History of Christianity in Romania - Origin of The Romanians' Christianity

Origin of The Romanians' Christianity

See also: Origin of the Romanians

The core religious vocabulary of the Romanian language originated from Latin. Christian words that have been preserved from Latin include a boteza ("to baptize"), Paşte ("Easter"), preot ("priest"), and cruce ("cross"). Some words, such as biserică ("church", from basilica) and Dumnezeu ("God", from Domine Deus), are independent of their synonyms in other Romance languages.

The Romanian language also adopted many Slavic religious terms. For example, words like duh ("soul, spirit"), iad ("hell"), rai ("paradise"), and taină ("mystery, sacrament") are of South Slavic origin. Even some terms of Greek and Latin origin, such as călugar ("monk") and Rusalii ("Whitsuntide"), entered Romanian through Slavic. A smaller number of religious terms were borrowed from Hungarian, for instance mântuire (salvation) and pildă (parable).

Several theories exist regarding the origin of Christianity in Romania. Those who think that the Romanians descended from the inhabitants of "Dacia Traiana" suggest that the spread of Christianity coincided with the formation of the Romanian nation. Their ancestors' Romanization and Christianization, a direct result of the contact between the native Dacians and the Roman colonists, lasted for several centuries. They adopted Slavonic liturgy when it was introduced in the neighboring First Bulgarian Empire and Kievan Rus' in the 9th and 10th centuries. According to historians who suggest that the Romanians descended from the inhabitants of the Roman provinces to the south of the Danube, the Romanians' ancestors turned to Christianity after it was legalized throughout the Roman Empire in 313. They adopted the Slavonic liturgy during the First Bulgarian Empire before their migration to the territory of modern Romania began in the 11th or 12th century.

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