|Geographical range||Central Europe|
|Period||Late Bronze Age to early Iron Age|
|Preceded by||Urnfield culture, Trzciniec culture|
|Followed by||Pomeranian culture|
| Prehistory and|
protohistory of Poland
| Stone Age |
Bronze and Iron Age
Early Middle Ages
| Lusatian culture |
The Lusatian culture existed in the later Bronze Age and early Iron Age (1300 BC – 500 BC) in most of what is now Poland and parts of the Czechia, Slovakia, eastern Germany and western Ukraine. It covers the Periods Montelius III (early Lusatian culture) to V of the Northern European chronological scheme.
There were close contacts with the Nordic Bronze Age.Hallstatt and La Tène influences can also be seen particularly in ornaments (fibulae, pins) and weapons.
The Lusatian culture developed as the preceding Trzciniec culture experienced influences from the Tumulus culture of the Middle Bronze Age, essentially incorporating the local communities into the socio-political network of Iron Age Europe.It formed part of the Urnfield systems found from eastern France, southern Germany and Austria to Hungary and the Nordic Bronze Age in northwestern Germany and Scandinavia. It was followed by the Billendorf culture of the Early Iron Age in the West. In Poland, the Lusatian culture is taken have spanned part of the Iron Age as well (there is only a terminological difference) and was succeeded in Montelius VIIbc in the northern ranges around the mouth of Vistula by the Pomeranian culture spreading south.
'Lusatian-type' burials were first described by the German pathologist and archaeologist Rudolf Virchow (1821–1902). The name refers to the Lusatia area in eastern Germany (Brandenburg and Saxony) and western Poland. Virchow identified the pottery artifacts as 'pre-Germanic' but refused to speculate on the ethnic identity of their makers.[ citation needed ] The Polish archeologist Józef Kostrzewski, who started in 1934 to conduct extensive excavations of a Lusatian settlement of Biskupin, hypothesised that the Lusatian culture was a predecessor of later cultures that belonged to the early Slavs. Modern archeologists, such as Kazimierz Godłowski and Piotr Kaczanowski, hold the view that the ethnic geography of Bronze Age Central Europe then included peoples whose languages and ethnic identity are simply unknown.
Burial was by cremation; inhumations are rare. The urn is usually accompanied by numerous (up to 40) secondary vessels. Metal grave gifts are sparse, but there are numerous hoards (such as Kopaniewo, Pomerania) that contain rich metalwork, both bronze and gold (hoard of Eberswalde, Brandenburg). Graves containing moulds, like at Bataune, Saxony and tuyeres, attest to the production of bronze tools and weapons at the village level. The 'royal' tomb of Seddin, Brandenburg, Germany, covered by a large earthen barrow, contained Mediterranean imports like bronze vessels and glass beads. Cemeteries can be quite large and contain thousands of graves.
Well-known settlements include Biskupin, in Poland, and Buch, near Berlin. There are both open villages and fortified settlements (burgwall or grod) on hilltops or in swampy areas. The ramparts were constructed of wooden boxes filled with soil or stones.
Its economy was mainly based on arable agriculture, as is attested by numerous storage pits. Wheat (emmer) and six-row barley formed the basic crops, together with millet, rye and oats, peas, broad beans, lentils, and gold of pleasure (Camelina sativa). Flax was grown, and remains of domesticated apples, pears and plums have been found. Cattle and pigs were the most important domestic animals, followed by sheep, goats, horses and dogs. Pictures on Iron Age urns from Silesia attest horse riding, but horses were used to draw chariots as well. Hunting was practiced, as bones of red and roe deer, boar, bison, elk, hare, fox, and wolf attest, but it did not provide much of the meat consumed. The numerous frog bones found at Biskupin may indicate that frogs' legs were eaten as well.
Hoards in swampy areas are considered by some archaeologists (Hänsel) as 'gifts for the Gods'. Human bones in 5 m deep sacrificial pits in Lossow (Brandenburg) might point to human sacrifice and possible ritual cannibalism [ citation needed ].
The Urnfield culture was a late Bronze Age culture of Central Europe, often divided into several local cultures within a broader Urnfield tradition. The name comes from the custom of cremating the dead and placing their ashes in urns which were then buried in fields. Over much of Europe, the Urnfield culture followed the Tumulus culture and was succeeded by the Hallstatt culture. Some linguists, such as Peter Schrijver, have suggested that the people of this area may have spoken a form of Italo-Celtic, and suggest that the Proto-Celtic language may have originated in a dialect spoken by members of this group.
The Hallstatt culture was the predominant Western and Central European culture of Late Bronze Age from the 12th to 8th centuries BC and Early Iron Age Europe from the 8th to 6th centuries BC, developing out of the Urnfield culture of the 12th century BC and followed in much of its area by the La Tène culture. It is commonly associated with Proto-Celtic populations. Older assumptions of the early 20th century of Illyrians having been the bearers of especially the Eastern Hallstatt culture are indefensable and archeologically unsubstantiated.
Biskupin is an archaeological site and a life-size model of a late Bronze Age fortified settlement in north-central Poland that also serves as an archaeological open-air museum. When first discovered it was thought to be early evidence of a West Slavic settlement, but archaeologists later confirmed it belonged to the Biskupin group of the Lusatian culture from the 8th century BC. The excavation and the reconstruction of the prehistoric settlement has played an instrumental part in Polish historical consciousness.
