History of Slovenia

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The history of Slovenia chronicles the period of the Slovene territory from the 5th Century BC to the present times. In the Early Bronze Age, Proto-Illyrian tribes settled an area stretching from present-day Albania to the city of Trieste. The Holy Roman Empire controlled the land for nearly 1,000 years. Modern-day Slovenia gained its independence from Yugoslavia in 1991, and is today a modern state and a member of the European Union and NATO.


Early history

In ancient times Celts and Illyrians inhabited the territory of present-day Slovenia. Also, the Adriatic Veneti were dwelling in northeastern Italy and parts of Slovenia. A well-developed Illyrian population existed as far north as the upper Sava valley in what is now Slovenia.[1] Illyrian friezes discovered near the present-day Slovene city of Ljubljana depict ritual sacrifices, feasts, battles, sporting events, and other activities.

The Roman Empire established its rule in the region in the 1st century, after 200 years of fighting with the local tribes. The most important ancient Roman cities in this area included: Celeia (now Celje), Emona (Ljubljana), Nauportus (Vrhnika), Poetovio (Ptuj). The modern country's territory was split among the Roman provinces of Dalmatia, Italia, Noricum, and Pannonia.

Slavic settlement

The first phase of Slavic settlement in the territory of modern Slovenia is dated around the year 550 and originated in the area of modern Moravia (i.e., the West Slavic speaking branch). From there Slavs moved southward into the territory of the former Roman province of Noricum (modern Upper and Lower Austria regions). Subsequently, they progressed along the valleys of Alpine rivers towards the Karawanken range and towards the settlement of Poetovio (modern Ptuj).

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