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secherbernard
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« Reply #100 on: April 22, 2012, 08:16:50 AM »

I have printed the paper and I am going to read it this afternoon, but about what you have said, the paper says: “Ce n’est que vers 3800-3500 av. J.-C. qu’elle atteint les Alpes, le plateau Suisse – notamment dans la culture de Pfyn – et l’Italie du nord». We know that Ötzi (3300 BC) used copper tools.
Yes, metallurgy was earlier in Switzerland and Italy than in France
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« Reply #101 on: April 22, 2012, 04:14:28 PM »

Ann Woodward and John Hunter, An Examination of Prehistoric Stone Bracers from Britain (2011)  concludes that Bell Beaker wrist guards were not archer's bracers, but made for hawking, according to the review in British Archaeology May/June 2012. Curiously that is not mentioned in the book blurb from Oxbow.  
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alan trowel hands.
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« Reply #102 on: April 22, 2012, 06:48:02 PM »

Ann Woodward and John Hunter, An Examination of Prehistoric Stone Bracers from Britain (2011)  concludes that Bell Beaker wrist guards were not archer's bracers, but made for hawking, according to the review in British Archaeology May/June 2012. Curiously that is not mentioned in the book blurb from Oxbow.  

I know an archaeologist who does flint knapping, archery etc and he was of the same opinion that the wrist guards were useless and also the barbed and tanged arrows looked a lot better than they actually are as arrows and reckons the pre-beaker arrows were far better.  If I recall correctly the B&T arrows tend to fall to fracture on impact and so often cant be re-used as much as other types.
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Jean M
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« Reply #103 on: April 23, 2012, 08:50:37 AM »

What puzzled people about the wrist guards is that they seemed from burials to have been worn on the outer left forearm, rather than the inner forearm, and they have no strong association with flint arrowheads.

I have been looking for other evidence of falconry so early and find nothing, but that doesn't mean that it wasn't happening. It seems that the Goths learned falconry from the Sarmatians, which would fit with falconry not being associated with Corded Ware. The first image which appears associated with hawking is too late to tell us much - 8th C BC - but it happens to be a Luwian stele from a Neo-Hittite kingdom.
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A.D.
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« Reply #104 on: April 23, 2012, 12:45:03 PM »

I've done a bit of archery myself and thought stone was  an unusual choice for a wrist guard. I thought it might have been some kind of brace for using really powerful bows. Maybe tied to the forearm and hand to prevent the wrist flexing? It just seems to bulky and likely to snag unless you flex the wrist which would reduce the drawing power. Mike Loades would be the person to ask.
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Jean M
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« Reply #105 on: May 06, 2012, 09:04:33 AM »

A student at Leiden University did a dissertation on Bell Beaker wrist guards. It is online and very useful for figure 1 (from Harrison 1980), showing the distribution of two types, which largely follow the routes I outline in Beaker Folk to Celts and Italics. The narrow type: Po valley, southern France, Iberia, Brittany. The broad type: clustering with Eastern Beaker, though there are narrow types there as well.
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alan trowel hands.
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« Reply #106 on: May 06, 2012, 11:33:22 AM »

A student at Leiden University did a dissertation on Bell Beaker wrist guards. It is online and very useful for figure 1 (from Harrison 1980), showing the distribution of two types, which largely follow the routes I outline in Beaker Folk to Celts and Italics. The narrow type: Po valley, southern France, Iberia, Brittany. The broad type: clustering with Eastern Beaker, though there are narrow types there as well.

That was interesting coming soon after others have dismissed them as archery equipment.  I found that paper pretty convincing that they are archery equipment. 
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rms2
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« Reply #107 on: May 06, 2012, 12:16:01 PM »

I haven't had time to read the entire paper in detail, but what I did read was interesting, and the photos are excellent.

One thing that had crossed my mind awhile back was that the wristguards might have been the extra protective component in a larger leather guard worn over the forearm. I see in Figure 23 (and described on page 39) that I wasn't alone in that idea.
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IALEM
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« Reply #108 on: May 06, 2012, 03:25:35 PM »

The archaeologist Vazquez Cuesta thinks that they were some multipurpose protection.

