Why are the slavs / slavic people called the slavs? It looks like the name suggests that it has to do something with slavery.

closed as off-topic by Tyler Durden, Samuel Russell, Oldcat, Semaphore, Mark C. Wallace Aug 12 '14 at 10:31

This question appears to be off-topic. The users who voted to close gave this specific reason:

  • "Requests for trivia or basic historical facts are off-topic if they can be easily answered by looking up the relevant topic on Wikipedia. We're trying to complement common historical references, not duplicate them." – Tyler Durden, Samuel Russell, Oldcat, Semaphore, Mark C. Wallace
If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

  • 2
    The English word "slave" is derived from the word "Slav" which came first. Try reading the Wikipedia. Basic historical facts are off topic. – Tyler Durden Aug 11 '14 at 21:40

It was actually the other way around.

slave (n.)

late 13c., "person who is the chattel or property of another," from Old French esclave (13c.), from Medieval Latin Sclavus "slave" (source also of Italian schiavo, French esclave, Spanish esclavo), originally "Slav" (see Slav); so used in this secondary sense because of the many Slavs sold into slavery by conquering peoples.

This sense development arose in the consequence of the wars waged by Otto the Great and his successors against the Slavs, a great number of whom they took captive and sold into slavery. [Klein]

For more information see here.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.