Aromunes (Makedonji-Armânji / Rramânji / VlachsaAromuni): a people living in the Southern Balkans , mainly in northwestern Greece, south-central Albania, and the republic of southern Macedonia . Some scarce groups are residing in Bulgaria and the Dobrogea region in Romania, where they arrived as an immigrant community, location of the Aromuna ethnic groups of the Balkans, according to areas of linguistic presence at the beginning of the 20th century.
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- 1 Classification and names
- 2 Culture
- 3 Origins
- 4 History
- 5 News
- 6 Scent personalities
- 7 Sources
Classification and names
Aromún derives from the Latin name “romanus”. They speak the Aromanian language, a Neo-Latin language called Makedon / Armânâ (after Makedonji / Armânji) .2 According to the geographic area in which they live, Aromuns are grouped into different subgroups. “Pindianos”; concentrated in the area of the Pindo Mountains, SW. of the Republic of Macedonia, north of Epirus and O. of Thessaly. “gramustians”; concentrated in the W of the Greek province of Macedonia and the northern tip of Epirus . ” muzachiaros ” and ” farserotas “, the latter reside in southern Epirus and in Aetolia and Acarnania.
The festival called “Days of the Culture of the Aromunes”, in Macedonia, 2009. The National Day of the Aromuns is on May 23 and in Macedonia (FYROM) it is a holiday recognized by the State Constitution.
Their origin is not yet known with certainty and there are several theories about the origin of the Aromuns (also called “Aromuns”): The most famous and well-known is that they are descendants of the Romanized Illyrian peoples. In Greece they are considered descendants of Latinized Greeks shortly after the Roman conquest of Greece, or even during the first years of the Byzantine Empire., when Latin was still the official language of the empire. In Romania they are considered descendants of Romanized Dacian tribes, who would have moved from modern Transylvania to northern Greece during the second half of the first millennium after Christ. Other theories claim that they are descendants of Roman legionaries who received land to farm in Greece as payment for their years of service in the army, or descendants of Latinized Thracians (mixed with Illyrians).
After the middle of the Middle Ages, the Aromuns, taking advantage of the weakness of the Byzantine Empire , created semi-autonomous states from the 11th century onwards. Examples of this were the Greater Wallachia (centered in the Greek region of Thessaly) and the Little Wallachia (in western Greece). Eventually, like the vast majority of Balkan peoples, they would fall under the power of the Ottoman Turks. Under Ottoman rule, the Aromuns enjoyed quite a few privileges. They were allowed to bear arms (something forbidden to the rest of the Christians of the empire) and they were able to prosper as merchants. Trade between Central Europe and the Balkans was virtually in their hands. Cities inhabited mainly by Aromuns – as, for example, Moscopole, in Albanian territory today – came to have tens of thousands of inhabitants.
However, relations with the Turk deteriorated and this resulted in the loss of some of his privileges. The city of Moscopole was razed by the Turks in the 18th century, ending its economic prosperity. Then there was a “repastoralization” of the Aromuns, returning to dedicate themselves to their traditional activities: the raising of cattle and sheep, transhumance and the trades of woodcutters and carpenters. In the 19th century, the Aromuns participated in the Greek revolution against the Ottomans, and some of its leaders were Aromuns, such as Ioannis Kolettis. The Aromuns considered themselves Latin-speaking Greeks; “Greek vlacophones”. During the 19th century, the emergence of Romanian nationality caused some Aromuns to stop considering themselves Greek and to consider themselves Romanian, or just aromunes. A tension arose between Aromunes who were in favor of the Greeks and those who were in favor of the Romanians. Romania encouraged the creation of Romanian schools in Aromun villages; But everything changed after the Second World War: on the one hand, the Romanians stopped financing schools in Greece, on the other, “anti-Greek” Aromunes supported the German and Italian invaders by creating an autonomous Aromone state in Greece.Pindo Greek Indeed, during that war was created (by the Italians who occupied Greece) the Principality of the Pindo aromuno -the only state in history under the command of Alkiviadis Diamandi di Samarina. When the Axis lost the war, the “anti-Greek” Aromuns were imprisoned or had to leave the country. Today the vast majority of Aromuns are considered “Greek.”
In Greece the Aromun people still live as in Albania and Macedonia. The language they use is threatened, as they are generally bilingual: they speak the official language of the nation-state to which they belong, apart from the language of their ethnic group. In many cases they only speak the official language. There is a significant number of descendants of Aromuna in Western Europe and the United States, who are the most aromuna “conscience”. In the countries of origin this awareness is not so strong and is on the way to the definitive assimilation of the aromunes.
There are many aromuna personalities: from Mother Teresa to Herbert von Karajan the list is very numerous. On the right some images of these characters. Mother Teresa, Andrei Maguna, Patriarch Joachin, Patriarch Athenagoras, Emanoil Gojdu, Milton Madaquia among others….