, (or Suebi
etc.), were a large group of related Germanic peoples
who lived in Germania
and were first mentioned by Julius Caesar
in connection with Ariovistus
' campaign in Gaul
, c. 58 BC. While Caesar treated them as one Germanic tribe, though the largest and most warlike, later authors such as Tacitus, Pliny and Strabo specified that the Suevi "do not, like the Chatti
, constitute a single nation. They actually occupy more than half of Germany, and are divided into a number of distinct tribes under distinct names, though all generally are called Suebi". "At one time, classical ethnography had applied the name "Suevi" to so many Germanic tribes that it appeared as though in the first centuries A.D. this native name would replace the foreign name "Germans".