Artefacts associations and context

A trawl through Early Celtic Art would readily reveal that the categories of metal-work that constitute the core of La Tene art are weapons and defensive armour (including equestrian gear), drinking vessels and services, and personal ornaments. There is of course much else besides, but it is from these three categories that the image, or perhaps the caricature, of the Celt derives, the aggressive, swaggering warrior, drunken and intemperate, and given to extravagant personal display. Encouraged...

The late Bronze Age industrial revolution

The introduction of iron technology might be regarded as evidence enough for an industrial revolution, though in fact its introduction and progressive adoption in Europe were protracted over more than a millennium. Iron tools were in circulation in South-Eastern Europe in the mid-second millennium bc, and by the later Urnfield (Hallstatt B) phase, some swords were being made and embellished in iron in eastern Central Europe, and occasionally much further west (Gomez and Mohen, 1981 Pleiner,...

Ornament on pottery and other materials

Meare Somerset

Though there are distinctive pottery styles in Wessex and southern England throughout the pre-Roman Iron Age, it must be recognized that much of Britain (and Ireland) north of the Trent, with the notable exception of Atlantic Scotland, is virtually aceramic, with only minimal quantities of hand-made and poorly fired domestic ware recovered from settlement contexts. Even in Southern Britain, wheel-thrown pottery appears only in the first century bc, and though there is some evidence of regional...

Champagne and the premier style continu

Map Cerrig Drudion

Nowhere is this process of experimentation better illustrated than in the Champagne, where in addition to palmette and lotus, the lyre or lyre-palmette were among those motifs adapted from classical sources through Italic intermediaries into the Celtic artist's repertory, most frequently appearing either as opposed pairs of S-scrolls Figure 4.1 Transition towards the Developed La T ne Styles. A 1, base design of the Schwarzenbach bowl 2, design of drinking horn cap from Schwarzenbach. Adapted...

Introduction identifying the problems

Tene Chronology

The problems of identifying, dating and explaining the La Tene in Ireland are even more fundamental than for Britain. First of all, it would not be pure casuistry to ask how far the types representative of the Irish La Tene are in fact La Tene at all. Types such as Y-pendants are not part of the La Tene repertory in Continental Europe, and the one type that is ubiquitous in great numbers in Continental Europe, the safety-pin brooch, is represented in Ireland by barely thirty examples. A second...

Torrs and its affinities

Celtic Bronze Age Gold Lock Rings

This period of innovation and experimentation culminated by the third century in the mature phase of insular Celtic art, and the production of a number of high-status pieces of parade armour and related ceremonial or symbolic metal-work. Foremost in this group are the Torrs pony-cap and horns, the Witham shield and the Wandsworth circular shield boss, all of which display a combination of repouss relief ornament and engraved, two-dimensional designs, and which have generally been regarded since...

Celtic ethnicity Celtic languages and Celtic art

The first questions that should be addressed in a book that incorporates the phrase 'Celtic art' in its title are whether the term 'Celtic' is justified, and in what sense is it being applied Chapman 1992 cast doubt on the belief that Celts in Iron Age Europe existed as an ethnic group at all. Collis 2003 was more qualified in his critique, noting that Caesar's identification of the inhabitants of his third part of Gaul, who were known as 'Celtae in their own language, but Galli in ours' de...

Conclusions

To the question 'can we meaningfully talk about Celtic art ', we have answered in the affirmative, but not simply as careless shorthand for La Tene art. It is possible to argue from the documentary record of ancient historians and geographers that there were people known to the classical world as Celts, and even people who regarded themselves as Celts. Furthermore, the evidence of personal and place-names, admittedly in many cases known from Roman period sources, allows us to infer, in the...

Motif style and meaning

The conventional approach to archaeological classification, the recognition of types and type-sequences, study of their recurrent associations, and the plotting of spatial distributions of key types, has been criticized over the past generation as descriptive rather than explanatory or interpretative. Accepting that analysis is not an end in itself but a means of distilling order from the mass of data available as an essential preliminary to interpretation, this study of Celtic art will retain...

