Definition of Illyrian in English:


Line breaks: Il¦lyr|ian
Pronunciation: /ɪˈlɪrɪən


1Relating to the ancient region of Illyria: Illyrian tribes
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  • The name ‘Albania’ is derived from an ancient Illyrian tribe, the Albanoi, who inhabited part of modern-day Albania from around 1225 BC to AD 200.
  • Half a century before Christ the Thracians occupied Hungary east of the Danube, while Hungary west of the Danube was the home of Celtic and Illyrian tribes.
  • Eventually, the Aitolians had to be recalled to help their former enemies in Epirus against Demetrios's savage Illyrian raiders.
2Of or denoting the branch of Indo-European languages represented by modern Albanian.
More example sentences
  • Albanian is probably part of the Illyrian branch of eastern Indo-European languages.


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1A native or inhabitant of ancient Illyria.
More example sentences
  • The first known inhabitants were the Illyrians, followed by the Celts in the fourth century, and the Romans a century after that.
  • The national ideology insists on an unequivocal ethnic relationship with the ancient Illyrians.
  • Albanians descend from the ancient Illyrians.
2 [mass noun] The branch of the Indo-European family of languages represented by modern Albanian.
More example sentences
  • Whether the Albanian language stems from Illyrian or Thracian, both, or neither is a matter of contention.

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