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La Tène Culture

(575 words)

Author(s): Pingel, Volker (Bochum)
[German version] Named after the archaeological site La Tène (field name) at Thielle on Lake Neuchâtel, Neuchâtel Canton, Switzerland. Soon after the discovery in the mid 19th cent., the La Tène Culture (LTC)/La Tène Period was recognized as typical of the later Iron Age in much of Central Europe and neighbouring areas. The site itself is, however, not particularly typical of the LTC, firstly because it offers a cross-section of finds (above all weapons and iron implements, wooden parts, etc.) tha…

Pottery, production of

(2,347 words)

Author(s): Pingel, Volker (Bochum) | Scheibler, Ingeborg (Krefeld)
[German version] I. Celtic-Germanic civilizations The manufacture of pottery in the Celtic and Germanic world is characterized by two shaping processes: 1) freehand moulding without any technical aids and 2) shaping on the potter’s wheel. Until the early Celts adopted the high-speed wheel from the Mediterranean world, coiling pots by hand and other freehand shaping methods were the sole methods and remained in practice into the Middle Ages to varying degrees. In central Europe, pottery thrown on potters’ wheels in local shops from the early Celtic 'princely seats' …

Sword

(862 words)

Author(s): Le Bohec, Yann (Lyon) | Pingel, Volker (Bochum)
[German version] I. Classical Antiquity The sword used in Rome's early period is referred to as ensis or gladius in the transmission (Verg. Aen. 7,743; 9,431; 12,458; Liv. 1,43,2). According to Livy, the soldiers of the first three classes ('divisions') in the Servian order of centuriae were equipped with swords (Liv. 1,43,2). The Gallic sword was longer and had no pointed tip, the Hispanic sword was short, had a tip and was more suitable for thrusting than for slashing (Liv. 22,46,5). In the period of the 2nd Punic W…

Oberdorla

(164 words)

Author(s): Pingel, Volker (Bochum)
[German version] O. is a bog in the district of Mühlhausen (Germany) where sacrifices were made. It was completely excavated 1957-1964, but published only in parts until now. It is a Germanic cult site that was used from the 6th cent. BC to the 4th cent. AD and which shows strong Celtic influences in the pre-Christian period. In the bog, various cultic areas were demarcated by stones or poles. Numerous animal bones (especially from cows and horses) and remains of sacrificial meals show that the si…

Amber

(687 words)

Author(s): Hünemörder, Christian (Hamburg) | Wartke, Ralf-B. (Berlin) | Pingel, Volker (Bochum)
[German version] I. General The fossil resin of the conifers that gets its name in German ( Bernstein) from its combustibility or as a succinite. The magnetic power of attraction of amber was already known to Thales (A 1,24 and A 3 DK); from the Greek name ἤλεκτρον ( ḗlektron) the modern term ‘electricity’ is derived. Mentioned in Aristotle (e.g. Met. 4,10,388b19 ff.) and Theophrastus (H. plant. 9,18,2; Lapid. 3,16; 5,28 and 29 [2]), and as sucinum in Tacitus (Germ. 45). Pliny (Italian thium, German glaesum: HN 37,31-46) characterizes amber as defluens medulla pinei generis arboribus (‘t…

Torques

(475 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg) | Pingel, Volker (Bochum)
('torque'; Lat. also torquis; Gr. στρεπτόν/ streptón, 'twisted'). [German version] I. Classical Antiquity Helically twisted collar of bronze, gold or silver with open but almost touching ends, which were thickened or figure-shaped and could sometimes be turned outwards. Torques are known from the Bronze Age onwards and numerous examples survive. The Greeks learned of torques from the Medes and Persians, where they were worn by people of high status (Hdt. 8,113,1; 9,80,4; Xen. Cyr. 1,3,2-3; cf. Curt. 3,3,13),…

Urnfield culture

(176 words)

Author(s): Pingel, Volker (Bochum)
[German version] Final section of the Central European Bronze Age (13th-8th cents. BC), named after the predominant custom of cremating and burying the dead in urns in largish burial fields (Necropolis IX). UC extends - connected by these shared ideas across Central Europe in various regional groups - from the northern edges of the German uplands to the Alps and from central France to the Carpathians. As a precursor to the Iron Age Hallstatt Culture (8th-5th cents. BC), which is regarded, at least…

