What Was Bosnia Called in Ancient Times?

Bosnia and Herzegovina is a country located in the Balkan Peninsula of Europe. It is a country with a rich and diverse history, which dates back to ancient times.

The region has been inhabited by various tribes and communities throughout history, each leaving their mark on the land. But what was Bosnia called in ancient times? Let’s explore.

Illyrian Times

The first known inhabitants of Bosnia were the Illyrians. They were a group of Indo-European tribes that lived in the western part of the Balkans, including Bosnia and Herzegovina.

The Illyrians were skilled warriors and traders. They established many settlements throughout the region, including urban centers such as Daorson, Butmir, and Glasinac.

The Roman Era

During the 2nd century BC, the Romans conquered Illyria and established their rule over the region. The Romans called Bosnia by its Latin name ‘Bosna’. They built roads, bridges, aqueducts, and other infrastructure projects throughout Bosnia to facilitate trade and transport.

The Medieval Era

After the fall of Rome in 476 AD, Bosnia was ruled by various tribes and communities until the arrival of Slavs in the 7th century AD. The Slavs established their state in Bosnia called ‘Bosanska Krajina’. It was a feudal state ruled by local lords who pledged allegiance to the king.

The Ottoman Empire

In 1463 AD, Bosanska Krajina fell to Ottoman Turks after a long period of warfare. The Ottomans renamed Bosnia as ‘Bosna Eyalet’ and incorporated it into their empire.

During Ottoman rule, Bosnia experienced significant cultural and economic growth. Many mosques, public buildings, bridges, and other infrastructure projects were built during this time.

Austro-Hungarian Rule

The Ottoman Empire declined in the 19th century, and Bosnia became part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire in 1878. The Austro-Hungarians renamed Bosnia as ‘Bosnien und Herzegowina’. They modernized the country’s infrastructure, established industries, and introduced new technologies.


In conclusion, Bosnia has been called by different names throughout history. The Illyrians called it by their own name, the Romans called it ‘Bosna’, the Slavs called it ‘Bosanska Krajina’, the Ottomans called it ‘Bosna Eyalet’, and the Austro-Hungarians called it ‘Bosnien und Herzegowina’.

Each of these periods of history has left its mark on Bosnia’s culture, language, and architecture. Today, Bosnia and Herzegovina is a proud nation with a rich history that is always worth exploring.