The Illyrians

The Illyrians

by John Wilkes
     
 

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For more than a thousand years before the arrival of the Slavs in the sixth century AD, the lands between the Adriatic and the river Danube, now Yugoslavia and Albania, were the home of the peoples known to the ancient world as Illyrians. This book, now available in paperback, draws upon the considerable archaeological evidence that has become available since the

Overview

For more than a thousand years before the arrival of the Slavs in the sixth century AD, the lands between the Adriatic and the river Danube, now Yugoslavia and Albania, were the home of the peoples known to the ancient world as Illyrians. This book, now available in paperback, draws upon the considerable archaeological evidence that has become available since the Second World War to provide an account of the origins, culture, history and legacy of the Illyrians.

John Wilkes describes the geography of Illyria and surveys the region in the prehistoric, Greek, Roman and medieval periods. He discusses Illyrian art, material, culture, religion and customs. A chapter examines the Illyrian language, of which little trace survives, and its connection with other Indo-European languages. Professor Wilkes also scrutinizes the linguistic evidence for the Illyrians' relatedness to other peoples - Thracian, Italic, Greek and Celtic. He concludes with a discussion of a possible survival of an Illyrian native culture in the Roman and Byzantine periods.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"This is splendid scholarship from which even mature scholars can learn much." Choice
Library Journal
Wilkes (archaeology, Univ. of London) has tackled the difficult task of presenting a people whose scarce artifacts lack the grandeur of other ancient societies and whose ethnic origins and relationships are still a matter for scholarly debate. The first chapter, a history of Illyrian studies, explains how present-day rivalries among Balkan ethnic groups have turned research into a matter of national pride, with some resultant distortion of facts. Relying on archaeological evidence and classical texts, the author then surveys the history (through late Roman times), material culture, religion, and customs of the tribes residing between the Adriatic and the Danube whom Greeks and Romans called Illyrians. Despite constant references to the region's geography, Wilkes provides only one small map to assist the reader; other titles in this series make much greater use of maps to indicate the locations or movements of peoples and pinpoint sites being discussed. Still, this is recommended for larger public and all academic libraries as a solid survey of the subject.--Edward K. Werner, St. Lucie Cty. Lib. System, Ft. Pierce, Fla.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780631198079
Publisher:
Wiley
Publication date:
01/16/1996
Series:
Peoples of Europe Series
Pages:
376
Sales rank:
835,656
Product dimensions:
7.87(w) x 9.84(h) x 0.59(d)

Meet the Author

John Wilkes has conducted excavations on Hadrian's Wall and in Scotland. He has travelled extensively in Eastern Europe, and is currently excavating Sparta.

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