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This article refers to the ancient inhabitants of the Balkans. For other uses of this word, see Illyria (disambiguation).

Illyrians has come to refer to a broad, ill-defined "Indo-European"[1] group of peoples who inhabited the western Balkans (Illyria, roughly from northern Epirus to southern Pannonia) and even perhaps parts of Southern Italy in classical times into the Common era, and spoke Illyrian languages. It is, however, less believable that in reality there was such a broad group that self-identified as Illyrians, and some argue that the ethnonym Illyrioi came to be applied to this large group of peoples by the ancient Greeks, Illyrioi having perhaps originally designated only a single people that came to be widely known to the Greeks due to proximity. Indeed, such a people known as the Illyrioi are supposed to have occupied a small and well-defined part of the south Adriatic coast, around Skadar Lake astride the modern frontier between Albania and Montenegro. The name may then have expanded and come to be applied to ethnically different peoples such as the Liburni, Delmatae, Iapodes, or the Pannonii. Image File history File links Unbalanced_scales. ... Illyria or Illyrian may refer to: Illyria, a region in southern Europe inhabited in antiquity by the Illyrians, who were conquered by the Romans in the third and second centuries B.C., forming the Roman province of Illyricum. ... Proto-Indo-European Indo-European studies Indo-European is originally a linguistic term, referring to the Indo-European language family. ... This article or section does not adequately cite its references or sources. ... Illyria Illyria (disambiguation) Illyria (Anc. ... Epirus (Greek Ήπειρος, Ípiros) is a geographical and historical region of the Balkan peninsula in south-eastern Europe. ... Position of the Roman province of Pannonia Pannonia is an ancient country bounded north and east by the Danube, conterminous westward with Noricum and upper Italy, and southward with Dalmatia and upper Moesia. ... Era Vulgaris redirects here. ... The Illyrian languages are a group of Indo-European languages that were spoken in the western part of the Balkans in former times by ethnic groups identified as Illyrians: Delmatae, Pannoni, Illyrioi, Autariates, Taulanti (see List of Illyrian tribes). ... An ethnonym (Gk. ... Skadar Lake (Serbian, Skadarsko jezero in Serbian), Lake Shkodër or Lake Shkodra (Albanian versions, Liqeni i Shkodrës in Albanian), also sometimes called Lake Scutari (Italian version Lago di Scutari in Italian), is a lake on the border of Serbia and Montenegro with Albania, the largest lake in the... Anthem Oj, svijetla majska zoro Oh, Bright Dawn of May Montenegro() on the European continent()  —  [] Capital (and largest city) Podgorica Official languages Serbian (Ijekavian dialect)1 Government Republic  -  President Filip Vujanović  -  Prime Minister Željko Å turanović Independence due to the dissolution of Serbia and Montenegro   -  Declared June 3, 2006   -  Recognized June...

In Greek mythology, Ιλλυριός (Illyrios, Illyrius) was the son of Cadmus and Harmonia who eventually ruled Illyria and become the eponymous ancestor of the whole Illyrian people. [2] Pliny in his Natural History applies a stricter usage of the term Illyrii, when speaking of Illyrii proprie dicti ("Illyrians properly so-called")[3] among the native communities in the south of Roman Dalmatia. A passage from Appian's Illyrike is representative of the broader usage of the term: The bust of Zeus found at Otricoli (Sala Rotonda, Museo Pio-Clementino, Vatican) Greek mythology is the body of stories belonging to the ancient Greeks concerning their gods and heroes, the nature of the world and the origins and significance of their own cult and ritual practices. ... Illyrius (Greek: Ιλλυριός) is a name known in different stories found in ancient Greek mythology. ... Cadmus Sowing the Dragons teeth, by Maxfield Parrish, 1908 Caddmus, or Kadmos (Greek: Κάδμος), in Greek mythology, was the son of the king of Phoenicia (Modern day Lebanon) and brother of Europa. ... Harmonia may refer to: Harmonia Music, a Cambridgeshire-based youth music organisation Harmonia (mythology), the Greek goddess of harmony and concord Harmonia, a genus of lady beetles Harmonia (band), a 1970s German band Harmonia Ensemble, an Italian chamber music group Harmonia Sacra, a music textbook Harmonia research project, building programming... An eponym is a person (real or fictitious) whose name has become identified with a particular object or activity. ... Pliny the Elder: an imaginative 19th Century portrait. ... This is the history of Dalmatia. ... Appian (c. ...

