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Breeding like rabbits?! Slavic populations in Europe between 500 CE and 1000 CE

Discussion in 'World History' started by Domen, Jun 7, 2013.

  1. Domen

    Domen Misico dux Vandalorum

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    Chapter 6 of the 2008 book I am presenting, is about paleodemographic studies.

    This chapter is generally showing, that it was impossible for the Slavs to grow from such a small area as some people claim they originally (ca. year 500 CE) lived in, into such a huge population over such a vast territory as they were in year 1000 CE, during just 500 years:

    At first, authors of the book quote E. Vielrose studies on population growth / natural growth rates in Medieval Europe:

    Entire Europe = average annual growth during each 100 years (average annual growth from each 100 individual annual growths)



    And some other data (Kurnatowski's data is more important for our discussion here):



    Kurnatowski (1977), after analysis of archaeological and historical data, came to a conclusion, that:

    "when it comes to the period of Roman influences, then most probably an average annual growth of entire population was not higher than 0,1%, and even in moments of increased dynamics which took place in some periods and in some areas, it was not higher than 0,15%. On the other hand when it comes to the population growth speed in the second half of the first millennium of Common Era, then I would suppose, that in the scale of entire Slavdom it could not be lower than 0,2% and could not be higher than 0,3%. It should be noted, that this estimation is in agreement with previous studies regarding the dynamics of population growth during the early and middle ages of our history."

    Authors of the book comment:

    "Of course estimations of population size and population growth for various Slavic countries are not to the same degree certain and exact. Their critical summary was presented for example by Łowmiański (1973), who accepted, that around year 1000 Eastern Slavs numbered 4 million people, Western Slavs 1,9 million and Southern Slavs 1,4 million. In total entire Slavdom around year 1000 was to be populated by - according to this estimation - 7,3 million people. Kurnatowski (1977) recognized this estimation as very cautious and rather underestimation than excessively overestimated, but he intentionally accepted the second starting point, which would represent the lowest possible extreme variant of population of Slavdom, and thus he decreased the population of Western Slavs by 100,000, of Eastern Slavs - by 500,000, and of Southern Slavs - by 200,000 (chart 10)."

    ============================================

    Some further excerpts from the book:

    "After obtaining data regarding population of Slavdom in year 1000 and the data (estimations) regarding the population growth rate in the second half of the first millennium CE, Kurnatowski (1977) calculated hypothetical size of Slavic population in earlier times that is by the end of the 7th century CE and by the end of the 5th century CE (chart 11). He presented his calculations for two variants of natural growth rates: 0,2% annually and 0,3% annualy. This data shows, that population of Slavdom could fluctuate by the end of the 7th century CE between 2,65 million and 4,1 million people, while by the end of the 5th century CE between 1,45 million and 2,68 million people.

    Chart 11:



    Thus Kurnatowski (1977) established hypothetical lower and upper population sizes, which after growing during 500 years with average annual growth rate of between 0,2% and 0,3% would in the end result in the approximate number of people close to estimations of Łowmiański (1973) for year 1000 (growth rate 0,3% annually) or of Kurnatowski (growth rate 0,2% annually).

    Using the same method as Kurnatowski in 1977, we carried out similar calculations for data emerging from the hypothesis of Godlewski (1979). That hypothesis assumed, that the size of original area inhabited by Slavs before their expansion was around 300,000 km2. But we did not have any data regarding the population size and density of population living in that area. In such situation, we decided that the most comfortable solution is to accept the hypothetical lower and upper possible level of population density and to carry out calculations for both extreme variants. It should be expected, that real values will be located somewhere within the scope delimited by minimal and maximal possible level of population density. We accepted two extreme levels of population density: 1 person per km2 and 4 people per km2. Are these well balanced estimations as extreme values? Actually population density of 4 people per km2 corresponds to population density level in year 1000 in various parts of Slavic lands and thus it can be considered as an inflated estimation (Piontek 2002).

    Anyway, for accepted estimations of population density, according to Godłowski's allochthonic hypothesis (1979), population of native Slavic territories (ca. 300,000 km2 around year 500 CE according to Godłowski) would be between 300,000 and 1,200,000 people. In chart 12 we presented calculations of Slavic population size around year 1000, carried out according to three different estimated levels of annual population growth. These calculations indicate, that Slavic populations, in order to settle the area in which they lived around year 1000, would need to be characterized by extremely high dynamics of population growth and high numerical amount of initial population (high population density already around year 500)."

    Chart 12:



    As you see, it would require a totally impossible growth rate of 0,5% per year, to increase from 0,3 million in 500 CE to 7,3 million in 1000 CE.

    =================================

    Godłowski's hypothesis, mentioned above, is as follows:

    "... crystallization of Slavic culture and its formation in such shape, as we know it from archaeological materials of the Early Medieval period (...) took place in the 5th century CE in territory ranging from the [eastern] foot of Carpathian Mountains up to the Pripyat River and left-bank area of middle Dnieper River, size of which covered ca. 300,000 square km. Simultaneously, it was the initial area / exit area of the great expansion of this culture and these people, which took place during the next centuries."

