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Archive of What's New on Buber's Basque Page

 May 24, 2008

Azkarate Deadline Extended: Rosa wanted to let everyone know that the deadline for applying to help with the Azkarate Reconstruction has been extended to June 15. See this article for details.

 May 24, 2008

Sheepherder's Ball on NPR's Morning Edition! The Kitchen Sisters wrote me to help spread the word about their upcoming program on Hidden Basque Kitchens. The full press release reads:

    Hidden Kitchens on NPR's Morning Edition
    The Sheepherder's Ball: Hidden Basque Kitchens
    Produced by The Kitchen Sisters (Davia Nelson & Nikki Silva)
    Thursday, May 29th

    On Thursday, May 29th, Hidden Kitchens explores the world of Basque sheepherders in the American west and their outdoor, below-the-ground, Dutch oven cooking traditions. Basques fleeing Franco's Spain and economic hardship there and in France came to America with the promise of work as shepherds, a lonely job few wanted in the US. Within days of arriving in America these men, with little or no sheepherding background, found themselves alone, with two dogs and a thousand sheep, walking hundreds of miles across the mountains for months on end, in search of food and pasture. Provisions were delivered to the men once a week along the sheepherding trail. They dug a hole in the ground and buried Dutch ovens to bake bread and stew lamb. During winters they crowded into boarding houses in Boise, Bakersfield, Winnemucca, eating at family style tables full of music, leg of lamb and red wine. And once a year, feasted on chorizo and broad bean stew, dancing to the Jota, at the Sheepherder's Ball.

    Contact: The Kitchen Sisters / / (415) 788-0290 /

So, find your local NPR station and check out Morning Edition on Thursday!

Azkarate Reconstruction Service Learning

Rosa Totorica, the new EuskoSare coordinator for the USA, writes to remind us about the Azkarate Palace reconstruction project:

    Azkarate 2008 Service Learning Application Period Ends July 15.

    Those interested in participating in the Azkarate Palace reconstruction service learning project must submit applications soon.

    EuskoSare along with Concordia Association and the City of Azkarate, situated in Lower Navarra, are calling on youth in the global Basque community to collaborate in the third consecutive year of the Azkarate palace reconstruction and renewal effort. This year's dates are August 1st through the 23rd. The first year's youth service was in August 2006 and the second year was in July 2007.

    Application requirements for interested participants should include:

  • 18-45 years old
  • Membership in some type of Basque group or organization
  • Fill out the form and email to EuskoSare (

    Participants will only need to pay for their roundtrip tickets to the Basque Country. The organizers will take care of food and lodging costs. Participants will work five hours a day, Monday - Friday. The work will consist of various tasks including cleaning, painting, transporting materials, construction of a wall around the castle, etc.

    There will be free time of course. Some of the free time will be organized by the Concordia Association, which specializes in international cooperation projects and by EuskoSare. Recreational and cultural activites include excursions to the southern Basque Country, Lapurdi and Xiberoa.

    When the palace reconstruction project is finished, it will be converted into an International Diaspora Center which among other things, will host Basques from all over the world who are interested in learning more about their origins.

    What are you waiting for? Don't stand on the sideline, join up!

    For more information please email:

 May 04, 2008

We are still adjusting to our new life with Rose. Rose is a wonderful baby, and we are doing great, but I'm still not in a regular rhythm, so the updates to Buber's Basque Page are still going to be somewhat sporadic. For the time being, I've got a couple of quick announcements.

Volunteers Needed! Benoit Etxeberri, a very active member of the Basque cyber-world, writes:

    EuskoSare is calling upon the young people of the Diaspora to help in the construction of the Azkarate Palace from August 1st through the 23th. All details are here.

So, if you are interested in helping out, check out that link!

Dance Group from Gipuzkoa:, a dance group from Ibarra, Gipuzkoa, would like to introduce themselves! They have a video presentation on YouTube that shows their combination of traditional elements with some more modern touches. Very interesting!

Even more about Guillermo: Guillermo Zubiaga has really gotten a lot of press lately! I'd like to think I helped him out a bit with the interview, but really, this is a testament to his skill. He was recently interviewed by EiTB, the Basque television station, and has posted the interview on his website. Zorionak Guillermo!

CD Oberena... in Scotland: In an interesting reflection of how the Internet does indeed make the world smaller, Graham Stephen Donachie wrote to tell me about his blog on the Club Deportivo Oberena soccer club in Pamplona, who play in Spain's third division. Graham write's his blog from Arbroath, Angus, Scotland. He gives updates on games, info on players, and his own musings about life in general.

Combining Dance with Theater: A second dance group, Antzart, combines dance with theater to create a unique experience. Their theater draws heavily from Basque mythology, incorporating characters such as Basajaun, Mari, and the Lamiak. They have a video introducing their new play "Nortasunaren bila".

Bernardo Atxaga online: Bernardo Atxaga, one of the most well-known Basque writers and the author of, amongst other novels, Obabakoak (one of my favorite books!), is now online. In addition to his main website, he also has a blog where he is writing online his newest novel.

Photo Album Update! Finally, for today, several photos have been added to the Photo Album. First, Andy Franco, who designed and forged several of the items on display in the Boise Basque Museum exhibit on Basque whaling, sends some photos of his work, including the beautiful lauburu you see here. My sister-in-law, Shelley Jones, shares a great photo of an ikurrina she took during her trip to Donostia. Eskerrik asko, Andy and Shelley!

 Apr 05, 2008

It's very quiet around here: Hi everyone. Sorry it has been so quiet around Buber's Basque Page recently. But, it is for a very good reason. My wife, Lisa, and I are the pround parents of a beautiful baby girl! Rose is one month old today, and we are still adjusting to life with Rose. So, the updates haven't been as forthcoming as normal. But, I do have some things in the works, including a couple of interviews, so I hope to get things going again soon. Until then, I hope life is good for everyone!

Ondo izan!

 Feb 18, 2008

More from David Cox Jauna: The inestimable David Cox, a very frequent contributor to these pages, returns with a couple of items. First, he sent word that Bernardo Atxaga's latest novel, The Accordianist's Son, has recently been translated to English. On, David has a review of the Spanish translation of the book.

Also, David shares some photos from his most recent trip to Euskadi. Check out his Guest Album to see his photos of Baigorri, Elorrio, Aranzazu, and Aresti Kalea in Trapagaran, Bizkaia. Eskerrik asko, David!

More about Guillermo: At the end of last year, I posted an interview I had done with Basque graphic design artist Guillermo Zubiaga. Since then, he has appeared in a few more interviews. For those interested in his work and his upcoming graphic novel on the history of Basque Whaling, check out this interview on (in Euskara), and Euskadi Irratia (though I can't find a link for that one). Zorionak, Guillermo!

 Feb 03, 2008

International Center for the Basque Diaspora: Benoit Etcheverry, who seems to have no end to the projects he has to promote the Basque culture, sends word of one of his more ambitious projects. He is working to create the International Center for the Basque Diaspora in the town of Ascarat in Behe Nafarroa. On this site you can find some videos in a number of languages showing the plans for the Center and the work-in-progress. Benoit asks that anyone who supports the Center send him a note of encouragement and support, just saying "I think this project is a good idea, I support it's completion", something like this. There is a place on the site to leave such a note.

Sorte ona, Benoit!

Dia de San Blas! Today is the Day of San Blas, and a number of towns in Euskal Herria have fiestas today (though the biggest seems to be in Abadino, Bizkaia). San Blas is the patron of throat diseases and his fiesta is characterized by these little cookies, with a hole in the center, that are coated with an anis-flavored frosting. Anis is what gives black liquorice it's flavor. Unfortunately for me, I really don't like the taste of anis. But, I've been to a fiesta once on San Blas day (though I forget when and where, I just remember the cookies!) and it was a lot of fun.

Since it's my saint's day, doesn't that mean I should get my wish and the Giants should clobber the Patriots? Just saying...

 Jan 27, 2008

Protest over Basque president visit: Juan Jose Ibarretxe, the president of the Basque Autonomous Community, is scheduled to speak at Stanford on Feb 14. His visit has stirred up a lot of debate and protest, mostly because of his plan to hold a referendum on the future status of the Basque Autonomous Community within Spain (thanks to Phillipe Acheritogaray for clarifying this).

To read about the protest, along with some pretty spiteful comments by visitors, check out this article. Then, if you are so inclined, come to the Forum and discuss it.

 Jan 21, 2008

The Great Basque Classical Composers: The Basque Country is known for its music. Whether the unique instruments -- such as the alboka, txalaparta, or txistu -- that are the foundation of Basque folk music, or punk and rock bands exemplified by Negu Gorriak and Kortatu, music is definitely a cornerstone of Basque culture. However, the Basques also have a very strong tradition in classical music and some very successful composers have come from the Basque region, including Juan Crisotomo de Arriaga and, perhaps the most famous, Maurice Ravel. David Cox, a frequent contributor to Buber's Basque Page, returns with an overview of the most inf luential and prominent Basque composers: Symphonic Variations on a Basque Theme: The story of the great Basque composers.

Eskerrik asko, Daffyd!

If anyone else would like to contribute an article to be featured as a Guest Column on Buber's Basque Page, please let me know!

And the collection keeps on growing! Thanks to Jerry Hooks for sending this photo of the tattoo he has on his left arm, incorporating the Ikurrina. He is also has another one he is working on. Thanks for sharing, Jerry!

Postcards for Buber: When I first started these pages, I had a little notice asking for postcards, if anyone was up for sending me one. Well, I thought I'd ask again and, this time, I'll put them in the gallery. I'd rather not post my mailing address up here right now, but if you find a cool Basque-themed postcard you'd like to share, either scan it and email it to me or write me an email and I'll send you my address that way.

 Jan 05, 2008

Urte Berri On! I hope everyone has a great 2008!

Work for Basque Speaker: Anna Lavelle of Lionbridge is looking for Basque speakers who can work from home. The full text of the ad for the job is here:

Lionbridge enrpesaren webgune ebaluatzailea
Mota: Lanaldi partziala
Iraupena: Zehaztu gabea

Lionbridge Technologies, Inc. (Nasdaq: LIOX) enpresa globalizazio eta frogaketa zerbitzuen hornitzaile garrantzitsuenetako bat da. Lionbridge-ek errekurtso globalak programa frogatuen kudeaketarako metodologiekin konbinatzen ditu, bezeroei enpresa azpikontratatu gisa laguntzeko, enpresaren produktu eta edukientzako beharrezko zerbitzu guztiak eskainiz, haien bizi ziklo osoan zehar: diseinua, globalizazioa, frogatzea eta mantentzea. Industria guztietako organizazio globalak Lionbridge-engan ezartzen dute bere konfiantza nazioarteko merkatuko parte hartzea handitzeko, produktu eta eduki globaletara azkar egokitzeko eta enpresako aplikazio eta informatika sistemetan egindako inbertsioen emaitzak hobetzeko Lionbridge-en egoitza nagusia Waltham-en (Massachusetts) kokatzen da eta beste 50 zentro baino gehiago ditu 25 herrialdetan banatuta, Lionbridge eta VeriTest marken izenpean zerbitzuak eskaintzeko. Informazio gehiagorako, zoaz

Lionbridge Technologies taldea, mundu osoko 25 herrialdetan egoitzak dituena, lanaldi partzialerako langile autonomoen bila dabil, euskara eta ingeles maila aitua dutenak eta Euskal Herrian bizi direnak, euren webgune ebaluatzaileen taldera batzeko.


  • Ingelesa jakitea beharrezkoa da, hizkuntza horretan lan egiteko mailan.
  • Euskaraz jakin behar da.
  • Interneta oso ongi ezagutu eta erabiltzen duen jendearen bila gabiltza, erabiltzaile maila baino altuagoa dutenak.
  • Informatikari buruzko ezagutza izatea gomendatzen da, baina ez da beharrezkoa.
  • Jaiotzez euskalduna ez bazara, Euskal Herrian gutxienez 5 urte eraman behar dituzu.
  • Ingeleseko ziurtagiri ofizialak (adibidez, Cambridge-eko Unibertsitatearenak) lagungarriak dira.

    Lana sareko bilatzaileak ebaluatzean datza. Ordutegi malgua eskaintzen da, etxeko betebeharretara moldatzeko aukera ematen duena, beraz, lana eta bizitza pertsonalaren arteko oreka lortu nahi dutenentzat (astean 10-20 ordu inguru).

    Zuzendu helbide honetara: . Mezuan bi eranskin gehitu: zure curriculumaren kopia, ingelesez, eta aipamen gutun bat zure gaitasun aipagarrienekin, zaletasunekin, interesekin eta esperientziekin; zure jaioterria eta bizilekua ere adierazi.

    Lionbridge Technologies taldea lan aukeren berdintasunean oinarritzen da.

     Dec 30, 2007

    After a busy holiday season, I'm finally getting through my email and updating these pages. I intend to get a few additions and updates over the next couple of days. So, check back to see what I have in store for you.

    Interview with Guillermo Zubiaga: First off, Zorionak eta Urte Berri On! My Christmas gift to all of you is a very interesting interview with Guillermo Zubiaga. Guillermo Zubiaga is a graphic artist living in New York, though he was born and grew up in the Basque Country. We met through my website, when Guillermo contacted me about a link to his site. In this interview, Guillermo describes growing up in post-Franco Euskal Herria, his experiences in the US comic book industry, and his current project about a comic book on the history of Basque whaling.