Aylesford and late Iron Age cremations

Iron Art Denmark

From the second half of the first century bc, south-east England north Kent, the Thames valley, Essex and thence inland to the Chilterns - sees the appearance of a new and distinctive type of burial in cremation cemeteries, a practice that is also widely represented in north-eastern France and Belgium at this period. For much of the twentieth century, following the pioneer study by Hawkes and Dunning 1930 , this innovative burial rite was equated with settlement by the Belgae, a confederation...

Britain and Ireland

Iron Age Britain Art

It would be plainly misleading to argue that Britain and Ireland were exempt from the wider European trend towards the three-dimensional relief styles fashionable from the beginning of the middle La Tene, though the identification of individual pieces as Plastic Style in any formal sense might be difficult. A substantial body of the British material, including the great works of parade armour, are in a very real sense 'plastic', though their construction often entails techniques that are...

Personal ornament and dress

Throughout the Urnfield zone, and indeed in the cognate late Bronze Age cultures of Northern and Atlantic Europe, personal ornaments are an important component of hoards and funerary assemblages. Some of the key types change with the transition to the first, Hallstatt Iron Age, which may reflect changes in dress and costume rather than simply decorative fashion, since the latter is commonly a factor of the former. Common to both periods in Central Europe are bracelets, generally of penannular...

Fortifications settlements and society

From the sheer numbers of burials represented in the archaeological record for the late Bronze Age, and from the quantities of artefacts recovered from burials and from hoards, it is generally inferred that this was a period of demographic expansion and social change. Compared to some earlier periods of European prehistory, the settlement evidence too is relatively abundant. Settlements display considerable diversity, both topographical and morphological. Fortified sites become more prominent...

Beginnings of the La Tene ornamental style

In the older traditional framework represented by Jacobsthal and de Navarro 1952 insular Celtic art would have been expected to reflect the Continental sequence of styles, albeit in diluted form appropriate to its peripheral position in Europe. In reality, while insular La Tene styles may indeed display characteristics analogous to Continental fashions, relatively few objects can be regarded as actual imports, and the parade armour and prestige products of the middle to late pre-Roman Iron Age...

Weapons and armour

Celtic Rapier Bronze Age

The burgeoning technical capacity of late Bronze Age metal-working was in significant measure dedicated to the equipping of the Urnfield warrior Figure 2.5 . No better Figure 2.5 The Urnfield warrior, equipped with sword, shield, helmet, cuirass and greaves 1 early Urnfield solid-hilted swords from Erding 2 , Erlach 3 and Geiging 4 . Swords adapted from Muller-Karpe 1980 . Figure 2.5 The Urnfield warrior, equipped with sword, shield, helmet, cuirass and greaves 1 early Urnfield solid-hilted...

History of research

The identification of distinctive styles of ornament on Iron Age metal-work as 'Celtic' has its origins in the mid-nineteenth century, and is particularly associated with John Kemble, whose work was published posthumously in 1863, together with contributions from R. G. Latham and A. W. Franks, under the title Horae Ferales. Franks used the term 'Late Keltic' to describe objects such as the Battersea shield and horse-gear from the Polden Hills hoard, in contrast to earlier material of the Bronze...

The Developed Styles in Eastern Europe

Waldalgesheim Burial

As a result of the work of Kruta, Szabo and others, much more is now known than at the time of Jacobsthal's pioneering research about the impact of the Waldalgesheim style in eastern Central Europe, and its formative role in creating there the three-dimensional Plastic Style and the distinctive Hungarian Sword Style of the ensuing period. Some examples of the Developed Style from Bohemia bear striking similarities to the Waldalgesheim group, and could even have been the product of a Celtic...

Influence of the Developed Styles on insular art

Ornament Styles Italy

For most commentators of insular Celtic art, a retarded chronology has been axiomatic, with an inviolable threshold around 300 bc. In consequence, there are no unequivocal examples of the Continental La T ne Early Style, and any reflecting the developed Waldalgesheim tradition are generally nevertheless seen as displaying an insular character Frey and Megaw, 1976 . Megaw and Megaw 2001, 192 nevertheless cite the Cerrig-y-Drudion fragments Figure 4.11, 1 as an example of the 'classic...