    =================================

    "Accepting estimated data of Kurnatowski (1977) regarding population of territories of Eastern, Western and Southern Slavdom around year 1000, we also calculated what was the population of these territories around year 500, accepting various possible population growth rates (between 0,1% and 0,4%) - charts 13 to 15 (Piontek 2002).

    Chart 13 - eastern Slavdom / Eastern Slavs

    Chart 14 - western Slavdom / Western Slavs

    Chart 15 - southern Slavdom / Southern Slavs (the only group of migrating Slavs, according to authors)



    Conclusions drawn from these calculations are such, that initial levels of the size of Slavic population around year 500 accepted in Godłowski's allochthonic hypothesis (1979, 2000) are decidedly far too low. On the other hand, the size of Slavic population migrating South (which lead to emergence of Southern Slavs) did not have to be so high. Initial migrating population of Southern Slavs, in order to reach the level of ca. 1,200,000 people around year 1000, with natural growth rate estimated at between 0,2% - 0,3% annually, should have numbered between 260,000 and 440,000 people around year 500.

    As the most probable ones, we can accept the following estimations regarding the Slavic population size in three inhabited by them areas around year 500 CE: eastern Slavs - between 2000 thousands and 1000 thousands people; western - 660 thousands to 400 thousands; southern (migrating group) - 440 thousands to 260 thousands. Of course, when it comes to southern Slavs, these calculations are just a hypothetical estimations, which is not taking into account the real chronology of their colonization and migrations.

    Chapter 6.2: Condition and dynamics of Early Medieval Slavic populations:

    We gathered data about life length / life expectancy of adult people [people who survived to their adulthood, rather than dying already as children - Domen] in Medieval populations of Eastern Slavs, Western Slavs and Southern Slavs, calculated by various authors (charts 16 - 20). Most of these examined Slavic populations are dated for 9th - 11th centuries. This data indicates, that the lowest values of average age at death among adult people were among populations classified as Eastern Slavs (36 - 40 years at death) and Western Slavs (32 - 41 years at death), while the highest values were among Southern Slavs (42 - 45,5 years at death). Charts 16 - 20.

    [here I can scan and post also charts 16 - 19, if you want - Domen]

    Chart 20 (of course "Słowianie Południowi" = "Southern Slavs"):



    It must be also underlined, that areas inhabited by Early Medieval Slavic populations with very low dynamics of population growth, are exactly the same areas which are considered by some scholars (followers of allochthonic / migratory ["eastern"] theories of the origins of Slavs) as original territory of native Slavic populations, from which they supposedly migrated after year 500. On the other hand areas marked as inhabited by populations with high dynamics of population growth, are areas captured by Slavs during theri expansion. Another substantial fact is that populations living in basins of Pripyat, Dnieper and Prut rivers were characterized by low biologic dynamics, which is why their demographic expansion could only be limited, and their capabilities of achieving population growth were not very high.

    (...)

    Archaeologists accepting Godłowski's conception, concerning the origins and expansion of Slavs, as well as its author himself, have never shown any proofs which would support the hypothesis, that populations living in 5th century in the area between the eastern foot of Carpathian Mountains up to the Pripyat River and left-bank area of middle Dnieper River underwent a demographic tranformation, which would make them capable of demographic expansion.

    For many years there is a dispute about this issue; both archaeologists and anthropologists raise arguments saying about the fact, that there are no traces of demographic expansion of early Slavs assumed by Godłowski, neither in examined archaeologic materials, nor in historical sources, nor in anthropological data.

    The theory of demographic transition is one of most well-known / of the best recognized issues of the science of demography (Hassan 1981). We do expect, that the hypothesis about eastern origins of Slavs, presented by allochthonists, will at long last find its credible demographic substantiation. For we do not find any credible confirmation of this hypothesis in paleodemographic studies, which are aimed at evaluation of the condition and biological dynamics of Slavic population, basing on very numerous and diversified analyses of skeletal materials.

    If one wants to prove the validity of Godłowski's hypothesis, about the eastern origins and then westward expansion of Slavs, one should at first present substantial arguments, which would explain the reasons of changes in reproductive system of groups of early Slavs - changes allowing them to rapidly increase their biological dynamics and, due to this fact, to rapidly expand into vast territories from their initial homeland. Sadly, we do not find any such arguments in discussed reconstruction of the processes of migrations and settlement of the Slavs. It is only said about some alleged regularity, that:

    "(...) people until that time not playing any major role in history and living in a rather small area suddenly and amazingly start to work their way up in history and start to expand at a very fast pace over territories in terms of size multiple times exceeding their original homeland. In case of Slavs this situation occured with particularly unprecedented vibrancy (Godłowski, 2000).

    -----------------------------

    Authors of the book do not agree that such a "sudden and amazing" growth and expansion can be reasonably explained.

    =============================

    Some archeologists also oppose the hypothesis of eastern origins of Slavs.

