"as much as argot is not properly a language but a jargon, so the Gypsies are not a people but the last descendants of a class of outlaws dating from another era:
Gypsies are our Middle Ages preserved; dangerous
classes of an earlier epoch. The Gypsy terms that
made it into the different argots are much like the
Gypsies themselves: since their first apparence, in
fact, Gypsies adopted the patronymics of the countries
through which they traveled—gadjesko nav —
thereby losing somehow their identity on paper in the
eyes of all those who believe they can read (Alice Becker-Ho).
This explains why scholars were never successful in interpreting the Gypsies' origins and in getting to know well their language and customs: the ethnographic investigation, in this case, becomes impossible because the informers are systematically lying."
G. Agamben, Means Without End