    News from EiTB! A big Eskerrik Asko to Lorenzo Sainz Nieto of EiTB for helping me get the Basque News Ticker on this page! At the top, you'll see scrolling headlines from EiTB on Basque subjects. Any feedback anyone has on the ticker would be greatly appreciated. Should it appear on all pages, or just the main intro page?

    Basque Restaurants: When I started these pages, one of the first major contributions I got was by Charles Shaffer of Seattle. Not of Basque blood, Charles was definitely Basque at heart, especially when it came to food. He had compiled a list of all the Basque restaurants in the United States that he could, mostly so he would know where he needed to eat next. Over the years, a number of the restaurants on Charles' original list have closed and others have opened. Many visitors have left notes about which ones had changed ownership, changed cuisine, or even changed location. I've finally updated the main list against the visitor comments. If you have other changes that should be made, please let me know. Either write me or leave a note on the page. You can find Charles' list of Basque Restaurants in the US here.

    New Book for Learning Euskara: Tracy Liaw of Hippocrene Books sent me the following press release for a new book on learning Euskara:

      Basque is one of the world's most enigmatic languages; it is believed to be a language isolate -- a language with no known linguistic relatives. It has been spoken for more than 2,000 years in the area where it is still used today, in the Pyrenees Mountains in north-central Spain and southwestern France. It is also spoken by immigrant communities around the world, including in the United States, Venezuela, Argentina, Mexico, and Colombia.

      Beginner's Basque with 2 Audio CDs provides an excellent introduction to one of the most ancient languages of Western Europe. It is ideal for both classroom use and self-study.


    • introduction to the Basque region
    • 12 practical language lessons with dialogues, vocabulary, and expressions
    • comprehensive grammar explanations
    • review exercises with answer key
    • Basque-English and English-Basque glossaries
    • 2 audio CDs of dialogues and vocabulary with correct pronunciation by native Basque speakers

      Wim Jansen teaches linguistics at the University of Amsterdam. He is the author of several Basque-related books and articles, including the first Basque-Dutch dictionary.

      Beginner's Basque with 2 Audio CDs
      Wim Jansen
      $26.95 paperback; 283 pages

      Orders: Phone: 718-454-2366; Fax: 718-454-1391;

    The Sounds of Basque: Be careful what you wish for! I often get requests for links or any online resource to hear what Euskara sounds like. Well, the folks of fonatari, at the University of Deusto, have compiled what they themselves call an "exhaustive" database on the sounds of the Basque language. They have both audio and video, and have broken down the database by the different dialects of Euskara. So, if you have always wondered how the Gipuzkoans pronounce "tx", this is the website for you!

    Basque Perspective on US History: I run a site on Basque culture and history from the United States. It is only fitting and fair that someone run a site on the history of the US from the Basque Country! And that is exactly what Ben JH Van Melle is doing from the French-Basque city of Ahetze. His site, USAStatesDates, offers general historical events and facts on the US, in a timeline organized per state. Not since Alexis de Tocqueville has a French-(Basque)-man showed such great interest in the US. :)

     Nov 15, 2007

    Candle in the Night: In light of the recent Wall Street Journal furor, it seems apt that the Center for Basque Studies at the University of Nevada, Reno, is being honored and recognized by a new book. A Candle in the Night: Basque Studies at the University of Nevada, 1967-2007 documents the history of the Center, from its humble beginnings as a program to study the Basque shepherd in the American West to the leading institution of Basque Studies outside of Euskal Herria. The book is being celebrated with two book signings in the Reno area. You can learn more about the book here. You can also read about the book in Spanish at Luis Foncillas' blog.

    The Center for Basque Studies has been one of the most staunch defenders and proponents of Basque culture and language. Their efforts have lead to a much deeper understanding and appreciate of the Basque experience, not only in the US, but in the Americas in general and even back in the motherland. It is through the efforts of people like those in the Center that the Basque culture is still thriving, even in the face of such reporting as we recently saw in the WSJ. The timing of the release of this book is serendipitous and highlights the need for the Center. It is only through the efforts of the Center and similar institutes that the negative stigma and prejudices illustrated by the WSJ article can be overcome.

    Zorionak Center for Basque Studies!

    I'm on Facebook! Yeah, I've made a profile on facebook. Woohoo! A couple of friends got on so I thought I'd see what it is about. It's interesting and maybe an easy way to keep at least some contact with some friends. Not sure if I wanted to post my profile here for all to see, but I thought, what the hell, I might as well. So, if you are on facebook too, stop by and say hello.

     Nov 10, 2007

    Wall Street Journal furor: The Wall Street Journal recently published an article by Keith Johnson which questioned the usefulness of Euskara, the Basque language, in a modern context. He makes a number of points, most of which are pretty ridiculous. For example, he criticizes Euskara for having non-native words for concepts like democracy, which, of course, isn't a native English word either as it derives from Greek roots. Because of the number of incorrect assertions Johnson makes, this article has generated quite the response from online Basques. Unfortunately, the WSJ article is only viewable to those who have a subscription to the journal (if you have one, you can see the article here). However, you can get the gist of the article by reading the responses to it. Here are a couple:

    • Itsasertzeko zubia (which also posts a reply by Johnson in response to the criticism his article has generated)
    • Luistxo's blog
    • Mikel Iturbe's response to the article
    • EuskoBlog's take on the Basque-phobe-of-the-week
    • EiTB's initial response to the article and
    • Mikel Morris's answer to Johnson (Morris is the author of the leading English-Basque dictionary)

    What do you think? Leave a note on the blog.

  •  July 05, 2007

    From Idoya Salaburu Urruty: As you may know, the IV World Congress of Basque Communities in Bilbao is coming up. The main goal of the World Congress of Basque Communities is to promote the meeting and collaboration among Basque communities, Basque clubs, federations and confederations of Basque clubs, and Basque institutions. You will be able see blogs, photos, and diaries of everything that happens in Bilbao.

    With EuskoSare's special coverage, those who are not participating in the IV World Congress of Basque Communities will be able to follow along with everything that is happening in Bilbao through the Internet.

    The congress special coverage has begun with exclusive interviews with delegates and participants of the Diaspora who have commented on their expectations in regards to this global meeting.

    During the coming together of the meeting we will count on a group of columnists consisting of members of the EuskoSare team and collaborators that will attend as delegates and who will constantly provide updates through a blog that has already been put in place with news from previous congresses.

    We invite all users to leave their comments and suggestions regarding this Global Basque Community meeting.

    Check it out!

     July 01, 2007

    Zorionak Homedale! Homedale, Idaho, the town I grew up in, has a lot of Basques. But, until recently, they weren't overly organized. They partook in the Basque celebrations in nearby cities, but not as a group from Homedale. Rather, they were a bunch of individuals who were from Homedale. All that changed maybe 5 years ago, when a number of Basques in the area formed "Txoko Ona". Now, for a club that young, you might expect that they would maybe have dinners once in a while, play mus at someone's house, or even have language classes if a Euskara expert lived in town (which, in Gloria Lejardi, one does). And they did all of that. But they did so much more. They have also raised enough money to build their own Basque Center. This is the 12th Basque Center in the United States and a mighty fine one at that.

    Two weeks ago, Homedale dedicated their new center. Lisa and I were lucky enough to be able to attend the first day of the dedication. It was marked by Aita Tillous blessing the building and the groove of three sapplings from the Tree of Gernika. I was honored to give a short description of why the Tree of Gernika is such an important symbol to the Basques (something I might write up for the site soon). And that was followed by a dinner for about 300 hundred at which tongue, cod, and flan were served. It was a marvelous night.

    The next day, which I wasn't able to attend due to a work commitment, they had sporting events, a shepherd's bread baking contest (which I understand was very competitive), and dancing.

    The center, named Txoko Ona, is located in the heart of Homedale (see this map for the exact location). And, true to form, the members of the club are there every Tuesday for Mus night.

    As a son of Homedale, I am both amazed and very proud of what they have accomplished in Homedale. Having a center where Basques can gather and dance, speak Euskara, play Mus and eat is the dream of every Basque organization. Homedale stopped dreaming and started doing and has done something amazing, not only for the Basques in the area, but for the whole town.


    New Tattoo from Inaki: Inaki of Durango Tatu, who has sent many photos of his previous Basque-themed tattoos, has sent another one. He did this stylized lauburu for an ex-Jai Alai player who had played many years in the US. The full photo of the tattoo is in the Photo Album.

    English Words from Basque: Last month's quiz was about words in English that had a Basque origin. Specifically, it was which of these words is likely not of Basque origin: silhouette, rutabaga, anchovy, garbanzo, bizarre, chaparral. The most popular answer was silhouette, with 40% of the votes. Unfortunately, the correct answer is rutabaga. The origins of each word:

    • silhouette: The English word is taken from French, in which it derives from the surname of a certain Etienne de Silhouette, a French politician of the 18th century. This is a French spelling of the Basque surname Zilhueta, a French Basque variant of the surname Zulueta or Zuloeta; this in turn derives from zulo `hole' (zilo in part of the north) plus the very frequent suffix -eta `abundance of'. This surname was doubtless given originally to someone who lived where there were many holes in the ground, or perhaps more likely caves.
    • rutabaga: From the Swedish "rotabagge"
    • anchovy: Possibly coming from Basque anchuva "dry" (on the notion of "fish for drying"), though is is not certain.
    • garbanzo: Garbanzo comes from the Basque garbantzu, meaning ?dry seed.?
    • bizarre: French, from Spanish bizarro, brave, probably from Basque bizar, beard.
    • chaparral: The American English word chaparral derives via Spanish from Basque txaparra `scrub'.
    These explanations were found on various websites. As you can see, some are only possible etymologies. It may be that bizarre and anchovy have other origins. But it is pretty certain that silhouette, garbanzo and chaparral are of Basque origin. So is bilbo, which once meant sword in Old English, as Basque steel was often used to make swords. Later, it was used as the name of one of Tolkien's hobbits. I put rutabaga on the list only because it ended in aga, like many Basque words.

     June 03, 2007

    Basque Comic Book Artist: I'm a big comic book fan. Mostly, I like the standard superhero fare, though some non-superhero books like Fables are very good. I've always wondered if there was any kind of comic book culture in the Basque Country, or if there were at least any newspaper comic features produced there. Well, I still don't know, but I have leared that Guillermo Zubiaga, born Bilbao, is a Basque working in the US comics industry. He is an artist and I've seen his work featured in some previews I've seen online. He looks like a great talent and he asked me to share his website with everyone.

    Amaia's Tattoo: Amaia saw the collection of Basque related tattoos I have in the Photo Album (the tattoo gallery can be found here) and she was motivated to send me a photo of her tattoo. It is the Basque flag inside of a heart. Thanks for sharing, Amaia!

    Travel to the Basque Country: I received notices for two companies offering tours to the Basque Country.

    • The first is Basque Tours. They offer off the beaten track tours around the Basque Country. These tours include 1-day, 3 to 5-day and a la carte tours. As they wrote me, they will show visitors how the local people live, their traditions, and their way of being. Visitors will enjoy the gastronomy societies, climb the most popular mountains, and stroll on the beaches.
    • The second site is North Incoming Service. Since 1992, NIS, located in Bilbao, has helped people and groups discover the Basque Country. They can work with other travel agencies to develop a 1 to 5 day stay in Euskal Herria. These trips include a group of experts in genealogy that will research the origin of the visitor's surname, a warm welcome with specialised guides that will take you to the village where the surname is native from and will show you the buildings or remains related to your lineage. The trip will be completed with the delivery of a nice and detailed dossier with all the information. All the necessary services related with transportation and meals will be also included.

    Singing Competition! Idoya Urruty wrote to announce EuskoSare's latest competition: Eusko Cantat, EuskoSare's Vocal Group Competition. From the website: EuskoSare has organized a Singing Competition through the Internet, open to all vocal groups composed of 5 to 8 members located outside of the Basque Country. 2,000 Euros in prizes will be awarded. In order to participate, contestants must submit 3 recorded songs according to the contest terms and conditions.. If you have a Basque vocal group, this is for you!

    Also, Idoya recently conducted an interview with Gloria Totoricaguena, the current director of the University of Nevada, Reno's Center for Basque Studies. The interview can be found here.

    The Basque Way: Emily Lobsenz of Daggewood Films is working on a project entitled Ipuina Kontatu: The Basque Way. She writes: The Basque Way is a five-part documentary series exploring the Basques' cultural history and showing how their oral tradition transmits and preserves their identity and heritage. While maintaining the integrity of their ancient culture and language, the Basques have both learned from and influenced every culture with which they have come into contact. From five perspectives: Mind, Spirit, Heart, Sea and Mountain, the series views Basque history as a triumphal paradigm in the modern struggle to sustain an authentic culture while adapting to the cross currents of globalization. They are currently seeking financing to help complete the project, so if the project intrigues you, just hop on over to Daggewood Films to learn more.

    Basques in the World: Benoit Etcheverry is one of the harder working Basques on the Internet. He has created a number of websites to help spread the Basque culture to the world and has also worked on a number of radio programs with the same goal. His newest effort is Euskaldunen Munduan, which is broadcast via Radio France. In this program, Benoit interviews a Basque person in some part of the world in Euskara. Since January 20, he has interviewed people in Norway, Ireland, Italy, Scotland, Calfornia, Nevada, Utah, and Mexico. The site also has an archive of the most recent programs. Great work, Benoit! You can also check out his other program, 8 Herrialdeak Zuzenean, broadcast on Gure Irratia.

    New Ikastola en Arberoa: A group of parents in the region of Arberoa are trying to form an new ikastola (Basque school) for the area. They have started a blog on their experiences. The blog, currently in Basque and French, describes the project and what the group is currently working on.