    Authors of the discussed book, quote for example Leciejewicz (2002):

    "... Slavic inhabitants of Polish lands in the Early Medieval period were exhibiting accurate enough ties with heritage of their predecessors in this part of Ancient barbaricum, that we are authorised to claim native / local roots of their culture. On an ethnographic map of Early Medieval Europe, Slavs from this part of Europe were representing, just like their eastern kinsmen, an agrarian culture, significantly different from culture of Scandinavian vikings, Balts in their forested zone and nomadic people in the steppes around the Black Sea. Slavs were numerically significant, the most agrarian peoples living outside the Ancient limes of Europe and it does not seem possible, that the Slavic ethnos could be shaped in a relatively small territory, within the primeval forests and swamps of the upper Dniester river."

    ===============================

    And one more quote from authors of the discussed 2008 book (an excerpt from "Final conclusions" chapter):

    "Thesis about rapid / sudden demographic expansion of Slavic populations is highly speculative and cannot result from derivation studies / source studies, as some of its followers claim.

    It thus cannot be claimed, that the area of basins of Oder and Vistula rivers was deserted after migration of Germanic tribes during the so called great migrations, and that it was once again populated by Slavic people not before the 5th / 6th centuries.

    A new beginning in the studies of the process of ethnogenesis of Slavs seems possible only after rejection by archaeologists, of their highly speculative, allochthonic model / migratory model ["eastern model"] of the origins of Slavs.

    Results of anthropological studies, including our own research, are increasingly strongly supporting the views of some scholars, who say that cultural processes taking place between the Late Antiquity and the Early Middle Ages were too complicated to explain them just with simple migratory model."

    ==========================

    Edit:

    Here charts 16 and 17:

    Western / Eastern Slavs:



    Southern Slavs:



    =====================================

    See also this discussion:

    http://historum.com/european-histor...-linguistics-anthropology-history-etc-11.html

    ===========================

    Polish historian Wyrozumski mentions the theory of another historian - Hensel - which is quite similar to what you wrote (except that according to Hensel, Proto-Slavic people perhaps replaced the original Venetic population and adopted their name, after the Veneti migrated away):

    Wyrozumski writes:

    "(...) the theory, that Proto-Slavs should be identified with the Trzciniec culture. After giving this theory a new shape and a convincing amplification by Witold Hensel, it looks as follows: The area, in which the ethnogenesis of Balto-Slavic community took place around the end of the Neolithic period, would be the triangle between the Baltic Sea, the San River and the middle Dnieper River. The Trzciniec culture which flourished during the Bronze Age (16th - 13th centuries BC) would be the product of perhaps already separated Proto-Slavic community. While its neighbouring in the west Proto-Lusatian culture would belong to people of the Venetic language group, which is either considered by scholars as related to Illyrian language group, or as a totally separate group. Initially there perhaps took place some mutual interfusing between both cultures, while later, around the beginning of the 1st millennium BC, the Veneti abandoned their homeland in the Oder river basin area, which opened the way for the Proto-Slavs to expand westward. In that area they perhaps took over (...) the name of their predecessors, under which they were known to Ancient writers."

    And in another place of his book:

    "(...) sources from first centuries of Common Era (Pliny the Elder who died in 79 CE, Tacitus who died in 120 CE, Ptolemy who died in 2nd century) mention the first name of inhabitants of our lands. Those were the Veneti. If originally this name probably denoted a separate Venetic language group, then already during first centuries of CE it denoted a number of tribes living in basins of Oder and Vistula rivers, especially - as it seems - in middle and upper parts of these rivers. This name was very viable / lively and it was expansive to at least the same degree, as a thousand years later the tribal name of Polani, or in Silesia - the tribal name of Sleenzane. The same name - Venedi / Wenedowie - is also applied to Slavs from Polish territories during the next centuries, and the last echo of this name can be found in a 9th century source, so called description of Germania, written in Britain during the reign of Alfred the Great (871 - 899). A persistent trace of this nomenclature survived even longer in German language in which the name for Medieval Slavic tribes living between the Oder river and the Elbe river was Wenden."

    The same Wyrozumski, when describing arguments for western and eastern origins of Slavs, writes:

    "(...) The main argument supporting the theory about western origins of Slavs, are traces of Slavic linguistic contacts with Germanic, Baltic, Illyro-Venetic and Iranian language groups. On the other hand, in Slavic languages there is a total absence of any loanwords from Finno-Ugrian languages, which would testify against the alleged eastern ethnogenesis of our ancestors. Followers of the western thesis were also highlighting the fact that names for cis (yew-tree) and bluszcz (ivy), which grow only in basins of Vistula and Oder rivers, are common for nearly all Slavic languages, which means that these names date back to the Proto-Slavic period, preceeding the dispersal of Slavs from their original homeland (Urheimat) and the emergence of several separate Slavic languages as a consequence of that dispersal. (...)"

    But, according to Wyrozumski:

    "(...) On the other hand, followers of the eastern theory, highlight the fact that names for buk (beech tree) and jawor (sycamore), which initially grew in Western and Central Europe, are loanwords in Slavic languages. This would suggest, that at the beginning Slavic people did not know these trees, considering that they had no their own terms to describe them, which suggests that they would originally live outside the zone where these trees grew. (...) The reference of Greek historian Herodotus about the Neuri, living to the north of / beyond the Iranian Scythians, somewhere in the region - as is usually thought - of upper Pripyat river or maybe Narew river, who are usually identified with Slavic people, would suggest the early settlement of Slavs in Ruthenian or rather Southern Ruthenian lands."

