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The Migration of The Early Germanic People

By Gambargin
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This map is an attempt at showing projecting the region of the original homeland of the Germanic people (circa prior to 750 BCE) and their later migration that cultivated in the frontiers set by the Roman Empire during emperor's Hadrian rule (AD 117 – 138). The tribes listed are those which were recorded in the early 2nd century, and thus, may not be accurate :P.

Prior to the 750 BCE, the nordic bronze age was a relatively stable culture that flourished in the European plains of Denmark and southern Scandinavia, a region where the original Germanic people most likely originated. It was suggested that due to the climatic change between 850 BCE to 760 BCE in Scandinavia, as well as the latter drastic change in 650 BCE (which coincides with the pre-roman Iron Age), that the Germanic tribes began migrating towards Eastern Germany and further toward the Vistula.

By approximately 250 BCE additional expansion further southwards into central Europe took place and five general groups of Germanic people emerged, each employing distinct linguistic dialects but sharing similar language innovations — they are distinguished from one another as: North Germanic in southern Scandinavia; North Sea Germanic in the regions along the North Sea and in the Jutland peninsula NW Europe, which forms the mainland of Denmark together with the north German state of Schleswig-Holstein; Rhine-Weser Germanic along the middle Rhine and Weser river (which empties into the North Sea near Bremerhaven); Elbe Germanic spoken by the people living directly along the middle Elbe river; and East Germanic between the middle of the Oder and the Vistula rivers

Predictably enough, by the late 2nd BCE, Roman accounts reported these migrating Germanic people entered into what the Romans considered their territory which triggered armed confrontation, some of which, are pretty destructive to both sides. One of the earliest conflict recorded was the Teutones-Cimbri invasion (113–101 BC) that managed to destroyed multiple Roman legions, which prompted a drastic reform of the Roman Army under Marius that helped Rome to defeat these Celto-Germanic tribes that threatened the Roman Republic. Later, Julius Caesar recorded some of the Germanic Suebis who helped some of the Gallic tribes in fighting against Rome, as well as others whom he came in contact when crossing the Rhine during his Gallic campaign. By the early 1st century AD, the migrating Germanic tribes had face the Romans many times and some oven joined the Roman Empire as auxillaries to fill the ranks of the Roman Imperial Army. While this helped to aid the Roman war effort, in most cases, the Germanic people who served the romans learned their tactics and obtained their weapons, both of which, were often used against the Roman themselves. This can be seen during the life time of Ermenaz (18/17 BC – AD 21), or Arminius as he was known to the Romans. Arminus hailed from the tribe of Cherusci who served the Roman army as auxiliaries; when opportunity was presented, he instigated a rebellion and led an ambushed that destroyed three Roman legions at the battle of Teutoburg forest.

However, not all the Germanic tribes were violent to the Romans. Those who lived along the frontiers enjoyed wealthy trade with the Roman Empire and in return, they learned to settle down and lived like the Romans, mimicking their ways, unlike their bretheren in the east who were more pastorial and still considered "Barbaric". On the other hand, those who were hostile to the Romans made a rather destructive impact, such as that caused during the Marcomannic war (166 - 180 AD) that saw Marcomannic-Quadians Germanic warriors (as well as their Lazyges Sarmatian allies) invading the heartland of Italy. At the end of the 2nd century AD and the beginning of the 3rd century AD, many of these Germanic tribes were beggining to become more courageus in standing up against the Roman empire. Together, with the pressure exerted from growing population and the later arrival of the Huns, Europe enters into the true era of Voelkerwanderung, or the Migration era that spelled the end of the Roman Empire.

Created as part of Gambargin's Monthly Historical Sketch Series that aims to portray various cultures across the globe in the context of history, as a spin-off from the Historically Wrong Sketch Series :) (Smile)

Part 10
: Migration Era and The Fall of Rome

Migration Era and The Fall of Rome by Gambargin

Part 8:
Voelkerwanderung - The Migration Era

Voelkerwanderung - The Migration Era by Gambargin
Image size
4182x2772px 14.52 MB
© 2016 - 2021 Gambargin
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Arminius1871's avatar
Wow this is so epic! I showed your pic some friends, we all think it´s damned beautiful how you draw :)

Is this your first map?
Gambargin's avatar
Thank you, glad you and your friend like it!

Not my first map, but this is an experimental ones :D
webkilla's avatar
love this kind of stuff
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