Southwest Europe And The Celtiberians

With the demise of diffusionism as an explanation of culture change, older interpretations of the Celticization of South-West Europe and the Hispanic Peninsula, typified by Bosch-Gimpera's 1942 twin waves of trans-Pyrenean colonization, have been abandoned in favour of an ill-defined process of acculturation derived from Hawkes' concept of 'cumulative Celticity' Alberro, 2003 . The real issue is breaking the exclusive equation of Celts and La Tene culture, which is not simply to revert to the...

Crowns torcs and personal display

Stylistic similarities can be traced with both Torrs and Newnham Croft in some of the prestige metal-work that accompanied one of the most richly-furnished burials discovered in modern times, uncovered in 1988 at Mill Hill, Deal Parfitt, 1995 . The burial, in an elongated pit, just sufficient to accommodate an extended, adult male inhumation, yielded no evidence of coffin, nor of a barrow mound or marker. Grave-goods, however, included an iron sword in its decorated bronze scabbard, a decorated...

Artistic and technical achievement in metalwork

Ardagh Chalice Inscription

In examining early Celtic art in Europe we have seen that artistic expression in metal-work concentrates within three broad fields weaponry and equestrian gear, personal ornaments, and vessels and accessories relating to feasting and more especially drinking. Though documentary sources abundantly testify to warfare in early historic society, a reality represented especially in insular sculpture in the form of mounted warriors bearing arms, archaeologically, the evidence for weaponry and...

Funerary practice and ritual

Bronze Age Greaves

The most fundamental change in burial practice represented in the late Bronze Age in Europe is the widespread adoption of cremation as the funerary rite. The north-alpine practice of burial in Urnfields, first appearing in the Bronze D phase of the thirteenth century, spread over the next half millennium northwards into the Lausitz culture zone of the north European plain, and westwards towards the Atlantic coasts as well as into southern France and across the Pyrenees. The Urnfield culture, as...

The colour plates are located between pages and

1 Later Bronze Age ceremonial 'hats' 2b Open-work gold of Schwarzenbach bowl 3 The Klein Aspergle grave-group 4b The Glauberg flagon detail of lid 5b The Waldalgesheim torc and arm-rings 6a The Erstfeld torcs and arm-rings 10a The electrum torc from Snettisham Hoard E 12 The Book of Durrow, f. 192 v 15a The Hunterston brooch front view 15b The 'Tara' brooch back view

Britain and Rome

Motifs Vine

In parallel to the late La Tene pattern in Continental Europe, and in contrast to the widespread absence of a recurrent insular burial tradition, the south-east of England in the later Iron Age is notable for its cremation cemeteries. Among these, from the Augustan period at least, and continuing into the early years of Roman occupation, is a series of aristocratic or high-status burials, lavishly furnished with the trappings of hearth and home, and including amphorae and vessels for the...

Ultimate La Tne and the midfirst millennium background

1st Century Pictish Celtic Art

Any attempt to trace influences in later Insular art styles from earlier La T ne traditions has invariably stumbled over the vexed problem of the hiatus between the end of Roman occupation in Britain and the appearance from the seventh century of metal-work, sculpture, and illuminated manuscripts of the Early Christian period. In Ireland, the problem is exacerbated by the fact that contact with the Roman world was limited. In Scotland, the earliest acceptable date for the appearance of Class I...

Northalpine Europe and Italy

Pottery Vase Designs

Finally, and perhaps crucially, we should examine the trans-alpine examples of the Developed Style of La Tene art, trans-alpine, of course, from the Celtic perspective but vexingly cisalpine for two centuries or more from the Roman viewpoint. Discounting for the moment pieces that can be regarded as Italo-Celtic, the number of major artefacts that are of La T ne type is strictly limited, and almost invariably from funerary contexts rather than from settlements. In recent years excavations at...

The Irish Scabbard Style

Lisnacrogher Scabbards

The Irish Scabbard Style is based upon just six decorated scabbard-plates, all found in relatively close proximity in County Antrim. Three of these decorated scabbards were found in the River Bann, as was a fourth undecorated example and a number of other Iron Age finds, including several horse-bits, spear-butts of both knobbed and tubular types, a sword and socketed axe, both of iron, and the well-known Bann disc. As with the British finds from the Thames and the Witham, these may well have...

