The Pelasgians or proto – Latins (Arimii)

(The Pelasgians from the northern parts of the Danube and the Black Sea)





XXXIII. 7. Migrations of the Arimii in Gallia (Aremorici, Remi).


The migrations of the Pelasgian tribes westwards had begun even during the primitive times of history, a long time before the invasion of the Celts.

A proof in this regard are the various items of the Neolithic industry discovered on the territory of Gallia, which by their shape, their technique and ornamentation, belong to the archaic Pelasgian civilization.


At the time when the Roman senate had charged Iulius Caesar to defend the northern frontiers of Italy, the most ancient Pelasgian tribes of Gallia had been dislocated, and pushed forward to the extreme parts of the continent, near the great Ocean, by the later migrations.

These western and northern regions of Gallia had in official Roman geography the name of Aremorica; a term which indicates at the same time the name Aremori for the most ancient Pelasgian nation from the land of Gallia.

From the point of view of its etymology, the name Aremori is only a simple archaic rotacism of the word Aremoni. Under this form the term is very ancient.

One ‘Archemonos (where ch represents only a guttural aspiration), appears in the epic legends about the war of the 7 against Thebes, as a son of the prince Lycurgus of Nemea (Apollodorus, Bibl. lib. III. 6. 1).

In Rome still existed in the 4th century some parts of the ancient city which were called vicus Archemonium or Archemorium and forum Archemorium (Sextus Rufus, De reg. urb. Romae. Regio VII).

The highest part of the hill Aventin, where traditions said that Remus, the brother of Romulus, had wanted the citadel of Rome to be built, was still called at the beginning of the Christian era, Remora (Cicero, De div. c. 4) and Remona (Fabretti, Gloss. Ital. p. 1158), or Remoria (Dionysius, lib. I. 86) and Remonia (Plutarc, Oeuvres, Romulus).

Remores, Aurelius Victor tells us (Orig. gent. Rom. 21), had been called in antiquity some sort of people.

Remuria or Remoria (Ovid, Fast. Lib. V. 480-481) was an ancient national feast day of the Romans in honor of the good and illustrious ancestors. The same solemnity, with nocturnal rites, is still celebrated today at the Carpathians, under the name of Alimori, especially in Banat and in the western regions of Transilvania (Hasdeu, Etym. magn. Rom. see Alimori); and in Bucovina and Moldova the same ancient ancestors (Remori or Alimori) are called Rahmani and Rohmani (Miklosich, Uber d. Wand. d. Rumunen, p. 18; Marian, Sarbatorile, III. p. 171).


In Gallia, the most important group of Aremori was formed by the inhabitants of Aquitania, or from ancient Aremorica (Pliny, IV. 17; Schnakenburg, Idiomes populaires de la France, p. 40);

a region which from the point of view of the ethnic element, of the idiom and administration, comprised the western territory of Gallia, from the Pyrenees to the river Liger (Loire). In this south-western part of Gallia had been spoken during the whole course of the Middle Ages a popular Latin idiom called lingua romana (la langue romane).

In regard to the geographical origin of these Aremorici, settled between the Pyrenees and Liger, S. Hieronymus tells us (Comment. in epist. ad Galatos, lib. II. c. 3) that the Aquitanii (or Aremoricii) were proud of being of Greek origin; meaning from the eastern parts of Europe, which in those times were in the sphere of influence of Greek civilization.



Another considerable group of Aremori or Aremorici was settled in the parts of north-west of Gallia, close to the Ocean, between the rivers Liger and Samara (Caesar, B.G. lib. VII. 75). Caesar calls these districts Armoricae civitates. Jornandes called them Armoritiani (De reb. Get. c. 36) and Procopius, Arborychi (Bell. Goth. I. 12). Among these Aremorici, the most extreme were the so-called Ostiones or Ostiaei, and the islands from the vicinity had the name Oestrymnicae (Aviennus, Or. Mar. v. 130).

Armorica of the north-western parts of Gallia comprised especially the peninsula called today Bretagne, an important archaeological region, where exist the most grandiose and most beautiful megalithic monuments of Gallia: menhirs, peulvans, alignments, dolmens and cromlechs (Cartailhac, La France prehistorique, Ed. 1889, p. 201; Bertrand, La Gaule, p. 124).


Another Pelasgian population of Gallia, which belonged to the family of the Arimii, was settled between the upper courses of the rivers Liger and Arar (Saone). This tribe figures in official acts of the Roman republic under the name of Aedui. The Eduii, Caesar tells us (B. G. lib. I. 43), had always occupied the first place among the peoples of Gallia. The Roman senate had officially recognized on different occasions, that the Eduii were a people from the ancient Latin family, because of which they had been attributed the honorific title of “fraters et consanguinei” (B. G. I. 33), brothers and people of the same blood as the Romans; and Cicero calls them “fraters nostril Aedui” (ad. Atticum, I. 19).


The fourth numerous group of Arimi was settled in Gallia Belgica, near the rivers called Axona (Aisne) and Matrona (Marne).

