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The Kalderash are a subgroup of the Romani people. They were traditionally smiths and metal workers and speak a number of Romani dialects grouped together under the term Kalderash Romani, a sub-group of Vlax Romani.


The name Kalderash (kalderash in Romani, căldărari in Romanian, kalderás in Hungarian, калдараш (kaldarash) in Bulgarian, kalderaš in Serbo-Croatian, 'котляри (Kotlyary) in Ukrainian, and кэлдэрары (kelderary) in Russian) descends ultimately from Latin caldāria (related to Romanian căldare "cauldron, bucket, pail", Modern Greek καρδάρι (kardári) and English cauldron), in effect describing their trade as tinkers; see also the related to the Romanian word căldăraș.[1] Many Roma and non-Roma living throughout Europe have the surname "Caldaras", linking their ancestry to this Romani subgroup.[2] An annual Gypsy festival in San Sebastián, Basque Country, Spain, includes a procession of the Caldereros on February 2 each year.


There are about 200,000 Căldărari living in Romania. They spread throughout Ukraine migrating from Bessarabia to the north and east.


Due to industrialisation, metalcraft is no longer as profitable, so the Kalderash have diversified their sources of income, though often they remain in metallurgy.


The Kalderash traditional dress is one of the most famous Romani traditional dresses, and is still worn. They usually marry at a very young age (15–20, last 20 years in Russia 12–18) and have very strict customs relating to hygiene.

Notable Kalderash

See also


  1. ^ "ROMANI Project - Manchester". Romani.humanities.manchester.ac.uk. Retrieved 15 December 2017.
  2. ^ ""Gypsies" in the United States". Smithsonianeducation.org. Retrieved 15 December 2017.

Further reading

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