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Map of Germania tribes

Suevi (सुएवी) or The Suebi were a large group of Germanic peoples who were first mentioned by Julius Caesar in connection with Ariovistus' campaign in Gaul, c. 58 BC.[1]


The term Swedes is believed to have been derived from the Proto-Indo-European reflexive pronominal root, *s(w)e, as the Latin suus. The word must have meant "one's own (tribesmen)". The same root and original meaning is found in the ethnonym of the Germanic tribe Suebi, preserved to this day in the name Swabia.[2]


Jat clans


While Caesar treated them as one Germanic tribe, though the largest and most warlike, later authors such as Tacitus, Pliny and Strabo specified that the Suevi "do not, like the Chatti or Tencteri, constitute a single nation. They actually occupy more than half of Germany, and are divided into a number of distinct tribes under distinct names, though all generally are called Suebi".[8]

"At one time, classical ethnography had applied the name "Suebi" to so many Germanic tribes that it appeared as though in the first centuries A.D. this native name would replace the foreign name "Germans"."[9]

Classical authors noted that the Suebic tribes, compared to other Germanic tribes, were very mobile, and not reliant upon agriculture.[10]

Suevi and Getes

James Todd[11] writes about the Suiones, Suevi, or Su that Now the Su, Yueh-chi, or Yuti, are Getes, according to De Guignes. Marco Polo calls Cashgar, where he was in the sixth century, the birthplace of the Swedes ; and De la Croix adds, that in 1691 Sparvenfeldt, the Swedish ambassador at Paris, told him he had read in Swedish chronicles that Cashgar was their country. When the Huns were chased from the north of China, the greater part retired into the southern countries adjoining Europe. The rest passed directly to the Oxus and Jaxartes ; thence they spread to the Caspian and Persian frontiers. In Mawaru-l-nahr (Transoxiana) they mixed with the Su, the Yueh-chi, or Getes, who were particularly powerful, and extended into Europe. One would be tempted to regard them as the ancestors of those Getes who were known in Europe. Some bands of Su might equally pass into the north of Europe, known as the Suevi. The meaning of Suevi is uncertain, but the word has no connexion with that of any Central Asian tribe.

Movement of Suebic groups

Various Suebic groups moved from the direction of the Baltic Sea and river Elbe, becoming a periodic threat to the Roman empire on their Rhine and Danube frontiers. Toward the end of the empire, the Alamanni, also referred to as Suebi, first settled in the Agri Decumates and then crossed the Rhine and occupied Alsace.

Swabia after Suebi

A pocket remained in the region now still called Swabia, an area in southwest Germany whose modern name derives from the Suebi. Others moved as far as Gallaecia (modern Galicia, in Spain, and Northern Portugal) and established a Suebic Kingdom of Galicia there which lasted for 170 years until its integration into the Visigothic Kingdom.


Caesar placed the Suebi east of the Ubii apparently near modern Hesse, in the position where later writers mention the Chatti, and he distinguished them from their allies the Marcomanni. Some commentators believe that Caesar's Suebi were the later Chatti or possibly the Hermunduri, or even the Semnones.[12]

Later authors use the term Suebi more broadly, "to cover a large number of tribes in central Germany".[13] Although no classical authors explicitly call the Chatti Suevic, Pliny the Elder (23 AD – 79 AD), reported in his Natural History that the Hermiones were a large grouping of related Germanic gentes or "tribes" including not only the Suebi, but also the Hermunduri, Chatti and Cherusci.[14] Whether or not the Chatti were ever considered Suevi, both Tacitus and Strabo distinguish the two partly because the Chatti were more settled in one territory, whereas Suevi remained less settled.[15]

Strabo (64/63 BC – c. 24 AD), in Book IV (6.9) of his Geography also associates the Suebi with the Hercynian Forest and the south of Germania north of the Danube. He describes a chain of mountains north of the Danube that is like a lower extension of the Alps, possibly the Swabian Alps, and further east the Gabreta forest, possibly the modern Bohemian forest. In Book VII (1.3) Strabo specifically mentions as Suevic peoples the Marcomanni, who under King Marobodus had moved into the same Hercynian forest as the Coldui (possibly the Quadi), taking over an area called "Boihaemum". This king "took the rulership and acquired, in addition to the peoples aforementioned, the Lugii (a large tribe), the Zumi, the Butones, the Mugilones, the Sibini, and also the Semnones, a large tribe of the Suevi themselves". Some of these tribes were "inside the forest" and some "outside of it".[16] Tacitus confirms the name "Boiemum", saying it was a survival marking the old traditional population of the place, the Celtic Boii, though the population had changed.[17]

Tacitus describes a series of very powerful Suebian states in his own time, running along the north of the Danube which was the frontier with Rome, and stretching into the lands where the Elbe originates in the modern day Czech Republic. Going from west to east the first were the Hermunduri, living near the sources of the Elbe and stretching across the Danube into Roman Rhaetia.[18] Next came the Naristi, the Marcomanni, and then the Quadi. The Quadi are on the edge of greater Suebia, having the Sarmatians to the southeast.

