The Irminones, also referred to as Herminones or Hermiones, were a group of early
Germanic tribessettling in the Elbewatershed and by the 1st century ADexpanding into Bavaria, Swabiaand Bohemia. Irminonic or Elbe Germanic is a conventional term grouping early West Germanicdialects ancestral to High German.
The name Irminones comes from
Tacitus’s "Germania" (98 AD) who categorized them as one of the tribes of Mannus. Other West Germanicproto-tribes were the Ingvaeonesand Istvaeones, all of them living in the "Central region" of Germania, as well as the Suebi, which include the Semnones, the Quadiand the Marcomanni. Pomponius Melawrites in his "Description of the World" (III.3.31) in reference to the Kattegatand the waters surrounding the Danish isles (see the Codanus sinus):: On the bay are the Cimbriand the Teutoni; farther on, the farthest people of Germania, the Hermiones.Mela then begins to speak of the Scythians.
Pliny's "Natural History" (4.100) claims that the Irminones include the
Suebi, Hermunduri, Chatti,and Cherusci.
Nenniusthe name "Mannus" (see Mannaz) and his three sons appear in corrupted form, the ancestor of the Irminones appearing as Armenon. His sons here are Gothus, Valagothus/ Balagothus, Cibidus, Burgundus, and Longobardus, whence come the Goths(and Ostrogoths, Visigoths, Crimean Goths), Valagoths/ Balagoths, Cibidi, Burgundiansand Lombards/ Langobards.
They may have differentiated into the tribes
Alamanni, Hermunduri, Marcomanni, Quadi, Suebiby the 1st century AD. At this time the Suebi, Marcomanniand Quadihad moved southwest into the area of modern day Bavariaand Swabia. In 8 BC, the Marcomanni and Quadi drove the Boiiout of Bohemia.
Suebiis usually applied to all the groups that moved into this area, though later in history (ca. 200 AD) the term Alamanni(meaning "all-men") became more commonly applied to the group.
"Jǫrmun", the Viking Age Norse form of the name "
Irmin", can be found in a number of places in the Poetic Eddaas a by name for Odin. This pans with both the historical circumstances of the Irminones in relationship to Rome, Widukinds confusion over whether Irmin was comparable to Mars or Hermes, and with Snorri Sturluson's allusions at the beginning of his Prose Edda; that Odin's cult appeared first in Germany and then spread up into the Ingaevonic North.
* Grimm, Jacob (1835). "Deutsche Mythologie" (German Mythology); From English released version "Grimm's Teutonic Mythology" (1888); Available online by Northvegr © 2004-2007: [http://www.northvegr.org/lore/grimmst/015_02.php Chapter 15, page 2] -; [http://www.northvegr.org/lore/grimmst/015_03.php 3] . File retrieved 09-26-2007.
* Tacitus. "Germania" (1st Century AD). (in Latin)
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