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the northernmost group of Eastern Slavs, who in the sixth to tenth centuries occupied the shores of Lake Il’men’, the basins of the Volkhov, Lovat’, and Msta rivers, and the upper reaches of the Mologa River.
The archaeological monuments of the Il’men’ Slavs of the sixth to eighth centuries are the sites of farming settlements and high conical mounds containing the remains of cremated corpses. The oldest layer of the fortified town site dates to the seventh and eighth centuries. An iron plowshare from a sokha (light wooden plow) is evidence of well-developed agriculture. In the ninth to 12th centuries the cities of Staraia Russa and Novgorod grew up on the lands of the Il’men’ Slavs. Eventually, the lands became the nucleus of the possessions of the Novgorod Feudal Republic.