The definitions of the greater ethnic groupings within Germania were apparently not always consistent and clear, especially in the case of mobile groups such as the Suevi. Whereas Tacitus reported three main kinds of German peoples, Hermiones, Istvaeones, and Ingvaeones, Pliny specifically adds two more genera or "kinds", the Bastarnae and the Vandili (Vandals). The Vandili were tribes east of the Elbe, including the well-known Silingi, Goths, and Burgundians, an area which Tacitus treated as Suebic. That the Vandals might be a separate type of Germanic people is a possibility Tacitus noted also, but for example the Varini are named as Vandilic by Pliny, and specifically Suebic by Tacitus.

Migration of Jats from Sapta Sindhu

Hukum Singh Panwar (Pauria)[19] considers Suevi to be the Shivi or Sibia Jat clans, who migrated from Sapta Sindhu. He has narrated as under that probably earliest migrants as leaders of these tribes were Shivi.

Just see the remarkable parallels between the functioning of the Germans and the Indian Jat tribal "Khaap" and "Sarvakhaap" panchayats. This further reminds us of the Vedic republican communities (the Panchajatah or Panchajna), who are considered by us as the common ancestors of the Indian Jats and the German Goths or Gots.

Before concluding, we may go into the question of identity of the Teutons and the Swedes. The Teutons were Aryans including High and low Germans and Scandanavians, and to be more specific Goths (Gots, Getae, Jats, Juts), Lombards (Lampaka or Lamba), Normans, Franks (Vrkas, Saxons (Sacae Getae) and Angles[20] The Suevis (Sivis) including the Vilka (Virkas), the Manns (Mans) the Schillers (Chhilller) (Within brackets are given the Indian names of the tribes) etc. who, as we shall note (infra), migrated from the Sapta Sindhu to the Scandanavian countries in ancient times, were known as

The Jats:Their Origin, Antiquity and Migrations: End of p.159

Svi Thjoth or Sui or (Suiones) Joth (Cf no. IX in the book), (Sivi or Sibi Jat), in archaic Norse, and ultimately as the Swedes.

Mr. B.S.Dahiya[21] has assiduously pin-pointed nearly 250 European communities whose names are identified by him with the surnames (gotras) of the Indian Jats. The Sivis were probably earliest migrants as leaders of these tribes. It is these tribes whose anthropological details are given above. In the light of the aforesaid evidence we can reasonably assert that the physical characteristics of the Sivisa (Suevis) and their descendents (the victims of Dasarajna wars, who managed, by hook or by crook, to remain in the Harappan region, cannot be different from those of ones who perforce left the country for good or were deported to their new home in the Scandanavian countries[22].

In the end, it will not be irrelevant to recall what Qanungo very aptly remarked: "In character the Jat resembles the old Anglo-Saxon and the ancient Roman, and has indeed more of the characteristics of the Teuton than of the Celt in him". In view of our investigations, we may well reverse the statement of Prof. Qanungo that the Teutons and others resemble the Jats - their ancestors - and not the other way round. Truly speaking, as and when in the past an upheaval, whether social, political or religious, took place in Sapta Sindhu , shock waves were sent to Central Asia and Middle East from this epicentre and its ripples were recorded as far away as the Baltic, Scandanavian, Netherlandic and American countries in the past, (infra). This is like Australia and the Americas experiencing similar social tremors from Europe in the recent past, and almost due to same kind of reasons. We have yet to see a Volkerwanderung of the Europeans to the Indian sub-continent in the sense in which the exodus of Indo-Aryans flooded Europe in the past. Our investigations pertaining to the historico-somatometrical details· and serological make-up of the Jats, as available from the present, medieval, classical and ancient Indian and foreign sources, in our view, conclusively establish that the Jats, like the descendents of other races, are the direct descendents of the Rig Vedic Aryan tribes whose officina gentium (cradle) was the Sapta-Saindhava country and whose names, in the course of the criss-cross of their migrations down the ages to various climes and countries, underwent recognizable alterations. They have indeed inherited not only their thoughts and sentiments but markedly their physical features also. We may cap all our observations with the final one: "Allah knows better".