Materials and techniques

Attempting to define an art object in the context of later prehistoric societies is likely to be contentious. A flint axe, a bronze pin or a pottery vessel may be technically accomplished and aesthetically pleasing to handle, but we would not necessarily regard them as art objects. Yet many bronze pins or brooches that presumably served a utilitarian function as dress accessories may conform to a form and style not dictated by function alone that consciously or unconsciously identified the...

List Of Figures

2.1 Late Bronze Age vessels with bird and sun-disc ornament 21 2.2 Late Bronze Age cult vehicles 22 2.3 Strettweg, Austria, cult vehicle 24 2.4 Hallstatt period animal imagery in bronze and pottery 25 2.5 The Urnfield warrior with equipment 28 2.6 A late Bronze Age cuirass from Marmesses 31 B Class B Atlantic cauldron from Shipton-on-Cherwell, Oxfordshire 31 2.7 Images from decorated pottery from Sopron district, Hungary 35 3.1 Details from the Klein Aspergle grave-group 39 3.2 Italic imports...

Shields and parade armour

Battersea Shield

One of the finest examples of the repouss technique combined with engraved ornament is represented by the bronze scabbard mount from the River Witham Figure 7.2 . This is a pre-eminent example of the incised ornament integrating closely with and reinforcing the repouss component. The broadly diagonal layout of the ornamented panel has been frequented remarked with reference to Hungarian Sword Style analogies, but the Witham example is singular. Its design, unfolding from a sub-circular element...

The British sword series

Wetwang Tene

After an absence in the late Hallstatt Ha D phase, the long sword in Britain makes a delayed reappearance in La Tene 1, but throughout the fifth century and into the fourth the short dagger of late Hallstatt derivation remains a principal weapon type. Jope 1961b effectively demonstrated that these were insular products, distinguished from their Continental counterparts by the technicalities of their twin-loop suspension and open-ring chape construction. Among early fourth-century examples, the...

Laddering and chagrinage

Two distinctive ornamental techniques characterize some of the Swiss swords and scabbards laddering and chagrinage. Laddering is known on less than a dozen sword blades or scabbards. It comprises a series of horizontal grooves disposed invariably on either side of a central midrib, and extending for the full length of the blade or scabbard. Laddering appears on early La Tene scabbards, continuing into the earlier stages of middle La Tene. In Britain even it occurs on the early La Tene scabbard...

Craftsmen and production

Despite the fact that archaeological classification for more than a century and a half has been based upon the Three Age technological model, actual metal-working sites or evidence for the role of craftsmen is remarkably sparse in the archaeological record. Settlement sites may yield what is uncritically described as 'slag' begging the question which stage in the metal-working process it represents , but in minimal quantities compared to the actual by-product of bronze or iron-working on even a...

The historical dimension

There remains the important consideration of historical records of the political expansion of Celts into Italy and the events that this precipitated. This important source of information has been deliberately left till last, since too often the archaeological evidence is seen only as a material manifestation of the truths that are enshrined in the historical texts. Properly, both sets of data should be examined rigorously by the criteria of their respective disciplines before cross-reference is...

The Art Of The Swordsmith

Jacobsthal coined the term 'Sword Style' with particular reference to a series of ornamented scabbards of middle La Tene type from Hungary. In doing so he recognized that this distinctive group was not generated in isolation, either geographically or chronologically indeed, he memorably declared that 'the style is a development of the Waldalgesheim style and presupposes its existence' 1944, 95 . In fact, the Hungarian Sword Style, or more strictly Scabbard Style, has a Waldalgesheim phase, best...

Dragonpairs

Tene Dragon

One of the few genuinely pan-European elements in early La Tene art is the dragon-pair motif Figure 5.5 , embellishing the upper end of the front-plate of scabbards from south-eastern Britain Stead, 1984 to Transylvania Petres, 1982 , with examples south of the Alps Megaw and Megaw, 1989 and one outlier across the Pyrenees Ginoux, 1995 . Both Jacobsthal 1944, 46 and de Navarro 1972, 229 saw these devices as evidence of orientalizing influences in early Celtic art, or even as a direct Scythian...

