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Thread: Bronze Age women travelled the world while men stayed at home

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    Quote Originally Posted by Angela View Post
    All of that is very true.I would just re-iterate what was said above about certain cultures in the Near East giving women some modicum of independence, such as the Egyptians and the Phoenicians. They also, like the Celts, had powerful women leaders in a minority of situations, such as Hatshepsut ruling as Pharaoh in Egypt, and some powerful Phoenician Queens. That doesn't mean, in either case, that women in general had a lot of power.You can't make these blanket generalizations, at least not, at least, if you know anything about the cultures of the Near East in antiquity.
    There certainly wasn't, but the purpose of what I said was to give examples that the ancient near east didn't influence Greece to subordinate women as Dov asserted.
    Quote Originally Posted by Dov View Post
    You got me mixed up with someone? I never wrote anything like that.The chronicle I mean to the written period.Orientalization of Greece from the Phoenician and the adoption of the Phoenician alphabet is a fact. This quote is about common late writing period, not prehistoric times.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jovialis View Post
    There certainly wasn't, but the purpose of what I said was to give examples that the ancient near east didn't influence Greece to subordinate women as Dov asserted.
    Yes, I understood you, and you were correct.


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    Quote Originally Posted by Angela View Post
    These movements reflect either bride exchange or bride "sale" for goods.
    It makes sense in societies where land ownership is passed from father to son. Young girls would be sold to the highest bidder, they're an extremely valuable commodity after all, and a man who is willing to pay a good price is more likely to take good care of the commodity. It's a win win for all parties involved.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ygorbr View Post
    We have no solid proof that Celtic and Sarmatian women were as free and equal to men as Hollywood movies of "barbarian women warriors" depict them. It's not the first time that Hollywood is extremely anachronistic and impresses contemporary values and practices into ancient history. The fact that some women participated in war is no guarantee that the average woman, who of course were mothers and housewives, had a high status and high personal freedom in their villages. We don't even know if those women warriors were regarded as "common women" just like the spouses and daughters of all those strong men. If what we know about more developed and literate Indo-European societies, like Greeks, Romans, Persians and North Indians, is to be believed, that was definitely not the case.

    Also, you need to analyze things through the context and conditions of that time. For instance, a practice like the prohibition of divorce by early Christianity, which eventually became a burden to women, was quite possibly a huge improvement for many women who previously felt extremely insecure as they aged and when they ceased to be pleasant companions to their husbands. That's just an example of how "equality" and "oppression" aren't as black and white as you seem to think. The fact that Indo-European tribes had a few women warriors tell us little about how they were in fact treated in everyday life when they were not part of a tiny military elite.

    The archeology of the steppe of the Bronze Age and Iron Age gives an answer to this question. We have strong evidence of this. In addition to the stories of ancient authors like Herodotus and others, now in the south of Russia and in Ukraine (Nikopol burial mounds) many women's graves are found in the part of Scythian and Sarmatian women, which are prototypes of mythological Amazons. Which are buried in full arms, with quivers of arrows, as well as traces of wounds, which indicates that they participated in the battles, and the weapons were not ritual. For example, a 14 year old girl, with a wound from an arrow and with weapons, found in Ukraine. The Greek colonists on the Black Sea told of the women of the warriors, which was the beginning of the Indo-European myth about the Amazons.

    Also from the ancient authors is known about Sparta (a typical Indo-European military democracy) and Spartan women who were trained in sports, military skill, music and culture on a par with boys. And they were freed from domestic affairs, which were performed for them by slaves. Sometimes they went on hikes, they could also suppress the helot revolts.
    Also Spartan women were the only Greek women to participate in the Olympic Games.

    Women emancipation and women warriors did not exist in all Indo-European societies, but it was inherent in many of them. This is one of their specific detail.

    I propose to rely on scientific historical and archeologichal facts, and not on own internal inspiration.


    The fact that Indo-European tribes had a few women warriors tell us little about how they were in fact treated in everyday life when they were not part of a tiny military elite.
    We have the data of ancient authors above about societie structure of Celts, Germanics, Sarmatians and Spartans. This is roughly speaking about their towards women. We walk in circle of the discussion.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dov View Post
    The archeology of the steppe of the Bronze Age and Iron Age gives an answer to this question. We have strong evidence of this. In addition to the stories of ancient authors like Herodotus and others, now in the south of Russia and in Ukraine (Nikopol burial mounds) many women's graves are found in the part of Scythian and Sarmatian women, which are prototypes of mythological Amazons. Which are buried in full arms, with quivers of arrows, as well as traces of wounds, which indicates that they participated in the battles, and the weapons were ritual. For example, a 14 year old girl, with a wound from an arrow and with weapons, found in Ukraine. The Greek colonists on the Black Sea told of the women of the warriors, which was the beginning of the Indo-European myth about the Amazons.

    Also from the ancient authors is known about Sparta (a typical Indo-European military democracy) and Spartan women who were trained in sports, military skill, music and culture on a par with boys. And they were freed from domestic affairs, which were performed for them by slaves. Sometimes they went on hikes, they could also suppress the helot revolts.
    Also Spartan women were the only Greek women to participate in the Olympic Games.

    Women emancipation and women warriors did not exist in all Indo-European societies, but it was inherent in many of them. This is one of their specific detail.