The Jats:Their Origin, Antiquity and Migrations: End of p.160

जाट इतिहास और जर्मन जातियां

ठाकुर देशराज[23] के अनुसार हेरोडोटस ने लिखा है कि - मध्य एशिया की बड़ी जेटी जाति में अश्वमेध का रिवाज था और संक्रांति के शुभ अवसर पर यह महोत्सव उनके यहां होता था (पारसी लोगों में तो अश्वमेध नहीं होता फिर हेरोडोटस किस आधार पर उन्हें शाक ही पुकारता है। - ले.) । मध्य ऐशिया में एक अश्व जाति भी जाटों के पड़ोस में रहती थी, वह वाजस्व की संतान के लोग कहे जाते थे। लेकिन पिंकर्टन ने यूरोप में जाटों के साथ सुएवी, कट्टी, केम्ब्री और हेमेन्द्री आदि 6 जातियां बताई हैं। ये सब एल्प और वेजर नदी के किनारे तक फैल गई थीं। वहां उन्होंने युद्ध के देवता महादेवजी के नाम पर एक विशाल स्तंभ खड़ा किया था। अनेक इतिहास लेखकों ने अपनी-अपनी मति से उसे मंगल अथवा बुद्ध का स्तंभ बताया है। ये छः जातियां भारत में क्रम से जाट, अहीर, काछी, कुर्मी, हेमेन्द्री कहलाती हैं। वास्तव में जाटों का और अहीर काछियों आदि का प्रारम्भ से निकट रहना और निकटतम सम्बन्ध पाया जाता है। ये सभी एक ही स्टाक की जगजार्टिस के किनारे की रहने वाली जातियां थीं। जाटों ने यूनान में कर्जसीज को और अर्बेला में दारा को रथों की सेना की सहायता दी थी। इस सेना में 15 हाथी और 200 रथ थे। कर्नल टाड ने हेरोडोटस के आधार पर लिखा है कि इन लोगों से युद्ध करने के लिए सिकन्दर ने स्वयं कमान की थी। वे अपनी भुजाओं के बल से यूनानियों को प्रत्येक आचरण में विफल कर देते थे। उन्होंने सिकन्दर की पर्शिनियो की कमान वाली सेना को अस्तव्यस्त कर दिया था, जिससे उसे दूसरी सेना उनसे भिड़ने के लिए भेजनी पड़ी थी। प्रत्येक जाट ने वह पराक्रम दिखाया कि मानो वह जीत की पक्की अभिलाषा रखता है, किन्तु अर्बोला के युद्ध में दारा की पराजय बदी थी। काछी लोग भी इस युद्ध में बड़ी बहादुरी से लड़े थे।

दलीप सिंह अहलावत[24] लिखते हैं कि विजेता जाट अत्तीला का साम्राज्य कैस्पियन सागर से लेकर राइन नदी (पश्चिमी जर्मनी में) तक फैला हुआ था। तात्पर्य है कि जाटों का निवास व शासन जर्मनी में भी रहा है। ये लोग ईसा से लगभग 500 वर्ष पूर्व जर्मनी में पहुंचे। यूरोप के अन्य देशों इटली, गॉल, स्पेन, पुर्तगाल, इंगलैण्ड और यूनान आदि पर जो जाटों ने आक्रमण किये उनका वर्णन यूरोपीय इतिहास में यही मिलता है कि उसमें अधिकांश जाट लोग जर्मनी और स्कन्धनाभ (स्केण्डेनेविया) के निवासी थे।

श्री मैक्समूलर ने भी जर्मनी में आर्य रक्त स्वीकार किया है। टसीटस ने लिखा है कि :“जर्मन लोगों के रहन-सहन, आकृति, रस्म व रिवाज तथा नित्य कार्यों का जो वृत्तान्त पाया जाता है उससे विदित होता है कि कदाचित् ये लोग और शाक द्वीप (ईरान) के जिट, कठी, किम्बरी (कृमि) और शिवि (चारों जाट) एक ही वंश के हैं।”

आगे यही लिखते हैं कि “जर्मन लोग घोड़े की आकृति बनी हुई देखकर ही सिक्के का व्यवहार करते थे, अन्यथा नहीं। यूरोप के असि जेटी लोग और भारत के अट्टी तक्षक जटी, बुध को अपना पूर्वज मानकर पूजते थे। प्रत्येक जर्मन का बिस्तर पर से उठकर स्नान करने का स्वभाव जर्मनी के शीतप्रधान देश का नहीं हो सकता, किन्तु यह पूर्वी देश का है।”

