Old European hydronymy has been taken as indicating an early (Bronze Age) Indo-European predecessor of the later centum languages.Europa Polyglotta, Linguarum Genealogiam exhibens, una cum Literis, Scribendique modis, Omnium Gentium ("multilingual Europe, exhibiting a genealogy of tongues together with the letters and modes of writing of all peoples"), from Synopsis Universae Philologiae (1741).
The 4th century Tabula Peutingeriana records the names of numerous peoples and tribes.
Ethnographers of Late Antiquity such as Agathias of Myrina Ammianus Marcellinus, Jordanes or Theophylact Simocatta give early accounts of the Slavs, the Franks, the Alamanni and the Goths.
The total number of national or linguistic minority populations in Europe is estimated at 105 million people, or 14% of 770 million Europeans.
Western There is no precise or universally accepted definition of the terms "ethnic group" or "nationality".
A pre-Roman stage of Proto-Basque can only be reconstructed with great uncertainty.
Regarding the European Bronze Age, the only secure reconstruction is that of Proto-Greek (ca. A Proto-Italo-Celtic ancestor of both Italic and Celtic (assumed for the Bell beaker period), and a Proto-Balto-Slavic language (assumed for roughly the Corded Ware horizon) has been postulated with less confidence.
The Indigenous peoples of Europe are the focus of European ethnology, the field of anthropology related to the various indigenous groups that reside in the nations of Europe.
According to German monograph Minderheitenrechte in Europa co-edited by Pan and Pfeil (2002) there are 87 distinct peoples of Europe, of which 33 form the majority population in at least one sovereign state, while the remaining 54 constitute ethnic minorities.
The Chronicon Slavorum (12th century) gives an account of the northwestern Slavic tribes.
Gottfried Hensel in his 1741 Synopsis Universae Philologiae published what is probably the earliest ethno-linguistic map of Europe, showing the beginning of the pater noster in the various European languages and scripts.
William Rubruck, while most notable for his account of the Mongols, in his account of his journey to Asia also gives accounts of the Tatars and the Alans.