#351691

Anonymous

In the second half of the 6th century, a time when Slavic tribes were attacking Thessalonica and settling in Macedonia and Greece, one of the most outstanding Byzantine rulers, Emperor Maurice (582-602) (or Pseudomauricius?) , pays tribute to their great hospitality to strangers and humanity to captives. Maurice also notes that the women were virtuous, an attribute confirmed by Christian observers in medieval Germania.

"Their (Slavs') women are virtuous more than human nature assumes; thus most of them consider husband's death to be their own death and choke themselves voluntarily, not taking widowhood for a way of living".
(Pseudomauricius, Strategikon XI)

"When a man dies, his live woman is burned with him, if woman die, the husband does not burn, and if die as single, married him after death. Their wives want to burn so they can with them (her husband), entered into heaven."
(Al-Masudi, The Meadows of Gold)

TIETMAR, Bishop of Merseburg, recorded in 1018, the occasion of marriage Oda, wife of King Boleslav the Brave, customs in Poland, at the time of her father, Duke Mieszko:
"At the time of her father, who was a pagan, each wife after her husband's death, murder themselves (kill herself)."

and many others…

"Several women had only the princes and the wealthy people, who possessed sufficient means to support more houses. Most population (the common people) is not likely to be poligamy; even nobles, nor princes probably didn't have more lawful wives, more likely, that there was one factual wife, and the other women were just concubines. There can not deceive us, the term "uxor" which sources used, as the word "uxores" could be understood not only as wives, but also as concubines.

It is certain that the pagan Slavs marriege with more women considered as normal, and, after received the christian faith, not even for a long time couldn't giving up with this custom. So sources are talking about, how much should the effort to completely stamp out polygamy. At common people (the population) tribal system prevented polygamy. Where whole bunch of families mannaged together, there is absolutely not possible, the number of women surpasses the number of men. But certainly for polygamy was no room in so called wider (cooperative, unshed) families, comprised of more marriages.

The low status of Slavic women is manifested by the spread custom that women after her husband's death, burned or otherwise depriving of life and burried along with her husband.

The custom was explained in different ways. The woman was allegedly bound by a fidelity to her husband until his death and therefore had to join him in death. There are still many other factors played a role – Slavs believed in life after death, and therefore they put in the grave with deceased everything he need for life. Just as they thought such thing is a woman.

About widespread of that custom, testify report which gives St. Boniface, and detailed by Ibn Rust talking about woman, whom the deceased most liked, hang and then throws in fire.

Regardless at all that, the position of women  ancient Slavs can not be regarded as equal to the position of slave, which already shows the difference, which consisted of the women and concubines."

Karlo Kadlec, Slavic original law, Before 10 century
http://www.svevlad.org.rs/knjige_files/kadlec_pravo.html