     May 05, 2007

    First Basque Boarding House in the US: It seems that last month's quiz was again a stumper for most people. The question was In what US state was the first Basque boarding house established? The answer that was selected the most was Idaho, closely followed by New York and Nevada, all of which make sense, but all of which are incorrect. According to Jeronima Echeverria, author of Home Away from Home: A History of Basque Boardinghouses, the first major influx of Basques to the US was during the goldrush of California and the first Basque boardinghouses appeared in that state in the decades following the gold rush. See A Reminiscence: The Basque Hotel by Jeronima Echeverria for more on Basque boardinghouses.

     April 26, 2007

    70th Anniversary: Today, April 26, marks the 70th anniversary of the bombing of Gernika. Occuring during the Spanish Civil War, the civilian town of Gernika was bombed on a Monday, traditionally a market day for the village, by the German Luftwaffe "Condor Legion" as well as Italian forces, working with Franco's army. At the time, the Basque government claimed that over 1600 people died in the attacks. More recent estimates put the figure between 250 and 300.

    Gernika is most famous as being the center of Basque democracy. The Tree of Gernika is famous as the spot that local Basque law makers would gather from all over the province and decide on laws. The kings of Spain would pledge, under the Tree of Gernika, to protect Basque liberties and old laws, or fueros. These practices were inspirations to the founding fathers of both France and the United States, in particular John Adams.

    The bombing of Gernika inspired Picasso to paint one of his most famous paintings, Guernica. Originally made for the World's Fair hosted by Paris, the piece now resides in the Reina Sofia museum in Madrid. A reproduction of the painting hangs in the United Nations to remind the delegates there of the horrors of war.

    Gernika was not the only Basque city bombed in this way. Earlier in the same day, the town of Gerrikaitz was also bombed. Gerrikaitz is at the crossroads between Gernika, Durango, and Lekeitio. It is also my dad's home town. About one month earlier, on March 31, the town of Durango had been bombed. Between 350 and 500 people were killed in those attacks.

    For more information about the bombing, see this Wikipedia article. It is in there that I first read about the bombing of Gerrikaitz. I would like to know more about it. If anyone has more information about that attack, please let me know.

    I've posted the same information on my blog, but have added some links to articles about the bombing. People can also leave their own comments there. Click here to see the post.

     April 7, 2007

    New Feature: I'm playing with a new feature. On the right, just under the "Buber Sariak" link, there is a Today in Basque History box. It is pretty sparse right now, so don't be surprised if the box is empty on a given day. As time goes on, events will be added and it will be just another nice perk of visiting the pages. Comments are definitely welcome. And there is a form for submitting an event. I'm requiring that events have a full date (year, month, day) associated with them. I may consider doing other events that don't have a full date, but I'm not sure yet.

    Let me know what you think!

     April 1, 2007

    The Internet and Basque Identity: For minority languages and cultures such as Basque, questions of preserving identity are crucial for the long term survival of the culture. However, without a basic understanding of what composes identity, of how identity is expressed, efforts to preserve culture will only be partially successful. Pedro Oiarzabal recently completed his PhD focusing precisely on what it means to be Basque all over the world. In this interview, Pedro shares his thoughts on what role the Internet plays in identity and community.


     March 31, 2007

    And the survey says... Thanks to all who voted in this month's poll! The turnout was really nice. Though, it seems, this question stumped most people. According to, the US community with the highest percentage of Basques is Winnemucca, NV! While I haven't been able to independently verify this myself, I was able to see that the Basque population of the county containing Winnemucca is about 4%. Compare that to the census numbers for Boise: about 1%. So, while Boise definitely has more Basques than Winnemucca, Winnemucca has the largest percentage of Basques.

    Obaba for download: I imagine that Obabakoak by Bernardo Atxaga is one of the most successful books ever written in the Basque language, in terms of international recognition. I know it is one of my all-time favorite books, one that I give as a gift whenever I can. In 2005, the book was made into a movie, set in the fictional Basque town of Obaba. The movie was nominated for a number of awards and won three. Now, you can view the movie online! Jaman, an online film community, has Obaba available for download. Check it out!

    "Tell me what Basque is not a politician?": Recently elected as Lieutenant Governor of California, John Garamendi has been called the most powerful Basque politician in the world by some. In an exclusive interview, Idoya Salaburu Urruty of EuskoSare asks the Lieutenant Governor about his Basque heritage and what being Basque has meant to him.

    Paging Basques in NY: I often get emails asking for information about the New York Basque Club, or Euzko Etxea of New York. While they have a news site, actually contacting the club and learning about their local events has been difficult. To improve their visibility, NYEE has launched a new site that focuses on the club. has information about meetings, dinners and other upcoming events. Thanks to Julen Abio for sending me the info on the new site. Zorionak!

    Your weekly dose of Basqueness: For those of you who just can't get enough Basque related items in your inbox each week, I remind you of John Ysursa's Astero. Every week, John highlights the latest news from Euskadi, shares an interesting tidbit of Basque culture, or updates you on the most recent happenings in NABO. Well worth a look, and there is an archive in case you've missed a few issues.

    Constructing the Azkarate Castle: Another item from EuskoSare: EuskoSare, along with the Concordia Association and the town hall of Azkarate in lower Navarre, is reaching out to the youth belonging to the Basque organizations around the world who want to participate in another collaborative event to assist with the restoration of the Azkarate Castle. The plan is to create a building for the future International Center of the Diaspora. See here for more information.

     March 11, 2007, part 2

    Visiting Euskadi: Originally posted to EuskoSare's USA list by Xabier Berrueta:

      KAIXO everyone !!!!!

      Are you interested in going back to your sustraiak (roots) in Euskal Herria but not sure how to do it and how or where to start?????

      Are you tired of going to the Basque Country, eating two large meals a day for 14 days straight and your only concept of Euskal Herria is the village/town of your relatives and the airport????

      Are you embarrassed to kick your 65 year old aunt out of her bedroom to see her sleep on the couch (because you are the guest.... of course) or maybe perhaps you are tired of sleeping on your aunt's couch?????

      If all or some of this relates to you......... BIDEAK has a solution for you.

      It is an experience and opportunity to visit the differnet aspects of the seven provinces of the Basque Country. Trips are personalized and are based on one week, two week, three week and month long tours.

      Trips are being planned for July and August 2007. My understanding is that trips are filling up quickly for this year.

      For more information:

      • your United States Contact is :
        Kate Camino
        phone: 1-775-848-2754
      • your contact in Euskal Herria is:
        Jasone Gezuraga
        phone: 011 34 94 630 81 98

      For additonal information you can visit the BIDEAK website (currently in Euskera) at:

     March 11, 2007

    I have quite a few updates today, so let's get going.

    Theatre du Versant: For those of you who might be visiting Biarritz, check out the Theatre du Versant. I heard of them from Xabaltz, who is the coordinator of an international coproduction called Diaspora Bidaian. Sounds very interesting!

    Gernika Lives: The 70th anniversary of the bombing of Gernika is next month and Begonya Plaza has created a film about the bombing and the Basque people. She writes:

      I would like to introduce to you, my film "Gernika Lives", a 40 minute documentary in Basque, Spanish and with English voice overs, is about the bombing of Gernika and the Basque people of Euskadi in northern Spain. This film is narrated by John Randolph and stars my father Jesus Plaza, and the late Basque activist/writer, Mario de Salegui, as well as interviews with the survivors, their recollections on that attrocious day, and what it means to be a Basque, culturally, socially, politically, creatively.

      This is a personal life long journey of mine. As a child my father told me of the horrors he experienced when all of a sudden bombs were attacking his home, and his small precious village. Now more than ever we need to look back on these events to contemplate the urgency of peace in the world.

      I would love for everyone interested in the Basque country and it's people to know that this important film is available for purchase. $39.99. Emilia Doyaga has organized a screening at Columbia University where I will also be speaking after the film and at the New York Eusko Etxea.

    Check out her site at

    The British are really Basque: I've seen a lot of press, and gotten a few emails, about a new book, The Origins of the British: A Genetic Detective Story by Stephen Oppenheimer. The author, through the study of mitochondrial DNA, argues that the British are less diverse, as a nation, than previously though and that they share a common ancestry -- with the Basques. The original settlers of the British Isles were from northern Spain and the original language of the Isles was Euskara. It looks like it is getting mixed reviews, though the negative reviews are more for writing style (it is too technical for the average reader) rather than the content. These results are sure to shed new light on the prehistory of Europe!

    How to search for Basque ancestors/Como buscar antepasados vascos: A visitor calling him or herself baietz sent me this info on how to search for Basque ancestors.

    Si quereis encontrar a vuestros antepasados vascos, seguir estos pasos.

    • Primero, encontrar al que emigro de Euskadi y a partir de aqui lo podreis localizar en algunas de estas direcciones.
    • En estas direcciones podreis encontrar su partida de nacimiento o boda con la fecha, lugar y los nombres de sus padres.
    • Si sigues haciendo lo mismo con sus padres podras remontarte en el tiempo.
    • Tambien podeis buscar por pueblos.
    • Ademas os doy otra direccion donde podreis encontrar documentos relacionados. Suerte on eta agur

    Sargardoa Euskal Herrian: Scott Powell alerted me to this article in the Washington Post. It is the season for cider houses in Euskal Herria and the article describes a typical gathering at one of the cider houses. I've had the fortune to attend one near San Sebastian and it is a very memorable experience. Definitely worth the effort if you find yourself in the Basque Country.

    Un vasco en Nueva York: Luis Foncillas, one time president of New York Euzko Etxea, has started a new blog hosted by The blog is Un vasco en Nueva York and gives his thoughts on various cultural happenings, both in Euskal Herria and the United States.

    Basque Personals: It seems that match-making sites are becoming pretty popular. In the US there is eHarmony and a couple of others (I know I've seen commercials for others, but their names escape me at the moment). Not to be out-done, there is now one specifically for Basques! Going live this last Valentine's Day, kaixomaitia! is a site for Basques to meet other Basques. And the site is entirely in Euskara (or, at least I couldn't find the typical links for other languages). They even have a ranking of both men and women from Euskal Herria. If you are a love-lorn Basque, check it out!

    New Basque Cultural Magazine: Inaki of Durango Tatu, who has sent in a number of photos of his tattoo work now on display in the Photo Album, also told me about a new cultural magazine. Neu, available in both Euskara and Spanish, is a magazine about the arts, music, and life in Euskal Herria. It includes articles on hot-spot hotels, what to do on the weekends, and much more. They bill themselves as The first magazine in Euskera and Castellano about travel and culture of the Basque Country, Nafarroa, and Iparralde. I'm currently trying to find out if I can get a subscription sent across the seas to the US.

    Centro Vasco Colombia - Euskal Etxea: Francisco Espinosa Iragorri sent me the link to the Centro Vasco Colombia-Euskal Etxea's website. In Euskara, English and Spanish, it details the goings-on of the club, including the recent visit of the President of the Basque Autonomous Community. The site gives a brief history of the Basques in Colombia as well as some coats-of-arms of Basque families there. The site is very nicely done. Zorionak!


     February 27, 2007:

    Zorionak! Happy birthday to my little brother, Dave! And happy belated birthday to his two kids, Teo and Estelle, as well as my wife, Lisa!

    Basque Society meets again! Michel-Antoine Goitia-Nicolas, The President of the Louisiana Basque Society, writes:


      Since August 29, 2005 the Louisiana Basque Society has not met. That is the date on which our beloved city suffered the ravishes of Hurricane Katrina. The societys' officers have remained in some communication, however, we all have simply indured this difficult trial. Some members have died, some have moved away, others are still homeless, and others are still "just surviving". None the less, On March 3rd. 2007; this Saturday, we will have our first meeting since the storm, we will join with one of our new officers Jose Maria Cundin, from Getxo, Vizkaya in the Basque Country, to celebrate the opening of his art show and our reuniting since Katrina. We hope those who love art, as well as, their ancestors and the land they came from (Euzkalherria) will join us, in what we hope will grow to become one of the largest Basque community in America!

    Zorionak, Michel!

     February 25, 2007:

    I've been swamped with work (it is proposal writing season) so I haven't been able to keep up as much as I would like. Today, a very brief update. After a long drought, I've gotten a mini-flood of pictures of people's tattoos! And they are all very cool, with some neat variations of the lauburu. Previous contributor Inaki of Durango Tatu sent some new work of his, including some tattoos he did for a guy in Miami who saw Inaki's work here! Very, very cool. Check out the the Tattoo Gallery.

     January 15, 2007:

    No new links today, but I've modified how the webnotes work, for those of you who use those. There are two changes:

    • More recent notes are shown first in the list, not last
    • The notes are now paginated, so only 20 notes are shown at a time. There is a forward/backward option to move through the notes
    I'd appreciate feedback from anyone who uses the notes to let me know what they think and if they see any problems.

     January 14, 2007:

    Urte Berri On! I hope everyone had a great Christmas and New Year! I've got a number of updates I plan to make over the next two days. Please check back again on Tuesday (Monday is a holiday in the US; Martin Luther King Day) for a complete update, or check in regularly over today and tomorrow as I continue to add updates.

    Basque Athletic Apparel: Jeremiah Saiz sent me a couple of links for you Basque sports-fans! Astore is the official supplier of a number of Basque teams, including Osasuna, Real Sociedad and Euskal Selekzioa. La Liga Shop has jerseys and other items for all of the First League Spanish teams, including Athletic Bilbao and Real Sociedad. I think this wool cap at Astore is particularly cool. Eskerrik asko, Jeremiah!