He also has come out with a theory about the Bell Beaker social origin. You all probably know that in the earliest Bell Beaker in the Tagus valley graves are collective, and usually only one person has the Bell Beaker package. He has also noticed that in contemporary graves from the same site the Bell Beaker articles are of quite different quality, so he conclude that they are not an status simbol, but rather they mark the position in a familiar structure (The head of the family), that will explain that only one individual per grave is "bell Beaker" and that they are of very dissimilar social condition.
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razyn
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« Reply #109 on: May 06, 2012, 06:06:51 PM »

A student at Leiden University did a dissertation on Bell Beaker wrist guards. It is online and very useful for figure 1

Some of the rest of it is also useful.  I was reading the caption of the last burial (no. 31) in Appendix VI, a guy found in a ditch at Stonehenge (so, not a proper Bell Beaker burial at all).  And I recalled, but dimly, a reenactment based on that set of remains.  I don't think it discussed his wrist guard, or culture; certainly not his DNA... but there was an elaborate scenario about his having trespassed on the sacred Inner Circle, and having been shot several times (as he was attempting to flee) for his trouble.  (There were five arrowheads in the body.)  I think, but am not certain, that it was in the National Geographic Channel program, "Stonehenge Decoded."  Does that ring any bells with others?  I have a DVD of that program, which I enjoyed at the time (2008?).  Guess I could watch it again, if I had to, to answer my own question.
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OConnor
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« Reply #110 on: May 06, 2012, 06:51:03 PM »

I wonder if the arrowheads were tanged, or leaf type?.
Perhaps people had access to both?
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Jean M
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« Reply #111 on: May 09, 2012, 06:55:09 AM »

The dissertation mentions a paper Fokkens, H., Y. Achterkamp, & M. Kuijpers 2008. Bracers or bracelets? About the functionality and meaning of Bell beaker wrist-guards, Proceedings of the Prehistoric Society, 74, 109-140, which I think has the answer in fig 10. It is online at the link above. 

The stone item was fixed onto the outer side of a leather cuff. So the smooth leather protected the wrist while not snagging on the bow-string. The stone was either purely decorative or acting as a bracer.
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alan trowel hands.
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« Reply #112 on: May 09, 2012, 05:41:10 PM »

Maybe some kind of knuckle duster type set up :0)
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Jean M
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« Reply #113 on: May 09, 2012, 06:28:07 PM »

I wondered if it was meant to protect the wrist in combat against swordsmen, but the sensible thing for an archer is to stay out of reach of swords. :) 
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razyn
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« Reply #114 on: May 12, 2012, 01:42:52 PM »

A student at Leiden University did a dissertation on Bell Beaker wrist guards. It is online and very useful for figure 1

Some of the rest of it is also useful.  I was reading the caption of the last burial (no. 31) in Appendix VI, a guy found in a ditch at Stonehenge (so, not a proper Bell Beaker burial at all).  And I recalled, but dimly, a reenactment based on that set of remains.  I don't think it discussed his wrist guard, or culture; certainly not his DNA... but there was an elaborate scenario about his having trespassed on the sacred Inner Circle, and having been shot several times (as he was attempting to flee) for his trouble.  (There were five arrowheads in the body.)  I think, but am not certain, that it was in the National Geographic Channel program, "Stonehenge Decoded."  Does that ring any bells with others?  I have a DVD of that program, which I enjoyed at the time (2008?).  Guess I could watch it again, if I had to, to answer my own question.

It wasn't on that NatGeo DVD; but, as luck would have it, the correct show was aired last night (at 2 AM, gasp) and I watched enough of it to confirm that the correct show was, in fact, "Stonehenge Deciphered" -- a 2008 co-production of the BBC and the Smithsonian Channel (which aired it here, on cable TV).  It also includes a good segment on the discovery of the Amesbury Archer "six years ago," which would I guess be 2002, now ten years ago.  And in that segment, you actually see a couple of the wrist guards (not in situ, as the Archer's bones have been sorted out and were displayed on a lab table).

Also you get to see guys from Wessex Archaeology and Bournemouth University doing 30 second soundbites, as Noted Authorities.  Some of you probably know those guys.
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« Reply #115 on: May 12, 2012, 11:20:09 PM »

I wondered if it was meant to protect the wrist in combat against swordsmen, but the sensible thing for an archer is to stay out of reach of swords. :) 

The English archers tried their best to stay out of reach of French swords during the Battle of Agincourt.

