Fire, Earth, Water

Joanna Brück

in The Oxford Handbook of the Archaeology of Ritual and Religion

Published in print October 2011 | ISBN: 9780199232444
Published online September 2012 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks in Archaeology

 Fire, Earth, Water

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This article considers the character and role of ritual and religion in the European Bronze Age, and addresses a series of interlinked themes and issues. The sites discussed range geographically from Scandinavia to the Mediterranean, and from Ireland to Hungary. There is considerable diversity in the available evidence for ritual practice across Europe, but there are also striking similarities that speak of the intensity of inter-regional interaction. Religious iconography, although relatively rare, provides insights into elements of Bronze Age belief systems, but the names and characteristics of particular deities are lost to us. In addition, there is a wealth of information on a range of ritual practices that can cast light on the role of religion in Bronze Age society.

Keywords: ritual; religion; Scandinavia; Mediterranean; Ireland; Hungary; inter-regional interaction; belief systems; religious iconography

Article.  8271 words. 

Subjects: Archaeology ; Historical Archaeology

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