The Greeks call those people Illyrian who dwell beyond Macedonia and Thrace, from Chaonia and Thesprotia to the river Danube. —Appian, Illyrike 1


Thraciae veteris typvs. ... Chaonia, Chaon, was the name of an ancient tribe located in modern-day Albania and Greece. ... Thesprotia (Greek: Θεσπρωτία) is one of the prefectures of Greece. ... The Danube (ancient Danuvius, Iranian *dānu, meaning river or stream, ancient Greek Istros) is the longest river in the European Union and Europes second longest river. ...


The ethnogenesis of the Illyrians remains a problem for prehistorians. Among those who take the meaningfulness of the terms "people" or "tribe" for granted, the consensus of the "primordialists"—[4] those who take ethnicity for a basic organizing principle from times of old— is that the ethnic ancestors of the Illyrians, labelled "Proto-Illyrians", branched off from the main linguistic Proto-Indo-European trunk before the Iron Age. Current theories of Illyrian origin are based on ancient remnants of material culture found in the area, but archaeological remains alone have so far proven insufficient for a definite answer to the question of the Illyrian ethnogenesis. Ethnogenesis is the process by which a group of human beings comes to be understood or to understand themselves as ethnically distinct from the wider social landscape from which their grouping emerges. ... Proto-Indo-European (PIE) may refer to: Proto-Indo-European language the hypothetical common ancestor of the Indo-European languages Proto-Indo-Europeans, the hypothetical speakers of the reconstructed Proto-Indo-European language Proto-Indo-European roots, A list of reconstructed Proto-Indo-European roots Categories: | ... Iron Age Axe found on Gotland This article is about the archaeological period known as the Iron Age, for the mythological Iron Age see Iron Age (mythology). ... In archaeology, culture refers to either of two separate but allied concepts: A material culture comprises physical objects from the past, the study of which is the basis of the discipline. ...

When the Proto-Illyrians became a distinct group remains unclear, for example. The process may have begun as early as the Eneolithic (the latest phase of the Stone Age). It is hypothesized (Wilkes, pg. 33) that in the Eneolithic period invading Indo-European groups mingled with indigenous pre-Indo-European groups, resulting in the formation of the principal tribal groups, based upon their uses of the Paleo-Balkan languages: Illyrians, Thracians, and others. The Chalcolithic (Greek khalkos + lithos copper stone) period, also known as the Eneolithic or Copper Age period, is a phase in the development of human culture in which the use of early metal tools appeared alongside the use of stone tools. ... Stone Age fishing hook. ... Map showing the Neolithic expansions from the 7th to the 5th millennium BC Europe in ca. ... The Paleo-Balkan languages were the Indo-European languages which were spoken in the Balkans in ancient times: Dacian language Thracian language Illyrian language Paionian language Ancient Macedonian language The only remnant of them is Albanian, but it is still disputed which language was its ancestor. ... Thracian peltast, fifth to fourth century BC. Thracian Roman era heros (Sabazius) stele. ...

A. Benac and B. Čović, archaeologists from Sarajevo, hypothesize that during the Bronze Age there took place a progressive 'Illyrianization' of peoples dwelling in the lands between the Adriatic and the Sava river. Map of Bosnia and Herzegovina (Sarajevo) Coordinates: Country Bosnia and Herzegovina Entity Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina Canton Sarajevo Canton Government  - Mayor Semiha Borovac (SDA) Area [1]  - City 141. ...

