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Female Mobility Key Element in Cultural Interchange during Stone Age and Bronze Age: Study

4,000 years ago European women left their birth settlements and travelled far to form families, taking with them new objects and cultural ideas

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Female mobility during the Stone Age and Bronze Age was a key element in cultural interchange (Representational Image). Pixabay

Berlin, Sep 05, 2017: Female mobility during the final phase of the Stone Age and start of the Bronze Age was a key element in cultural interchange between regions, according to a new study.

The study, published on Monday in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) magazine, shows how 4,000 years ago European women left their birth settlements and travelled far to form families, taking with them new objects and cultural ideas, Germany’s Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History said.

The report is based on the graves found in the Lech valley, south of the city of Augsburg, reports Efe news.

In the families living in the settlements in the region at that time, the majority of women came from other areas, probably from Bohemia or central Germany several hundred kilometres away, while the men normally remained in or very near their birth location.

According to the researchers, this “patrilocal” type of social pattern, in which new couples live in the territory of the man’s family, combined with individual female mobility, was not a temporary phenomenon but rather lasted for some 800 years during the transition from the Stone Age to the Bronze Age.

Participating in the study headed by Philipp Stockhammer, of Munich’s Ludwig-Maximilians University, were Corina Knipper of the Curt-Engelhorn-Centre for Archaeometry, along with Alissa Mittnik and Johannes Krause of the Max Planck Institute and the University of Tuebingen.

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“Individual mobility was a major feature characterising the lives of people in Central Europe even in the third and early second millennium,” said Stockhammer regarding a phenomenon that the researchers believe fostered the development of new technologies in the Bronze Age.

The scientific team used genetic and isotope analysis along with archaeological evaluations to research the remains of 84 individuals buried between 2,500 and 1,650 B.C. in cemeteries belonging to individual homesteads and containing up to several dozen burials made over several generations. (IANS)

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Bronze Age History Indicates European Women Travelled While Men Stayed Home

The findings shed light on the importance of female mobility for cultural exchange in the Bronze Age

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Bronze Age
European women travelled far from their home villages to start their families in bronze age. IANS

London, Sep 07, 2017: In the early Bronze Age nearly 4,000 years ago, European women travelled far from their home villages to start their families, bringing with them new cultural objects and ideas, while men usually remained in the region of their birth, a research has showed.

The findings, which shed light on the importance of female mobility for cultural exchange in the Bronze Age, showed that the practice persisted over a period of 800 years during the transition from the Neolithic to the Early Bronze Age.

This played a significant role in the exchange of cultural objects and ideas, which increased considerably in the Bronze Age, in turn promoting the development of new technologies, the researchers said.

For the study, published in the journal PNAS, the team examined the remains of 84 individuals buried between 2500 and 1650 BC, and found that at the end of the Stone Age and in the early Bronze Age, families were established in a surprising manner in the Lech, south of Augsburg, in present-day Germany.

Also Read: Female Mobility Key Element in Cultural Interchange during Stone Age and Bronze Age: Study 

The majority of women came from outside the area, probably from Bohemia or Central Germany, while men usually remained in the region of their birth.

“We see a great diversity of different female lineages, which would occur if over time many women relocated to the Lech Valley from somewhere else,” said Alissa Mittnik from the Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History in Germany.

This so-called patrilocal pattern combined with individual female mobility was not a temporary phenomenon, but persisted over a period of 800 years, they said.

The study allowed researchers to view the immense extent of early human mobility in a new light.

“Individual mobility was a major feature characterising the lives of people in Central Europe even in the third and early second millennium,” said Philipp Stockhammer, from the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universitat Munchen. (IANS)

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Recent Archaeological Digs Show the Remains of ‘Skull Cult’ in Turkey

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Gobekli Tepe, Turkey
Gobekli Tepe was a place where the people from the Stone Age use to gather around 9,000 years ago. Wikimedia
  • A study by the German Archaeological Institute suggested that Gobekli Tepe was a place of ritualistic significance
  • There were 691 fragments of bones at the site and 408 of them belonged to human skulls
  • There were no signs of decapitation and it was clear that the changes were made shortly after their death

Turkey, July 1, 2017: Gobekli Tepe was a place where the people from the Stone Age use to gather around 9,000 years ago. It was a time long before the kingdoms or the kings use to rule the lands.