    ============================

    See also this discussion:

    http://historum.com/european-histor...-linguistics-anthropology-history-etc-13.html

    ============================

    And more about anthropology from previous chapters of the 2008 book:

    Illustration 29:

    Multilayered scaling of square matrixes of euclidean distances for 32 male populations from Europe in terms of 10 metrical features of skull.

    I replaced black dots by red dots for Medieval Germanic populations (majuscules) who were nearest neighbours of Medieval Slavic populations, green dots for Roman era populations (bold) and blue dots for Medieval Western (normal typestyle) and Eastern (italics) Slavic populations:

    As for Medieval Germanic populations who were nearest neighbours of Slavs:

    Burgundowie = Burgundians
    Frankowie = Franks
    Alamanowie = Alemanni
    Sasi = Saxons
    Bawarowie = Bavarians
    Norwedzy = Norwegians
    Islandczycy = Icelanders
    Szwedzi = Swedes
    Longobardowie = Lombards (Langobards)

    Roman era populations:

    K. czerniachowska = Chernyakhovsk culture
    K. przeworska = Przeworsk culture
    K. wielbarska = Wielbark culture

    Medieval Western Slavs:

    Małopolanie = Slavs from Lesser Poland [Vistulans? - Domen]
    Meklemburgia = Slavs from Mękelnborg / Mecklenburg [Polabian Slavs, the Obotrites? - Domen]
    Cedynia = Slavs from Cedynia [westernmost Polans / Lubuszanie aka Leubuzzi, Licikaviki, Liubusiki / Prissani? - Domen]
    Pomorzanie = Pomerelians
    Śleżanie = Silesians
    Wielkopolanie = Slavs from Greater Poland [Polans? - Domen]
    Słowacy = Slovaks
    Lubelszczyzna = Slavs from Lublin Region [Lendians? - Domen]
    Mazowszanie = Mazovians

    Medieval Eastern Slavs:

    Słowenie = Ilmen Slavs
    Polanie = Polans [the eastern ones, those from Ukraine - Domen]
    Galicz = Slavs from Galich / Halych region

    Etc., etc.



    Illustration 28:



    Dendrogram arranging the matrix of square euclidean distances of 32 male populations of Europe:

    I underlined Medieval Germanic populations which were nearest neighbours of Slavs (I listed them above) with red colour, Roman era populations with green colour and Medieval Western and Eastern Slavic populations (see above) with blue colour.

    I also included each group of populations most closely biologically related to each other in a separate buckle. Each most closely related group is included in one buckle. According to the book: "it is difficult to trace further, less close relations between groups", which is why data about further connections between grups can be less accurate than data about closest relations:

    As you can see all Germanic neighbours of Slavs, except the Lombards, were most closely related to each other, not with other ethnic groups.

    On the other hand, the Lombards were most closely related to Slavic Małopolanie [Vistulans?], Przeworsk and Chernyakhovsk cultures.

    Małopolanie [Vistulans?] themselves, were more closely related to Roman era populations, than to Medieval Lombards.

    =====================================

    In other words, populations most closely biologically related to Ancient Wielbark Culture were:

    - Slavic Pomerelians
    - Slavic Polabians / Obotrites (Mecklenburg region Slavs)
    - westernmost Polans / Lubuszanie (Leubuzzi, Licikaviki, Liubusiki) / Prissani (Cedynia)

    Slightly less closely biologically related to Wielbark Culture were:

    - Mazovians
    - Slavs from Greater Poland (Polans?)
    - Ilmen Slavs
    - Slavs from Słaboszewo (in Cuiavia) - but these skulls are from Later Medieval / Early Modern times, not from Early Medieval like others

    While most closely biologically related to Ancient Przeworsk and Chernyakhovsk Cultures were:

    - Slavs from Lesser Poland (Vistulans I suppose) - they were especially very closely related to Chernyakhovsk Culture, while a bit less closely to Przeworsk Culture

    Also closely related to these two Roman era cultures, but less closely than Vistulans, were Germanic Lombards.

    Slightly less closely related to these 2 cultures than Vistulans and Lombards were:

    - Slavs from Lublin Region (Lendians I suppose)
    - Slavs from Galich / Halych region
    - Silesians (Sleenzane)
    - Moravians
    - Slovaks
    - Slavs from Łekno (in Cuiavia) - but these are skulls from Late Medieval / Early Modern times, not from Early Medieval like others.

    What is very interesting, is that Germanic Lombards (Langobards) were much more closely biologically related to several groups of Slavic people (Slavs from Lesser Poland, Galich / Halych region, Lublin Region, Silesians, Moravians, Slovaks and Late Medieval / Early Modern period Slavs from Cuiavian Łekno area) than they were related to all other Germanic populations which lived in territories bordering Slavic territories.