Celts in southwest Spain and Portugal

Documentary sources, notably Strabo and Pliny, strongly suggest the presence of Celts in the south-west of the Hispanic peninsula, and epigraphic evidence from the Roman occupation equally endorses this conclusion. Archaeologically the inference has been that Celts expanded from the territory of the Celtiberians, both south-westward and north-westward into the region of the Castro culture, but the dating of these episodes or sequence of episodes remains uncertain. Settlements in south-western...

Northern Europe longdistance influences

Hallstatt Decorated Ceramics

That prestige goods ornamented in the La Tene style penetrated beyond the Celtic world into the Germanic regions of Northern Europe was uniquely demonstrated by the discovery in 1952, in a pit under a stone cairn at Bra in east Jutland, of the remains of a magnificent communal cauldron Klindt-Jensen, 1953 . The fragmentary remains had been deposited under a pair of boulders with a large, iron socketed axe but otherwise with no associated artefacts, and no evidence of a burial. The cauldron had...

The archaeological and historical context

In the middle La Tene period in north-alpine Europe, the principal source of ornamented metal-work continues to be burials, but in place of the high-status Furstengraber of the early La Tene phase are cemeteries, comprising both flat-graves and tumuli according to regional preference, but seldom displaying the extravagance in grave-goods of the princely burials of the middle Rhine or Champagne. In place of the wine-service and precious personal ornaments, the best-equipped burials are those of...

Orientalizing again from Gundestrup to Sark

Examples Orientalizing Greek Art

We have seen that the receipt of classical imports in the late La T ne did not prompt a revival of artistic imitation and experimentation among north-alpine workshops, other than that represented by the striking of local coinages. As a result doubtless of protracted contact with Eastern and South-Eastern Europe, however, there was evidently mutual interaction between eastern and western craftsmen, witnessed most graphically and enigmatically in the well-known silver-gilt 'cauldron' from...

The beginnings of Scottish symbol stone art

Art Animal Realistic

Sculptured stones of the early historic period were classified by Joseph Anderson for his Rhind lectures of 1892 into three principal classes, a system that was adopted in the publication with Romilly Allen of Early Christian Monuments of Scotland Allen and Anderson, 1903 . The three classes have since been taken as broadly successive chronologically, if overlapping in their currency, from at least the seventh to tenth centuries ad. The basis of classification involved several criteria. Class I...

The Mirror Style

Balmaclellan Collar

Most distinctively insular of all the later examples of La Tene art are the decorated mirrors, concentrated for the most part to the south and east of a line from the Severn to the Wash. They apparently represent an innovation of the first century bc earlier mirrors are known, in the Arras culture, and very infrequently from early La Tene contexts in Central Europe, but these are undecorated and typologically have little or no relationship to the later insular series. The later British mirrors...

Oppida and urbanization

A major debate among archaeologists over the past twenty-five years has been the extent to which communities in Central and Western Europe in the late La Tene period had developed urban or proto-urban settlements that constituted central places within an emerging state-level social structure. Caesar described major sites in Gaul as oppida, though it is arguable whether this implied attributes comparable to Roman towns. He even described Avaricum, Bourges, as the fairest city urbs in all Gaul....

Later Insular Art In Britain And Ireland

It is not within the scope of the present study to trace in detail the progression of later Celtic art in Britain and Ireland through the emergence of elaborate Early Christian cross-slabs of Scotland or the metal-work, manuscripts and high crosses of Early Christian Ireland into the Medieval period. Many other studies Henry, 1965 1967 1970 Henderson and Henderson, 2004 Harbison, 1999 have dealt with this rich field from an art-historical or archaeo-historical perspective much more fully than...

