Wednesday, January 16, 2019

Not So Simple (Lemercier, 2018)

This paper was mentioned over at Eurogenes.  

"It seems vain to want to comprehend all the Bell Beakers manifestations in a single theory."

That's from Oliver Lemercier, 2018.  Local Data and Global Perspectives in Bell Beaker Archaeology in the Journal of Neolithic Archaeology.
From the paper

There is an ironic and inverse relationship between knowledge and theory when it comes to the Bell Beakers.  The more you learn about Bell Beakers, the more difficult it is to make bold declarations.  I believe it was Turek that said this mystery isn't because Beakers were unusual people or something, but because they lived so long ago and left us no written account of their civilization.  So we have to guess at why they did the things they did, why they married who they did, what they spoke, and who they worshiped.

If I remember correctly, Lemercier has read, studied or collected an enormous body of documentation produced on the Bell Beakers; I recall it being several thousand documents.  Remember that much of the primary research on Beakers is documented in twenty-something languages spanning a century.  There's a lot out there.  So when Lemercier says 'it ain't that simple people', he has my attention.

Anyhow, that map above is amazing in the sense that the 'phenomenon' had such a wide arc of influence, even on very distant cultures.  The Beaker stylistic influences actually go beyond the yellow peripheral areas in theory.

While a single theory of their development and motivations may be impossible, some basic statements can be said of their civilization, see Czebreszuk

Wednesday, January 2, 2019

Happy New Year 2019!

...goodbye and good riddance to piece of crap 2018!

2018 has sucked a lot for Beakerblog and many opportunities to blog about significant events in Beaker archaeology were missed due to other responsibilities.  Beakerblog shed two major responsibilities at the end of 2018 that should allow for many blogging opportunities this next year.

My new year's resolution is to outnumber previous blog posts by half!   Let's see what happens.

The advent of ancient DNA comes at a precarious time in European history.  Does migration mean nothing?  It looks as if European archaeology is struggling greatly with the facts on one hand, and an ideal on the other.

Expect a year of heated discussion, and more Beaker graves!