    Lombards - who apparently had much more of common ancestors with several Slavic groups, than with any other Germanic group:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lombards

    Slavs from Lesser Poland (Vistulans?) and Lombards are also the 2 groups most closely related to Przeworsk and Chernyakhovsk cultures.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vistulans

    Most of Slavic Vistulans and of Germanic Lombards were biological descendants of Przeworsk and Chernyakhovsk Roman era people.

    But Germanic Lombards were also very closely biologically related to several other Slavic groups, not just to Vistulans.

    On the other hand, those Germanic Lombards were not closely biologically related to any other of Germanic tribes listed above.

     
  2. hobbsyoyo

    hobbsyoyo Deity

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    I have to hand it to you, that was a pretty brilliant tactical move on your part.
     
  3. Domen

    Domen Misico dux Vandalorum

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    :) I really don't like the "switching to next page" thing. :lol:

    It is better when entire related text is on the same page...

    ============================

    Edit:

    By the way - let's see what Velleius Paterculus wrote about the Lombards (Langobards):

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lombards#Archaeology_and_migrations

    As you can see, Velleius Paterculus suggests that the Lombards were not a Germanic tribe (were not "Germans").

    He wrote that they were "surpassing even the Germans in savagery" - which means, that he considered them as distinct from "Germans".

    This is confirmed by studies quoted above, which show that Lombards had more common ancestors with Slavs than with other Germanic people.

    Of course this only means that in times of Paterculus' lifetime, the Lombards did not speak any of Germanic languages.

    This does not exclude the fact, that they underwent Germanization later - and spoke German language during the Middle Ages.

    However, ethno-linguistic Germanization of course did not change biological and genetic features of the Lombards.

    ============================

    Edit:

    I am also no expert so I probably wan't be able to explain all of your doubts (I also have doubts about some points in this book).

    But when it comes to your question above:

    As authors of the book I quoted say, when they are describing that illustration (Ryc.) 28, "it is difficult to accurately place [on this particular illustration] further, less close relations between groups", which is why data about further connections between grups on illustration 28 can be less accurate than data about closest relations.

    So I would only look at those closer connections when it comes to illustration (Ryc.) 28.

    On the other hand, to trace less close / farther connections, I would look at illustration (Ryc.) 29, and compare distances between points (as well as on which side of the graph these points are located - left / right / upper / lower, etc.).

    So from Ryc. 29 it seems, that Moravians and Slovaks are closely related - when it comes to Germanic tribes - to Franks, Saxons and Burgundians.

    According to the same Ryc. 29, Icelanders are most closely biologically related to Norwegians, Swedes and Allemanni.

    Yes, it is not an evidence for being Slavic-speaking. But it is an evidence for not being Germans in the Ancient period.

    On the other hand, anthropology provides evidence that they had common ancestors with Slavs. Ryc. 29 two-dimensional graph posted above also shows this, placing the Langobard "point" closer to several Slavic groups than to all other Germanic groups. Langobards were also closely biologically related to Roman era cultures Wielbark and Chernyakhovsk, just like several Slavic groups, but unlike all other Germanic groups.

    Hard to say. Maybe their saga is simply wrong regarding their legendary origins?

    After all, Polish "saga" says that Poles are of Sarmatian origins and this is disputed.

    Or maybe they left Scandinavia very, very long time ago - and lived outside of Scandinavia, separated from the Saxons while close to some other people for a very long time, enough long that their biological features became more similar to other people, rather than Saxons?

    Or maybe they intermarried a lot during their migrations with people who were ancestors of Medieval Slavs?
     
  4. Domen

    Domen Misico dux Vandalorum

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    But let's take one more look at one issue of this anthropological study of biological (not necessarily ethnic or linguistic) connections:

    Vistulans (Wiślanie) - from Lesser Poland... Their most important stronghold was Cracow (Kraków).

    There is a chronicle written by Wincenty Kadłubek (lived in ca. 1150 - 1223), which is considered by modern Polish historians as a total fairy tale and utter rubbish when it comes to its first chapters (about legendary beginnings of the Poles).

    In those chapters Kadłubek describes duke Krakus / Gracchus - a legendary founder of Kraków (Cracow) - who was a king of some people living at the Vistula (Kadłubek does not give their name - he initially does not call them "Poles" and he does not call them "Slavs").

    That duke Krakus / Gracchus - according to Kadłubek - fought wars against Ancient Gauls (or - to be precise - Celts, but Kadłubek did not distinguish them from each other). According to Kadłubek, warriors of Krakus / Gracchus repulsed the Gallic (Celtic) invaders, and even invaded the region of Pannonia (modern Western Hungary, which was inhabited by Celts for some time). Krakus / Gracchus also at some point travelled to the region of modern Carinthia (perhaps it was a peaceful travel, Kadłubek doesn't provide any details).

    Celtic raids of the area of modern Cracow could indeed take place - Celts indeed penetrated into Silesia and what is now southern Poland.

    Only after describing these events, and the return of Krakus / Gracchus from Carinthia, Kadłubek says that he was elected king and founded the "kingdom of Poland". Of course this is already total rubbish and fairy tale. In general the "legendary period" in his chronicle is considered a pure fairy tale.

