The origin of Romani people

Most of my friends know that Romani people is one of my biggest interests and Bulgaria is a good place to be if you want to help the Romani people as there are at least half a million of them living right here. But where did the Romani people originally come from?
Well, about 1000 years ago the people we today call Romanies were living in north India, more precisely in the Hindu Kush mountain area. But at the same time as Islam was spreading into India, the Romanies fled out towards west. About 250 years later, in the late 1200s, they arrived to Europe and the Balkans. Shortly after began a 500 year long period in which big parts of the Romani people were enslaved, a period that only ended in 1864. This long period of enslavement did of course make a huge impact on the Romani people and left them with a very uncertain future when the slavery ended.

One common misunderstanding is that the Romani people came from Egypt, and this is also how they started to be wrongly named as “Gypsies” instead of the correct term “Romani people” or the subgroup “Roma people”

I will continue with these posts about the Romani people now and then, in the hope of that people will make less false presumptions and also learn more about their origin and culture.

Romani girl

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