- "Barrayaran Greekie?” asked Rish, brows rising in puzzlement.
“The smallest of our main languages,” he told her. “The Firsters actually arrived in four disparate settlement groups—Russian, British, French and Greek, as their home regions on Old Earth were back then. Over the centuries of the Time of Isolation, everyone pretty much blended together genetically—founder effect, you know—but they kept up those languages, which still gave folks plenty to fight about. I think there were some more minor tongues as well, to start, but those got rubbed out in what you galactics call the Lost Centuries. Except we weren’t lost, we were all right there. It was just the Nexus that got misplaced."
- ―Ivan explains the Firsters to Tej[src]
The Firsters were the original 50,000 colonists of the planet Barrayar. They came mainly from Russia and other European nations. While some other languages and cultures were likely present, following the Time of Isolation, the resulting languages on Barrayar were English, Russian, French, and Greek.
Behind the scenes
The author has stated that the founder population was about 20% "non-white" (as per United States usage of the term), which is the source of their "Mediterranean" appearance. See 046621.html, 046657.html, and 125304.html for discussion from the author.