In contrast to an ethnogenesis in the Balkans, another (older) school of scholars maintains the theory of an Illyrian invasion, which involves a great movement of Illyrian tribes from the lowlands of central Europe (modern Hungary), towards South Eastern Europe and the Balkan peninsula. The Illyrian invasion is estimated to have occurred around the 13th century BC. The numerous Thracian names in Illyria have led many scholars to believe that the region was originally inhabited by Thracians, who were either deplaced or submitted to the Illyrian invaders. The Illyrians were most likely in turn pushed eastwards by Celtic or Germanic tribes from the northwest. According to this theory, the Illyrian invasion most likely caused the Thracian expansion to the east, the movement of the Greeks to the south and the Phrygian migration from Thrace into central Asia Minor. The last event may have created the conditions for the Achaean Greeks to colonise the coast of Asia Minor and the Dorians to start their invasion. The Thracians were an Indo-European people, inhabitants of Thrace and adjacent lands (present-day Bulgaria, Romania, northeastern Greece, European Turkey and northwestern asiatic Turkey, eastern Serbia and parts of Republic of Macedonia). ... Illyria Illyria (disambiguation) Illyria (Anc. ... This article is about the European people. ... Phrygian can refer to: A person from Phrygia The Phrygian language This is a disambiguation page — a navigational aid which lists other pages that might otherwise share the same title. ... Anatolia (Greek: ανατολη anatole, rising of the sun or East; compare Orient and Levant, by popular etymology Turkish Anadolu to ana mother and dolu filled), also called by the Latin name of Asia Minor, is a region of Southwest Asia which corresponds today to... Anatolia (Greek: ανατολη anatole, rising of the sun or East; compare Orient and Levant, by popular etymology Turkish Anadolu to ana mother and dolu filled), also called by the Latin name of Asia Minor, is a region of Southwest Asia which corresponds today to... This article or section should be merged with Dorian The Dorian invasion is one of the theories advanced to explain the decline of the Mycenaean civilization in ancient Greece. ...

Bronze Age remains

In the western Balkans, there are few remains to connect with bronze-using Proto-Illyrians, except in western Serbia and eastern Bosnia. Moreover, with the notable exception of Pod near Bugojno in the upper valley of the Vrbas River, nothing is known of their settlements. Some hill settlements have been identified in western Serbia but the main evidence comes from cemeteries, consisting usually of a small number of burial mounds (tumuli). Assorted ancient Bronze castings found as part of a cache, probably intended for recycling. ... Anthem Serbia() on the European continent() Capital (and largest city) Belgrade Official languages Serbian language 1 Recognised regional languages Hungarian, Croatian, Slovak, Romanian, Rusyn 2 Albanian, English 3 Government Parliamentary republic  -  President Boris Tadić  -  Prime Minister Vojislav KoÅ¡tunica Establishment  -  Formation 8th century   -  First unified state c. ... Approximate borders between Bosnia (marked light) and Herzegovina (marked dark) Historically and geographically, the region known as Bosnia (natively Bosna/Босна) comprises the northern part of the present-day country of Bosnia and Herzegovina. ... // Look up pod in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... Bugojno (Serbian: Бугојно) is a town in central Bosnia and Herzegovina. ... The Vrbas (Serbian Cyrillic: Врбас) is a major river in western Bosnia and Herzegovina. ... Alternate meanings of barrow: see Barrow-in-Furness for the town of Barrow in Cumbria, England; also Barrow, Alaska in the U.S.; also River Barrow in Ireland. ...

In eastern Bosnia in the cemeteries of Belotić and Bela Crkva, the rites of inhumation and cremation are attested, with skeletons in stone cists and cremations in urns. Metal implements appear here side-by-side with stone implements. Most of the remains belong to the fully developed Middle Bronze Age. Bela Crkva (Бела Црква) is a town and municipality in South Banat District of Vojvodina, Serbia and Montenegro. ... The crematorium at Haycombe Cemetery, Bath, England. ... A cist (IPA ) is a small stone-built coffin-like box used to hold the bodies of the dead (notably during the Bronze Age in Britain). ... Maya funerary urn For the computing term, see URN. An urn is a vase, ordinarily covered and without handles that usually has a narrowed neck above a footed pedestal. ...

Iron Age remains

Illyrian peoples in the classical period

The Illyrians formed several kingdoms in the central Balkans, and the first known Illyrian king was Bardyllis. Illyrian kingdoms were often in war with ancient Macedonia, and the Illyrian pirates were also a large danger for the neighbouring peoples. This article or section does not adequately cite its references or sources. ... Bardyllis (also attested as Bardylis) was an Illyrian king who ruled from 385 to 358 BC and founded the Bardyllis Dynasty. ...

