Who were the first Slavs


Status: 06/15/2017 11:59 a.m. | archive
A Slavic settlement with a ring wall was reconstructed in Groß Raden in Mecklenburg.

From Mecklenburg to Wendland and Holstein: Slavs once lived in many places in northern Germany. Museums with the typical ring walls are a reminder of this. The term Slavs stands for a group of tribes and peoples from Eastern Europe. What they had in common was a common language family that set them apart from the other two major language groups in Europe: Germanic and Romance. The origin of the Slavs may have been in what is now Ukraine. From there, Slavic tribes migrated westwards from the 6th century - initially to the Balkans. In the 7th century they reached areas of Germanic tribes and reached the Elbe.

Over the Wendland to the coast

Around a hundred years later there were settlements of Slavic tribes in Wendland and on the Bay of Kiel. The Rundling villages in Wendland can be traced back to these population groups. The tribes of the Abodrites settled in Mecklenburg and are considered by many to be the origin of the Mecklenburg royal houses. While the Slavic settlements initially lived from agriculture and cattle breeding, their inhabitants also developed craft techniques and traded in the 8th and 9th centuries. To defend their communities against external enemies, the Slavs built ring walls, which were later partly destroyed and partly used as a starting point for larger villages and towns. A further common cultural development of the Slavs apparently stood in the way of the great spatial expansion. Rather, regional influences shaped the lives of the immigrants.

The Sorbs - a national minority

The most famous Slavic people in Germany today, who still cultivate their culture, are the Sorbs. They live in Lausitz in eastern Brandenburg and southern Saxony. In Germany, the Sorbs - like the Danish minority - are recognized as a national minority with around 60,000 people.

Groß Raden: sanctuary of the Slavs

1,000 years ago Groß Raden in Mecklenburg was a temple of the Slavs. Today visitors can relive the everyday life of a settlement from the early Middle Ages. more


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North Tour | 05/27/2017 | 6:00 p.m.