Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home
Hostname: page-component-59b7f5684b-n9lxd Total loading time: 0.587 Render date: 2022-09-29T13:37:35.205Z Has data issue: true Feature Flags: { "shouldUseShareProductTool": true, "shouldUseHypothesis": true, "isUnsiloEnabled": true, "useRatesEcommerce": false, "displayNetworkTab": true, "displayNetworkMapGraph": false, "useSa": true } hasContentIssue true

Chapter Ten - Warfare or Sacrifice? Archaeological Research on the Bronze Age Site in the Tollense Valley, Northeast Germany

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  06 April 2018

Christian Horn
Affiliation:
Christian-Albrechts Universität zu Kiel, Germany
Kristian Kristiansen
Affiliation:
Göteborgs Universitet, Sweden
Get access

Summary

Find material from several archaeological sites over a stretch of 2.5 km along the valley of the River Tollense in northeast Germany, dating to about 1.250 BC, seem to indicate violent Bronze Age conflict on a so far unexpected scale. Skeletal remains of at least 110 mostly male individuals, partly with perimortal as well as healed lesions, have been excavated together with horse remains in the valley. Finds of two wooden clubs, numerous bronze and flint arrowheads as well as bone spearheads indicate the use of mostly simple but effective weapons. This is in some contrast to finds from mounds where bronze weapons such as swords and spearheads testify to prestigious burials. Recent findings indicate a Bronze Age wooden construction in the river valley, possibly a bridge, close to the beginning of the find concentration. Among the find material from the Tollense valley there are also various bronze objects dating to Period III, for instance two small tin ingots and gold spiral rings. They offer the possibility to discuss the relevance of these sites in the Tollense valley in view of the role of violent conflicts and of possible ritual acts connected to these events.
Type
Chapter
Information
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2018

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below. (Log in options will check for institutional or personal access. Content may require purchase if you do not have access.)