    The Sounds of Euskara: I often get requests for links or something where people can listen to the Basque language, to hear what the language sounds like. Well, Inaki Gilisasti has sent me a link to Lapiko, an archive of mp3 files of Basque phrases. Right now, they have 8000 phrases from the dictionary "Urduliz aldeko Berba lapikokoa - Lexico del euskera" by Uribe Kosta. These phrases include not only Batua, but also phrases from other dialects of Euskara. Eskerrik asko, Inaki!

    More Basque Blogs: A couple of people have sent me some links for Basque blogs. First, there is Navarra in Excelsis, a blog that focuses on Nafarroa. This blog is written in Spanish. Then there is Basquing in the Sun, which comes to us from New York, but is written in Euskara.

    Independent News Sites: For those looking for different perspectives on the goings-ons in Euskal Herria, here are two sites for you:, a free publication dedicated to Basque youth, and Indymedia Euskal Herria, the Basque Country's Independent Media Center. Thanks to Ander for sending these to me (and the corrections to the Euskara on my comment form).

    Basque Portraits: Zoe Bray is a naturalist painter and social anthropologist, currently concentrating on painting the portraits of inhabitants of the Basque Country. Check out her site at

    NABO, repackaged: The North American Basque Organization has been trying to find just the right way to present themselves on the web. As John Ysursa describes it:

      What's in a web name? It depends, but for NABO this marks our fourth try at a name and the aim is that this one will stick. Our initial address was but that proved too awkward, and it didn't really explain what we were about ( was never an option at the time since it was taken). The second web name came a little closer, but still didn't reflect that some of our members were not Basque social clubs. So the third one seemed to be more inclusive with, but as we began in earnest trying to welcome clubs from Canada and Mexico the .us extension proved too narrow. So here you have webname #4: This should hopefully now go the distance, because it tells it like it is (at least in English). It's our abbreviated name, "Basque" is prominent, and the .org extension is for non-profit entities. We hope you will find this website useful.
    The new site is at

    That's all for today, but, hey, if you want to know what I've been doing, check out my blog Blah!.


     December 1, 2006:

    Just a couple of announcements today.

    Olentzero DC-ra dator! Not only is Olentzero coming to Washington DC, he is accompanied by a brand new Basque Club: Washington, DC Euskal Etxea! The first president is Argia Beristain Dougherty, who I had the pleasure to get to know in the Seattle Euskal Etxea. Their next event is the Inaugural Olentzero Jaia on Saturday, December 9. Washington, DC Euskal Etxea has set up two addresses for their web pressence: and Check them out!

    50 years for Pariseko Eskual Etxeko! And another club, the Pariseko Eskual Etxeko, is celebrating 50 years this weekend! Zorionak! They have a full program for the celebration, sent to me by frequent forum poster jabal. The program is:

    Pariseko Eskual Etxea
    La Maison Basque de Paris
    f�te ses 50 ans
    Vendredi 1er d�cembre
    19h30 : Concert de musique instrumentale traditionnelle basque
    (Gaita, Alboka, Txalaparta, Txistu)
    Samedi 2 d�cembre
    d�s 10h00 : march� de produits du Pays Basque
    10h00: Match de rugby du PEERugby au Stade P�blo Neruda
    13h00: Ap�ritif et repas
    16h00: Contes et l�gendes basques pour les enfants par Euken Ostolaza.
    18h00: Kantaldi avec Amaia Riouspeyrous
    19h45: Spectacle de danse basque avec le groupe DUGUNA
    21h00: Buffet traditionnel anim�
    23h00: Grande soir�e basque anim�e par le groupe AISTRIKA
    Dimanche 3 d�cembre
    10h30: Messe en Basque et Fran�ais en l'�glise Notre Dame du Rosaire 
           (chant�e et dans�e par les associations partenaires)
    12h30: Inauguration de la biblioth�que
    13h00: Grand banquet des 50 ans, avec animation musicale
    Image courtesy of Kukuxumusu.

    Who is Olentzero, anyways? This week's Astero, the weekly Basque updates from NABO, discusses the origins of Olentzero, the Basque Santa Claus (that should be a give away for the quiz!). The name Olentzero itself seems to come from ancient Basque words that mean the season of calling from house to house. Before he became the beloved Christmas figure, Olentzero was a vicious giant who, upon learning of the birth of Jesus, killed all those who ate too much. Since then, he has become a more lovable man, in the spirit of Santa Claus.

     November 11, 2006:

    Today, I'm happy to present a new Guest Column and a new Interview!.

    Interview with Xabier Ormaetxea: Long time visitors of Buber's Basque Page will recognize Xabier Ormaetxea. He was the driving force behind the Surname Research Project that was such a big part of Buber's Basque Page in the early days. Those surname pages are still among the most popular areas of Buber's Basque Page. However, beyond his great interest in genealogy, Xabier was also a member of the Basque Parliament for nearly 20 years.

    In this interview, Xabier describes the work of the Basque Government, why he is so interested in genealogy, and his current work helping orphans in the Ukraine.

    Coins of Euskal Herria: Numismatism refers to the study of coins and payment. Erik McCrea is a numismatist, specializing in coins belonging to non-official groups that issue coins. That is, he collects coins from political parties and micro-nations, or nations without official status. In his article Coins of Euskal Herria, Erik describes some coins he found that were issued by Herri Batasuna, a political party of Euskadi. To put the coins in perspective, Erik gives a very detailed introduction to modern Basque history. He then describes the handful of coins that were issued by Herri Batasuna.

     November 03, 2006:

    So, things didn't quite work out like I hoped last week and I didn't get as much updated as I wanted. Sorry for the delay. Lots of things will get added today (I hope!) so make sure you check back at the end of the day for the full update.

    Photos from Euskadi: Frequent contributor David Cox recently spent a week or so in Euskadi. It seems not so long ago that he was telling us about his last trip. This time, he saw the Oinkari dancers of Boise in Gernika, attended a show by Pirritx and Porrotx in Langraiz, and climbed Mount Igeldo in Donostia. David shares a few photos from his trip.

    My trip to Euskadi: By coincidence, I myself was in Euskadi at the same time David was. Unfortunately, I didn't know that and we didn't meet up. I spent just a few days, between trips for work in other parts of Europe, in Munitibar, where I attend the fiestas of Aulesti. You can read a bit about my trip on my blog.

    News from EuskoSare: EuskoSare just turned 1 year old! Zorionak! They have been very busy lately and I've received a number of announcements from their US coordinator, Idoya Urruty.

  • First, EuskoSare have revamped their website. It now includes a Bulletin Board and Business Ads where you can buy, sell, trade, post jobs, etc within the Global Basque Community.
  • Eusko Ikaskuntza- Basque Studies Society will award the Ene Saria prize for an organization outside Euskal Herria that has done the most to promote the Basque language. They are looking for nominations. The deadline is November 12!
  • Idoya Urruty and Xabier Berrueta have set up a community for Basques in the US. From the site: It is an open and interactive network for all the Basques in the US to share information, advice, news, important dates, and experiences relating to our common origin.
  • EuskoSare has also created a page of NABO email lists for such things as NABO's summer camp and Gaztealdi, a Basque Young Adult Assembly.
    Mil esker, Idoya!

    Basque National Soccer? There has been a lot of talk recently about creating a national Basque soccer team. In early October, Euskadi and Catalunyia played a friendly match. This match was important as neither region has a national team, so to speak. At least, not one that is allowed to qualify for the World Cup. ESPN had an interesting article on meaning and implications of that match. There is also a group dedicated to getting the Basque national team the ability to qualify for the World Cup. has the goal of seeing Euskadi as a separate team in the World Championships.

    Basque Caves: Mendukilo is a touristic cave. The caves of Aralar, previously only accessible to top speleologists and adventure lovers, were adapted by Cuevas de Astiz in Summer 2005 for all to enjoy. The site offers tours of the caves, which take about 50 minutes. It sounds like an interesting way to enjoy the subterranean world.

    Basque Folk Company: Audrey Lalanne of the Leinua Taldea sent me an announcement of their website. Leinua Taldea is a company of Basque folk arts. They perform both traditional folk dance as well as modern productions that feature a certain sophistication in the lighting and the sets. Their site also gives audio excerpts from their performances.

    Zane's Tattoo: Zane Echenique sent this photo of his tattoo, which combines the lauburu and ikurrina into one image. Eskerrik asko, Zane!

    The Lady: Edward Barturen is a composer who's paternal grandparents were of Basque descent. He has just released a new CD entitled The Lady. You can purchase the CD, as well as hear some of Edward's music, on his website.

    The Oldest Europeans: In a previous update, I mentioned J. F. del Giorgio's book The Oldest Europeans. JF has since given me some updates on his book, including an interview with Nick Goldman as well as the following press release:

      Yes, they met Neanderthals. They were Basques from the Pyrenees. They left a clear DNA trail, described in
      The Oldest Europeans by J.F. del Giorgio, a book on Basque, Celtic, Scandinavian, Greek and Italian roots. Thousands of years later some Basques came to California and raised both sheep and cattle and produced nice wines. They helped L.A. grow.

      Recent findings near Gibraltar have pushed Neanderthal survival date closer to us, about 28,000 years ago. Basques' ancestors were already in France and the Iberian Peninsula at least some 7,000 years before that. Skulls similar to the typical Basque elongated cranium are found in the oldest strata. Tools found in Chatelperron, France, show that they mingled with Neanderthals. Some Basque legends seem to tell about that encounter. They describe the incredibly strong Basojaun, the hairy Lord of the Woods who was there first.

      Basques were among the first discoverers of North America. They came after cod and whales, leaving names all along (Biscayne Bay, Key Biscayne, Biscayne National Park, Port Aux Basques, Miquelon Island, the Basques' Coast in Newfoundland, etc). Jean Louis Vignes brought his bon vin expertise to California in 1831. He came from the region that regales the world with its famed Armagnac and les delicieux Chateaux (Haut-Brion, Laffite, Latour, Margaux, Mouton-Rothschild). His vineyards would later produce 150,000 bottles of wine per year. His nephew opened the first Californian wine shop in New York in 1860. Other Basques came to raise cattle and sheep. Many came during the Gold Rush. A lot of them worked in 1850 in the Cahuenga Valley. Fifty years later, a real state developer bought part of a ranch there and named it Hollywood.

      For more information or an interview, visit

    That's all for today, folks!

     October 21, 2006:

    It's been a while since the last update. I've been doing a bit of traveling, both for work and pleasure. I will soon update my blog with details of my trip to Europe (including a brief stop-over in Bizkaia) and New York. Throughout the next day or two I will also update this site with new items. The update will go slowly, so check back in the next day or two for the completed update. I'll add items as I go along.

    Durango, Bizkaia: First, Paul Andrews is spending some time in Durango, Bizkaia. This is a great time to be there, as the fiestas of Durango just occured earlier this month. During my first trip to Euskal Herria, my cousin Jon Uberuaga took me to the fiestas, which were my first, and they were wonderful! Such marcha! Anyways, Paul has sent a few pictures he has taken in Durango. Thanks for sharing, Paul!

     September 04, 2006:

    History of Buber's Basque Page: This is something I've been meaning to post for a while. The Internet Archive Wayback Machine is an incredible resource for the history of the web. Through it, we can look at a history of Buber's Basque Pages. Click on the following links for a retrospective of this site.

    Basque Vital Records: Mª Nieves of Portugalete sent me a number of links for people trying to research their family origins. These sites contain vital records (though right now some of the records are limited; the site for Bizkaia only has baptisms) that can be searched. I've already found a number of new leads on my genealogy. Sites exist for the three provinces of the Basque Autonomous Community: for Bizkaia, the site is Aheb-Beha; for Gipuzkoa, Eliza Gipuzkoa; and Araba, Ahdv-Geah. Some of the sites are in English, but some are only in Spanish and Basque. Happy hunting!

    Webnotes: An important aspect of this site is the ability of people to leave notes on the various articles. This allows the visitors to share their thoughts, knowledge and experiences with others, to improve the information on this site and to enhance the experience for others. I've added a bit of information about the notes left on the site. This page has some basic information about the notes left on this site, including the most popular pages and the most recent notes (an expanded list compared to the one on the side bar). If people are interested in seeing other information there, please let me know and I will do my best to accomodate.

    Euskara in Tunisia: Gonzalo Aranguren, a good friend from my time in Seattle, sent me this picture from his recent trip to Tunisia. It is a store in a market there, where one of the signs beckoning customers is in Euskara. The store-owner had been in the Basque Country and must have learned a bit of Basque. Thanks for sharing, Gonzalo!

    Buber Award Photos: In May, Lisa and I visited Euskal Herria as part of a invitation to attend the 2006 Buber Awards. I finally got some photos from our trip up in the Photo Album. The photos were taken by both myself and Lisa.

    Language Consultants: Heather Allen writes to say that her company is expanding the effort described before and need more Basque speakers for translation work. The job description:

      We require several Basque native speakers for an upcoming language project. The work may involve reviewing vocabulary lists, ranking words according to common frequency of use, noting errors, suggesting new words for this list, providing analysis based on knowledge of grammar, vocabulary and syntax and other related tasks. You may also be creating and translating typical text messages such as those entered on a cell phone.

      All work will be done on the Consultants computer. Location is not a factor, as all work will be exchanged by email or FTP. Applicants must have a PC with Windows 2000 or higher, MSOffice 2000 or higher (including Word, Excel and Access, if possible), as well as internet access.

      All candidates:

      • must speak and write Basque as their first and native tongue
      • must have lived in a region where their native language is spoken within the last five years
      • must be able to converse in written and spoken English

      Remuneration for this position will be $15 CAD / hr.

