasts use instead of goth to encompass all gloomy, dark music) is a noisier movement inspired by industrial, including such bands as Das Ich. Ambient bands such as Lycia weave a much smoother, eerie sound with few, if any, vocals. Trance, an offshoot of the rave scene is a highly electronic musical styling that is a close cousin to goth and includes some very talented bands and DJs such as Dance 2 Trance and DJ Tiësto. Marilyn Manson, and other members of the death glam scene are visually very similar to the goths with morbid fetishistic overtones. Goth metal groups, who are spiritual kin to the death metal scene mentioned earlier in this writeup, combine goth fashions with hardcore metal sounds. The Slimelight club in Islington, London, gave rise to the cybergoth sound which draws various influences from the works of cyberpunk authors such as Bruce Sterling and William Gibson, anime and rave culture—bands such as Goteki and Sheep on Drugs are examples of this subgenre.

Of course, many of the (relatively) old-time goth fans reject these newcomers as wannabes. One of the weirdest things about the goth movement is that, very few bands have ever wanted to be called goths, and most of the ones who have desired the title have been arguably less deserving. Siouxsie and the Banshees, Bauhaus and the Sisters of Mercy all have rejected the term goth, yet these three remain mainstays of the movement. Some fans even make a distinction between goth and gothic (for more information about this odd phenomenon, please see jkotecki's superb piece: Goth vs. Gothic). Just to further mess up the picture, some fans feel that including such goths-come-lately as the Cybergoths is somehow disrespectful to the entire movement.

However grim and serious Bauhaus, UK Decay and their ilk may have seemed, there was usually a sense of humor and fun just below the surface. Songs like Bauhaus' Party of the First Part and Now I'm Feeling Zombified by Alien Sex Fiend belie a strange, dark, but intensely silly sense of humor that kept much of goth from wallowing in the sort of grim self-importance that it could have easily done. It may be that the people who are arguing about the latest reincarnations of goth need to reconnect with that sense of fun that spawned the movement in the first place.

"...there's a helluva lot of goth bands who are coming up, who have a whole new perspective on goth, mixing the punk or the industrial edge. I think there's a lot of talented goth musicians and people involved in the scene, they just haven't been recognized yet."—Christoph (Black Atmosphere)


* This author has recently come to the realization that the glam bands, which were primarily in the UK, and the New York downtown bands were really sibling movements—having similarities in influence, sound and style, especially at first.

** Some fun can be had by goth aficionados, in arguing over the identity of the "first goth album"—an amusing, if ultimately not terribly meaningful, diversion. Cases have been made for Nico's the Marble Index and the End, Alice Cooper's Love it to Death and David Bowie's the Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars

*** The name positive punk seems really strange, given our gloomy stereotype of the goths. That name sort of brings to mind a smiley-face with a mohawk!


References:
Siouxsie and the Banshees by wharfinger
Bauhaus by Wolfang
industrial music by neschek
Goth vs. Gothic by jkotecki
Dead Can Dance by hramyaegr
This Mortal Coil by tkil
My thanks to Devon for editorial advice
Thanks to DejaMorgana for additional input
"Gothic Rock: Stigmata Martyr...the Unstoppable Goth Machine" 2 CD collection and liner notes by Mick Mercer (Cleopatra, Los Angeles, 1992).
A History of Gothic Music, this is an unbelievably well-researched site all about the history of the movement - http://www.scathe.demon.co.uk/histgoth.htm
Goth 101 by Marc Gander http://www.leepresson.com/goths.htm
A Study of Gothic Subculture -- Alternative Press, November 1994 issue By Dave Thompson and Jo-Ann Greene. Online at http://www.darkwaver.com/subculture/articles/undead.php
Nationmaster.com encyclopedia entry: http://www.nationmaster.com/encyclopedia/Gothic-rock

Goth (?), n. [L. Gothi, pl.; cf. Gr. ]

1. Ethnol.

One of an ancient Teutonic race, who dwelt between the Elbe and the Vistula in the early part of the Christian era, and who overran and took an important part in subverting the Roman empire.

⇒ Under the reign of Valens, they took possession of Dacia (the modern Transylvania and the adjoining regions), and came to be known as Ostrogoths and Visigoths, or East and West Goths; the former inhabiting countries on the Black Sea up to the Danube, and the latter on this river generally. Some of them took possession of the province of Moesia, and hence were called Moesogoths. Others, who made their way to Scandinavia, at a time unknown to history, are sometimes styled Suiogoths.

2.

One who is rude or uncivilized; a barbarian; a rude, ignorant person.

Chesterfield.

 

© Webster 1913.

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