The Swiss Scabbard Style

Scabbard Plans

By far the greatest proportion of Swiss La Tene swords and scabbards come from, or are attributed to, the type-site itself, and for that reason lack the benefit of closed associations afforded by cemetery contexts. The purpose and function of the site at La Tene Figure 5.6 have been a source of debate since its discovery in 1857 in an old branch of the river Thielle, between Lake Neuchatel and Lake Biel, immediately beneath the Jura mountains in north-west Switzerland. It was the controlling of...

Late Bronze Age and Hallstatt ornamental styles

Late Urnfield Sword

Late Bronze Age ornamental styles, as exemplified on bronzes, could be regarded as essentially geometric. Two techniques are particularly in evidence on metal-work, engraved and repouss . From Northern Europe, through Central Europe and including parts of the Mediterranean, geometric curvilinear and linear motifs are widespread and recurrent, so that it would be difficult to assign these styles expressly or diagnostically to any one regional or chronological grouping. Within the Urnfield...

The late Bronze Age and the Dowris metalwork industry

South West Divide

The question arises, therefore, what preceded the Irish La Tene Metal-work in the Hallstatt Iron Age tradition is even more sparsely represented in Ireland than it is in Britain, and what there is in any significant numbers, namely, bronze swords of Gundlingen type Cowen, 1967 , is generally regarded as being of local manufacture, like their British counterparts, rather than evidence of close direct contact with Continental Europe. Hallstatt-type bracelets or Italic-type brooches, often without...

Early Christian manuscript art

Cathach Writing

We have already considered the problems of the apparent 'hiatus' between the end of Roman occupation in Britain, and the rather less clearly defined end of the earlier Iron Age in Ireland, and the seventh eighth-century floruit of Insular art. Had Jacobsthal published a study of Early Christian manuscript art, he might have observed that it was 'an art with no genesis'. He might then have proceeded to identify its three principal roots as native 'Ultimate La T ne', innovating Germanic...

The Castro Culture of the peninsular northwest

The Castro Culture of north-west Spain and northern Portugal is distinguished by its walled settlements, variously described according to size and sophistication of internal layout as castro, cividade or citania. The largest and most urbanized in layout, like the Citania de Briteiros and Citania de Sanfins, are essentially post-Augustan in their surviving plan, but almost certainly have a longer antecedent history. They may have double or multiple enclosing walls, and their internal occupation...

The wine trade and southern imports

Dressel Distribution

From the middle of the second century bc, southern imports, probably linked to the trade in Italian wine, once again make their appearance in north-alpine Europe Figure 10.2 . While it may be true Fitzpatrick, 1985, 317 that North-Western Europe 'never constituted a market in the technical sense for Roman goods' in the period prior to the conquest of Gaul, nevertheless the archaeological distribution of amphorae Figure 10.2A affords striking testimony to the extent of the demand for...

Feasting and drinking

Urnfield Cauldrons

The earliest beaten bronze vessels associated with ceremonial and perhaps ritual feasting and drinking occur in the Bronze D phase of the thirteenth century bc in Central Europe. By Hallstatt A1 in the twelfth century a typical set of vessels associated with festive or ritual drinking was buried in the chieftain's grave at Hart-an-der-Alz in Bavaria. Apart from weaponry and some personal ornaments, the grave contained a beaten bronze bucket, and as accessories a handled sieve or straining cup...

The middle Iron Age first to third centuries ad

Old Ireland Images

It will be apparent from the previous analysis of the La T ne material assemblage that many of the types already considered, horse-bits, Y-shaped pendants, spear-butts, brooches and pins, must have continued in modified form into the opening centuries of the Christian era. Horse-bits of Types D and E, for example, are ornamented in a more formal curvilinear style that evidently reflects Roman influence, and in some instances associations with Roman imported material confirms this assessment....

Ritual sites and cult practices

Ritual sites in the La Tene Iron Age take a variety of forms, and it is not until the Gallo-Roman period that a regular plan of temple buildings or sacred enclosure can be recognized. Not surprisingly the closest we have come to formalized ritual structures are the remains from the Celto-Ligurian sanctuaries of Mediterranean Gaul, with skull-niched pillars and sculpted images. Elsewhere in the absence of recognizable structural remains, altars or dedications to deities, it is not easy to infer...