Józef Kostrzewski was a Polish archaeologist.
The Pomeranian culture, also Pomeranian or Pomerelian Face Urn culture was an Iron Age culture with origins in parts of the area south of the Baltic Sea, from the 7th century BC to the 3rd century BC, which eventually covered most of today's Poland.
The Únětice culture or Aunjetitz culture is an archaeological culture at the start of the Central European Bronze Age, dated roughly to about 2300–1800 BC. The eponymous site for this culture, the village of Únětice, is located in the central Czech Republic, northwest of Prague. There are about 1,400 documented Únětice culture sites in the Czech Republic and Slovakia, 550 sites in Poland, and, in Germany, about 500 sites and loose finds locations. The Únětice culture is also known from north-eastern Austria, and from western Ukraine.
The Jastorf culture was an Iron Age material culture in what are now north Germany and Denmark, spanning the 6th to 1st centuries BC, forming the southern part of the Pre-Roman Iron Age. The culture evolved out of the Nordic Bronze Age, through influence from the Hallstatt culture farther south.
The Tumulus culture dominated Central Europe during the Middle Bronze Age.
The Penard Period is a metalworking phase of the Bronze Age in Britain spanning the period c. 1275 BC to c. 1140 BC.
The prehistory and protohistory of Poland can be traced from the first appearance of Homo species on the territory of modern-day Poland, to the establishment of the Polish state in the 10th century AD, a span of roughly 500,000 years.
Upper Lusatia is a historical region in Germany and Poland. Along with Lower Lusatia to the north, it makes up the region of Lusatia, named after the Slavic Lusici tribe. Both Lusatias are home to the West Slavic minority group of the Sorbs.
Thraco-Cimmerian is a historiographical and archaeological term, composed of the names of the Thracians and the Cimmerians. It refers to 8th to 7th century BC cultures that are linked in Eastern Central Europe and in the area west of the Black Sea.
The archaeology of Northern Europe studies the prehistory of Scandinavia and the adjacent North European Plain, roughly corresponding to the territories of modern Sweden, Norway, Denmark, northern Germany, Poland and the Netherlands.
Prehistoric France is the period in the human occupation of the geographical area covered by present-day France which extended through prehistory and ended in the Iron Age with the Celtic "La Tène culture".
The European Bronze Age is characterized by bronze artifacts and the use of bronze implements. The regional Bronze Age succeeds the Neolithic. It starts with the Aegean Bronze Age in 3200 BC (succeeded by the Beaker culture), and spans the entire 2nd millennium BC in Northern Europe, lasting until c. 600 BC.
The Elp culture is a Bronze Age archaeological culture of the Netherlands having earthenware pottery of low quality known as "Kümmerkeramik" as a marker. The initial phase is characterized by tumuli, strongly tied to contemporary tumuli in Northern Germany and Scandinavia, and apparently related to the Tumulus culture in Central Europe. This phase was followed by a subsequent change featuring Urnfield (cremation) burial customs.
In Europe, the Iron Age is the last stage of the prehistoric period and the first of the protohistoric periods, which initially means descriptions of a particular area by Greek and Roman writers. For much of Europe, the period came to an abrupt local end after conquest by the Romans, though ironworking remained the dominant technology until recent times. Elsewhere it may last until the early centuries AD, and either Christianization or a new conquest in the Migration Period.
The Bronze and Iron Age cultures in Poland are known mainly from archeological research. Early Bronze Age cultures in Poland began around 2300–2400 BCE, while the Iron Age commenced in approximately 700–750 BCE. The Iron Age archeological cultures no longer existed by the start of the Common Era. The subject of the ethnicity and linguistic affiliation of the groups living in Central Europe at that time is, given the absence of written records, speculative, and accordingly there is considerable disagreement. In Poland the Lusatian culture, spanning both the Bronze and Iron Ages, became particularly prominent. The most famous archeological finding from that period is the Biskupin fortified settlement (gord) on the lake from which it takes its name, representing the Lusatian culture of the early Iron Age.
The House Urns culture was an early Iron Age culture of the 7th century BC in central Germany, in the Region between Harz Mountains and the junction of river Saale to river Elbe. It was the western periphery of the bronze and Iron Age Lusatian culture.
After the glaciers of the Ice Age in the Early Stone Age withdrew from the area, which since about 1000 AD is called Pomerania, in what are now northern Germany and Poland, they left a tundra. First humans appeared, hunting reindeer in the summer. A climate change in 8000 BC allowed hunters and foragers of the Ertebølle-Ellerbek culture to continuously inhabit the area. These people became influenced by farmers of the Linear Pottery culture who settled in southern Pomerania. The hunters of the Ertebølle-Ellerbek culture became farmers of the Funnelbeaker culture in 3000 BC. The Havelland culture dominated in the Uckermark from 2500 to 2000 BC. In 2400 BC, the Corded Ware culture reached Pomerania and introduced the domestic horse. Both Linear Pottery and Corded Ware culture have been associated with Indo-Europeans. Except for Western Pomerania, the Funnelbeaker culture was replaced by the Globular Amphora culture a thousand years later.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Lusatian culture .|