Wednesday, June 12, 2013
Scandinavian Bronze Age Atlantean Interaction
I have already outlined the extensive global trade that clearly existed between 2500 BC through 1159 BC. I use those two dates in particular because they can be pinned down extremely well. The actual trade culture itself collapsed in the Atlantic around 1159 BC. However remnants also continued to operate afterward in a piecemeal fashion. The knowledge was never totally lost but it got cut up into smaller sub routes.
The Atlantic remnant was effectively killed of by the advent of Roman hegemony. Thus it is unsurprising that the Scandinavians operated into the Ohio Valley and Lake Superior in the aftermath of the Atlantean Subsidence in 1159BC.
This article is also an excellent follow up on the extensive work conducted by Barry fell in the late seventies. Bit by bit, this mass of prehistory is been slowly unearthed.
Vikings in North America may have been preceded by Bronze Age colonists. (Photos)
JULY 21, 2011
BY: RICHARD THORNTON
Was there also a two-way cultural exchange across the North Atlantic before and during the Bronze Age? Scandinavian scholars narrowly define the term “Viking” to a relatively small percentage of their population that terrorized Europe between 793-1154 AD, but the evidence is accumulating that the documented Viking settlement in Canada may have been one of many cultural exchanges between North America and Northwestern Europe.
LANDSKRONA, SWEDEN – July 21, 2011 (Examiner.com) - It is the time of year, when thousands of Scandinavian young people, just graduated from gymnasium and headed to a university, are encouraged by their parents to temporarily go wild. The custom is called “Rusing,” and dates back to the Viking Era. In Scandinavia, one does not see the stars in early summer. It is a perfect time for men and women on the threshold of adulthood to go crazy . . . temporarily.
A Rus was a Scandinavian man, who lefthome in a boat for adventure, plunder, trade and accumulation of wealth. Those who went east were more likely to seek trade, farmland in a milder climate and a local bride. They lent their name to the future kingdom of Russia. Unfortunately for Europe, those that went south or west, were initially more interested in devastating Christian monasteries and churches in revenge for attempts by missionaries to convert Saxony, Friesland and Denmark. They were called “vikingor” by their more conservative neighbors back home. A “vik” is a small harbor.
The “Viking” settlements found by Canadian archaeologists at L’Anse aux Meadows, Newfoundland in the early 1960s are believed to have been built by relatives of Erik the Red, who colonized Greenland. The buildings were dated by radiocarbon analysis to around 1003. Technically, these people were not “Vikings” but rather Scandinavian colonists. They were farmers and herders. There is some archival and archaeological evidence that the merchants of Iceland and Greenland continued to visit the coast of Canada and New England until around 1375 AD, when a "Little Ice Age" emptied the Scandinavian colonies in Greenland - and caused several Native American towns to be abandoned in the Southeast. It has been speculated that the survivors of the Greenland Colony migrated to Canada. To date, no other permanent Scandinavian settlements in North America have been confirmed by a majority of the archaeology profession, but several potential locations of Scandianavian colonies in Canada have been suggested.
Many similarities between Bronze Age Skǻne and Eastern North America\
Landskrona is a seaport on the Őresund Channel in the Swedish province of Skǻne. Across the Őresund is the large Danish Island of Zealand, The location was the heart of an advanced Neolithic Culture and then, a Bronze Age civilization that lasted from 1600 BC to 600 BC. During that period, the climate of the North Atlantic region was much milder. It is likely that navigable channels opened up in the Arctic Ocean during the summer, enabling ships to take the “great circle” route between continents.
The end of this golden era was like the plot of the movie, “The Day After Tomorrow.” The dense populations of Skǻne, plus the large islands of Zealand and Jutland suddenly collapsed around 600 BC when a massive cyclonic storm or perhaps a tsunami leveled the forests. The North Atlantic froze and the Arctic became a solid ice sheet. This catastrophic event was followed by a shift to a damp, cool climate in Scandinavia like today. Afterward Northern Germanic peoples (Scandinavians) steadily moved northward and inland, pushing the indigenous people, the Gamla Folk, into oblivion.
[ The correct date for this collapse is more properly 1159 BC through tree ring dating pulled from Irish bogs - arclein]
Well over a hundred Bronze Age gravhög’s or conical burial mounds still exist in Landskrona Kommun (County.) These mounds are identical in age, shape and construction to burial mounds found in the Ohio River Basin and Southern Highlands of the Eastern United States. Examples of log-lined or stone slab lined tombs within the mounds can be found on both sides of the Atlantic. The Adena Culture of the Ohio River Basin was particularly associated with conical burial mounds.
