> where do you think the Slavs came from that settled in Slovakia?There's general agreement on that, Helene (thank you and Joe for your
kind words). Most accept that about 2,000 years ago the Slavs lived
in the area of today's Belarus, about 200 miles north-east of
Slovakia, perhaps also in eastern Poland, western Ukraine.
They were farmers, freshwater fishermen, and hunters.
They called each other Slov-en, "a person (capable) of
(comprehensible) words," people who were able to understand each
other: slov-o = "word."
By around the year 400, some of them had migrated south along the
Black Sea and settled the area all the way to today's Bulgaria and
central Greece. Others moved west (today's eastern Germany) and east
By around 500 they'd reached today's Slovakia, most, if not all from
the south turning back north. They probably didn't cross the
Carpathians directly, from the north. Rather, some would have passed
through Silesia and the Moravian lowlands, others along the Black
Sea. They probably reached the Danubian plains (today's Hungary)
along those routes, and expanded north into Slovakia from there.
It wasn't a single massive march (i.e., not like the Huns earlier, or
the Ugrics later). It must have been a gradual expansion: a group of
younger people would establish a new village a few dozen miles
upstream, for example, the next generation would do the same. In
other instances, larger groups of people must have covered longer
distances in one stretch.
So, by around 500-600, the Slavs were in much of Central Europe and
to the south-east and east and north-east of it. (Thank you, Ron,
for posting about the Austrian maps: I copied and used them after you
mentioned them the first time.)
There's a recent dissenting view. However, I wouldn't hold my breath
for specialists to look into it.
votruba "at" pitt "dot" edu