The area now known as Latvia has been populated by ancient Baltic (and Finno-Ugric!) tribes since 3,000 BCE, but it was not until around 900 AD that the different tribes began forming specific territorial borders. Five tribes emerged: the kurši, līvi, latgaļi, sēļi, zemgaļi (Curonians, Livonians, Latgallians, Selonians, and Semigallians).
The kurši were known as the “Baltic Vikings”, with a warring nature, frequently raiding neighbouring settlements. These peoples lived on the west coast of the Baltic Sea.
The zemgaļi and sēļi were known to be excellent farmers, settling along the Daugava River, east of the kurši.
The līvi lived along the shore of the Gulf of Riga and were primarily traders and fishermen.
The latgaļi were the largest tribe, settling in the area east and north of the Daugava. The Latgallian’s territory was known as Jersika, and was ruled by Greek Orthodox rulers from the Rurik Dynasty (early Rus peoples).