The eastern Alps

Durrnberg Flagon

Notwithstanding these regional concentrations in the Hunsr ck-Eifel and Champagne, longer-distance contacts are attested within north-alpine Europe, as well as with the Mediterranean world. A prime example is afforded by the cemetery of D rrnberg-bei-Hallein in the Austrian Alps Penninger, 1972 Moosleitner et al., 1974 Pauli, 1978 . The D rrnberg was evidently an important centre for the production of salt from the late Hallstatt to at least the middle La Tene period, and salt mining in fact...

The La Tene Later Relief Styles

Broadly contemporary with the Sword Styles, dating from the later fourth or third centuries bc, a range of artefacts, including personal ornaments, especially from the middle La Tene cemeteries of eastern Central Europe, developed a high-relief style of ornament which Jacobsthal defined as the 'Plastic Style'. As its name implies, the Plastic Style is characterized by its three-dimensional, relief form, in English implying a moulded quality, as in modelling in the round with clay, but in the...

The southern province and ceremonial statuary

Entremont Aix

From at least the beginning of the sixth century bc, following the establishment of the Greek colony of Massilia, the Mediterranean coast of Gaul had been exposed to external influences and imports, acquiring a domestic material culture in terms of settlements and architecture as well as in pottery that was distinct from that of the barbarian hinterland. After the end of the fifth century, Massilian coastal trade declined, but by the third, Hellenistic influence is clearly visible in the...

The Hungarian Scabbard Style

Hungarian Ornament

Hungarian scabbards have been divided by Szabo and Petres 1992 into those with ornament belonging within the Waldalgesheim continuum, and those that stylistically may be regarded as later. In fact, the conventional chronology for the Hungarian Scabbard Style is quite compressed, its start being dated hardly before the early third century, with its decline apparently by the second quarter of the second. While there may well have been direct influence from western Waldalgesheim centres, we should...

The Waldalgesheim Style

Celtic Saulces Champenoise

The Waldalgesheim Style, named by Jacobsthal after a princely burial in the middle Rhine Aus'm Werth, 1870 Joachim, 1995 , notwithstanding its continuing debt to classical plant prototypes, displays an independence of interpretation and confidence in execution that marks the culmination of achievement of the early La T ne period. Modern commentators are divided regarding the regional origins of this developed style, and the Rhineland is not obviously a focal point in its north-alpine...

South East Europe and Hellenistic influences

Celtic Helmet With Bird

In various parts of South-Eastern Europe, extending into Greece and Asia Minor, finds have been made of archaeological material, including grave-goods, of La Tene type, that inevitably have been interpreted as evidence for the historically documented invasions of Celts into those regions in the third century bc. In Romania, one such burial, combining Hellenistic with 'Celtic' types, was the third-century warrior's grave at iumejti, in the district of Maramurej near the border with Ukraine. The...

Aquitania

Celtic Plastic Style

The Roman province of Aquitania had very variable boundaries, extending under Augustus far beyond the area that Caesar described as one of his three parts of Gaul. For Caesar, the Garonne was a significant boundary between Aquitani and Celtae, a boundary that periodically might reflect some distinctions in the archaeological record between the regions that lie between it, the Pyrenees and the Atlantic coast, on the one hand, and the regions of the Tarn, Quercy, Perigord, Limousin and Charente...

Orientalizing influences in the Early Styles

Ring Weiskirchen

For Jacobsthal, Oriental influences were one of the three roots of early Celtic Art. Yet he was acutely aware that it was 'as easy to see the East behind the Celtic designs as it was difficult to define precisely country and date of the prototypes' 1944, 156 . The literature is strewn with parallels for individual traits, sometimes from Scythian art itself largely the product of Greek craftsmen working for native patrons , sometimes from Luristan art of Persia, sometimes from the earlier...

Human and animal representations

Bronze Figures

Anthropoid-hilted swords of Class G are of particular interest because of progressive Romanization in their depiction of the human head. The ancestry of this form of hilt derives ultimately from late Hallstatt weapons, but only in the later La T ne are the hand-grips so distinctively cast with reeled mouldings, and the knobbed 'heads' given hair and facial features. The fact that examples may be Janus-faced suggests some cultic significance for the warrior's protection. The effect and extent of...