      Native speakers should forward their CVs, and any questions, directly to Heather Allen at:

      Interested applicants should also complete our online application located at:

     September 03, 2006:

    Basque Heritage Night: The Colorado Rapids, a Major League Soccer team, recently signed Aitor Karanka of Athletic Bilbao. To welcome him, the Rapids, in conjunction with Colorado Euskal Etxea hosted a Basque Heritage Night in which Basques from the region (Colorado, Wyoming, and New Mexico) cheered the Rapids on as they beat the LA Galaxy 1-0. For some photographs from that night, check out NMEE's photo gallery.

    Tattoos: I've added two new tattoos to the Photo Album. One belongs to Eric Navas of the Colorado Euskal Etxea, who we met when we went to Denver for the Rapid's Basque Heritage Night. The other belongs to Adam Krueger (Gavica), who just got the first of what seems will be several Basque-themed tattoos. Thanks guys! The photo of Eric's tattoo was taken by my wife, Lisa Van De Graaff.

    Basques in the US: Where are the Basques concentrated in the US? Which communities boast the highest percentage of Basques? Winnemucca, Nevada has the population with the highest percentage of Basques at 4.2%, followed closely by Gooding, Idaho and Battle Mountain, Nevada at 4.1%. My hometown, Homedale, Idaho, checks in at 1.2%. Want to see the full list? Check out I was surprised that towns in New York and in Texas made the list.

    Rebirth of the Blog! After one failed attempt, due to overwhelming spam, I am trying again to start a blog. It won't have a huge number of postings (I won't post to it every day) and it won't be exclusively Basque content, but I do intend to post about some personal musing on Basque subjects. If anyone is interested, my blog is called Blah!

    What does it mean to be Basque? In the Forum, there is an interesting discussion on what it means to be Basque. Drop in, check it out, and leave your thoughts.

    Time is running out! Just a reminder that the deadline for EuskoSare's International Basque Short Story Contest is fast approaching! Get your entries in now!

  •  August 20, 2006:

    Food! Todo Pintxos is your guide to the pintxos of Gipuzkoa. Not quite like the tapas of the rest of Spain, pintxos are the Basque take on that tradition. Todo Pintxos has recipes, a guide to bars serving pintxos and a top ten pintxos list. They even have tour routes of the old part of Donostia for those looking to maximize their pintxo experience!

    More food! Speaking of food, Brenda Olson sent me word about the newest Basque restaurant in the US, Brenda's Basque Dining! It is in Fallon, NV and serves traditional family-style Basque cuisine. You can find directions and contact information to Brenda's Basque Dining, along with many other Basque restaurants in the US, in Charles L. Shaffer's list of Basque restaurants. Check it out!

    Abizena berriak: I have received write-ups on two Basque surnames, which have been added to the Surname List. First, Jaime Peña sent me some information about his surname Peña. Then, Antonio Zavaleta, who has been researching his surname Zabaleta/Zavaleta and has written an extensive chapter on that surname to appear in a book on the history of the Mexico-Texas border, sent me an excerpt from his work. Thanks guys!

     July 29, 2006:

    Basque Writing Contest! EuskoSare is hosting the first ever International Basque Short Story Contest! If you have story to share about anything Basque, including the people or Euskal Herria, you can enter your story into this competition. The stories must be 300 words or less. The deadline is September 16 and the winner will receive $500! For more details about the contest, see these rules. Good luck to all! I really look forward to seeing what is submitted!

    Basque Ranching Culture: As an introduction to the just-passed National Basque Festival in Elko, Nevada, Cowboy Showcase has an nice article on Basque Ranching Culture in the Great Basin. They discuss a number of details about Basque life in Nevada, including how Basque ranching started in the area, interviews with a number of old sheepherders, and an introduction to the arboglyphs the sheepherders would carve into the trees. There are a number of great photographs accompanying the article.

    Basque Blogs: David Cox sent me a couple of blogs dealing with politics in the Basque Country. He notes that, after the seeming closure of Berria's English site, it is hard to get Basque-related news in English (though, EITB24 is one good source). The two blogs are Irish Solidarity Committees with the Basque Country and Euskal Blog : Ingeleraz. Thanks David!

    Visiting Donostia: Manuel Monasterio pointed out this New York Times article on Going to San Sebastian. The article, by Sarah Wildman, gives tips on where to stay, where to eat, and what to do when you are there. If you are thinking of taking a trip to Donostia (as the Basques call San Sebastian), this article is a good place to start.

    Basque Songs: Langues de France en Chansons is a site that tours the regions of France via the songs of those regions. While the site is in French, the songs of the Basque region are in Euskara. For every region, the site gives some history and description of the region and some photographs while playing songs from that region. The site is visually very interesting and the songs, while maybe a little short on quantity, are also very nice.

     July 22, 2006:

    Say It Out Loud! Frequent contributor David Cox returns to one of his passions: music. This month's Guest Column, David introduces the seminal Basque rock band Negu Gorriak. David gives some context about the formation of Negu Gorriak and their songs. He also discusses the evolution of Negu Gorriak, especially how their songs began addressing global issues such as imperialism and poverty. Negu Gorriak is one of the most important Basque rock bands and David gives us a nice overview of their career.

    The Oldest Europeans: J. F. del Giorgio just sent me a copy of his latest book, The Oldest Europeans. It describes the prehistory of Europe, and focuses on the rights of women both before and during the Indo-European invasion/migration that ended up absorbing most societies that were then in Europe. The Basques are one of the few pre-Indo-European cultures to survive until present day. While I haven't had a chance to read J.F.'s book yet, it indeed looks very interesting and gives a examination of Basque pre-history. For those interested in this new book, check out the reviews by Paige Lovitt and Norm Goldman, as well as an interview of J.F. del Giorgio by Norm Goldman. You can buy the book at You can also visit, a site dedicated to the book.


     July 05, 2006:

    Zorionak USA!: Happy (belated) 230th Birthday to the USA!

    The Drowsy Chaperone: Congratulations to Bob Martin and Janet Van De Graaff, whose production, "The Drowsy Chaperone", won five Tony awards! Janet is cousin to my wife, Lisa Van De Graaff. Go see this musical!!!!

    Looking for Basque Speakers: Heather Allen wrote me about an employment opportunity with her company. She works for a Canadian company currently seeking Basque native speakers to assist in generating a vocabulary list of words for use in cell phone text messaging. If you are interested, you can apply using this online form.

    Best Cheese in the World: Tim Proctor, of French Food Freaks, wrote me of a couple of news items of interest from Iparralde, the French-Basque Country.

  • First, a 10 month matured sheep's milk (brebis) cheese from the Ossau/Iraty AOC produced by the Agour Fromagerie in Helette won the World Cheese Award for 2006. It's the best cheese in the world for 2006! For more information, see this article.
    And two Rugby related items:
  • U S Nafarroa, the combined rugby team of St Jean Pied de Port and St Etienne de Biagorrie, won the French 2nd division. Not bad for a club that only started three years ago.
  • Biarritz Olympique won the French Rugby Union championship and are now Champions of France.

    Basques in DC: A friend of mine from Seattle, Argia Beristain Dougherty, has recently moved to Washington, DC, where she is trying to gather the Basques in DC for an evening of food, friends and fun. To learn more about this gathering, which will be on July 22, see this invitation.

    More updates soon, including an interview or two and an article by David Cox on the Basque rock band Negu Gorriak!

  •  June 04, 2006:

    Day 2 of this update!

    Bizkaia Xede: While in Euskadi, I met Iñaki Palacios Camion and Lander de Bilbao Alcántara of Bizkaia:::Xede. Bizkaia:::Xede is an effort within Bizkaia to attract talented people who might wish to work and live in Bizkaia and assist them in doing so. They offer various services to help people establish themselves in Bizkaia. The goal is to bring the talented people Bizkaia needs to be a leader in technology, business, and innovation. They seem very enthusiastic and very willing to help anyone wanting to live in Bizkaia.

    Basque Cuisine: Gastronomia Vasca is a wonderful site for all of you foodies. They have a huge selection of recipes, both Basque and from other parts of the world, that are organized by type of food. However, you can even search for recipes by the principale ingredient. The site is loaded with lots of great pictures and even has a glossary of terms. It is currently in Spanish and Euskara, but maybe if enough of us ask, they will translate it to English too. :) The site is a production of the Escuela de Hostelería Leioa.

    Amerikanuak: The Spring 2006 issue of Range Magazine has an article on the history of Basque sheepherders in the American West. They focus a lot on the eastern Oregon area of Jordan Valley, the place where my mom's grandparents settled. It was her grandmother's uncle, Jose Navarro, that first went to the Jordan Valley area and brought his niece, Ines, over to help him out. If you have the chance to find this article, it is worth checking out.

    New Portal for the Basque Country: Arantza Mesa sent me a note announcing the relaunching of is a virtual guide to the Basque Country, with content about the culture of the Basque Country, its customs, history, language, and more. The content includes guides to the beaches of the Basque Country and the capital cities.

    And one just for Bilbao: Bilbao Directo is a new guide to the Basque city of Bilbao, with daily news, announcements and events. You can even publish your own content. Check out what is going on in Bilbao!

    Well, that's all for now. I have more links to add, but they will have to wait for another day.

     June 03, 2006:

    Buber Sariak: Every year, Internet & Euskadi, a group who promotes the Basque presence on the internet, give awards for the best Basque websites. The awards are called Buber Sariak. When they created the awards about 5 years ago, they needed a name for them and asked to use "Buber" from my pages here. I was honored that they thought the name of my pages would make a good name for their awards.

    This year, there were a number of awards given and the overall winner was, a site about mountaineering.

    They also invited me to participate in the award ceremony this year. My wife, Lisa, and I flew to Bilbao where Jose del Moral, one of the key people behind Internet & Euskadi, graciously hosted us during the ceremonies. I presented one award and was given an honorary award for my work on these pages here.

    The experience was amazing. I felt like a minor celebrity for a day. EITB24, the Basque media's news website, editted by Lontzo Sainz, interviewed me for a couple of articles on their site (here and here; there are photos and video on those sites). There was even an interview on the Basque television. It was great to be a part of this year's awards. Thanks to all who made it such a wonderful experience!

    While in Euskadi, Lisa and I also visited family in Munitibar and spent a few days in Baiona. We will get some photos up on the site soon. Stay tuned!

    Zorionak! Since the last update, my mom and dad both had birthdays, my mom on May 22 and my dad on June 1. Happy birthday mom and dad!

    Buitraker: When in Euskadi this last time, I bought the new CD from Buitraker, called Urrezko Kabiak. The CD is a bit of harder metal-like guitar, electronica, and a few other styles thrown in. The songs are about relationships, politics and the rat race. Urrezko Kabiak means "jail of gold" and refers to the trap we find ourselves in when trying to get the material things we want but then having to find ways to pay for them. I really like the CD and hope others can point me to new Basque music that is similar in spirit.

    Basque Music: Speaking of Basque music, Vito Laterza is the presenter of the radio show Who Do You Think You Are?, in the United Kingdom. He recently presented a show on Basque music. He has a transcript of the show on his blog and you can also download an MP3 file of the entire show. Vito discusses the evolution of modern Basque music, going from Kortatu to Negu Gorriak (pictured in the thumbnail here) to some modern groups. He also tries to explore the connections between art and politics in the making and reception of this music.

    I have more updates coming, probably tomorrow, if not tonight. Check back soon!

     April 30, 2006:

    Saint Pierre and Miquelon: When you consider the Basque webmasters, Marc Cormier stands out as one of the originals. He has been promoting the Basque culture that is unique to the French islands of Saint Pierre and Miquelon from the beginning of the internet. The Basque associations of the islands are approaching two very important anniversaries: the 25th anniversary of their festival as well as the 100th anniversary of their Fronton. In this month's Guest Column, Marc introduces us to the Basques of these islands and tells us about the upcoming celebration.

     April 16, 2006:

    Interview with Gloria Totoricagüena: Today, I am beginning a new series. From time to time, I will be interviewing people in the Basque community, both in the diaspora and in the Basque Country, who make important contributions to Basque culture. These might be historians, new makers, artists, or anyone who is a part of the greater Basque community. The idea is to get their perspectives on Basque culture and maybe introduce more people to the work that they are doing.

    The first interview is with Gloria Totoricagüena. Dr. Gloria Totoricagüena, a prominant researcher in the field of the Basque diaspora, was recently named the director of the University of Nevada, Reno's Center for Basque Studies. In this interview, conducted over email, I asked her about growing up Basque, her plans for the Center, and her views on what it means to be Basque and the role that the Basque diaspora has in the future of the Basque Country.

    Paul Gregory's Tattoo: Paul Gregory sent me a photo of his tattoo. He says he is currently in the process of getting it reworked, so we should soon see a new and improved version of Paul's tattoo. You can find the full size image of his tattoo in the Photo Album. Thanks Paul!


     April 08, 2006:

    Today, I have a lot of new links to add. Enjoy!

    US Basques: John Ysursa, one of the drivers behind a lot of NABO's efforts to promote the Basque culture in the US, has just started a new webpage. is a site dedicated to Basque-American news and information. The Astero bulletin I mentioned before is part of this effort. Check out these pages and help John help the Basque culture and language!

    Bilbo Hiria Irratia: Bilbo Hiria Irratia, an FM radio station in Bilbo transmitting in Euskara, is now online. You can listen to them live or you can download their program in MP3 format. Their website is Give them a listen!