कर्नल टॉड ने लिखा है कि “घोड़े की पूजा जर्मनी में सू, कट्टी, सुजोम्बी और जेटी (जाट) नाम की जातियों ने फैलाई है, जिस भांति कि स्कन्धनाभ में असि जाटों ने फैलाई।” कर्नल टॉड ने भारत के जाट और राजपूत तथा जर्मन लोगों की समानता के लिए लिखा है कि “चढ़ाई करने वालों और इन सब हिन्दू सैनिकों का धर्म बौद्ध-धर्म था। इसी से स्केण्डेनेविया वालों और जर्मन जातियों और राजपूतों के आचार, विचार और देवता सम्बन्धी कथाओं की सदृश्यता और उनके वीररसात्मक काव्यों का मिलान करने से यह बात अधिकतर प्रमाणित हो जाती है।”

प्रसिद्ध इतिहासज्ञ टसीटस ने लिखा है कि “जर्मनी और स्कन्धनाभ के असि लोग जाटवीर ही थे[25]। जाट इतिहास अंग्रेजी पृ० 36 पर लेफ्टिनेन्ट रामस्वरूप ने लिखा है कि “प्राचीनकाल में जर्मनी पर शिवि गोत्र के जाटों का राज्य व निवास था।”


सेमोन एक सुएवी लोगों की जर्मनिक जनजाति थी जो पहली सदी में एल्बे और ओडर नदी के बीच बसे हुये थे। पहली सदी में उनका वर्णन टैसिटस ने जर्मनिया में किया है। सेमनोनेस के राजा मासी और उसके पुजारी गाना कैसियस डियो द्वारा उल्लिखित हैं। एक पवित्र उपवन में उन्होंने परम देव की पूजा की। एड्डा की एक कविता हेल्गकविआ हुनडिंग्सबाना II में एक उपवन का उल्लेख है। तीसरी शताब्दी में, सेम्नोन्स दक्षिण की ओर खिसक गये और अंत में आलमनी लोगों का हिस्सा बन गया। ऑग्सबर्ग में एक एक रोमन स्मारक की वेदी पर 260 ई. का एक शिलालेख मिला जिसमें कहा गया है कि सेमनोनेस जुथुंगी भी कहलाते थे। [26]

External links


  1. Menzel, Wolfgang; Mrs. George Horrocks (Translator); Edgar Saltus (Supplementary Chapter) (MDCCCXCIX). Germany from the Earliest Period: Volume I. New York:
  2. Noreen, A. Nordens äldsta folk- och ortnamn (i Fornvännen 1920 sid 32).
  3. Bhim Singh Dahiya, Jats the Ancient Rulers (A clan study)/Appendices/Appendix II, p.329
  4. Hukum Singh Panwar (Pauria): The Jats:Their Origin, Antiquity and Migrations/An Historico-Somatometrical study bearing on the origin of the Jats, pp.159-160
  5. Jat History Thakur Deshraj/Chapter VI,p.185
  6. Jat History Dalip Singh Ahlawat/Chapter IV, p.396
  7. Ram Sarup Joon: History of the Jats/Chapter III, p.42
  8. Tacitus Germania Section 8, translation by H. Mattingly.
  9. "Germanic Tribes". Late Antiquity. Harvard University Press. 1999. p. 467. ISBN 9780674511736
  10. "Caes. Gal. 4.1".
  11. James Todd Annals/Chapter 6 Genealogical history of the Rajput tribes subsequent to Vikramaditya, Vol I, pp.73fn-4
  12. Peck. "Harpers Dictionary of Classical Antiquities year=1898"
  13. Chambers, R. W. (1912). Widseth: a Study in Old English Heroic Legend. Cambridge: University Press. pp. 194, note on line 22 of Widsith. Republished in 2006 by Kissinger Publishing as ISBN 1-4254-9551-6.
  14. "Book IV section XIV".
  15. "Strab. 7.1".
  16. "Strab. 7.1".
  17. "Tac. Ger. 28".
  18. "Section 41".
  19. Hukum Singh Panwar (Pauria): The Jats:Their Origin, Antiquity and Migrations/An Historico-Somatometrical study bearing on the origin of the Jats, pp.159-160
  20. Ripley op.cit., p. 106.
  21. Jats the Ancient Rulers (A clan study)/Appendices/Appendix II,pp.319-332
  22. Qanungo, History Of Jats, Vol. I, p. 2.
  23. Jat History Thakur Deshraj/Chapter VI, p.185
  24. Jat History Dalip Singh Ahlawat/Chapter IV, p.396
  25. आधार लेख - जाट इतिहास पृ० 183 से 185, लेखक ठा० देशराज।
  26. Helmut Castritius: Semnonen. In: Reallexikon der germanischen Altertumskunde, vol. 28 (2005), p. 156