"A widespread urban legend claims that two-fingered salute or V sign derives from a gesture made by longbowmen fighting in the English army at the Battle of Agincourt (1415) during the Hundred Years' War. According to the story, the French were in the habit of cutting off the arrow-shooting fingers of captured English and Welsh longbowmen, and the gesture was a sign of defiance on the part of the bowmen, showing the enemy that they still had their fingers."
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Arch Y.
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« Reply #116 on: May 13, 2012, 08:26:43 PM »

A student at Leiden University did a dissertation on Bell Beaker wrist guards. It is online and very useful for figure 1

Some of the rest of it is also useful.  I was reading the caption of the last burial (no. 31) in Appendix VI, a guy found in a ditch at Stonehenge (so, not a proper Bell Beaker burial at all).  And I recalled, but dimly, a reenactment based on that set of remains.  I don't think it discussed his wrist guard, or culture; certainly not his DNA... but there was an elaborate scenario about his having trespassed on the sacred Inner Circle, and having been shot several times (as he was attempting to flee) for his trouble.  (There were five arrowheads in the body.)  I think, but am not certain, that it was in the National Geographic Channel program, "Stonehenge Decoded."  Does that ring any bells with others?  I have a DVD of that program, which I enjoyed at the time (2008?).  Guess I could watch it again, if I had to, to answer my own question.

It wasn't on that NatGeo DVD; but, as luck would have it, the correct show was aired last night (at 2 AM, gasp) and I watched enough of it to confirm that the correct show was, in fact, "Stonehenge Deciphered" -- a 2008 co-production of the BBC and the Smithsonian Channel (which aired it here, on cable TV).  It also includes a good segment on the discovery of the Amesbury Archer "six years ago," which would I guess be 2002, now ten years ago.  And in that segment, you actually see a couple of the wrist guards (not in situ, as the Archer's bones have been sorted out and were displayed on a lab table).

Also you get to see guys from Wessex Archaeology and Bournemouth University doing 30 second soundbites, as Noted Authorities.  Some of you probably know those guys.

I think I've seen that episode. If I'm not mistaken, they speak of Stonehenge and the West side of the River Avon being the land of the dead, or taboo; hence the stones represent or are a representation of the deceased. Whereas the land of those who are living would be in settlements made of wood on the opposite side of the River Avon; the wooden structures long have deteriorated.

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« Reply #117 on: May 13, 2012, 08:34:47 PM »

Anybody read the book: "The Beaker Culture of the Balearic Islands", by Dr. Waldren? I believe it was published in 1998, and I'm wondering how really old Bell Beaker the Bell Beaker culture really is. I can't place my finger on it, but I heard the Balearic Islands have some of the oldest Bell Beaker artifacts. It would make sense if the oldest Bell Beaker Archer's equipment is found near the eastern shores of Iberia. However, I'm not sure how it plays into the Bell Beaker sites in Southern Portugal, which I am hearing are the oldest Bell Beakers found. Of course, Anatole mentions the Pyrenees are the oldest, but I'm not sure where he's getting his data from; it doesn't seem reliable.

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Jean M
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« Reply #118 on: June 20, 2012, 07:39:46 AM »

I now have in my hands the long-awaited volume: Michael J. Allen, Julie Gardiner and Alison Sheridan (eds.), Is There a British Chalcolithic? (2012)

I listed the contents in a previous post.  "Searching for the Chalcolithic: continuity and change in the Irish Final Neolithic/Early Bronze Age" by Neil Carlin and Joanna Bruck is a disappointment. They argue a strongly anti-migrationist case, and fly in the face of the evidence in other ways, arguing against a link between metallurgy and Bell Beaker pottery. That is so dotty. They know these things arrived together and say so. They must know that Bell Beaker was found at the earliest copper mine in Ireland, but they avoid discussing it by saying   that this site lies outside the scope of their paper.
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« Reply #119 on: June 20, 2012, 01:11:07 PM »

I now have in my hands ...That is so dotty. They know these things arrived together and say so. They must know that Bell Beaker was found at the earliest copper mine in Ireland, but they avoid discussing it by saying   that this site lies outside the scope of their paper.

