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Europe before Rome A Site-by-Site Tour of the Stone, Bronze, and Iron Ages



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Oxford University Press
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Werner Herzog's 2011 filmCave of Forgotten Dreams, about the painted caves at Chauvet, France brought a glimpse of Europe's extraordinary prehistory to a popular audience. But paleolithic cave paintings, stunning as they are, form just a part a story that begins with the arrival of the first humans to Europe 1.3 million years ago and culminates in the achievements of Greece and Rome. InEurope before Rome, T. Douglas Price takes readers on a guided tour through dozens of the most important prehistoric sites on the continent, from very recent discoveries to some of the most famous and puzzling places in the world, like Chauvet, Stonehenge, and Knossos. This volume focuses on more than 60 sites, organized chronologically according to their archaeological time period and accompanied by 200 illustrations, including color photographs, maps, and drawings. Our understanding of prehistoric European archaeology has been almost completely rewritten in the last 25 years with a series of major findings from virtually every time period, such as tzi the Iceman, the discoveries at Atapuerca, and evidence of a much earlier eruption at Mt. Vesuvius. Many of the sites explored in the book offer the earliest European evidence we have of the typical features of human society--tool making, hunting, cooking, burial practices, agriculture, and warfare. Introductory prologues to each chapter provide context for the wider changes in human behavior and society in the time period, while the author's concluding remarks offer expert reflections on the enduring significance of these places. Tracing the evolution of human society in Europe across more than a million years,Europe before Romegives readers a vivid portrait of life for prehistoric man and woman.

Author Biography

T. Douglas Price is Weinstein Professor of European Archaeology Emeritus at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. His books include Principles of Archaeology, Europe's First Farmers, and the leading introductory textbook in the discipline, Images of the Past.

Table of Contents

Chapter 1. Frameworks for Europe's Past
Geography and Environment
Raw Materials
Past Climates
Time and Chronology
A Very Short History of European Archaeology
Chapter 2. The First Europeans
Early Europeans
Atapuerca, Spain, 1,300,000 year ago
Boxgrove, England, UK, 500,000 years ago
Schöningen, Germany, 400,000 years ago
Krapina, Croatia,130,000 years ago
Salzgitter-Lebenstedt, Germany, 55,000 years ago
El Sidrón, Spain, 43,000 years ago
Grotte du Renne, France, 40,000 years ago
Vindija Cave, Croatia, 34,000 years ago
Ancient DNA
Neanderthal Diet
Some Reflections
Chapter 3. The Creative Explosion
Origin and Spread of Modern Humans
The Upper Paleolithic
Pestera cu Oase, Romania, 40,000 years ago
Grotte Chauvet, France, 32,000 years ago
Grande Grotte, France, 32,000 years ago
Dolní V?stonice, Czech Republic, 27,500 years ago
Grotte de la Vache, France, 14,000 years ago
Gönnersdorf, Germany, 11,500 years ago
Pincevent, France, 12,000 years ago
Doggerland, North Sea, 11,000 BC
The Last Hunters
Franchthi Cave, Greece, 9000 BC
Mount Sandel, Ireland, 7000 BC
Moita do Sebastaio, Portugal, 6000 BC
Polderveg, Netherlands, 5500 BC
Tybrind Vig, Denmark, 5000 BC
Vedbæk, Denmark, 5000 BC
Rock Art: Vingen, Norway, 5000 BC
Some Reflections
Chapter 4. The First Farmers
The Origins and Spread of Agriculture
Shillourokambos, Cyprus, 8200 BC
Nea Nikomedeia, Greece, 6200 BC
Lepenski Vir, Serbia, 6200 BC
Vinca, Serbia, 5500 BC
Rudna Glava, Serbia, 5000 BC
Varna, Bulgaria, 4500 BC
Passo di Corvo, Italy, 6000 BC
Vaihingen, Germany, 5300 BC
Polished Flint Axes
Spiennes, Belgium, 4400 BC
La Draga, Spain, 5000 BCArbon Bleich, Switzerland, 3384 BC
Ötzi, Italy, 3300 BC
The Megaliths of Western Europe
Skara Brae, Orkney Islands, UK, 3200 BC
Stonehenge, UK, 3100 BC
Newgrange, Ireland, 3100 BC
Los Millares, Spain, 3200 BC
Hal Saflieni, Malta, 3600 BC
Rock Art: Barranco de la Valtort, Spain, 5500 BC
Some Reflections
Chapter 5. Bronze Age Warriors
The Rise of Metals
The Bronze Age in the Aegean
Knossos, Crete, Greece, 3000 BC
Akrotiri, Greece, 1627 BC
Mykene, Greece, 1600 BC
Uluburun, Turkey, 1300 BC
The Bronze Age North of the Alps
Bell Beaker
Amesbury Archer, UK, 2470 BC
The Indo-Europeans
Croce del Papa, Italy, 2150 BC
Poggiomarino, Italy, 1600 BC
Nebra, Germany, 1600 BC
Bronze Age Finds
Sun Chariot, Denmark, 1400 BC
Bronze Lurs, Denmark, Sweden, ca. 1000 BC
Gold Hats, Germany, ca. 1000 BC
Flag Fen, UK, 1350 BC
Salcombe, UK, 1000 BC
Rock Art: Tanum, Sweden, 1500 BC
Some Reflections
Chapter 6. Centers of Power, Weapons of Iron
At the Edge of History
The Celts
The Germans
The Scythians
Making Iron
Biskupin, Poland, 738 BC
The Etruscans
Necropoli della Banditaccia, Italy, 650 BC
Hallstatt, Austria, 800 BC
Hochdorf, Germany, 530 BC
Vix, France 480 BC
Danebury, UK, 550 BC
Grauballe, Denmark, 300 BC
Manching, Germany, 300 BC
Gournay-sur-Aronde, France, 280 BC
Ribemont-sur-Ancre, France, 260 BC
Celtic Religion
Maiden Castle, UK, 43 BC
Some Reflections
An Epilogue. Past and Present - Lessons from Prehistoric Europe
Europe before Rome

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