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Greek, Ancient: Κρέκαν, French: Erekan
Also Known As: "Hereka"
Immediate Family:

Daughter of Eskam
Wife of Attila the Hun, "Scourge of God", King of the Huns
Mother of Elak, 60th king of the Huns; Dengizich, 62nd king of the Huns and Ernak, 64th king of the Huns

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About Kreka

Kreka Kreka (Κρέκαν, "Krekan") was the wife of Attila. Priscus during his stay at Attila's court in 448 or 449 AD wrote "the next day I arrived at the wall of Attila's compound, carrying gifts for his wife... She had borne three children to him, of whom the eldest (Ellac) was ruling the Akateri and the other nations in the parts of Scythia near the Sea."[1] He then describes the compound:

"Inside the wall there were very many buildings, some built of wooden timbers carved and fitted together with an eye for style, other made of beams cleaned, scraped to straightness and placed onto logs that formed circles. The circles, starting from the ground, rose up to a height of good proportion. This is where Attila's wife dwelled. I passed the barbarians at the door and found her lying on a soft mattress. The ground was covered with woolen felt pieces for walking on. A number of male servants were gathered round her while female servants sat on the ground opposite her, dyeing some fine linens that were to be placed over the barbarians' clothing as adornment. I approached her and, after a greeting, presented her with the gifts. I then withdrew and walked to the other buildings where Attila was spending his time. I waited for Onegesius to come out since he already set out from his compound and was inside".[1]

At the last days of his mission to Attila, Priscus and Maximinus were "invited by Kreka to dinner at the house of Adames[nb 1] the man who oversaw her affairs. We joined him along with some of the nation's leading men, and there we found cordiality. He greeted us with soothing words and prepared food. Each of those present, with Scythian generosity, arose and gave us each a full cup and then, after embracing and kissing the one who was drinking, received it back. After dinner, we went back to our tent and went to sleep".[3]

Etymology Edit

The name is recorded as Κρέκαν (Krekan), Χρέχα (Khreka), Ήρέχα (Ereka), Ήρέχαν (Erekan).[4][5] Some copyists dropped v or ending -an.[4] Maenchen-Helfen considered Bang's etymology, by which it derives from *arï(y)-qan (the pure princess), i.e. Karakalpaks name Aruvkhan (aruv, "pure").[4] Pavel Poucha derived Kreka or Hreka from Mongolian appellation gergei (wife).[4][6]

Omeljan Pritsak noted that there two additional variants gergai and gergen, while ger is the root for "house".[6] The Mongolian word is comparable to Turkic Yakut language kärgän (root kär to ger, and suffix gän to gan) which means "family, house, members of household or family".[6] Word kärgännä means "to marry", while kärgännäx "married".[7] The Oghur Turkic vocalic metathesis is responsible for the change of *ker into kre-, while k- in the initial position of the suffix gan is the result of Oghur Turkic devoicing after r, l, n.[8] The reconstructed form krekän < *kerkän from older *kergän, was not a name, yet appellative meaning "wife".[8]