    But each legend has a grain of truth in it - is it possible that legendary stories were more long-lasting than tribes, languages or ethnic groups?

    If there was continuity of settlement, then who knows - maybe an Ancient story, in a very distorted form of course, survived in verbal accounts among local population until Medieval times? Maybe Kadłubek did not entirely made up his story about Krakus, but compiled from various folk legends from the Vistula river area, verbal accounts passed from parents to their children during dozens of generations?

    BTW - large settlements in area of modern Cracow (including the Wawel Hill) are confirmed by archaeologists already for the 14th century BC - and since that time there was continuity of settlement, of course with some temporary periods of population decrease, but the region was never totally deserted.

    The first confirmed period of major population decrease (and cultural regress) in the area of modern Cracow and its neighbourhood was in 6th - 5th centuries BC, after the collapse of the Lusatian culture, caused perhaps by Scythian and Celtic invasions. The second period of major population decrease in this area, was, as is commonly known, in the 4th - 6th centuries AD and was caused most likely by Hunnic invasions and bubonic plague, which also decimated Mediterranean population at that time (and maybe also by those alleged large scale migrations).
     
  5. Domen

    Domen Misico dux Vandalorum

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    They also quote the results and theories of genetic studies from other authors, already in first chapters of their book (before drawing their own anthropological conclusions, which I quoted above, in further chapters).

    Here is an excerpt from chapter 3.5. of this 2008 book, titled "The results of studies of molecular biology":

    "(...) Already for several years genetic analyses of Slavic populations are being carried out. They are based on studies of modern mitochondrial DNA (Malyarchuk 2001, 2004, Malyarchuk and others 2008, Grzybowski and others 2002, Grzybowski 2006, Toepf and others 2007) or Y chromosome (Perlic and others 2005). Until now studies of mtDNA have shown, that genetic pool of Western, Eastern and Southern Slavs is part of the complete genetic pool of European ethnic groups and has the highest number of phylogenetically related types of mtDNA.

    Western Slavs occupy a central position among all Slavic ethnic groups, and their genetic pool includes a maximal number of rare shared and similar types of mtDNA in relation to Russians and Belarussians, while these two ethnic groups only to some extent show genetic similarity to each other.

    It is also considered, that a large role in shaping the genetic structure of Slavs was played by interethnic processes - intermarrying and assimilation of populations, due to which Western Slavs show genetic similarity to germanic populations, such as Germans or Austrians, Bulgarians are similar in genetic terms to other Balkan populations, and Russians to Ugro-Finnic groups of northern and eastern Europe (Malyarchuk 2001, Grzybowski and others 2002).

    In case of analyses of Y chromosome, there is - so far - no general consensus regarding the origins of Slavs. Basing on studies of Y-STR haplotypes, authors of one of articles alleged the presence of substantial genetic differences between Polish and Belarussian populations, which - according to them - mean that Belarussians could not originally arise from territory of Poland. Due to this, authors of mentioned article claim, that Slavs originate from the Dnieper basin (Rębała and others, 2007). On the other hand, other scholars think that the presence of haplogroup N in chromosome Y of Eastern Slavs (Belarussians, Russians and Ukrainians) and at the same time absence of this haplogroup in populations of Western and Southern Slavs means, that the main direction of Slavic migration was from the west towards the east and resulted in the fact, that Slavs partially intermarried with populations living in Eastern Europe. These populations were characterized by high frequency of haplogroup N (Perlic and others, 2005).

    Recently Grzybowski (2006), while summarizing the results of polymorphism of mtDNA in Polish and Russian populations, came to a conclusion, that formation of modern Eastern Slavic populations was the result of intermarrying between Slavic tribes (whose Urheimat was most likely Central Europe), with Pre-Slavic populations of Eastern Europe, such as Ugro-Finnic tribes living in north-eastern and eastern peripheries of Eastern Europe, Baltic tribes in the west and Iranian tribes in the south.

    This author also thinks, that "the increase of resolution / precision of analyses, allowed us to distinct essential components, which are distinguishing Poles and Russians from other European populations. The most important of these components is subclade U4a2, phylogenesis of which was reconstructed with use of complete sequences of mitochondrial genotypes. Contrary to previous estimations of the evolutionary age of U4a2 based on the clock of HVS I region (...), current results of dating based on diversification of sequences of the coding region indicate Neolithic origins of this subclade. Time period of around 7,000 years, during which diversification within entire U4a2 subclade observed in modern populations was shaping itself indicates, that expansion of this subclade in Central, Northern and Eastern Europe can coincide with expansion of archaeological culture of Corded Ware" (Grzybowski 2007, page 137). (...)"
     
  6. Domen

    Domen Misico dux Vandalorum

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    But let me add my own comment on this:

    Please note, that these molecular biologists are researching DNA of modern people, who live in the 21st century - unlike anthropologists, authors of discussed book from 2008, who are researching biological features of Ancient and Early Medieval human remains.