A study by the German Archaeological Institute released in the journal ‘Science Advances’ suggested that Gobekli Tepe was a place of ritualistic significance performed by the early humans.

It is inevident that the people who were buried died there, but there were 691 fragments of bones and 408 of them belonged to human skulls. Moreover, according to the study the site also consisted of monolithic T-shaped limestone pillars and a stockpile of limestone sculptures. In fact, the research also shows the signs of deliberate modifications on the skull fragments.

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Deep grooves across the foreheads of the skull were also found and some skulls even had hole drilled into it. It showed the signs that the skulls were put on display so that the visitors could see them hanging. Though there were no signs of decapitation and it was clear that the changes were made shortly after the death of those people.

These kinds of remains were also found in other archaeological sites where the skulls were used to worship and in the ancient cities of Anatolia and Levant.

Anthropologists say that these practices were because people used human skulls for various reasons- some people used to worship ancestors, others thought the dead could protect the living and some groups also used skulls of their animals to display. They refer to these groups as ‘Skull Cults’.

Gobekli Tepe also seems to be one of the oldest skull cults that the researchers have come across till now.

– by Sumit Balodi of NewsGram. Twitter: @sumit_balodi

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Humans existed in Bengaluru 4 lakh years ago, claims Archaeologist

"The discovery confirms man's existence in this area during the Stone Age," claimed Dr K B Shivatarak, retired professor of ancient history and archaeology, Mangalore University

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Palaeolithic stone tools. Image Source: Wikimedia Commons
  • Shivatarak claims that the evidence was discovered in May 2016 near the Kadirenahalli underpass at Bendrenagar, Banashankari II Stage
  • The five stone implements collected by him from Banashankari includes scraper, miniature hand axe, leaf-like instrument, hand axe and hand stone
  • The remains are similar to that of stones founded near Abhimaan Studio near Kengeri

BENGALURU: An archaeologist claimed that Bengaluru city may have been home to humans since four lakh years and believes that he has unearthed the earliest pre-historic evidence in Bengaluru for the first time.

“The discovery confirms man’s existence in this area during the Stone Age,” claimed Dr K B Shivatarak, retired professor of ancient history and archaeology, Mangalore University.

Skeleton of Prehistoric Men. Image Source: Wikimedia Commons
The skeleton of Prehistoric Men. Image Source: Wikimedia Commons

Shivatarak claims that the evidence was discovered in May 2016 near the Kadirenahalli underpass at Bendrenagar, Banashankari II Stage. BWSSB had decided to fix the leakage in the area by digging the road, mentioned the TOI report on July 7, 2016.

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Shivatarak was curious to look onto the stones, the workers have found out. When he washed the stones he found them closely related to the instruments he founded in Tumakuru, Mandya and Chitradurga districts where he researched earlier.

Palaeolithic stone instruments. Image Source: Wikimedia Commons
Palaeolithic stone instruments. Image Source: Wikimedia Commons

The five stone instruments collected by him from Banashankari includes scraper, miniature hand axe, a leaf-like instrument, hand axe and hand stone. The miniature hand axe was made of quartz and quartzite. All the instruments were around 7-11cm long and 4-7cm broad.

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According to Shivtarak, the instruments were used by the prehistoric man for the hunting purposes. The stones were widely used in hunting and peeling off the animal skin. Shivatarak had not yet informed the archaeological department about his findings.

Miniature hand axe. Image Source: Wikimedia Commons
Miniature hand axe. Image Source: Wikimedia Commons

Shivatarak claimed, this is the first time that Palaeolithic remains have been found in Bengaluru. The remains are similar to that of stones founded near Abhimaan Studio near Kengeri.

“I am studying these findings in detail,” said Shivatarak.

But, the other archaeologists are doubtful about the fact that whether the stone age was inhabited in the area where later Bengaluru came up. According to Prof. Ravi Kori Settar, retired professor of archaeology at Karnataka University, there is no scope for the Palaeolithic stone instruments in Bengaluru as no quartzite dig was found in the city, mentioned the TOI report.

Quartzite Cobbles. Image Source: www.pinterest.com
Quartzite Cobbles. Image Source: www.pinterest.com

Professor Settar also claimed that no Palaeolithic tools can be found in the granite area and hence must be Pseudolithic (look likes of Palaeolithic) or Erolits (mimic Palaeolithic caused due to some natural activity).

– prepared by Aparna Gupta, an intern with NewsGram. Twitter @writetoaparna99

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