    Jai Alai in Texas and Philipino-American Jai Alai Group: There are two items related to Jai Alai. First, Texas Jai-Alai is developing a network of Jai Alai frontons in Texas. The idea is to create a professional Jai Alai league in Texas. It will include a Basque cultural center and they are looking for suggestions on what to include in these centers. They also hope to foster amateur leagues. Second, Robert Schwartz wrote me about the Association Of Filipino-American Pelotaris, a group that consists of ex-pros as well as highly qualified amateur pelota players. These players have been together for many years and come from the Philippines and other countries. They used to play in Milford, Ct. until that Fronton closed.

    French Food Freaks: Tim Proctor, a Brit who has the good fortune to live in La Pays Basque at St Jean Pied de Port, has started a new enterprise selling Basque food stuffs to the UK via the internet. The name of the site is French Food Freaks. They also have a few French-Basque recipes on their site. Yum!

    Basque Photographers: Two Basque photographers have sent me links to their sites. First, Jose Ramon Txintxurreta is a photographer from Onate, Gipuzkoa. He has some beautiful photographs of the Basque Country. Then, Suzanne Murphy-Larronde, a photographer of Basque descent, specializes in photographs of the people and customs of the Caribbean and Latin countries. She doesn't have any photos of the Basque Country -- yet -- but her work is wonderful.

    History of Araba: Erlantz Gamboa sent me a site on Place-names in Araba. The list is very extensive with meaning and surnames that are related. The list is incomplete, though, and Erlantz asks people to send more place names if they see one is missing. Also, Jontxu Rodriguez sent me his site, Raices Espanolas, which includes a database of people born in the Village of Labastida, Alava. It currently contains more than 3000 people.

    Basque Books: Gatuzain is a book publisher from the French-Basque Country. They have a catalog of books written in Euskara that seem to be focused on the customs and fiestas of the French-Basque Country (I'm not 100% sure as the page is in Basque and French and I don't understand either too well). The books seem to be aimed toward kids, so they may make an excellent vehicle for helping kids to learn Euskara.

    Mutur Zikin: Mutur Zikin is a Canadian effort to add a little spice to the Basque internet experience. They have a Basque saint of the day, many Basque-related animated gifs, and linguistic maps of the world. There is a lot of information here in a very unique site.

    Basque Painter: Baptiste Ibar is a painter of Basque descent. He lives and works in Connecticut but his paintings, done in a sort of modern style (I'm no art expert), express a wide range of emotion and explore the human experience in general.

     April 03, 2006:

    Basque Author Awarded Research Grant: In March of 2006, Christine Echeverria Bender was awarded a project grant by the National Endowment for the Arts and the Idaho Commission on the Arts to assist in the research of her next historical novel, which will tell the story of the first Basque whalers to set foot in North America. Preliminary research indicates that the Basques may have arrived as early as 1372, and Christine will explore this possibility and other recent finds when she travels this summer to Red Bay, Labrador to visit the site where four ancient but well-preserved whaling galleons have been found just offshore. She will also journey to Grand Manan Island, New Brunswick to study right whales, the same whales hunted in small boats before the dawn of the Renaissance. For more information about Ms. Bender and her writing, please visit

     April 02, 2006:

    Astero: From the Astero website: Astero (Basque for "weekly") is a Basque news and information service that is brought you via email on a weekly basis. The aim is to highlight an item or two of interest to Basque-Americans. Some of these articles will be original stories while others will be to draw your attention to a relevant item. The hope is that you will find this beneficial. On Egin--Enjoy!

    The Secret Language: My cousin Consuelo Uberuaga sent me a brief article on how Basque was one of the languages used by the US Army during World War II to encode its transmissions. The article was originally written by Iratxe Gomez (I don't have the full reference for the article) and I translated it into English. You can find the article here. If anyone knows more about this, I'd be very interested in hearing about it. Please leave a note on the page if you do know more.

    The Bengoecheas of Mountain Home, Idaho: Koldo San Sebastian sent me this article about the Bengoechea Family of Mountain Home, Idaho. The article is in Spanish, but gives a lot of information about the Bengoecheas, from their origins in the village of Bedarona in Bizkaia to Mountain Home, Idaho. Thanks Koldo!

    Walking Tours of Euskadi: Alex Chang wrote me about his and his wife's company, Fresco Tours. Fresco Tours offers small group walking tours of the Basque Country, starting with the Guggenheim, going to San Sebastian and the French Basque Country and on to the Rioja region.

    Brandon Snell's Tattoo: Brandon Snell sent me a photo of his Basque tattoo of a big lauburu surrounded by the words "I am Basque" in Spanish and Euskara. The full size image can be found in the Photo Album. Thanks Brandon!


     March 27, 2006:

    For US fans of college basketball, the NCAA tournament has reached the Final Four teams, one of which is George Mason University. They only have to win two more games to be the national champion for 2006. I don't know what his Basque connections are, but the head coach of the team, Jim Larranaga, definitely has a Basque surname. Just thought I'd mention it.

     March 22, 2006:

    It's been a while since the last update and I don't have things ready yet, but the news from the Basque Country today is too big to not mention. ETA, Euskadi ta Askatasuna, has declared a permanent cease fire, beginning March 24. This is after 45 years of activity. This is an important and historic day for the Basque Country. For more information, visit Google and their collection of arcticles.

    Also, to put this announcement in context and to learn about the origins of ETA, see Astero's article on ETA's ceasefire.

     February 04, 2006:

    Joselia Mendiolea's Photos from NABO 2005: Joselia Mendiolea sent me 8 of her wonderful photos from NABO's 2005 gathering. Many of them feature dancers, and then there is one of Aita Tillouis (used in the thumbnail here). You can find Joselia's photographs in the Photo Album.

    Basque Club in Australia: Joseph Goicoechea, the webmaster for the Basque Club of North Queensland, Australia, sent me the link to their recently revamped website. If you are in Australia, check them out! Jose A. del Moral writes: "I am writing to you because I want to ask you a favor. We started a new website about Bilbao with a Google Maps massup, Bilbao's blogs, folksonomies (what are the people from Bilbao talking about) and Flickr photos. You can navigate through the maps and place a 'txapela' where ever you find something whis is interesting for you.

    New Basque Music, Revisited: Last year, David Cox contributed a Guest Column on New Basque Music. Manu Gogenola, a Basque author who has written on the alboka (see David's review of his book), had some thoughts on David's article. With their permission, I have added Manu's comments to the end of David's article. Manu gives other suggestions of Basque groups of various music styles as well as a long list of links related to Basque music.

     January 26, 2006:

    Twins in the Family! On January 23, my brother Dave and his wife Shelley became the proud parents of twins, a little boy and girl. These are the first grandchildren for my mom and dad, Pete and Monica. Estelle Ines Uberuaga was born just one minute before Teodoro William Uberuaga. The lucky tykes share their birthday with my wife, Lisa. Teodoro is named after my dad's father, Teodoro Uberuaga Urionaguena, who passed away just after I was born. Ines is my mom's middle name. Congratulations to Dave and Shelley! I look forward to meeting my niece and nephew. Now, I just have to find some gifts that make a lot of noise!

     January 17, 2006:

    Euskal Herriko Leiendak: In the Forum, forum-member chris has been posting his translation of legends appearing in the book Euskal Herriko Leiendak. These are wonderful stories from the Basque culture, some describing the conflict between Christian and pre-Christian belief, others the interaction of people with the spirits around them, and one cosmological story about the creation of the moon and sun. I've collected the stories chris has posted so far and put them on a separate page. You can find those stories here.

     January 16, 2006:

    Urte Berri On! I hope everyone has a great 2006!

    Buber Sarriak: It's time again for the Buber Sarriak, the prizes to the best Basque websites. The homepage for the prizes, where you can nominate your favorite pages, is I have nothing to do with the prizes myself, besides having the honor of giving my name to them.
    Xabier Soubelet, Basque Painter: Xabier Soubelet, a painter from the Basque Country, send me a note about his work. Xabier will paint your ancestor's home or town in the Basque Country, provided you can tell him where it is. To get an idea of what his work looks like, visit his website.
    Josu Gainza's Tattoo: Josu Gainza sent me a photo of his tattoo which combines a number of traditional Basque elements. You can find the full size photo of his tattoo in the Photo Album.
    More to come in the next few days...


    December 05, 2005:

    Fiona Ashley Van De Graaff: Congratulations to my brother and sister-in-law, Tammy and Scott Van De Graaff, and the new addition to their family! Fiona Ashley was born on November 21. She is the first grandchild of Pearl and Dave Van De Graaff, and my wife, Lisa's first niece! Mother and baby are doing great! Zorionak, Scott and Tammy!

    November 27, 2005:

    Euskararen Nazioarteko Eguna: Idoya Salaburu Urruty sent me this notice: Eusko Ikaskuntza presents a declaration in support of the Basque language to conincide with the International Euskara Day, December 3. To see the declaration and to give your support, visit EuskoSare's website.

    Mus Gift Set: Just in time for Christmas! Joseph Popolo of sent me this link for a Mus Card Game box set, perfect for all of those Mus players out there.

    Lauburu in Surrey? Angus J Huck sent me this photo of a lauburu mosaic in a house in Brockham, Surrey, UK. He has no idea how a lauburu made it into the design of a house in the UK. Does anyone have any knowledge about the history of this house?

    Basque Regions of France and Spain: Phillip Cooper sent me this information about his new book Basque Regions of France and Spain: "A new guide to the landscapes of the Basque Country in English, featuring 8 car tours, 19 short walks of up to around 2 hours duration and 32 main walks with detailed 1:25000 maps. Also a large fold-out map of the whole region and all public transport details."

    New Links: Here are some new links added to Buber's Basque Page today.

    November 21, 2005:

    Jon C. Hodgson has sent me a link to his page,, where Jon displays his photographs, including some from Jaialdi 2005 as well as other Basque topics. Jon says his photos have been 'getting a lot of exposure, I had a 4-page spread in the French magazine "Pays Basque" and one will be used for the cover of an upcoming Basque Travel guide.' Check them out!

    November 7, 2005:

    Maxine Telleria, my maternal grandmother, passed away today at the age of 80. While not Basque herself, as evidenced by her last name she married a Basque man, Jose Maria Telleria who was the son of Basque immigrants. Maxine was a strong willed woman with a fiery spirit, who was maybe born a generation or two too early for someone of her independence. She was a remarkable woman who will be missed by everyone who knew her. Maite zaitut, amuma.

    November 2, 2005:

    My dad's brother, Jose Uberuaga, passed away today (Wednesday). I first met him during my first trip to the Basque Country in 1991. I knew him as a very joyful and generous man. While he could be deadly serious, he was also a fun-loving person, who lived life by his own rules, in his own way. He ran, along with his wife Eli, the bar/restaurant that is part of the Eroski in Gernika. He was a man who could fill a room with his presence and personality. He will be sorely missed. Goian Bego.

    October 30, 2005:

    Hi All. I've got a few new items to share with everyone.

    Euskadi by Bus: David Cox, a previous contributer to Buber's Basque Page, recently travelled to Euskadi with his family, including his two young children. While not Basque himself, David has a deep affinity to the Basque Country. In this Guest Column, Euskadi by Bus, David describes his family's visit, including getting around by bus, finding Basque speakers, and visiting some wonderful sites.
    Basque Rock Live: The Basque rock groups Betagarri and Berri Txarrak are touring in the US. They will be playing in November in both San Francisco and Boise. For more information, visit Basque Rock Live.
    Basque Identity: Pedro Oiarzabal, and his brother Agustin, have just released a book on their research on Basque Identity. Written in Spanish, their book, La Identidad Vasca en el Mundo tries to answer the question "what is the meaning of being Basque today?"
    The Monasterio Family: Manuel Monasterio of Santa Fe, NM, sent me some information about his family in Bilbao. The article was written by his cousin Jose Ignacio Aguirre Monasterio and you can find it here.

    October 10, 2005:

    Kaixo denari! Again, I've been too long in updating these pages. Life just gets in the way sometimes.

    8 Herrialdeak Zuzenean eta EuskoSare: First, let me mention two items sent to me by Benoit Etcheverry. Some of you might recognize his name from his website Ama Lur. He also directs a radio program for Basques in the diaspora. This program, 8 Herrialdeak Zuzenean, is now on the first Sunday of every month, always in 4 languages and live at: Gure Irratia. People can contact them at: or call at 00 33 559 59 60 33. The times for the program are:

    in Europe : 19:00 - 21:00
    in California : 10am - 12am
    in Guatemala : 11am - 1pm
    in Argentina : 2pm - 4pm

    Benoit also mentions that EuskoSare is online and going strong. EuskoSare's goal is to create a global Basque network. They intend to do this "by increasing communication and cooperation amongst all the Basques in the world, their friends and their organizations, through the Internet and outside it." Please visit their site and assist them if you can.

    New Book on Magellan's Voyage: Christine Echeverria Bender has written a book on Magellan's voyage. Recall that Magellan died envoyage and the voyage was completed by the Basque Juan de Elcano. About the book:

      Christine Echeverria Bender has just released her second novel, SAILS OF FORTUNE, detailing the harrowing and heroic voyage of circumnavigation led by Basque shipmaster Juan Sebastian de Elcano and captain-general Ferdinand Magellan. SAILS OF FORTUNE follows Echeverria Bender's applauded first novel, CHALLENGE THE WIND, which reveals the valuable contribution made by Basque seamen throughout the Columbus voyage to the New World. Her painstaking research and vivid prose reveals the hardship endured and the courage affirmed by the sixteenth century Basque explorers who left their homes to sail into the history books.