    In my opinion, modern "genetic similarity" between Western Slavs and Germans or Austrians, results from ethno-linguistic Germanization of Western Slavs (which as we know started already in the High and Late Middle Ages during the "Ostsiedlung" as well as military expansion into Slavic lands, and continued during further centuries), rather than from the alleged assimilation of Germanic tribes by Slavic tribes in the Early Middle Ages.

    These modern genetic studies on modern people thus cannot be considered as more reliable than studies of biological diversity conducted on real, original skeletons from Ancient and Medieval times, before the "Ostsiedlung", eastward expansion of German states, and the Germanization processes occuring between the High Middle Ages and the early 20th century in former Western Slavic lands (at first Slavic westernmost lands, then Lusatia, lands of Polabian Slavs, Western Pomerania, Silesia, some other parts of Poland, lands of the Kingdom of Prussia, etc., etc.).

    There was of course also Slavicization (including Polonization) of many ethnic Germans - but vast majority of this process was also taking place in more recent times (since the High and Late Middle Ages, until the 20th century, and partially even in the 21st century - since the remaining German minority in Poland, which was not expelled from Poland after 1945, is still assimilating and Polonizing itself).

    In such case, modern genetic studies are not as reliable as studies of biological diversity conducted on original human remains belonging to people who lived in Ancient and Early Medieval times.
     
  7. Azale

    Azale Deity

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    This thread reminds me of the scene in Se7en where Brad Pitt & Morgan Freeman find John Doe's house.
     
  8. Domen

    Domen Misico dux Vandalorum

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    Do you mean the "probably died 3 days ago... Oh, oh, OMG it is alive, it is alive!" part. :confused:
     
  9. Domen

    Domen Misico dux Vandalorum

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    There is a theory that remnants of Sarmatians (destroyed by the Huns) escaped to lands inhabited by Slavs / Proto-Slavs, and there assimilated with them. As a matter of fact there were various strongly Sarmatian-style items found inside early Slavic burial-grounds.

    There is perhaps some truth in this.

    Already Early Medieval French chronicler Flodoard of Reims (894 - 966) called the Slavs - "Sarmatians".

    ============================

    Here for example such an excerpt from the chronicle by Flodoard of Reims:

    http://books.google.pl/books?id=Ops...nepage&q=Flodoard of Reims Sarmatians&f=false

    "(...) A very large force of Magyars attacked Bavaria, seeking to invade Francia. King Otto [of Germany], along with Boleslav, the princeps of the Sarmatians, and Conrad [of Lotharingia], who was now reconciled to the king, fought against them. He cut down the Magyars, almost annihilating them. However, Conrad, who had fought very bravely that day and had inspired the king to victory, was killed. (...)"

    This is about Boleslav, duke of Bohemia.
     
  10. Pangur Bán

    Pangur Bán Deconstructed

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    If there is a link, that's not evidence for it. It's just classicizing link-making from readings of Isidore of Seville.
     
  11. Tolina

    Tolina trust the pillars with your s e c r e t s

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    Slightly off-topic...

    Until said "conclusion" ended when Mr. Issac II Angel decided that "dynastical marriage should be a blast!" and raised the taxes one time too much and we rebelled against him.

    Fun fact about Basil II's predecessor: He went and conquered Veliki Preslav and was like
    "k, we're done here, now let's get over with this". Unfortunately, Samuil in Sofia wasn't really thinking the same, thus starting a half of a century of struggle against the Byzantines.
     
  12. Domen

    Domen Misico dux Vandalorum

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    What did he write about Slavs?

    BTW - there are also linguistic similarities between Slavic languages with Sanskrit (satemization) and Old Persian / Iranian.

    Satemization perhaps took place in the Bronze Age - so before the Balto-Slavic language split into Baltic and Slavic.

    Satemization also encompassed Indo-Iranian, Albanian and Armenian languages.

    But Iranian / Old Persian influences on Slavic languages seem to be much later than Satemization and are not visible in Baltic languages - which indicates contacts between already Slavs after their split from Balto-Slavic people, and Indo-Iranian tribes (such as for example Scythians or Sarmatians).
     
  13. Domen

    Domen Misico dux Vandalorum

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    Such a quote which perfectly describes all disputes regarding the origins of Slavs:

    "There is a jigsaw puzzle which consists of 1000 pieces. We have only 100 pieces, because the remaining 900 are missing. Basing on this we want to reconstruct the entirety. The probablity of making a mistake is huge. But it doesn't mean that we shouldn't try."
     
  14. Domen

    Domen Misico dux Vandalorum

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    Demographic doubts concerning the supposed eastern origins of Slavs:

    Sudden and permanent capture of huge areas of Central and Eastern Europe, creation of new social and economic structures there - this is a process, which was not accomplished by Goths, Vandals, Huns and Magyars. How could it be done by few farmers from Pripyat Swamps?

    =======================================

    The Slavs apparently lived far to the west already at first mention / first contact. According to Procopius of Caesarea, who noted this under year 512, Germanic Heruli, after being defeated by the Lombards (ca. 505 - 508), migrated from their homeland at the middle Danube river (A) to the land of the Warini at the Warnow river (B). During that migration, according to Procopius, the Heruli were travelling "in turn through all lands of the Sclaveni and vast wildernesses". This indicates, that already in the early 500s Slavs lived in vast areas between (A) and (B) - see the map below.