Sounds like these folks could be good politicians. :)
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« Reply #120 on: June 20, 2012, 09:16:34 PM »

I now have in my hands the long-awaited volume: Michael J. Allen, Julie Gardiner and Alison Sheridan (eds.), Is There a British Chalcolithic? (2012)

I listed the contents in a previous post.  "Searching for the Chalcolithic: continuity and change in the Irish Final Neolithic/Early Bronze Age" by Neil Carlin and Joanna Bruck is a disappointment. They argue a strongly anti-migrationist case, and fly in the face of the evidence in other ways, arguing against a link between metallurgy and Bell Beaker pottery. That is so dotty. They know these things arrived together and say so. They must know that Bell Beaker was found at the earliest copper mine in Ireland, but they avoid discussing it by saying   that this site lies outside the scope of their paper.

lol I knew Neill would dissapoint on migration.  He is a bit of a Francis Pryor when it comes to beakers.  I disagree with him too. 
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secherbernard
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« Reply #121 on: June 28, 2012, 10:34:07 AM »

Soon, a new book about Bell Beakers: http://www.sidestone.com/books/background-to-beakers
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Background to Beakers is the result of an inspiring session at the yearly conference of European Association of Archaeologists in The Hague in September 2010. The conference brought together thirteen speakers on the subject Beakers in Transition. Together we explored the background to the Bell beaker complex in different regions, departing from the idea that migration is not the comprehensive solution to the adoption of bell Beakers. Therefore we asked the participants to discuss how in their region Beakers were incorporated in existing cultural complexes, as one of the manners to understand the processes of innovation that were undoubtedly part of the Beaker complex.

In this book eight of the speakers have contributed papers, resulting in a diverse and interesting approach to Beakers. We can see how scholars in Scandinavia, the Low Countries, Poland, Switzerland, France, Morocco even, struggle with the same problems, but have different solutions everywhere. The book reads as an inspiration for new approaches and for a discussion of cultural backgrounds in stead of searching for the oldest Beaker. The authors are all established scholars in the field of Bronze Age research.
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rms2
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« Reply #122 on: June 29, 2012, 07:04:34 AM »

Soon, a new book about Bell Beakers: http://www.sidestone.com/books/background-to-beakers
Quote
Background to Beakers is the result of an inspiring session at the yearly conference of European Association of Archaeologists in The Hague in September 2010. The conference brought together thirteen speakers on the subject Beakers in Transition. Together we explored the background to the Bell beaker complex in different regions, departing from the idea that migration is not the comprehensive solution to the adoption of bell Beakers. Therefore we asked the participants to discuss how in their region Beakers were incorporated in existing cultural complexes, as one of the manners to understand the processes of innovation that were undoubtedly part of the Beaker complex.

In this book eight of the speakers have contributed papers, resulting in a diverse and interesting approach to Beakers. We can see how scholars in Scandinavia, the Low Countries, Poland, Switzerland, France, Morocco even, struggle with the same problems, but have different solutions everywhere. The book reads as an inspiration for new approaches and for a discussion of cultural backgrounds in stead of searching for the oldest Beaker. The authors are all established scholars in the field of Bronze Age research[/size].

Looks interesting. Thanks, Bernard.

I wish we could get a truly comprehensive study of the Bell Beaker phenomenon, one that included dna analysis, archaeology, and anthropology.

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A.D.
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« Reply #123 on: July 02, 2012, 10:57:42 AM »

The wrist guards would be more compatible with the Irish bronze age rapier type sward for parrying thrusts  than against the short thick slashing swards. I don't know if the timescale is compatible. There are round small shields of both Scandinavian and Mediterranean type in Ireland.
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« Reply #124 on: July 02, 2012, 11:41:39 AM »

I've been browsing through A History of the World in 100 Objects (book from the library) and noticed on the Standard of Ur (circa 2500 BC) that the Sumerian king and six of his homeboys were drinking from something reminiscent of Bell Beakers.  Just in case that's of any interest -- I know their vessels could be horn cups, or several other things, but it's an interesting and contemporary picture.  At this url, look at the "peace" side (image 3 of 8), and you can zoom in on the cups:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/ahistoryoftheworld/objects/cVczEWH0RVm_dFZtJBAjRw
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