‘Who Were The Dacians?’: a book review by Marius-Constantin POPA

Jun 30, 14 • BlogNo CommentsRead More »
Who were the Dacians by Catalin Gruia

Who were the Dacians by Catalin Gruia

First of all, I have to admit that reading this book has enlightened me as concerns not only my past, but also the past of people to whom I belong. Before I continue my review, I must say that I have noticed the title of this book was chosen very well: who were the Dacians? I dare to answer this question after reading this book: they were a people of warriors (they fought in two great battles against the Romans), had idols (they worshipped gods, to whom they even sacrificed their deceased ones, since there are no graves discovered to prove that they buried their dead bodies) and were mainly peasants (they paid much attention to farming rather than fighting on the battlefield).

No matter how strong was the kingdom ruled by Burebista and later by Decebal, Dacia eventually became a province within the Roman Empire, after the battles fought between the Dacians and the Romans in 101-102 AD and 105-106 AD. The Dacians were also masters of gold – the Roșia Montană, for which the Mafia makes everything possible to own it, was a mining site that ensured great profits to the ones with visionary minds – and many jobs for those who wanted to earn their daily bread.

On the other hand, it is also possible that history to have ‘decided’ the fate of the Dacians to be defeated by the Romans, ‘borrow’ the Latin language from them and then identifying themselves with one of the peoples of ancestors of the Romanians. Nowadays, I do not know which of these two peoples is our ancestor – the Dacians or the Romans – or both of them, because from the religious point of view both peoples believed in gods, and the Holy Apostle Andrew baptized the future Romanian people after Dacia had become a Roman province. However, the entire Roman Empire – which also included the Dacia province – was baptized in the true sense of the word after Roman Emperor Constantin the Great had declared Christianity as state religion. It is, however, certain that the Romanian people can be considered the descendant of the Dacians and the Romans only after the baptism of the entire Roman Empire because a Christian people cannot descend from a pagan one.

After reading this book, I reached the conclusion that it is a much documented one, with many proofs to confirm the truth behind the title – who were the Dacians? Are we, the Romanians, their descendants?