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Filimer was an early Gothic king, according to Jordanes. He was the son of Gadareiks and the fifth generation since Berig settled with his people in Gothiscandza. When the Gothic nation had multiplied Filimer decided to move his people to Scythia where they defeated the Sarmatians. They then named their new territory Oium, meaning "in the waterlands". This migration would have taken place about 230 years before Jordanes wrote his "Origin of the Goths".[1]

The archaeological record shows that the population of the Gothic Wielbark culture (Poland) had indeed moved and settled in Ukraine and mixed with the previous populations of the Zarubintsy culture, where they formed the Chernyakhiv culture. This cultural movement is identified as the migration of the Goths from Gothiscandza to Oium, but not all scholars find the evidence compelling.[2]

The red area is Gothiscandza (the Wielbark culture), and the orange area is the extent of Oium (the Chernyakhov culture). The dark pink area is Gotland and the green area is the traditional extent of Götaland. The dark blue area is the Roman Empire.

Jordanes (XXIV:121) also relates that Filimer expelled the völvas, who were called Aliorumnas (probably Halju-runnos, meaning "hell-runners" or "runners to the realm of the dead", which refers to their shamanistic experiences during trance). These völvas were condemned to seek refuge far away and procreated the Huns.

The Danish scholar Christensen has suggested that the name Filimer was made up by Cassiodorus,[3] a suggestion that was favourably received among historians.[4]


  1. ^ Jordanes, Charles Christopher Mierow, ed., Getica 313 
  2. ^ Michael Kulikowski (2007), Rome's Gothic Wars, pp. 63, 64, ISBN 0521846331 
  3. ^ Arne Søby Christensen (2002), Cassiodorus, Jordanes, and the History of the Goths. Studies in a Migration Myth, ISBN 978-87-7289-710-3  External link in |title= (help)
  4. ^ Alexander Callander Murray (2004), "Review of "Cassiodorus, Jordanes..."", The International History Review, XXV: 805