      "Thank the Good Lord for our great historical biographers! Christine Echeverria Bender surely is at the top of the list, evoking the souls and ghosts long departed and placing them in our midst as real as they can be. Her Juan Sebastian de Elcano is unforgettable, as are his compadres. The voyage is incredible, spun by a master storyteller." -- Peter D. Laxalt, Author and Editor

      For more information, please visit

    Basque Resources in English from UNR: The University of Nevada, Reno, has begun an effort to put many Basque resources in English and online. You can find a full list of their books here, including many textbooks that can be purchased. The database of online books that can be downloaded for free is here. Take a look!

    Zorionak basque-genealogy!: The basque-genealogy group at Yahoo! just turned five years old and also just gained its 1000th member! Congratulations to all of them. You can find an article about the group and their history on Euskal Kultara's site.

    Jose Salutregui's Tattoo: Jose Salutregui sent me a picture of his tattoo. It's of a stylized lauburu and can be found in the Photo Album.

    Looking For Info on Basques in Idaho and Nevada: Finally, a friend of mine, Koldo San Sebastian, is doing research on the Basque families that immigrated to the United States. At this point, he is focusing on these counties: Lander county in Nevada, Ada county in Idaho, and Owyhee county in Idaho. If you have ancestors that lived in any of these counties, or of Basque descent and live or have lived in one of these counties, Koldo is looking for answers to the following questions:

      For Basques from the Old Land
      • 1. Their Original Names
      • 2. Birth date
      • 3. Birth city and the name of the house (baserri)
      • 4. How many people lived at home. How many of them emigrated (and to where)
      • 5. Why did they decide go to the USA (relatives, neighbours, contracts, etc.)
      • 6. What was their first job in the USA
      • 7. Were there more Basques with him/her
      • 8. When did he/she decide to naturalize
      • 9. Who did they marriages (Basque or Anglo)
      • 10. What was their Religion
      • 11. Were they a member of a Basque Club
      • 12. Military. Did they serve in the US Army, Navy, etc and where & when
      For Second, Third and fourth genetrations, the same questions plus
      • 1. What are the origins of your Basque and Non Basques Relatives. In the Basques case, give as much information as you can
      • 2. What is your education (very important)
    If you have answers to these questions, please send them to me ( and I'll pass them to Koldo. Please put in the subject that your email is for Koldo.


    August 13, 2005:

    It's been another long delay since I've updated these pages. June and July were both busy months. Our Basque club, the Basque Club of New Mexico, hosted a group of dancers from near Pamplona right after the 4th of July and we prepared for that. Immediately afterward, I had a business trip and then Jaialdi, which was great and which I hope to tell you all about soon. I'm finally getting caught up with work and such and that finally gives me some time to update these pages. I don't have a whole lot right now, but have some things I hope to prepared soon.

    First off, I received photos of new tattoos from both Janelle and Babette. Both feature variations on the lauburu. You can find their photographs in the Photo Album.
    The Forum continues to grow, with nearly 50 members now. We are mostly discussing Music and the Basque language, but there are interesting conversations on a wide variety of topics. In particular, Chris has posted some translations of various Basque stories in the Folklore section. I plan on copying them to the main site eventually.

    Finally, a friend of mine, Koldo San Sebastian, is doing research on the Basque families that immigrated to the United States. At this point, he is focusing on these counties: Lander county in Nevada, Ada county in Idaho, and Owyhee county in Idaho. If you have ancestors that lived in any of these counties, or of Basque descent and live or have lived in one of these counties, Koldo is looking for answers to the following questions:

      For Basques from the Old Land
      • 1. Their Original Names
      • 2. Birth date
      • 3. Birth city and the name of the house (baserri)
      • 4. How many people lived at home. How many of them emigrated (and to where)
      • 5. Why did they decide go to the USA (relatives, neighbours, contracts, etc.)
      • 6. What was their first job in the USA
      • 7. Were there more Basques with him/her
      • 8. When did he/she decide to naturalize
      • 9. Who did they marriages (Basque or Anglo)
      • 10. What was their Religion
      • 11. Were they a member of a Basque Club
      • 12. Military. Did they serve in the US Army, Navy, etc and where & when
      For Second, Third and fourth genetrations, the same questions plus
      • 1. What are the origins of your Basque and Non Basques Relatives. In the Basques case, give as much information as you can
      • 2. What is your education (very important)
    If you have answers to these questions, please send them to me ( and I'll pass them to Koldo. Please put in the subject that your email is for Koldo.


    June 1, 2005:

    First, Happy Birthday Dad! Zorionak! Had to get that out of my system... :)

    Second, I don't have a new Guest Column for this month either (anyone interested in writing something?). However, I do have something to announce. I've created a Forum for the discussion of Basque culture. As you'll see in the Forum, while I understand that they play a deep role in modern Basque culture, I would prefer that politics be kept to a minimum. I hope that we can focus on questions of culture and that people won't use this Forum as a soapbox for their political views. We will see how it goes. You can find the Forum here. Enjoy!

    May 29, 2005:

    There is a relatively new online community for Basques. Basque Pride, at, is a place to chat with other Basques about language, culture, and festivals. Check it out!

    May 28, 2005:

    This weekend, on June 1, Gure Irratia will broadcast the 8 herrialdeak zuzenean radio program. This program is the first radio program done by the Basques of the Basque Country, for ALL the Basques around the world. As such, it will be in four languages: Basque, Spanish, English and French. It is an interactive program, so they encourage people to either call or write them an email, and they will discuss your question on the program. Again, in will be June 1, from 4:00 pm to 6:00 pm in Europe, 11:00 am to 1:00 pm in Buenos Aires, and 6:00 am to 8:00 am in California. For more information about the group and person behind the event (Zortzi probintziak and Benoit Etcheverry) see here.

    May 26, 2005:

    I converted some of the Excel tables I have for Basque grammar into PDFs. You can find these in the Euskara section of the pages. Just search for PDF.

    Norman Carnahan sent me a recipe for Gateau Basque de Armentor. Enjoy!

    Daniel Miguelgorry sent me this interesting link about the Cagots.

    Mendi, of Durango, is always a great help to me any time I have a question or a request I can't answer myself. He has a blog though he hasn't updated it in a little while. Please pay him a visit!

    May 17, 2005:

    I haven't had much time to do updates lately. We have started a new Basque club in New Mexico -- the New Mexico Euskal Etxea -- and we had our first event last Saturday, a Tapa and Wine dinner. It was a great success, thanks to the very hard work of a number of our members. As a result, we have a lot of hope for the future of the club. If you know anyone in New Mexico that might be interested, please have them contact me.

    Another reason I didn't have an update until now is that I don't have a new Guest Column to put on the site. If you are at all interested in sharing your thoughts on some Basque related topic, please contact me.

    There have been a lot of things going on in the Basque Country and about Basque related things. Here are some articles of interest.

    Apr 1, 2005:

    While Basque is a very old language with an unknown origin, as a written language, Basque is relatively new. Thus, there isn't a great body of literature written in Basque. Of the books written in Basque, very few make their way to international recognition. One of the most interesting and widely recognized books, first published in Euskara in 1989, Obabakoak was Bernardo Atxaga's first international success. David Cox, who contributed last month's Guest Column about New Basque Music this month contributes a Review of Obabakoak.


    Mar 20, 2005:

    Jan Mansvelt Beck wrote me to announce his new book:

    Territory and Terror Conflicting Nationalisms in the Basque Country by Jan Mansvelt Beck
    Publisher: Routledge
    ISBN: 0415348145
    Pub Date: 04 FEB 2005
    Type: Book
    Price: �65.00
    Extent: 288 pages(Dimensions 234x156 mm)
    Illustrations: 17 line drawings and 18 tables

    All-Basque interpretations of national power have resulted in an uneasy mix of often fragmented and conflicting territorial identifications. Basques can identify themselves with France, Spain or an imagined Basque nation state. Territory and Terror confronts the imagined and actual territorial dimensions of nationalism, shedding new light on the Basque conflict. The study provides a rich description of territoriality analysed from a comparative perspective and explores the relation between territoriality and regional differences in conflict intensity. It supplies an account of the oft-overlooked internal struggles between Basques, arguing that overestimation of Basque nationalism as the ideological force behind the conflict often leads to a disregard of the identification of many with France or Spain. In addition, the author investigates the conflicts between Basque nationalists themselves over key issues such as terrorist activity. Territory and Terror will appeal to students and researchers of nationalism and territoriality, in particular to those with an interest in the Basque country.

    Contents:1. Introduction 2. The French-Basque experience: how Basques became French 3. The Spanish-Basque experience: a case of weak nation-state building 4. Euskal Herria: Rhetoric of commonness versus uncommon practice 5. Basque Nationalism: a recent and modest phenomenon 6. Euskadi as a weak proto-state: the fragmentation of Basque society 7. The Spatial Dimension of Violence: Beyond the fracture lines 8. Conflict Solutions: Past and future scenarios 9. Conclusion 10. Bibliography

    Series Information:Routledge Advances in European Politics

    Author Biography:Jan Mansvelt Beck is associate professor of geography at the University of Amsterdam. His research is focused on Spain and France and, in particular, on ethno-nationalism within these states.

    Mar 19, 2005:

    Hi All, I got this note about Korrika, which is a race held in the Basque Country every year in support of the Basque Language:

    Aupa Buber, soy Jabi Zabala, el periodista de Internet de Berria, me conoces, tengo mi blog: y la radio

    Trabajo tambien en la radio Bilbo Hiria irratia y el domingo retransmitiremos en directo el final de la Korrika en Bilbao. Haremos un programa especial de cuatro horas que emitiremos en directo por Internet. Me gustaria poder contar con un saludo tuyo y queremos contar con la participaci�n de gente de la diaspora vasca.

    In English, it basically says that they will transmit the end of this year's Korrika via the Internet at on Sunday.

    Mar 13, 2005:

    Here are some new articles of interest:

    Mar 01, 2005:

    When most people think about Basque music, they often think of the trikitixa -- the accordian and tambourine -- which plays such an important part of traditional Basque music. You can't go to any festival, either in the Basque Country or outside, without hearing that familiar sound. However, modern Basque music is much more than the trikitixa. It encompasses all modern forms of music, from classical and jazz to punk, heavy metal and ska. Often, these modern forms incorporate traditional sounds, such as the txalaparta and alboka. This month, David Cox contributes a Guest Column about the Basque interpretation of various music styles in his A Short Guide to the New Basque Music.

    Benoit Etcheverry, webmaster of 8 Probintziak, has told me of a radio program that will be dedicated to the Basque diaspora. It will be on Sunday, March 6, from noon to 2pm (California time (PST)). The name of the program is "the hour of the diaspora" and can be listened to from Gure Irratia'a website.

    And, as usual, here are some other articles of interest:


    Feb 01, 2005:

    Anyone who has visited the Basque Country, especially the rural areas, can't help but notice the important role sport plays in the lives of the Basque people. Some sports are famous all over the world, such as Jai Alai. Others, such as wood chopping and stone lifting, are familiar to those who frequent Basque fiestas. As these sports demonstrate, Basque sports in the rural areas emphasize strength and endurance, traits that were crucial in the caserio. Basques have become known for their skill in endurance sports, epitomized by Miguel Indurain and his cycling career. It would seem that running sports would also be a natural for the Basques and, indeed, they are. In this month's Guest Column, Andy Milroy, a historian of ultradistance running, introduces us to the long history of Basque running in his article The Great Running Traditions of the Basques.

    Christine Guecamburu is the latest to contribute a photograph of her Basque tattoo. Christine tells us that "I recently got this tattoo of a lauburu at Pirate Tattoo in Reno, NV. Thought I would share my pride with you." A photo of her full tattoo can be found in the Tattoo Photo Gallery.

    Recently, the Basque government approved a plan to allow for a referendum on greater autonomy from Madrid. There are a lot of articles about this on the web, and you can find many by searching for Basque in Google's News Search. Some of those articles are:

    And, some other articles of interest:


    Jan 02, 2005:

    Urte Berri On! Welcome to 2005!

    As many people in the US are recent descendents of immigrants, the question of their identity often arises. Do they identify more with the culture of their parents' or with the culture of their friends and peers? What role does the culture their parents brought from a foreign land play in their lives? Elizabeth Ihidoy is currently asking herself these kinds of questions. This month, she contributes a Guest Column in which she asks the questions which she is facing. Her article, Euskaldunak: A Quest for Identity, asks the questions. Maybe in the future Elizabeth will share her answers to her questions.

    Chris Bates has written reviews of three books which he shares with us. In the Book Review page, Chris gives his thoughts on The Basque History of the World, The Basque Language: A Practical Introduction and Colloquial Basque. Thanks Chris!

    More soon, including a recipe from Norman Carnahan.

    But, first, some recent Basque related articles:


    Dec 05, 2004:

    Manu Iturregi sent me an email saying that his band, "Igelaren Trikimailua" (The Frog's Trick), has just recorded their first CD. They play original Basque folk/rock music. You can find information about their band and the CD at

    Dec 04, 2004:

    Jimmy Jausoro passed away last Thursday at the age of 83. Jimmy was a corner stone of the Boise Basque Community. He was at nearly every Basque event in the area, always ready with his accordian to provide a Basque atmosphere at each gathering. He played for us when I was a member of the Caldwell Basque Dancers led by Gloria Lejardi. For more information about Jimmy, the Oinkari Basque Dancers have dedicated a page to Jimmy here. In addition, the Idaho Statesman and have stories about Jimmy.

    Dec 02, 2004:

    For those of you who do have a Basque-themed tattoo (at least one of you does, judging by the poll results so far), please consider sending me a photo to put in the Photo Album.

