Conan Lives!

Robert E. Howard's conceit for the Conan stories -- and, in fact, for most of his stories -- was that what we take to be the rise of civilization was really a very late period. Civilizations we have never dreamed of had risen and fallen, since before the oceans drank Atlantis.

More and more, it looks like he was right.
Writing did not arrive in this part of Europe for another 2,000 years, so it’s a mystery as to who was fighting whom. A full DNA analysis has yet to be completed, but evidence from teeth indicates that this was no local struggle. Instead, the chemical composition of the teeth show that the men came from many different parts of Europe, some from hundreds of miles away.

One hypothesis suggests that bands of warriors were brought together for a common purpose, in the same way warbands came together in the story of siege of Troy.

But what’s really startling historians is that nobody knew North European society was this organized, stratified and warlike so early in history. One researcher told Science magazine “if you fight with body armor and helmet and corselet, you need daily training or you can’t move. … This kind of training is the beginning of a specialized group of warriors.”

An elite warrior class can only exist if someone else is growing the warriors' food and making their weapons and tools. That suggests a degree of hitherto unsuspected stratification of Bronze Age society.
Let me tell you of the days of high adventure.


Ymar Sakar said...


That suggests a degree of hitherto unsuspected stratification of Bronze Age society.

What a bunch of...

As if humans thought they weren't under a "hierarchy" from the ancient days of creation.

So long as there are 3 humans in a group, there's a hierarchy.

Even the Spartans had helots and helot squires.

The number of things human expert authorities think they know that isn't true... well, it's larger than they think.

douglas said...

If you follow the link back to the 'Science' article, you get this:
"There was reason for skepticism. Before Tollense, direct evidence of large-scale violence in the Bronze Age was scanty, especially in this region. Historical accounts from the Near East and Greece described epic battles, but few artifacts remained to corroborate these boastful accounts. “Even in Egypt, despite hearing many tales of war, we never find such substantial archaeological evidence of its participants and victims,” UCD’s Molloy says.

In Bronze Age Europe, even the historical accounts of war were lacking, and all investigators had to go on were weapons in ceremonial burials and a handful of mass graves with unmistakable evidence of violence, such as decapitated bodies or arrowheads embedded in bones. Before the 1990s, “for a long time we didn’t really believe in war in prehistory,” DAI’s Hansen says. The grave goods were explained as prestige objects or symbols of power rather than actual weapons. “Most people thought ancient society was peaceful, and that Bronze Age males were concerned with trading and so on,” says Helle Vandkilde, an archaeologist at Aarhus University in Denmark. “Very few talked about warfare.”"


Only in academia could you seriously have people who study the ancient man who would believe such a thing. Incredible.

Hopefully, this find will educate them and give us some much needed pre-historical reference.