The Roman conquest

After the Roman conquest, most of the Illyrians were romanised, i.e. adopted Latin language and culture. The Illyrian city of Sirmium became one of the four capital cities of the Roman Empire, and several Roman emperors were native Illyrians by origin (see: Illyrian emperors). Latin is an ancient Indo-European language originally spoken in Latium, the region immediately surrounding Rome. ... Ruins of Sirmium Julian solidus, ca. ... Motto Senatus Populusque Romanus (SPQR) The Roman Empire. ... This is a list of Roman Emperors with the dates they controlled the Roman Empire. ... Several emperors of the Roman Empire were of Illyrian origin, or partly or possibly of Illyrian origin. ...

The fate of the Illyrians

The Illyrians are mentioned for the last time in Miracula Sancti Demetri (7th century AD).[5] Some scholars conclude that the modern Albanians are the descendants of the remnant Illyrians and that the Albanian language derives from the Illyrian language[6][7]. Others dispute this, claiming that Albanian derives from a dialect of the now-extinct Thracian language[6]. Some others believes the majority of the illyrians were conquered and/ or assimilated by the invading Slavic tribes after the fall of the Roman Empire[8], while others claim that the Illyrians were assimilated by the Serbs and Croats when they arrived in the Balkans, and that Albanian cannot derive from Illyrian due to according to them Illyrian being a centum language and Albanian being a satem one.[9][10] Albanian ( IPA ) is a language spoken by about 6 million people, primarily in Albania, Kosovo, but also in other parts of the Balkans with an Albanian population (parts of the Republic of Macedonia, and some parts in Montenegro and Serbia), along the eastern coast of Italy and in Sicily, as... The Illyrian languages are a group of Indo-European languages that were spoken in the western part of the Balkans in pre-Roman times. ... The Thracian language was the Indo-European language spoken in ancient times by the Thracians in South-Eastern Europe. ... Slav, Slavic or Slavonic can refer to: Slavic peoples Slavic languages Slavic mythology Church Slavonic language Old Church Slavonic language Slav, a former Jewish settlement in the Gaza Strip. ... Motto Senatus Populusque Romanus (SPQR) The Roman Empire. ... Centum is the collective name for the branches of Indo-European in which the so-called Satem shift, the change of palato-velar *k^, *g^, *g^h into fricatives or affricates, did not take place, and the palato-velar consonants merged with plain velars (*k, *g, *gh). ... Diachronic map showing the Centum (blue) and Satem (red) areals. ...

Later usage of the term

The term Illyrians was revived in the Habsburg Monarchy to designate South Slavs (Serbs, Croats, Slovenes, etc), because of the opinion that they were descendants of the slavicized Illyrians. When Napoleon conquered part of the South Slavic lands in the beginning of the 19th century, these areas were named Illyrian provinces. Under the influence of Romantic nationalism, a self-identified "Illyrian movement" (Croatian: Ilirski pokret) in the form of a Croatian national revival, opened a literary and journalistic campaign that was initiated by a group of young Croatian intellectuals during the years of 1835-1849.[11] This movement, under the banner of Illlyrism, aimed to create a Croatian national establishment under Austro-Hungarian rule, through linguistic and ethnic unity among South Slavs. It was repressed by the Habsburg authorities after the failed Revolutions of 1848. The Habsburg Monarchy, often called Austrian Monarchy or simply Austria, are the territories ruled by the Austrian branch of the House of Habsburg, and then by the successor House of Habsburg-Lorraine, between 1526 and 1867/1918. ... Countries inhabited by South Slavs (in black) Distribution of Slavic peoples by language The South Slavs are a southern branch of the Slavic peoples that live in the Balkans, the southern Pannonian Plain and the eastern Alps. ... Languages Serbian Religions Predominantly Serbian Orthodox Christian Related ethnic groups Other Slavic peoples, especially South Slavs See Cognate peoples below Serbs (Serbian: Срби or Srbi) are a South Slavic people who live mainly in Serbia, Montenegro, Bosnia-Herzegovina, and, to a lesser extent, in Croatia. ... Croats (Croatian: Hrvati) are a South Slavic people mostly living in Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina and nearby countries. ... For other uses, see Napoleon (disambiguation). ... Illyrian Provinces (French Provinces illyriennes) were formed in 1809 when Austria ceded with the Treaty of Schoenbrunn its lands Carinthia, Carniola, Croatia southwest of the river Sava, Gorizia and Trieste to France after the defeat at the Battle of Wagram. ... This article does not cite its references or sources. ... Vlaho Bukovac: Hrvatski narodni preporod, Zastor u HNK Zagreb Illyrian movement (Croatian/Serbian: Ilirski pokret), also Croatian national revival (Hrvatski narodni preporod), was a nationalistic campaign initiated by a group of young Croatian intellectuals during the first half of 19th century, around the years of 1835-1849 (there is some... The European Revolutions of 1848, known in some countries as the Spring of Nations or the Year of Revolution, were a revolutionary wave which erupted in Sicily and then, further triggered by the revolutions of 1848 in France, soon spread to the rest of Europe and as far afield as...