    And, I'm looking for contributions to the Guest Columns. Any Basque-themed article would be appropriate, including fiction, poetry, your experiences in the Basque Country, anything. It just has to be Basque-related. Contact me if you are interested.

    Nov 28, 2004:

    It's been a while since the last update. Things have been busy. I've got a number of additions, only some of which I will get to today. But, more should follow very soon.

    Martin Hardie, who wrote this article about the Orange Tide, has contributed a second article for this month's Guest Column. Martin's newest article is about Cafe-Baque, one of the Basque bicycling teams. A constant source of some of the great Basque riders, Martin discusses how Cafe-Baque is trying to become a pro team in their own right.

    Elizabeth Crain has sent a photo of her tattoo. Look for it in the Photo Album.

    Thanks Martin and Elizabeth!

    And some recent articles of Basque interest:

    Oct 31, 2004:

    Happy Halloween!

    Larry Trask passed away on March 28 of this year. He was a world expert on the Basque language and its history. He had built a website detailing some of the results of his research, giving his view of the history of the Basque language, and answering some common questions about the Basque language. His site has since disappeared from the internet. With the permission of his wife, I have collected his site. His site, in its entirety, is archived here.

    Oct 20, 2004:

    Martin Ugalde, author of this article on Basque history, died recently. Gara has an article about Martin, as does Berria.

    Oct 17, 2004:

    Hi everyone. I still don't have a new guest column for all of you, but I do have several updates.

    First, Jeff Basagoitia and Inaki of Durango Tatu have sent me new photographs of tattoos they either have or are designing. Thanks guys!

    Also, Jodi Moore, of the Battle Mountain Oberenak Basque Club, has sent me several photographs of young Basque dancers. There is a sampling of her photographs in the Photo Album, which she has available for sale.

    Douglas Vaisey has sent me a revised translation of the article on Juan Crisostomo de Arraga Balzola. It isn't perfect yet, but it is vastly improved.

    During the Spanish Civil War, as Franco's armies advanced towards the north, thousands of Basque children were evacuated from the Basque Country. Many of them went to the United Kingdom. John Berry has sent me a link about the history of the children in one Welsh town, Caerleon.

    EuskoSare, a new organization that has as its goal the creation of a communications and cooperation network for the Global Basque community, has just gone live with their website. They are looking for volunteers and anyone interesting in helping out.

    Finally, Ruby Garrovillo sent me some information about her surname, Garrovillo. Thanks Ruby!

    Sept 28, 2004:

    Not much has happened this month. I don't have a new guest column in line for this month. If anyone has something they would like to contribute, please let me know.

    There have been a few interesting articles about things Basque:

    Sept 05, 2004:

    A lot of people request translations to or from Basque. To help them out, I've created a page where they can leave their requests for people to help with. Please look at the Translation Request Page.

    Mendi has sent me this page on on the Spanish Civil War. It has photographs from the Basque Country during that time.

    Some interesting articles:

    Aug 23, 2004:

    Hi all. It's been a long time since the last update. I've been busy with work, which included a business trip to Europe. During that trip, I had a chance to take a couple of days of vacation to visit family in Euskal Herria. A lot of things are changing there. In this month's Guest Column, I describe some of the changes I noticed during my visit. I'd really like to hear comments on my observations from either people who live there or who have recently visited.

    I've gotten a number of new photos of Basque-themed tattoos. First, Inaki of Durango Tatu sent me a number of photographs of very nice designs. And Drew Miguelgorry sent me a photo of the huge lauburu he has on his shoulder. Look in the photo album. Thanks guys!

    PJ Ross sent me a link to a National Geographic article on the Running of the Bulls. Also, he sent me a link for several travel guides to the Basque Country written by his significant other Rogene. They have a lot of great information, such as where to find internet cafes and other such things.

    And, finally, a set of links to Basque articles:

    Eskerrik asko for visiting Buber's Basque Page!


    June 24, 2004:

    Jose Mari Lacambra-Loizu has written a book, a historical novel, about a Basque family, tracing their history from the last Ice Age through to the present. He has kindly shared the preface to his novel The Lords of Navarre, which is this month's Guest Column. More excerpts of his novel will appear in the future.

    It's been a busy month work-wise for me and that is the reason for the lack of activity here. Unfortunately, next month doesn't get any better, so updates will be rare in July as well. I hope that August gives me more time for the site.

    Chad Frederick has sent me a photo of his tattoo. Check it out in the photo album.

    A recap of interesting Basque related articles:

  • Hard-to-find Spanish liqueur makes a Basque Martini worth a sip
  • Basques vote for the European Parliament
  • SEI puts Basque language statistics on Internet
  • Basque party barred from elections

    If anyone has suggestions for poll questions or Guest Columns, please let me know.

    Finally, Buber's Basque Page is the top result for "Basque" at Google!.

    Eskerrik asko for visiting Buber's Basque Page!

  • May 08, 2004:

    In this month's Guest Column, Martin Hardie tells us about the Orange Tide, the extraordinary response of Basque cycling fans to the Tour de France. This is an interesting look at the intersection of sports and culture, and how a group of people find any outlet they can to overcome cultural repression.

    This week, the New York Times (free registration required) has an excellent article on Basque Cuisine. They visit restaurants in San Sebasti�n and the surrounding area. A must-see article for anyone interested in food!

    The Hollister Free Lance has an article about Basque dining in California, where they interview the owners of Matxain Etxea.

    And yet another food article! If you have never been in a Basque bar, George Pandi of the Montreal Gazette tells us all about the experience.

    Finally, let me point out that there are two excellent news sources from the Basque Country in English: Berria, the successor to Egunkaria, and Gara. Also, Basque news can be found via Google news. Try this!

    Eskerrik asko for visiting Buber's Basque Page!


    April 26, 2004:

    On this date, in 1937, the German airforce, at the request of General Franco, bombed the Basque city of Gernika, an event that inspired Picasso to paint his famous anti-war painting "Guernica". For more information, see this article by Cesar Vidal, translated by Peter Miller.

    The Financial Times has a nice article about the Biarritz rugby team.

    April 25, 2004:

    I have added several new photographs to the Photo Album from the trip me and my family took to Euskal Herria in 2002.

    April 23, 2004:

    The tree of Gernika, a symbol of Basque freedom and democracy, has died. The Australian has a nice article about the tree and the future plans for the next tree.

    April 11, 2004:

    In this month's Guest Column, I describe my reactions -- from the view point of a Basque-American -- to the commuter train bombings in Madrid last month. See the article entitled A Basque-American's Reaction to March 11. Please feel free to leave your own reactions and thoughts at the bottom of that page.

    Bo Bolinaga has been working hard on sending me genealogy information on the "boli" surnames. He has sent information on Bolibar, Bolinaga, Bollar, Bollegui, Bolloqui, Bolonzubi, and Bolumburu. Thanks, Bo!

    The biggest event in the Basque sports world this last week was the Tour of the Basque Country, a cycling event won this year by Russia's Denis Menchov. For more information, see the Tour's official page.

    There are two sites of note I'd like to bring to everyone's attention. First, Violeta sent this page about the Basque week in Montreal. It sounds like a lot of fun! Also, Benoit Etcheverry has started a new effort to increase the communication between the Basque Country and the Basque diaspora. His project is entitled 8 Garren Probintzia. Please stop by and let Benoit know what you think.

    Eskerrik asko for visiting Buber's Basque Page!


    March 29, 2004:

    Within the last week, two very important figures in Basque studies have passed away.

    Andolin Eguzkitza was a member of Euskaltzaindia, a linguist and a writer. While I didn't know him, he was well known for his love of the Basque language and culture. For more about Andolin, see this article from If you can read Basque, Susa Literatura has a site dedicated to him.

    The second person was Larry Trask. He was a well known Basque linguist, known for his research into the pre-history of Basque. He was probably one of the world experts on the history of the language. Larry was a member of the mailing list and, while I didn't know him well, we exchanged a number of emails and I collected many of his postings to the mailing list on this site (see here). Last year, Larry gave this interview to the British newspaper The Guardian. Deia has an obituary, in Spanish.

    Both of these men will be sorely missed, as they both were important figures in Basque studies. I personally learned much from Larry, and I know others learned just as much from Andolin.

    March 16, 2004:

    While the investigation into the attacks continues, the Spanish people have replaced the ruling Popular Party with the Socialists. There is lots of commentary on why -- because the Spanish people were against the war and punished Aznar for putting them in it or if they were upset with the PP manipulating the reporting of the investigation for political gain. There is also a lot of discussion about what this means in terms of the global fight against terror, etc.

    Though the investigation is not over, it seems more and more likely every day that ETA had nothing to do with these attacks. And the new prime minister, Zapatero, seems more willing to engage in dialog with the Basque president Ibarretxe. This might signal an improvement in the future for the Basque Country.

    March 13, 2004:

    More and more evidence is pointing to al-Qaida as being responsible for Thursday's bombings in Madrid. This evidence includes a video tape claiming responsibility. Several people have been arrested -- linked to the crimes via the cell phones and calling cards found in unexploded bombs -- people apparently connected with al-Qaida.

    Disturbingly, though maybe not surprisingly, there is also some evidence that the ruling Popular Party has put so much emphasis on ETA as being responsible because of the upcoming elections. If ETA were responsible, this would strengthen their reelection bid as they have been seen as tough on ETA. However, if it is al-Qaida, then these attacks might be seen as retribution for Spain's role in Iraq, hurting the Popular Party's chances in the election.

    Again, for the latest developments, see

    March 11, 2004:

    Today, a horrific attack occurred in Madrid (see, for example, here). While the Basque group ETA has been blamed, some evidence (see here and here) points to al-Qaida. Regardless, this is a sad day for all of the families of the victims of this attack and Spain as a whole. My sympathy goes out to all of those affected by today's events.

    For the latest news, see

    February 28, 2004:

    The second article in the Guest Column series has been posted. This one, entitled A Basque Historian's Dilemma, is by Joxe Mallea-Olaetxe. Joxe is a professor of Basque-American history at the University of Nevada, Reno. In this very interesting article, Joxe describes his research interests, giving a glimpse into the Basque history of the American West as well as a feel for the difficulty of being a historian of a minority people such as the Basques, a people who have not been well documented.

    I have also revamped the Photo Album, which includes the first set of photographs of Basque tattoos, submitted by Dave Elizondo. (Eskerrik asko, Dave!) I hope to have more soon.

    Finally, in response to my comments on Basque Mythology, I received the following interesting email from Warren: I saw your posting on the home page about Basque mythology. I can recommend the works of Marija Gimbutas. Although the subject matter deals primarily with neolithic Europe, her thesis is based upon the fact that Old European culture was matrifocal and matricentric. She draws parallels with historical European cultures, and especially enjoys the use of Basque culture to show the transitions of ancient myths into histroical ones. For instance, she explains, at length, parallels between Mari and other goddess/female deity type figures still present in Europe folklore. I can recommend the follwing:

    • The Goddesses and Gods of Old Europe
    • The Living Goddesses
    • The Language of the Goddess
    • The Civilization of the Goddess
    I am not an anthropologist/archeologist, so I enjoy these books because they were wrtten for laymen like me who don't want to go to primary literature to research these topics. It is primarily because of Prof. Gimbutas that I have become interested in things Basque as of late, especially the language. Anyhow, hope this helps.

    Eskerrik asko for visiting Buber's Basque Page!


    February 16, 2004:

    Today, I posted the first in a series of new articles called Buber's Basque Page Guest Column. The first article, by myself, is about my first trip to the Basque Country and the house my father called home before immigrating to the US. I hope to soon have articles by others that describe the fore-front of research in various Basque topics, the music scene in Euskadi, and several other topics. If anyone would like to contribute, the only requirement is that the article have a Basque topic or theme. It can be fiction or non-fiction, whatever you like.

    I also posted several articles about Basque Mythology that I translated from articles found in Spanish at the Encyclopedia Aunamendi. The topics include Basque Mythology, The Akelarre, Herensuge, Ortzi, Basajaun, The Hunter, Odei, and Witchcraft in the Basque Country. I personally find Basque Mythology very interesting and am dismayed by the lack of information in English. This is my attempt to help rectify the situation. I plan on posting more articles soon. If anyone has request, please let me know and I will try to accomodate, depending on my time and interest.

    Eskerrik asko for visiting Buber's Basque Page!


    January 17, 2004:

    Greetings Everyone!

    I'm redesigning the portal to Buber's Basque Page. This is still a work in progress, but what you see here is pretty much what the new portal will look like. I may make some tweaks, especially if I get comments about this look. If you have any suggestions or comments, please let me know.

    In particular, I'd like to know what people think about the content on the right. Is there something that is missing? I'm hoping to add headlines from Basque news sources soon, but that is the main thing I plan on adding. Also, is the listing of the sections on the left enough? I've pulled the main listing that used to be on the portal, figuring the left menu bar was enough. Please tell me if I've judged incorrectly.

    I hope to make Buber's Basque Page more dynamic and I'm also looking for more original contributions. I'd like to start a Guest Column, for anyone to write about any Basque topic they'd like. If anyone would like to contribute something, such as a story about a trip to the Basque Country, a tale about a Basque parent, or maybe a summary of some interesting research you do about the Basque people, please let me know. Of course, you will get full credit.

    I hope everyone likes the changes I'm making. If you don't, please don't hesitate to let me know, but please also give me suggestions on how to make things better.

    Eskerrik asko!

    This page is part of Buber's Basque Page and is maintained by Blas Uberuaga (
    Please report any problems or suggestions to Blas.
    Eskerrik asko!