The Bronze Age exhibits of museums in the Landskrona Area contain copper tools and trade ingots from the Early Bronze Age that are identical to their counterparts found in such museums as the Etowah Mounds National Landmark in the Cartersville, GA. However, the copper artifacts in the Southeast tend to date from about 500-1500 years after the Bronze Age ended in Europe. Some copper tools and art found in the southern Great Lakes Basin have been dated to be contemporary with the tail-end of the Bronze Age in Europe.
[ most likely the copper ewas kept in use much longer and resmelting took place ccontimously - arclein]
Near Landskrona is Ven Island, which is rich with evidence of Neolithic and Bronze Age occupation. It was also a major center of Viking activity, centered at the village of Bækviken. In the 1500s it was the feudal domain of the famous astronomer, Tycho Brahe. The location of his observatory on Ven has been developed into one of Sweden's top museums. Every square meter of beautiful Ven Island is saturated with the footsteps of mankind. It is a verdant mesa carved out by ancient glaciers that is essentially a living museum of all phases of Scandinavian civilzation.
On the cliff beneath the island's medieval St. Ibb’s Church, are petroglyphs, which are identical to those, found on some of the Track Rock petroglyphic boulders in the mountains in the state ofGeorgia. About an hour’s drive from Landskrona is the world famous Tanum Bronze Age archaeological site. Some of its petroglyphs are portrayals of boats. Others are game animals or very abstract symbols that can also be found on petroglyphic boulders at the Track Rock Archaeological Zone near Brasstown Bald, Georgia. The Track Rock petroglyphs are adjacent to an ancient trade path.
Ancient, pre-Colombian copper mines near Lake Superior contain massive rectangular blocks of almost pure copper that would have been far too large to have been transported by Native American canoes. This evidence suggests that exceptionally strong copper alloy was mined in North America and transported to Northern Europe. Nordic copper miners would have used stone tools and weapons during the Bronze Age, that were virtually identical to those in North America.
Contemporary cultures in North America
The period of 1600 BC to 600 BC corresponds exactly to the Olmec Civilization in Mexico and the Poverty Point Culture in Louisiana. The Poverty Point People built villages on raised earthen platforms composed of concentric circles. These villages were quite similar in form to contemporary Bronze Age villages and towns on the Atlantic Coast of Spain and Portugal. The contemporary rise of advanced cultures on both sides of the Atlantic may be a result of ideal climatic conditions, but there were many indentical petroglyphs used on both sides of the North Atlantic Ocean.
The Poverty Point People created thousands of fired ceramic “balls” with ornate, faceted edges that were used in cooking. Stone and ceramic balls of almost identical design can be found on northern Scotland, plus the Atlantic Coastal areas of Scandinavia, Iberia, France and Ireland. In addition thousands of polished stone fishing sinkers of identical design have been found in northern Scotland and in the vicinity of Poverty Point platform villages.
It would be extremely difficult to identify pottery made by Scandinavians in North America before the Middle Ages. The pottery of Eastern North America, Scandinavia, Ireland, Scotland and even Anglo-Saxon England was all made by hand and fired in pits until around 1100 AD. Roman colonists introduced the potter's wheel to Britain, but its use died out in the British Isles after the invasion of Angles, Saxons, Jutes and Norse colonists. In 1000 AD one could find hand-made, shell-tempered pottery at a town site in the State of Georgia or in a Viking village in the Scottish isles or in villages throughout Sweden.
Scandinavian influence on Native American fortifications
One current theory among some scholars of North American antiquity is that Viking jarls(noblemen) conquered Native American peoples and initiated the period when Southeastern Indians built large towns with many earthen pyramids. The linguistic and architectural evidence points strongly to Mexico for any influence on Southeastern Native American cultures, and there is no similarity between the “Southeastern Moundbuilders” to what was happening in Scandinavia between 900 AD and 1500 AD. The Viking’s own sagas record that they could not contend withSkraeling (American Indian) hunters and fishermen of the North Atlantic Coast. The ancestors of the Southeast’s Creek Indians would have been at least a foot taller than any Viking invaders and out-numbered them 10,000:1. Even after losing about 95% of their population to European plagues, the ancestors of the Creek Indians were able to stop expansion of the Spanish Empire and eventually drive the Spaniards into the walls of St. Augustine.
