Shadowland: Wales 3000-1500 BC [Paperback]

Stephen Burrow(Author)

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ISBN: 9781842174593 | Published by: Oxbow Books | Year of Publication: 2011 | Language: English 176p, col illus
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This is the story of life in Wales over a period of 1,500 years, as gleaned from the remains its inhabitants left behind. These people had no writing so they have left us no names and no records of their deeds. Instead we have the possessions they treasured in life, the broken remains of their bodies and the marks they left on the landscape. The people of these 15 centuries have remained essentially anonymous, in the shadows of prehistory. In part, these shadows have fallen by choice: from 3000 to 2200 BC, people built few monuments and buried very few of the worldly goods which they must certainly have possessed while, for the period 2200 until 1500 BC, monuments were built in profusion and the dead were buried in great numbers. The lives revealed seem filled with rituals that defy easy comprehension and the motivations of those who lived them are difficult to grasp. While thousands of burials are known and dozens of meeting places and ceremonial centres have been uncovered, hardly any settlements or houses are known. But the legacy of these people can even be seen far beyond their own lands: they provided stones for Stonehenge and began carving copper ore from the hills, in a process that would eventually create the largest mine in prehistoric Europe. In this beautifully illustrated book, Steve Burrows coaxes these shadowy figues back into the light.

Table of Contents

The shadows
Before 3000 BC

Part 1: 3000 – 2200 BC
The years around 3000 BC
2900 – 2500 BC. An insular folk
2400 BC and after. Bowing to the habits of foreigners

Part 2: 2200 – 1500 BC
A perspective from the east
Fuels for a new age
The dead in their thousands
What the dead took with them
Before they died

Leaving the Shadowland
Further reading

Reviews & Quotes

"This is a well-written, up-to-date and beautifully illustrated popular account of the history of Wales, over a period of 1500 years, covering the age of great henges like Llandegai and Stonehenge, the first ore mining and metal use, and the appaearance of fine exotic objects and selective burial... Burrow should be commended for illuminating a period of history that really deserves not to be left in the shadows."
Alistair Barclay
British Archaeology (126/September October 2012)

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