The purpose of the present study is to present the demographic characteristics of the urban settlements situated in the mountainous disadvantaged area of the South-West Development Region, Oltenia. Following our analysis, several aspects have been asserted: the numerical evolution of the population and identifying categories of urban settlements as resulting from the demographic dynamics, the natural and territorial movement of the population, the demographic behaviour expressed by demographic potential and marriage stability, the indicators pointing out gender, age, ethnical and confessional structure of the population.
Abstract: Situated in the South-West of Romania, Oltenia represents an important region, both from a historical and a geographical point of view, having a continuous population from ancient times. This statement is sustained by the variety of oiconyms, but also by the linguistic origin of most of the terms. Depending both on social-political circumstances, but also on physical-geographical determinations, oiconyms emphasize the features of the natural background and the peculiarities of the economic development. Among the categories of oiconyms found in Oltenia, we have chosen to analyse those ones that originate in the forest domain. The elements of spontaneous and cultivated forest vegetation have an important place in the oyconimy of Oltenia. The geoecological conditions both determinated the dimension and the structure of the forest cover, but also the tree cover. At present, the actual spread of the forest is connected with the ancient humanization of the Dacic population and its continuity. In the course of time, the population exerted a continuous pressure on the forest by grazing, which is a traditional occupation, even if, as compared to other regions, the forest cover had a lower percentage in the overall surface of Oltenia. The need to extend the cultivated areas, also expressed by the repeated deforestation, especially within plain areas is pointed out by the frequency of oiconyms that assign deforestation. The presence of the forest, its spatial dimension and the composition of the forest and tree areas regarding the component species, but also the geographical repartition of the corresponding oiconyms represent the basic coordinates of the present study. The specialized analysis of oiconyms in specific phytotoponyms emphasizes the fact that assigning names for localities has been made according to the surrounding reality. Also, the form of presentation for oiconyms in their dynamics, starting with the first documentary mention, both reveal the Romanian models of their formation and the historicaldemographical conditions in which the settlement network has evolved.
Abstract: Following the industrialization, migration of the work force from rural to urban settlements, as well as the considerable natural increase, more towns have passed from one demographic category to another, a fact which influenced the ranking of every towns in the national and regional hierarchy. The analysis of the rank variation on long term indicates that there are four categories of towns: towns having a negative dynamics, oscillatory dynamics, positive or stable one.