There is evidence of Scandinavian military “technology” reaching the Southeast, however. Between approximately 750 AD and 1100 AD, Danish and Norse Vikings would erect round military villages with timber palisades, archer towers and moats, when occupying a new area. Several of these “ring forts” are visible today in Denmark, southern Sweden and northern Germany. It is possible that any forgotten Viking expeditions in North America may have also built small “ring forts.” The concept of building round timber-palisaded villages might have spread inland.
Around 800 AD a new type of village appeared in the Southern Highlands, whose American Indian builders made a new style of pottery. Known as the Woodstock Culture this ethnic group built round, timber-palisaded villages, probably with dry moats. The Woodstock Culture disappeared shortly after 1000 AD. The time period of the Woodstock Culture's existence corresponds exactly with the period when pagan Viking raiders were most active. However, round, timber palisaded villages were still being built by Yuchi and Siouan Indians in North Carolina in the late 1500s.
From 900 AD to about 1600 AD, the ancestors of the Creek, Alabama and Choctaw Indians built much larger and more sophisticated towns with pyramidal mounds, but they also incorporated the idea of building timber palisades with archer towers and moats. No definite Scandinavian artifacts have been discovered in association with Southeastern Native American towns.
Was there a Pan-Nordic Culture before the Iron Age?
When Celtic tribes first invaded Ireland around 600 BC, they encountered a people of a different race, who had black hair and tan skin. The indigenous folks were expert sailors and fishermen, but lacked knowledge of iron or bronze. They were fond of carving petroglyphs on boulders. Many of these pre-Celtic Irish petroglyphs are very similar to those on Reinhardt and Forsyth petroglyphic boulders in the Georgia mountains. According to Gaelic lore, most of the indigenous Irish people, whom the Celts called, Fomhoire, which means “from the sea,” sailed into the Atlantic Ocean and never returned. Did they settle in North America or were they originally from North America? It may be the latter situation.
When the Romans first invaded Britain, northern Scotland was occupied by an indigenous people, who seem to have been the same as the Fornhoire. The Celtic Scots called them “Seal People.” The Picts of Scotland may have been a hybrid folk, of mixed Celtic and “Seal People” origin. The Seal People seem to have disappeared from Scotland toward the end of the Roman Era, 500 AD. No one yet knows to where they migrated. However, the surviving descriptions of the "Seal People" seem very similar to the known cultural characteristics of the "Dorset People." The Dorset People are believed by archaeologists to have been a sophisticated American Indian ethnic group, who preceeded the Inuit in the Arctic regions. Like the "Seal People" they were known to have been capable of traveling long distances over the ocean.
Professor Gordon Freeman of the University of Alberta studied the stone rings or medicine wheels of the Northern Great Plains, for over two decades. He found that they can be dated as old as 3,500 BC. Construction was begun on Stonehenge in southern England around 2,500 BC. Freeman is now working at sites in Wales that appear to date a couple of hundred years later than the famous Majorville, Alberta Sun Cairns (3,000 BC, but before Stonehenge.
After studying many stone circles and cairns on both sides of the northern Atlantic Ocean, Dr. Freeman is convinced that there was once a seafaring people that occupied coastal regions in both continents, but originated in central Canada. This ethnic group’s interest in astronomy became sufficiently sophisticated that one branch was able to build Stonehenge. From surviving descriptions of them in Ireland and Scotland, this Pan-Nordic people seem to have been at least partially American Indian in ethnicity. However, they were eventually pushed out of most areas of Europe by the Celts and Scandinavian Germans. Their descendants may be one of the indigenous tribes encountered by early European explorers.
While the Pan-Nordic theories of Freeman and others seem to buck all orthodox histories of mankind, a glance at the globe from a viewpoint above the North Pole clearly illustrates that the shortest route between Landskrona, Sweden and the Chesapeake Bay of North America was via the Orkney Islands, Iceland, Greenland and Newfoundland - the Great Circle Route used by jetliners today. Perhaps during the warm climate of the Bronze Age, such a trip was considered merely a hop and a skip by Formhoire copper merchants or North American tourists visiting Stonehenge.
The truth is out there somewhere!