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Because the term has been used both specifically for one or two Slavic groups and as an over-arching term (the Franks referred to pretty much all Slavs living between the Odra and Laba as either Wends or Sorbs), it is still difficult today to present a coherent picture of the Wends as a people. Here is one possible theory:

Wends are a sub-group of the Sorbs, a Slavic people who moved into Central Europe during the Völkerwanderung, most likely in response to pressure by the westward movement of peoples like Huns, and Avars. Some of their descendants, also called Wends or Lusatian Sorbs (Luzicki Srbi), still live in Lusatia today, where the Sorbian language is maintained in schools.

Other Wends, the Kashubians, settled between Kolobrzeg, Slupsk and west of Gdanskin Pomerania. Many Wends were driven out of 19th century Prussia during the 1848 revolutions. The Prussian (German Imperial) government insisted that Wends living in the area give up their language in schools and other public arenas. Moreover, the Wends who wished to continue living in the Empire were compelled to worship in the form of Lutheranism. A large part of the Wendish population of Prussia emigrated and went to the United States and to other countries like Australia -- countries that welcomed immigrants as a source of cheap labor. In the United States, the majority of Wends landed at first in Texas, where they became some of the earliest members of the Missouri Synod of the Lutheran church.

External link


See also:

  • Texas Wends (http://www.texancultures.utsa.edu/publications/texansoneandall/wendish.htm)

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