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

Daurentius (Greek: Δαυρέντιος) or Dauritas (Δαυρίτας) was a South Slavic (Sclaveni) chieftain.[1] He seems to have been the supreme chief, having lesser ones subordinated to him.[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",[4] and had the envoys slain. 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]


K. Nikolaevič (1862) mentioned Daurentius, "the then king or grand prince of the Slavs", with the name Dobreta, which he rendered via the Greek pronunciation of β/b=ν/n.[6]


  1. ^ Curta 2001, pp. 47, 91.
  2. ^ Živković 2008, pp. 47.
  3. ^ Bacic, Jakov (1987). "Slav: the origin and meaning of the ethnonym". Slovene Studies. 9 (1-2): 37. 
  4. ^ Curta 2001, p. 47.
  5. ^ Curta 2001, pp. 91–92.
  6. ^ Serbski li︠e︡topis. 106. Pismeny Kral. Vseučilišta Peštanskog. 1863. pp. 7–. себи покоравати , а не насъ други ; и тако лъ бит' Ье кодъ насъ , докле устрае бойнихъ поля и мачева на земльи." *) Такавъ одговоръ даду овьшъ послани- цима Добрета, **) тадашньШ краль или великШ кнезъ Ъуяр&у) Словяна , и ньихови племенски жупани. Но аварски посланици узму га на изсмехъ , и у таквомъ тону врло вероятно наведу ... Менандеръ пише на едномъ месту Δαυρέντιος, а на другомъ Δαυρίτας, кое име погрешна паризкогъ изданя при- ну^авала 6 пре^е читати : Лаудмтюд и Лауц1гад. Но и //аьдьтад е врло вероятно подметакъ доцншхъ кописта (збогъ едногласногъ кодъ Византинаца β—ν) на место : ЛаРд/тад —А 0 6 р ...