References

Bennike, P., Palaeopathology of Danish Skeletons. A comparative Study of Demography, Disease and Injury (Copenhagen: Akademisk Forlag, 1985).Google Scholar
Beltz, R., ‘Kegelgräber von Friedrichsruhe’, Mecklenburger Jahrbücher 47 (1882), 257287.Google Scholar
Brinker, U., Das Tollensetal zwischen Wodarg und Weltzin, Lkr. Demmin. Schauplatz einer kriegerischen Auseinandersetzung in der Älteren Bronzezeit? Eine osteoarchäologische Analyse. MA thesis, University of Hamburg (2009).Google Scholar
Brinker, U./Krüger, J./Lübke, H., ‘Taucharchäologische Untersuchungen zur Frage der Herkunft der bronzezeitlichen Menschenfunde im Tollensetal bei Weltzin, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern – ein Vorbericht’, Nachrichtenblatt Arbeitskreis Unterwasserarchäologie 16 (2010), 4147.Google Scholar
Dombrowsky, A., Bronzezeitliche Metallfunde aus dem Gebiet der mittleren Tollense unter besonderer Berücksichtigung der Flussfunde. MA thesis, University of Greifswald (2011).Google Scholar
Dombrowsky, A., ‘Bronzezeitliche Metallfunde aus dem Gebiet der mittleren Tollense unter besonderer Berücksichtigung der Flussfunde’, in Jantzen et al. (eds.), pp. 131–180.
Franz, A., Germanischer Götterkult. Das Geheimnis der geopferten Armee. www.spiegel.de/wissenschaft/mensch/germanischer-goetterkult-das-geheimnis-dergeopferten-armee-a-647876.html (accessed 14.09.2009)
Fröhlich, A., Studien zur mittleren Bronzezeit zwischen Thüringer Wald und Altmark, Leipziger Tieflandsbucht und Oker (Braunschweig: Braunschweigisches Landesmuseum, 1983).Google Scholar
Frost, L., ‘Flodfund’, Skalk 2 (2010), 1115.Google Scholar
Fyllingen, H., ‘Society and violence in the Early Bronze Age. An analysis of human skeletons from Nord-Trøndelag, Norway’, Norwegian Archaeological Review 36 (2003), 2743.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Fyllingen, H., ‘Society and the structure of violence. A story told by Middle Bronze Age human remains from central Norway’, in Otto, T., Thrane, H. and Vandkilde, H. (eds.), Warfare and Society. Archaeological and Social Anthropological Perspectives (Aarhus: Aarhus University Press, 2006), pp. 319329.Google Scholar
Gammelgaard, M., An entire army sacrificed in a bog. http://cas.au.dk/en/currently/nyhed/artikel/an-entire-army-sacrificed-in-a-bog/ (accessed 27.11.2012)
Harding, A., Warriors and Weapons in Bronze Age Europe (Budapest: Archaeolingua, 2007).Google Scholar
Ilkjær, J., ‘Dänische Kriegsbeuteopfer’, in Jørgensen, Lars (ed.), Sieg und Triumpf. Der Norden im Schatten des Römischen Reiches (Kopenhagen: Nationalmuseet, 2003), pp. 4465.Google Scholar
Jantzen, C., ‘Wann und warum entstanden die Menschenknochenlager?’, Archäologie in Deutschland 4/1997 (1997), 46.Google Scholar
Jantzen, C., Jantzen, D. and Terberger, T., ‘Der Fundplatz Weltzin, Lkr. Demmin – ein Zeugnis bronzezeitlicher Konflikte?’, in Piek, J. and Terberger, T. (eds.), Traumatologische und pathologische Veränderungen an prähistorischen und historischen Skelettresten. Diagnose, Ursachen und Kontext (Rahden/Westf.: Marie Leidorf, 2008), pp. 8997.Google Scholar
Jantzen, D., Brinker, U., Orschiedt, J., Heinemeier, J., Piek, J., Hauenstein, K., Krüger, J., Lidke, G., Lübke, H., Lampe, R., Lorenz, S., Schult, M. and Terberger, T., ‘A Bronze Age battlefield? Weapons and trauma in the Tollense valley, north-eastern Germany’, Antiquity 85 (2011), 417433.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Jantzen, D., Orschiedt, J., Piek, J. and Terberger, T. (eds.), Tod im Tollensetal. Forschungen zu den Hinterlassenschaften eines bronzezeitlichen Gewaltkonfliktes in MecklenburgVorpommern 1. Die Forschungen bis 2011 (Schwerin: Landesamt für Kultur und Denkmalpflege Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, 2014).Google Scholar
Jantzen, D. and Terberger, T., ‘Gewaltsamer Tod im Tollensetal vor über 3200 Jahren’, Archäologie in Deutschland 4/2011 (2011), 611.Google Scholar
Just, F., ‘Das Hügelgrab von Neu Grebs, Kreis Ludwigslust’, Bodendenkmalpflege in Mecklenburg, Jahrbuch 1968 (1970), 191210.
Krüger, J., Nagel, F., Nagel, S., Jantzen, D., Lampe, R., Dräger, J., Lidke, G., Mecking, O., Schüler, T. and Terberger, T., ‘Bronze Age tin rings from the Tollense valley in northeastern Germany’, Praehistorische Zeitschrift 87 (2012), 2943.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Lidke, G., Brinker, U., Dräger, J., Jantzen, D., Krüger, J. and Terberger, T., ‘Mehr als nur blanke Knochen. Archäologische Forschungen zum „Schlachtfeld der Bronzezeit’ im Tollensetal, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern (2008–2011)’, in Eickhoff, S. and Schopper, F. (eds.), Schlachtfeld und Massengrab. Spektren interdisziplinärer Auswertung von Orten der Gewalt (Wünsdorf: Brandenburgisches Landesamt f. Denkmalpflege, 2014), pp. 1724.Google Scholar
Osgood, H., ‘The dead of Tormarton: Bronze Age combat victims?’, in Otto, T., Thrane, H. and Vandkilde, H. (eds.), Warfare and Society. Archaeological and Social Anthropological Perspectives (Aarhus: Aarhus University Press, 2006), pp. 331340.Google Scholar
Schmidt, J.-P., ‘Die Bewaffnung während der Bronzezeit’, in Jöns, H. and Lüth, F. (eds.), Mythos und Magie. Archäologische Schätze der Bronzezeit aus MecklenburgVorpommern (Lübstorf: Archäologisches Landesmuseum, 2004), pp. 5762.Google Scholar
Schoknecht, U., ‘“Diese Fibel ist aus Spindlersfeld …”’, Archäologische Berichte aus Mecklenburg-Vorpommern 7 (2000), 4850.Google Scholar
Schoknecht, U., ‘Die Schmuckdose aus Weltzin, Lkr. Demmin’, Archäologische Berichte aus Mecklenburg-Vorpommern 12 (2005), 1012.Google Scholar
Schubart, H., Die Funde der älteren Bronzezeit in Mecklenburg (Neumünster: Wachholtz, 1972).Google Scholar
Terberger, T., Dombrowsky, A., Dräger, J., Jantzen, D., Krüger, J. and Lidke, G., ‘Professionelle Krieger in der Bronzezeit vor 3300 Jahren? Zu den Überresten eines Gewaltkonfliktes im Tollensetal, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern’, in Link, T. and Peter-Röcher, H. (eds.), Gewalt und Gesellschaft. Dimensionen der Gewalt in ur- und frühgeschichtlicher Zeit (Bonn: Habelt, 2014), pp. 93109.Google Scholar
Ulrich, J., ‘Neue Baggerfunde aus der Tollense im Raum Kessin-Weltzin, Landkreis Demmin’, Archäologische Berichte aus Mecklenburg-Vorpommern 15 (2008), 2235.Google Scholar
Vandkilde, H., ‘Bronze Age warfare in temperate Europe’, in Hansen, S. and Müller, J. (eds.), Sozialarchäologische Perspektiven. Gesellschaftlicher Wandel 5000–1500 v. Chr. zwischen Atlantik und Kaukasus (Darmstadt: von Zabern, 2011), pp. 365380.Google Scholar

Save book to Kindle

To save this book to your Kindle, first ensure coreplatform@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about saving to your Kindle.

Note you can select to save to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be saved to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

Available formats
×

Save book to Dropbox

To save content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about saving content to Dropbox.

Available formats
×

Save book to Google Drive

To save content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about saving content to Google Drive.

Available formats
×