Komatina, Predrag. Slavic Ethnonyms in the Bavarian Geographer: A Historiographic Linguistic Analysis

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For citation: Komatina, Predrag. Slavic Ethnonyms in the Bavarian Geographer: A Historiographic Linguistic Analysis, in Studia Slavica et Balcanica Petropolitana. 2020. № 1. Pp. 106-137. DOI https://doi.org/10.21638/spbu19.2020.106.

Title of the article  Slavic Ethnonyms in the Bavarian Geographer: A Historiographic Linguistic Analysis

Komatina, Predrag ― PhD in History, Institute for Byzantine Studies, Serbian Academy if Sciences and Arts, Belgrade, Serbia, e-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., OrcID 0000-0003-2469-2278, Scopus ID 56769854600

The paper was translated by Alimov, Denis Evgenyevich — PhD in History, St. Petersburg State University, St. Petersburg, Russia, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., OrcID 0000-0002-4733-4150 

In the section  Miscellanea / Miscellanea
Year 2020 Issue  1 Pages  106-137
Type of article RAR Index UDK; BBK 930.85; 63.5 Index DOI  https://doi.org/10.21638/spbu19.2020.106

The article is part of the project «Tradition, innovation and identity in the Byzantine World» (no. 177032), supported by the Ministry of Education, Science and Technological Development of the Republic of Serbia.

The so-called Bavarian Geographer describes the ethnopolitical situation at the end of the first half of the 9th century in a wide area of Central and Eastern Europe. The names of those tribes are mostly recorded in their Germanic forms, as they were known at the time among the Franks. Those names are in their Slavic forms basically authentic, quallificative in their nature, created according to certain collective characteristics that their bearers attributed to themselves. Thus we can assume that those tribes brought those names from their ancient homeland when they settled the Elbe region, and that could be corroborated with the fact that some of those tribal names appear also among the South Slavs (Obodrites, Serbs, Milingoi = Milcians?). In the area of ​​the ancient Slavic homeland itself, in the basin of the upper Oder, Warta, Vistula, West Bug and Upper Dniester, it lists a number of tribes that can be divided into two groups. The first would include those who still kept their old names and ancient tribal identities The second group includes tribes, which, judging by their names, were new, territorially based tribes, composed of members of various tribes that during the migrations stayed at their homes. Based on the ethnonymic material from the treatise of the Bavarian Geograph and other early medieval sources, one important conclusion can be reached about the Slavic ethnonymy — in naming of the tribes, peoples and communities, the Slavs held much more to the essence than form. The names derived from the same root occur often with different suffixes, and sometimes for one and the same tribe the names are derived from another, but semantically identical root. 

Keywords Bavarian Geographer, Slavs, Slavic tribes, Slavic ethnonyms, ethnic categories, ethnicity 
Full text version of the article. Article language Russian
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Tags: Source studies, identity, ethnicity, Slavic «tribes», Slavic Ethnonyms, Slavs, Slavic identity, MISCELLANEA / MISCELLANEA, historical source, Area studies, Communication, Bavarian Geographer, ethnonyms, ethnic categories

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