In the times of Caesar, the Arimic nations of Belgia were united among themselves in particular confederations, but the political preponderance was kept by the so-called Remi. When Caesar came with the Roman legions near the frontiers of Belgian Gallia, the Remii were the first to send him a deputation to let him know that they shall give themselves up to the power of the Roman people, together with all that was theirs (Caesar, B. G. II. 3). Remii, writes Caesar, have always enjoyed a principal honor from his part (B. G. lib. V. 54), they were on the second place among the peoples of Gallia, the first being occupied by the Edui (B. G. VI. 12). Strabo calls the Remi the most noble among the northern peoples of Gallia (lib. IV. c. 3. 5); and the Roman senate awards them the title of foederati, in other words, an administrative autonomy established through special treaties. Their main city was called Durocorter and Remi. Here was the residence of the imperial legate of Belgian Gallia.

The Remii, exactly like the Eduii, had had even before the conquest of Gallia ancient national traditions that they, in regard to their origin, might had been from the same ethnic family as the Roman people. During the Roman domination, a gate of the city was consecrated to the god Mars. This gate still partly subsisted to this day. The first arch, called of Rem, represents Remus and Romulus under the she-wolf; on the right is seen Faustus, on the left Acca Laurentia. It is a monument which, as we see, had consecrated an ancient tradition, that Remii were brothers of the same blood with the Romans.


We also find in the Middle Ages another legend about the origin of the Remi, very widely spread in the West, which said that Rem, separating from his brother Romulus, had passed into Gallia, where he founded the city Remi, which had surpassed by far, in wealth and beauty, the citadel of Romulus from near the Tiber (Graf, Roma nella memoria del medio evo. I. 101).

It seems though that the Remii also had other historical reminiscences about their geographical origin, namely that it had been in the eastern parts of Europe, and we found the same tradition with the Aremoricii of Aquitania, and with various Pelasgian tribes which had settled on the territory of Hispania.


The fact we are presented with is the following:

In the Reims (Remi) cathedral, which had played a very important role in the religious and political history of France, had been preserved even until the 18th century a Gospel written in Slavonic language, on which the kings of France swore their oath at the coronation ceremony, and which, because of this, had acquired the name of the Gospel of consecration, Le texte du sacre (Hasdeu, Textul sacrului de la Reims, in ziarul “Traian”, 1869, nr. 64-69).

This Gospel was made of two parts, one written with Cyrillic letters and the other with Glagolitic, or Dalmatian letters. The part written with Cyrillic characters was in fact only a copy made in the Romanian Country around the beginning of the 14th century (1300 – 1310), from another specimen written in Moldova around the end of the 12th century (1180 – 1200). This manuscript had later passed from the Romanian Country into Dalmatia, where it was bound together with another Gospel fragment written with Glagolitic letters. The Gospel bound as such, came into the possession of emperor Carol IV (1348 – 1378), who presented it to the monastery Emmaus from Prague, from where, after 1390, the manuscript passed into France, we do not know how; and there it was preserved with religiosity in the cathedral of Reims, and reached such veneration, that two successive royal dynasties, of the Valesis and the Burbons, swore at the coronation ceremony on that Gospel, Gospel written in part on the territory of the Romanian countries, with old letters, or Cyrillic, and with some particularities of the Romanian language [1].


[1. This particular importance accorded in Reims to a Gospel written partly with old letters and in a language not understood by the church priests of France, otherwise quite well educated, cannot be explained except by the existence of an ancient tradition. Probably the Gospel from the 14th century had substituted another more ancient one, written with Pelasgian characters (or Greek, as named by Tacitus), but lost or destroyed in the course of time].


In the time of Caesar, the so-called Viromandui or Veromandui were neighbors with the Remi. Their principal city was Augusta Viromandorum, called by Ptolemy polis Augousta ‘Romandon (Ed. Didot, lib. II. 9. 6). Therefore Romandi, not Veromandui, was the more correct form of the name, where the initial V had only substituted an H used as aspiration, exactly like in Veneti (‘Enetoi), Vesta (‘Estia).


Another people from Belgian Gallia were the so-called Oromansaci (Pliny, lib. IV. 31), a term certainly transmitted in a barbarian form by Roman geography.

Also the Suessionii, whom their neighbors, the Remii, called “brothers and people of the same blood” belonged to the same unity of nation, and to the same political confederation in Belgian Gallia, (Caesar, B. G. II. 3).


And at last, neighbors with Remii were also the so-called Bellovacii, who, as Caesar tells us, formed in Belgian Gallia the most powerful people, for their courage, authority and their number. They could arm 100,000 fighters (B. G. II. 4; Strabo, lib. IV. 4. 3). By their name and their character the Bellovacii seems to have been the same people as the Belacii, another Pelasgian warlike tribe, which had their dwellings in the Alps (C. I. L. vol. V. nr. 7231).

Diodorus Siculus, who had lived in the time of Caesar and Augustus, tells us that between the Gali and Romans had existed an ethnic kinship, since very remote times (lib. V. 25); and Strabo calls all Galii, Arimanic people (lib. IV. c. 4. 2).

Finally, to the ancient population of the Arimii is reduced the origin of a number of localities from the territory of today France. Of these we note here the following:

Aramon; Arembecourt; Armancourt; Armenonville; Ermenonville; Harmonville; Ormancey; Ormenans; Ramecourt; Ramicourt; Ramonchamp; Ramous; Ramousies; Ramville; Remeling; Remenoville; Remereville; Remering; Rem’gny; Reminiac; Remiremont; Remois; Remoncourt; Remonville; Remeray; Rimay; Rimancourt; Rimogne; Rimon; Roumens; Rumigny; Rumont (Janin, Dict. d. com. D. France, Paris, 1851).