Joldelund

(136 words)

Author(s): Pingel, Volker (Bochum)
[German version] in the district of North Friesland. A Germanic centre of iron production - surveyed in modern times - from the period of the late Roman Empire and early barbarian invasions ( c. AD 350-450). In the area of a village settlement with several peasant farms, specialized smelting of bog iron ores that occur locally took place in several hundred bloomery furnaces that were found distributed over c. 8 hectares. The raw iron that was extracted was further worked on site at several smithing locations. The necessary charcoal was produced in J. in at least…

Heuneburg

(378 words)

Author(s): Pingel, Volker (Bochum)
[German version] This item can be found on the following maps: Etrusci, Etruria | Princely graves, Princely seats Near Herbertingen-Hundersingen, in the district of Sigmaringen: fortified settlement of the late  Hallstatt culture (6th/5th cents. BC), situated on the upper Danube (ford?), with an open outer settlement and associated burial mounds, some richly fitted out. The H. is one of the most important centres of power ( Prince's seat) of the earlier Hallstatt period in central Europe. Excavations took place i…

Manching

(836 words)

Author(s): Pingel, Volker (Bochum)
This item can be found on the following maps: Celts | Oppidum [German version] A. General Large Celtic settlement ( Oppidum) south of Ingolstadt (Upper Bavaria) in a strategically favourable position on a dry gravel ridge between the Danube and areas of wetland (Donaumoos) extending from west to east, near a river crossing and formerly accessed by branches of the Danube (harbour?). The level settlement area is almost circular, with a diameter of 2.5 km, comprising 380 ha.; it is traversed by an ancient arterial…

Childeric I

(222 words)

Author(s): Spickermann, Wolfgang (Bochum) | Pingel, Volker (Bochum)
[German version] Frankish king ( c. 436-482), son of the hḗrōs epónymos Meroveus and father of  Clovis I. (Chlodovechus). C. ruled the Frankish province of Tournai from c. 463, and was frequently victorious as an ally of Rome fighting in northern Gallia against the West Goths and the Saxons. He was probably also entrusted with administrating the province of Belgica II (Greg. Tur. Franc. 2,9-27; Fredegar 3,11-12 MGH SRM 2). A legend relates that he interrupted his reign with eight years' exile in Thuringia (Greg. Tur. Franc. 2,12). C.'s tomb was discovered in 1653 at his capital Tou…

Vix

(152 words)

Author(s): Pingel, Volker (Bochum)
[German version] A 5th- to 1st-cent. BC Celtic necropolis at the village of V. near Châtillon-sur-Seine (in Burgundy). The best-known grave is that of the 'Princess of V.' in a tumulus with a voluminous wooden chamber; this early 5th-cent. BC princess's tomb (Prince's tomb) is richly furnished with imported Greek and Etruscan goods ( bronze krater, silver phiale/ patera , Greek pottery) and a gold torque (Torques) and a state carriage. Attached to the necropolis was a fortified settlement as a princely seat on the neighbouring Mont La…

Weapons

(2,508 words)

Author(s): Hausleiter, Arnulf (Berlin) | Hiesel, Gerhard (Freiburg) | Niemeyer, Hans Georg (Hamburg) | Blech, Michael (Madrid) | Kohler, Christoph (Bad Krozingen) | Et al.
[German version] I. Ancient Near East and Egypt Weapons were among the earliest artefacts fashioned by humans and their ancestors. Stone arrowheads and blades were the first recognizable weapons in the ancient Near East into the Neolithic Period ( c. 10000 BC). From the 4th millennium BC, weapons were depicted on roll seals and stelae in scenes of warfare or hunting. Of maces suitable for close combat, generally only the heads (of stone or metal) survive. One exception is the deposit at the Chalcolithic find site of Naḥal Mišmār in P…

Celtic Archaeology

(1,524 words)