    When it comes to Slavic incursions into the Byzantine Empire. According to Marcellinus Comes, already in 493 - 495 Thrace was invaded by some "unknown people". To describe them, he used the name of an already at that time non-existant tribe of the Gets (Getae). How do we know that those were Slavs? Over one hundred years later Theophylaktos Simokattes, historian of the early 7th century, explains that the Gets was a name given to Slavs at first contact (nearly all barbarian people attacking the Empire from the direction of the lower Danube river were being called like this - while the last mention of real Gets is from times of the reign of Vespasian in 1st century CE). Another Slavic invasion of Dobruja region is recorded in years 517 - 518, but here the invading people are already called the Antes. But those Slavic incursions from the direction of the Black Sea Coast were relatively small compared to those along the eastern foot of the Carpathian Mountains. The main Slavic pressure into the Danube line during the 6th century CE was by Slavic tribes migrating south between the Dniester River and the Carpathian Mountains, or even between the Pruth River and the Carpathian Mountains, so from the north-western direction, rather than from the north-eastern direction (see the map):



    Finally - when it comes to (C) on the map posted above. This (C) is the place called Anthaib by author of "Historia Langobardorum" - Paul the Deacon. The region called "Anthaib" was - according to Paul the Deacon - one of regions passed by the Langobards during their migration south. The name of this place is sometimes connected with the Slavic Antes. As you can see, this place is located exactly in the middle between (A) and (B) - point of departure and destination of the Heruli migration in the early 6th century CE, during which - according to Procopius of Caesarea - the Heruli were marching through lands inhabited by the Sclaveni. Of course the Langobard migration took place earlier than the Heruli migration:

    http://pl.wikipedia.org/wiki/Plik:Lombard_Migration.jpg



    Maybe this is the region where the Lombards intermarried with the Slavs (Antes), which is indicated by anthropological studies.
     
  15. Domen

    Domen Misico dux Vandalorum

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    But let's see what the "Strategikon of Maurice" (6th century) writes about Slavs:

    "(...) They do not keep prisoners in perpetual slavery like other peoples, but they demarcate for them a limited period of time, after which they give them a choice: they can return home after purchasing their freedom, or stay among them as free people and friends. (...)"

    "Strategikon of Maurice" is of course a 6th century (500s) source.

    Looks like Slavic tribes had a very efficient method of assimilating prisoners of war.

    In some other cases Slavic warriors murdered all men of conquered populations, while taking only women and children with them.

    This happened for example after Slavic warriors captured the town of Toperus in the Aegean Islands (Procopius, III.3.9-19).

    ==================================================

    But maybe the earliest account of the Sclaveni at the Danube, is from Pseudo-Caesarius of Nazianzus. Whether his work was in fact written by original Caesarius (331 - 368 CE) or by some later imitator (from the 5th century or from the 6th century) is uncertain. Anyway, he wrote about the Sclaveni living at the Phison (= Danubius = Danube) River. He described the Sclaveni were good hunters (they hunted foxes, rabbits, wild cats and wild boars). According to him, in the turmoil of battle as well as while hunting, they were intercommunicating without words, imitating wolf howls.
     
  16. Traitorfish

    Traitorfish The Tighnahulish Kid

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    May I just say how pleased I am that the map of Lombard migration resembles a very long beard?
     
  17. Dachs

    Dachs Hero of the Soviet Union

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    You could redraw it to make it look even more like a long beard. It's not as though it'll be any less factually accurate.
     
  18. Domen

    Domen Misico dux Vandalorum

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    That's why they are called Lang-o-bards, didn't you know? :lol:

    They both had long beards and migrated according to a route resembling a long beard.
     
  19. Domen

    Domen Misico dux Vandalorum

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    Yes. But with slash-and-burn agriculture it was impossible to feed a population with density of more than 1 person per 1 km2. In area of Slavic Poland, slash-and-burn agriculture was replaced by crop rotation (dwupolówka, two-field rotation) already in the 7th century CE (the 600s).

    BTW:

    It is possible that the original carriers of Slavic language were Ancient Neuri and Budini:

    I made a map, showing areas inhabited by Neuri and Budini (including Gelonos inside the territory of the Budini):

    The southern boundary between mixed forest / forest-steppe (to the North) and steppe (to the South) is also marked:

    My map below: http://s18.postimg.org/83ag811x5/Budini_Neuri_2.png

    Spoiler :


    Version with better visible archaeological cultures (Milograd, Chernoles, Zarubintsy, Kiev, Chernyakhovsk):

    All these cultures are at least partially overlapping each other in geographic space:

    http://postimg.org/image/ejmrid071/

    Spoiler :
     
  20. strijder20

    strijder20 Wallowing in irony

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    Even the highest growth estimate in your OP equals an annual growth rate of 1.5%. Libia's current growth rate is 5%. Given the vast amounts of land the Slavs could expand towards, it isn't all that impressive.
     

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