See also

Illyria Illyria (disambiguation) Illyria (Anc. ... This is a list of Illyrian tribes. ... This is a list of Illyrians. ... Illyrian gods are the objects of worship of the Illyrians, an Indo-European people in ancient history who maintained a polytheistic religion. ... The Illyrian languages are a group of Indo-European languages that were spoken in the western part of the Balkans in former times by ethnic groups identified as Illyrians: Delmatae, Pannoni, Illyrioi, Autariates, Taulanti (see List of Illyrian tribes). ... The Veneti (Enetoi in Greek) were an ancient people who inhabited todays northeastern Italy, in a area comprised in the modern-day region Veneto. ... The Liburnians (or Liburni, Gk. ... The Races of Europe is the title of two books related to the anthropology of Europeans. ... Queen Teuta (also Queen Tefta), was an Illyrian queen and regent who reigned approximately from 231 BC to 228 BC. After the death of Agron (250 BC?-231 BC) who established the first kingdom of Illyria, extending from Dalmatia on the north to the Aous (Vjosa river) River on the...


  1. ^ "Indo-European" in this context simply means "speaking Indo-European languages".
  2. ^ Apollodorus, III, 61
  3. ^ By implication, a broader usage was current when Pliny wrote.
  4. ^ Anthony D. Smith, The Ethnic Origins of Nations (Oxford, 1966) pp 6ff, coined the term to separate these thinkers from those who view ethnicity as a situational construct, the product of history, rather than a cause, influenced by a variety of political, economic, and cultural factors. The issue of ethnicity remains intractable even millennia later: see Walter Pohl, "Conceptions of Ethnicity in Early Medieval Studies" Debating the Middle Ages: Issues and Readings, ed. Lester K. Little and Barbara H. Rosenwein, (Blackwell), 1998, pp 13-24.(On-line text).
  5. ^ The compilation Miracula Sancti Demetri contains the legendary acta of Saint Demetrius of Thessaloniki.
  6. ^ a b http://www.britannica.com/eb/article-42640/Albania
  7. ^ Malcolm, Noel. "Kosovo, a short history", 1998, ISBN 0-814-75598-4.
  8. ^ The Balkans: from Constantinople to Communcism. Denis P Hupchik
  9. ^ Duridanov, Ivan. "The Language of the Thracians"
  10. ^ Centum and Satem languages
  11. ^ Elinor Murray Despalatovic, Ljudevit Gaj and the Illyrian Movement New York: East European Quarterly, 1975.

The Indo-European languages comprise a family of several hundred related languages and dialects [1], including most of the major languages of Europe, as well as many spoken in the Indian subcontinent (South Asia), the Iranian plateau (Southwest Asia), and Central Asia. ... Apollodorus was a common name in ancient Greece. ... Look up Acta in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... 12th-century mosaic depicting St Demetrios, from the Golden-Roofed Monastery in Kiev. ...


  • A. Benac, 'Vorillyrier, Protoillyrier und Urillyrier' in: A. Benac(ed.) Symposium sur la delimitation Territoriale et chronologique des Illyriens a l’epoque Prehistorique, Sarajevo 1964, 59-94
  • J. J. Wilkes, The Illyrians. Blackwell Publishing, 1992, ISBN 0-631-14671-7.
  • Dragoslav Srejovic, Les Illyriens et Thraces, 1997.
  • Alexander Stipčević, Iliri (2nd edition), Zagreb 1989 (also published in Italian as Gli Illiri)
  • P. Cabanes, Les Illyriens de Bardylis à Genthios: IVe – IIe siècles avant J. – C., Paris 1988 (ethnic Illyrians and Illyrian kingdom up to 168 BC)

External links

  • Origins

  Results from FactBites:
Illyrian Bt. (299 words)
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