Author(s): Pingel, Volker (Bochum)
[German version] A. General Celtic archaeology (CA) investigates the material legacy of groups of the population from the Iron Age, mostly in southern and south-western Central Europe, in addition to the  Germanic archaeology, which borders onto it to the north and north-east. This concerns the  Hallstatt culture of the early and the  La Tène culture of the late Iron Age. The equating of this archaeologically knowable cultures with the ethnicity of the  Celts is not constantly and unambiguously poss…

Lock, Key

(835 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg) | Pingel, Volker (Bochum)
[German version] I. Classical antiquity (Lock: κλεῖθρον/ kleîthron or κλεῖστρον/ kleîstron, βαλανάγρα/ balanágra; cf. Lat. claustrum/ claustra; bolt: μοχλός/ mochlós; key: κλεῖς/ kleîs, κλειδίον/ kleidíon; Lat. clavis). Apart from the bolting of a door or gate by means of a beam, a system was employed in Greek/Roman antiquity that had already been described in Hom. Od. 21,6f.; 46-50 and was still in use in Roman times: a bolt provided with projections was drawn into its locked position from the outside by means of a cord…

Hallstatt Cul­ture

(996 words)

Author(s): Pingel, Volker (Bochum)
[German version] The early Iron Age in central Europe is called the Hallstatt Culture (HC), after the town of Hallstatt in the Austrian Salzkammergut. In the middle of the 19th cent., a large cemetery (over 1,000 burials) was found there with extensive find material, which was viewed as typical and led to the definition of the HC in the 19th cent. The find site has a very special significance, because there is a salt mine there which was already extensively worked in the Bronze Age [5; 11. 67-79]. The HC includes the period from the middle of the 8th cent. to the middle of the 5…

Hoard finds

(754 words)

Author(s): Pingel, Volker (Bochum) | Kohler, Christoph (Bad Krozingen)
[German version] I. Celto-Germanic area In central Europe from the Byzantine period onwards, hoard finds (HF; storage, treasure, safekeeping, mass, hidden finds, etc.) primarily of metal objects (copper, bronze, iron, precious metals) are an important archaeological group of finds. The diversity of terms reflects the breadth of the discussion of the importance of the HF. The various contexts of the finds, e.g. solid ground, moors, rivers, special places (rocks, crevices, caves, transport routes, etc.…

Salt

(1,504 words)

Author(s): Nissen, Hans Jörg (Berlin) | Germer, Renate (Hamburg) | Giovannini, Adalberto (Geneva) | Pingel, Volker (Bochum)
[German version] I. Ancient Near East and Egypt Salt (Sumerian mun; Akkadian ṭabtu; Hittite puti; Hebrew mælaḥ; Egyptian sm.t) played an important role in all ancient Near Eastern cultures and in Egypt. In often high temperatures, the supply of salt was essential to life: salt was therefore part of workers' ordinary rations in Mesopotamia and Egypt (Rations). It was esp. used to season foods and to preserve meat and fish. In medicine, too, salt was used internally and externally. Salt was an important ingredient…

Celtic/Germanic archaeology

(2,366 words)

Author(s): Pingel, Volker (Bochum)
Pingel, Volker (Bochum) [German version] A. Definition (CT) Celtic/Germanic Archaeology (CGA) is a part of prehistoric archaeology (= prehistory, early prehistory and protohistory). Based on archaeological evidence (finds, monuments), the largely non-written history and culture of the Celts and the Germani are investigated using  archaeological methods. Its scholarly and scientific development and reception can be broken down into several stages. In doing so the main criteria are the steps that lead to …

Mirror

(1,020 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg) | Prayon, Friedhelm (Tübingen) | Pingel, Volker (Bochum)
(κάτοπτρον/ kátoptron; Lat. speculum). [German version] I. Greek Circular hand mirrors made of bronze with decorated ivory handles were already known in the Mycenaean period. Then mirrors are again evident from the second half of the 8th cent. BC. Greek mirrors can be divided into hand mirrors, standing mirrors and folding mirrors. Silver mirrors from the Mycenaean period have not survived, those from later periods only in exceptional circumstances. Round hand mirrors were developed as a direct imitatio…
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