Map of West-Central Europe from 919 to 1125, by William R. Shepherd. The territory of the Polabian Slavs is outlined in purple near the top, with the Obotrite and Veleti groups in white and the Sorb groups colored purple.
West Slav tribes in the 9th and 10th centuries
Polabian Slavic Tribes, green is uninhabited forested area
Reconstruction of the Slavic temple in Groß Raden
Reconstruction of Slavic gord in Groß Raden, Mecklenburg
West Slavic languages
Reconstruction of Slavic gord in Lusatia - Raddusch, Vetschau
The Limes Saxoniae border between the Saxons and the Lechites Obotrites, established about 810 in present-day Schleswig-Holstein
Primary source about history of Polabian Slavs - Chronica Slavorum of Helmold from the 12th century translated to Polish language by Jan Papłoński in 1862.
Danish Bishop Absalon destroys the idol of Slavic god Svantevit at Arkona in a painting by Laurits Tuxen.
Reconstruction of Slavic gord near Neubrandenburg
Reconstruction of Slavic gord at the Burgwallinsel (Gord Island)

Polabian Slavs (Połobske słowjany, Słowianie połabscy, ) is a collective term applied to a number of Lechitic (West Slavic) tribes who lived along the Elbe river in what is today eastern Germany.

- Polabian Slavs

907). The Sorbs and other Polabian Slavs like Obodrites and Veleti came under the domination of the Holy Roman Empire after the Wendish Crusade in the Middle Ages and had been strongly Germanized by Germans at the end of the 19th century.

- West Slavs

8 related topics

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Slavic tribes from the 7th to 9th centuries AD in Europe

Wends

Historical name for Slavs living near Germanic settlement areas.

Historical name for Slavs living near Germanic settlement areas.

Slavic tribes from the 7th to 9th centuries AD in Europe
The Limes Saxoniae border between the Saxons and the Lechites Obotrites, established about 810 in present-day Schleswig-Holstein
Germaniae veteris typus (Old Germany). Aestui, Venedi, Gythones and Ingaevones are visible on the right upper corner of the map. Edited by Willem and Joan Blaeu, 1645.
The interior of the original Lutheran Church the Wends established in Serbin, Texas, St. Paul.
This 1940 ethnic map by an Austrian scholar uses the term Windische for the population of Styria, in parallel to Slowenen elsewhere in Slovenia

In German-speaking Europe during the Middle Ages, the term "Wends" was interpreted as synonymous with "Slavs" and sporadically used in literature to refer to West Slavs and South Slavs living within the Holy Roman Empire.

For the medieval Scandinavians, the term Wends (Vender) meant Slavs living near the southern shore of the Baltic Sea (Vendland), and the term was therefore used to refer to Polabian Slavs like the Obotrites, Rugian Slavs, Veleti/Lutici and Pomeranian tribes.

Lutici

Lutician federation (983–1056/57)
Conrad II
Henry IV
The expedition of Bolesław III of Poland to Szczecin and east of the Oder to subjugate the Slavic Lutici, in 1121.
Otto of Bamberg, Pomeranian Dukes' Castle, Szczecin (Stettin)
Information board near the lake Lieps, claiming to be the site of Radgosc (Rethra). However, a scholarly consensus on the temple's location has not yet been established, and various theories have been forwarded and refuted.

The Lutici or Liutizi (known by various spelling variants) were a federation of West Slavic Polabian tribes, who between the 10th and 12th centuries lived in what is now northeastern Germany.

The Capture of the Wends

Wendish Crusade

The Capture of the Wends
Henry's duchies Saxony and Bavaria

The Wendish Crusade (Wendenkreuzzug) was a military campaign in 1147, one of the Northern Crusades and a part of the Second Crusade, led primarily by the Kingdom of Germany within the Holy Roman Empire and directed against the Polabian Slavs (or "Wends").

By the early 12th century, the German archbishoprics of Bremen and Magdeburg sought the conversion to Christianity of neighboring pagan West Slavs through peaceful means.

Obotrites

Main territory of the Obotritic confederation
Map of the Billunger Mark (c. 1000) showing different tribes of the Obotritic confederation
Main territory of the Obotritic confederation
The Limes Saxoniae forming the border between the Saxons to the west and the Obotrites to the east
Main territory of the Obotritic confederation
Niklot (1090–1160), prince of the Obotritic confederation, Schwerin Castle

The Obotrites (Obotriti, Abodritorum, Abodritos…) or Obodrites, also spelled Abodrites (Abodriten), were a confederation of medieval West Slavic tribes within the territory of modern Mecklenburg and Holstein in northern Germany (see Polabian Slavs).

Lands of the Hevelli and Sprevane, about 1150

Hevelli

Lands of the Hevelli and Sprevane, about 1150

The Hevelli or Hevellians/ Navellasîni (sometimes Havolane; Heveller or Stodoranen; Hawelanie or Stodoranie; Havolané or Stodorané) were a tribe of the Polabian Slavs, who settled around the middle Havel river in the present-day Havelland region of Brandenburg in eastern Germany from the 8th century onwards.

West Slavic tribes ("Wends") had settled in the Germania Slavica region from the 7th century onwards.

Burgwallinsel, a former Ukrian burgh on an isle in Lake Oberuckersee

Ukrani

Burgwallinsel, a former Ukrian burgh on an isle in Lake Oberuckersee

The Ukrani or Ukrians (Ukranen, Ukrer, Vukraner, Wkrzanie) were a West Slavic Polabian tribe in the Uckermark (terra U(c)kera, Uckerland) from the 6th–12th centuries.

Kessinians

The Kessinians, also known as Kessini, Chizzini, Kcynianie and Chyżanie, were a medieval West Slavic tribe in what is now northeastern Germany.

Linguistically, they belonged to the Polabian Slavs.

Poland under Mieszko's rule between ca. 960–992, encompassing most of the Lechitic tribes within its borders

Lechites

Poland under Mieszko's rule between ca. 960–992, encompassing most of the Lechitic tribes within its borders
The Limes Saxoniae border between the Saxons and the Lechitic Obotrites, established about 810 in present-day Schleswig-Holstein
Depiction of the legendary ruler Lech in Chronica Polonorum by chronicler Maciej Miechowita (Matthias de Miechow)

Lechites (Lechici, Lechiten), also known as the Lechitic tribes (Plemiona lechickie, Lechitische Stämme), is a name given to certain West Slavic tribes who inhabited modern-day Poland and East Germany, and were speakers of the Lechitic languages.

Distinct from the Czech–Slovak subgroup, they are the closest ancestors of ethnic Poles and the Pomeranians and Polabians.