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Carniola, Patria Sclavorum

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Chapter Summary

This chapter illuminates the virtually unknown early medieval history of the Carniola in the Upper Sava basin. It draws more attention to the following: the wording Carniola /. . ./ quod vulgo Creina marcha appelantur in the first charter from June 973 perfectly illustrates the double origin of the name. Describing events that probably occurred around 738, Paul the Deacon reports that Ratchis, the Lombard duke of Cividale del Friuli, invaded Carniolam Sclavorum patriam with his army. Two things are important in this report: firstly, Carniola is explicitly referred to as a Slavic homeland, although the territory was indisputably under Avar control until the 790s and was located in Avaria, which extended as far as Italy; secondly, Paul the Deacon clearly distinguishes two Slavic communities in the Eastern Alps, which both bordered on Friuli: The first is Carniola, Sclavorum patria, and the second Sclavorum gens in /?/ Carantanum.

Keywords: Carantanum; Carniolam Sclavorum patriam; early medieval history; Upper Sava basin



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