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Index Dutch Bronze Age
Index first farmers in the Netherlands

The origins of the First Farmers

Environment Spain - The Spanish Mediterranean

The first farmers who populated the central section with the coast of the Spanish Mediterranean found with a calcarous landscape sprinkled of forests of oaks and oaks, with small valleys fitted in a steep relief, in whose edges they found small rocky shelters apt to serve as house or to express different artistic manifestations. 


Hungary - Trade and Cultural interrelationship

The spread of the neolithic lifestyle in Europe between 5700-5000 B.C.E. Territory of the ALPC and its associated groups in Europe. In the second half of the 6th Millennium the territory of the Linear Pottery Culture spread to encompass an area stretching from Holland and the Paris Basin to the Ukraine and Moldavia but excluding the Carpathians. Although local groups developed in larger areas, all exhibited shared, similarities within the dominating features such as in the fields of settlement structures, lifestyle, belief systems and social systems.

Of course, regional differences were present in many smaller aspects such as form and decorations of the material culture. The obvious question is how, over such a large area, these close interrelationship were sustainable.

One probalble explanation, beside the role of ethic connections and shared belief systems, is the role of trade and exchange sytems. The trade and exchange of the stone tools and raw materials can be traced back to much earlier periods, for example the ancient hunting groups had long been trading amongst each other. In our region the obsidian from Zemplen and Tokaj, the quarz from Mátra, the Szentgál, the radiolarite from Szentgál and Mecsek and the flint from Little Poland constituted the raw material, that were distributed to far lying territories. Beside the stone tools, the spondylus shell and the associated jewellery were also important trade items and were spead from the Aegean to the Carpathians and beyond. It is also possible that the richly decorated fine quality wares also represented an important trade item in the region. 

  Valencia - Ceramics

The appearance of an economy based on the food production will bring with it new objects for the new tasks: spoons, needles and striker pins in bone, axes, chip axes and hammers in polished stone. But mainly ceramics, a new material with which to make containers to cook and to store. The older Valencian ceramics present diverse reasons made by the printing for the edge of the shell of molusco the 'cardium edule'. 

  Netherlands - Funnel beakers ("trechterbekers")

The funnel beaker is probably the most famous type of pottery produced by the Neolithic early farming society from the TRB-West Group (3400-2900 B.C.E.). The shape is very characteristic: a flaring neck, a pronounced shoulder, a more or less round belly and a small, flat base. Many examples have an undecorated neck, although decorations in small blocks of horizontal and vertical lines or zigzag-lines do occur. The transition from the neck to the shoulder is often accentuated by a horizontal or small zigzag-line. The belly is practically always decorated with vertical lines, consisting of a groove- or 'Tiefstich'-technique. Funnel beakers appear in many different sizes. Their function is related to storing, serving and drinking of liquid substances. The small funnel beakers may have served as drinking vessels, whereas the bigger ones could have served as containers. The pronounced shoulders may well have helped to refrain solid substances from having mixed with the liquid while pouring out the fluid substance. This type of pottery seems to have been produced during the largest part of the TRB-West Group. Their value for typo-chronology and/or dating the TRB-culture is restricted because of the uniform shape and decoration. 

Hungary - Face-pot

This famous neolithic face-pot fragment was found in 1961 at Füzesabony-Kettőshalom, northeastern Hungary, during an excavation by J.G. Szabó. Pieces of a large container pot were deposited in a rubbish pit. No other fragments or escorting material were found. So the pit's function and the pot's exact date are questionable. Typologically this fragment dates from the Alföld Linear Pottery Culture (about 5500 - 5000 B.C.E.), because of the culture-specific human face covering the cylindrical neck of a possibly bellied container pot. Some specialists date this find at the very end of that culture.

Füzesabony-Kettőshalom is a well known archaeological site in Hungary. J.G. Szabó found only one neolithic pit, but opened several other features, mainly graves from the bronze and iron ages and from the time of the Roman Empire and the Árpád Dinasty. Nowadays, after examining the surface finds at the site, it is evident that there must be other neolithic features, hidden in the earth and maybe contemporaneous with the face-pot pit. So this fragment should not be seen exclusively as a stray find. The excavated material of Füzesabony-Kettőshalom enriches the István Dobó Castle museum's archaeological collection. The face-pot among other rich archaeological finds from Heves County can be seen in the local-historical archaeological exhibition of Füzesabony. 

  Netherlands - Pedestalled bowl

Funnel beaker culture Pedestalled dish (TRB culture, ca 3450-2950 B.C.E.) These people were early farmers (neolithic period). Assembled from the potsherds excavated by the Amsterdam University in 1968 from the chamber of hunebed D26 at Drouwenerveld (Drenthe, Netherlands). Missing sherds were replaced by plaster (gips). 155 pots were placed in this chamber, containing food and drink to accompany the dead bodies if important persons when deposited here (as generally assumed, but hardly anything of this has been found in the hunebeds, here and elsewhere). 

Further research prooved that the TRB culture had somewhat "strange" rituals. It appeared that the pottery, found in the hunebeds, had been used for a funeral meal, before depositing it in the hunebed. It was also probably common to leave the dead body of a relative in a part of the house before inhumating. Sometimes the body was deposited outside the house so animals could feast on them. Later the larger bones were deposited in the hunebed, sorted on the size of the bones.

Hungary - Spherical cup with knob decoration from Kompolt-Kígyósér -note the thin rims...

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