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Chieftain of the Sclaveni
Reign fl. 577–579
Religion Paganism

Daurentius or Dauritas (Greek: Δαυρέντιος, Δαυρίτας) was a 6th-century South Slavic (Sclaveni) chieftain and warlord.[1][2]

His realm was situated in the basin of the Zala river, roughly in the territory of the old Roman province of Pannonia Prima, in present-day Hungary.[3]

Daurentius is the first Slavic chieftain to be recorded by name, by the Byzantine historian Menander Protector, who reported that the Avar khagan Bayan I sent an embassy, asking Daurentius and his Slavs to accept Avar suzerainty and pay tribute, because the Avars knew that the Slavs had amassed great wealth after repeatedly plundering the Byzantine Balkan provinces. Daurentius reportedly retorted that "Others do not conquer our land, we conquer theirs [...] so it shall always be for us", and had the envoys slain.[4] Bayan then campaigned (in 578) against Daurentius' people, with aid from the Byzantines, and set fire to many of their settlements, although this did not stop the Slavic raids deep into the Byzantine Empire.[5]


  1. ^ Martindale, Jones & Morris (1992), p. 390
  2. ^ Curta (2001), pp. 47, 91, 315
  3. ^ Bacic (1997), p. 37
  4. ^ Curta (2001), pp. 47, 91
  5. ^ Curta (2001), pp. 91–92, 315


  • Staroslovenski vojvoda Dauritas i oharski kagan Bajan, Istoriski časopis V, Beograd 1955 [1] (Serbian)
  • Bacic, Jakov (1987). "Slav: the origin and meaning of the ethnonym". Slovene Studies 9 (1-2): 33–41. 
  • Curta, Florin (2001), The Making of the Slavs - History and Archaeology of the Lower Danube Region, c. 500–700, Cambridge University Press, ISBN 978-0-521-80202-4 
  • Martindale, John R.; Jones, A.H.M.; Morris, John (1992), The Prosopography of the Later Roman Empire - Volume III, AD 527–641, Cambridge University Press, ISBN 0-521-20160-8