The Other Europe: Eastern Europe to 1945

By E. Garrison Walters | Go to book overview
Save to active project

History to 1800

EASTERN EUROPE is an area of considerable ethnic diversity. The population of some one-hundred million people is composed of fourteen major nationality groups and nine smaller ones. The absence of natural features that presented serious barriers to population movements, together with the historical predominance of multinational political organizations, ensured that the various ethnic groups were mixed together over much of Eastern Europe. The savagery of the Second World War and the political decisions that followed the end of the fighting did much to simplify the ethnic map, but considerable complexity remains.

Since it is almost impossible to describe the peoples of Eastern Europe without also discussing the historical events that formed them, this section will survey the period from the beginning of history to about the year 1400. By the start of the fifteenth century, the last of the presentday nationalities was firmly established in the area, and the history of Eastern Europe began to be integrated into European history as a whole.

The first historical records about Eastern Europe were provided by Greek chroniclers. 1 In addition to their own Hellenic tribe, these writers recorded the presence of six other groups: Germanic, Celtic, Scythian, Illyrian, Thracian, and Dacian. Of this group, contact with the first three was sporadic. The Germanic tribes were weak and scattered in early times, and their usual habitat was far to the north of the Greek world. The Celts, who appear to have ruled once over most of Europe, were in decline at the beginning of recorded history, with their remaining strength shifting westward. Evidence of their earlier importance in Eastern Europe is to be found in the name of Bohemia, which is of Celtic origin.

The Scythians, who did not inhabit Eastern Europe proper, were loosely settled in the steppe land of southern Ukraine (from about the eighth to the first centuries B.C.). A semi-nomadic people, the Scythians


Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
Loading One moment ...
Project items
Cite this page

Cited page

Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
The Other Europe: Eastern Europe to 1945


Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

While we understand printed pages are helpful to our users, this limitation is necessary to help protect our publishers' copyrighted material and prevent its unlawful distribution. We are sorry for any inconvenience.
Full screen
/ 432

matching results for page

Cited passage

Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.

Are you sure you want to delete this highlight?