Conclusion

The purpose of this review has been not just to seek stylistic antecedents for any specific motifs or stylistic traits within early La Tene art, but to consider technological, economic, ritual and social contexts within which such a development in art might have come about. While it true that individual motifs within the widespread and longstanding tradition of geometric ornament on both metal-work and pottery might be regarded as an antecedent of simple geometric designs on pottery and...

Languedoc

The late Bronze Age and first Iron Age sequence in Languedoc is still exemplified in the classic sequence of settlements and cemeteries at Mailhac, Aude Louis et al., 1955 1958 1960 , though more recent excavations such as those at the Peyrou cemetery at Agde have greatly amplified our understanding of the problems of the transition to the Iron Age. The assemblage from the cemetery of Le Moulin Mailhac I , described by Guilaine 1972 as un authentique Age du Bronze terminal showed a local...

The Celtiberians

Celtiberian Weapon

Nowhere is the tacit equation of Celtic identity and La Tene material culture more apparent than in the study of Celtic communities in the Hispanic peninsula. Accepting the documentary and linguistic evidence for Celtiberians in the eastern Meseta, and even for some late expansion of Celtic speakers into south-western and north-eastern regions, scholars have sifted through the archaeological inventory looking for the most tenuous traces of the influence of Central European La Tene types on...

The human image

Basse Yutz Flagons

Among Jacobsthal s initial precepts regarding early Celtic art was that it was not representational, and did not in general represent human or animal forms realistically or naturalistically. Humanoid faces, sometimes described as satyr-faces , with exaggerated or demoniac features, however, occur within a larger design in a variety of contexts, such as within the palmette and lotus ornament of the Weiskirchen plaque, or in specific and recurrent locations such as the top and base of flagon...

The Bohemian Plastic Style

Bohemian Totem

The importance of the Plastic Style in Bohemia and Moravia has largely been established through the analytical research of Kruta 1975 , whose sub-divisions have been widely adopted by other scholars. He demonstrated that the first phase of the Bohemian Plastic Style developed from types associated with the Duchcov horizon of the later fourth century. Two principal artefactual types were represented. Numerically most significant are a series of bronze penannular bracelets with buffer terminals,...

Burials in the late La Tene

The evidence for these imported artefacts in north-alpine Europe is derived significantly from rich graves, which once again come into prominence in the late La Tene. In much of North-Western Europe in this period the burial rite reverts to cremation in flat cemeteries, often with minimal grave-goods to accompany the cremated remains, which are frequently deposited in a wheel-thrown pottery vessel. In Belgic Gaul and in south-eastern England, this often takes the form of a tall, pedestal vase...

Coinage

Parisii Coins Art

The introduction of coinage to Celtic Europe was almost certainly a by-product of the expansion of Celts, raiders, traders or mercenaries, into Southern and South-Eastern Europe in the period of the historical migrations. Nash 1987 has summarized the case for regarding Celtic coinage, both in its appearance across north-alpine Europe generally, and in Britain specifically, as having relatively little to do with trade, and much more to do with payments for mercenary service. Celtic mercenaries...

The early Iron Age fourth to first centuries bc

Ring Pin Hoard

Notwithstanding the absence of Roman occupation in Ireland, its Iron Age has been divided into early, middle and late phases. As in Scotland beyond the limits of Roman occupation, the early phase is the most difficult to document in terms of material types, given the late dating conventionally assigned to the majority of La Tene types. The middle phase includes several of those distinctive types, dating to the first three centuries of the first millennium ad, and the late phase corresponds to...

Rhineland and Champagne

Motif Fle Palmette

The early La Tene La Tene A assemblage found in 1879 in the aristocratic grave at the Klein Aspergle, near Ludwigsburg in Baden-W rttemberg Pl. 3 Kimmig, 1988 , which first attracted Paul Jacobsthal s attention to the study of early Celtic art in the winter of 1921, provides us with an ideal introduction to the beginnings of fifth-century La Tene art, and the problems associated with its origins. The central burial of the tumulus, one of the most impressive of a group in the near neighbourhood...