    I propose to rely on scientific historical and archeologichal facts, and not on own internal inspiration.
    So, you've said twice already. You've been heard and answered. Stop spamming. It's boring.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Angela View Post
    So, you've said twice already. You've been heard and answered. Stop spamming. It's boring.
    No, I wrote nothing about the prototypes of the Amazons found in the Iron age steppe before, and also did not tell some details about the Spartan women. This may be of interest to someone.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ygorbr View Post
    Yes, but then we also know of some very powerful, intellectually independent and very wealthy Catholic medieval women in Europe, like, for example, Eleanor of Aquitaine and Amalasuntha. We also know of influent intellectuals like Catherine of Siena and Theresa of Avila, even warriors like Joan of Arc. Does that mean that the general status of average women in the medieval Christian world was confidently represented by that elite minority of independent women? I don't think so. It is always too easy to romanticize and glorify the long gone past for which we have much less evidences than we have for more recent and literate times, but I definitely don't buy the theory that Celtic and Germanic women were in general much more free than women in other ancient cultures. Probably they had less strictly defined social roles, but they were far from equal and powerful except for a minority of especially talented or noble women.
    This suggests that the status of women in Europe was still relatively high, when compared with other societies. (in absolute terms, this was already low)
    Also after this, some of the greatest rulers of Europe such as Queen Victoria and Catherine the Great were still possible. What is difficult to imagine in many other societies of those times.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dov View Post
    No, I wrote nothing about the prototypes of the Amazons found in the Iron age steppe before, and also did not tell some details about the Spartan women. This may be of interest to someone.
    Keep spamming and you're going to get an infraction. We've heard your opinion, loud and clear. Some of us just aren't buying it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dov View Post
    No, I wrote nothing about the prototypes of the Amazons found in the Iron age steppe before, and also did not tell some details about the Spartan women. This may be of interest to someone.
    are you referring to these russian finds?
    http://archive.archaeology.org/9701/...armatians.html
    or this one
    http://www.zmescience.com/science/ar...tomb-18082015/


    http://news.nationalgeographic.com/n...ttoo-cannabis/
    có che un pòpoło no 'l defende pi ła só łéngua el xe prónto par èser s'ciavo

    when a people no longer dares to defend its language it is ripe for slavery.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Wheal View Post
    Some errors of sex attribution occur in archeology, but not in this case. We are talking about a mass phenomenon.

    Yes, including this. There's a lot of that.

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    1 out of 1 members found this post helpful.
    Quote Originally Posted by Dov View Post
    Also from the ancient authors is known about Sparta (a typical Indo-European military democracy) and Spartan women who were trained in sports, military skill, music and culture on a par with boys. And they were freed from domestic affairs, which were performed for them by slaves. Sometimes they went on hikes, they could also suppress the helot revolts.
    Also Spartan women were the only Greek women to participate in the Olympic Games.
    That some Indo-European tribes of the Iron Age (a mere 2,000-3,000 years away from Proto-Indo-European Yamna, but let's forget about this huge chronological gap for now) had women warriors is not disputed. That this means necessarily that women in general were regarded as equal or nearly equal to men in the social and family structure is an entirely different matter, and if general Indo-European ancient societies and Indo-European mythology is to be believed as a possible indication of how things were back then it is clear that women may have had some freedoms, but were clearly secondary to men. The case of Sparta is actually very enlightening about this. Women had freedoms and were trained to be physically and mentally fit mainly to give many healthy and able children to become good warriors and sustain the inherently unstable nature of the Spartan society, in which a tiny minority had the monopoly of power over an increasing popultion of subjected helots. There aren't evidences that those were independent and emancipated women. They had certainly much more freedom to act, to move and to expose themselves than women in other - equally Indo-European - neighboring societies, but they were far from liberated women in positions of equal status. Rather, they were to be "productive and strong child-makers".

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    1 out of 1 members found this post helpful.
    Quote Originally Posted by Dov View Post
    This suggests that the status of women in Europe was still relatively high, when compared with other societies. (in absolute terms, this was already low)
    Also after this, some of the greatest rulers of Europe such as Queen Victoria and Catherine the Great were still possible. What is difficult to imagine in many other societies of those times.
    Granted, but certainly not that difficult to imagine in the ancient history of Egypt, Semitic societies in the Levant and even Arabia (Khadija, Muhammad's first wife and counsellor, was clearly an independent businesswoman and trader), or in many Native American societies, and certainly not that difficult to imagine, too, in non-Indo-European Europe if the apparent depictions of women's status in Minoan culture are really truthful. That is not to say that they were very free and stuff, no, but I'm not sure the existence of women warriors among some Indo-Europeans demonstrates that Neolithic Near Easterners were substantially more patriarchal than Indo-Europeans.

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    What I think has not been discussed is that the current social structure in the Middle East results from the patriarchal nature of Semitic society, which was a pastoralist society, like that of the Indo-Europeans.

    Farming cultures do seem to have been a bit different.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ygorbr View Post
    Women had freedoms and were trained to be physically and mentally fit mainly to give many healthy and able children to become good warriors and sustain the inherently unstable nature of the Spartan society, in which a tiny minority had the monopoly of power over an increasing popultion of subjected helots. There aren't evidences that those were independent and emancipated women. They had certainly much more freedom to act, to move and to expose themselves than women in other - equally Indo-European - neighboring societies, but they were far from liberated women in positions of equal status. Rather, they were to be "productive and strong child-makers".
    I asked to refrain from intuition. Ancient authors assert the opposite things. Sometimes even accusing Lycurgus and his law, call it "matriarchy." Spartan women even had the right to inherit the land, did not do household activities. According to Aristotle, women owned 2/5 of the state land.
    Plutarch noted that: "The riches of Laconia were for the most part in the women hands" (land)
    This is a colossal women's wealth even by modern standards.
    Regarding other women in Greece and the rest of the other societies, they were incredibly emancipated.

    And no where there was no talk about the fullness of equal rights, it is not worth debunking this empty thesis.
    Last edited by Dov; 21-09-17 at 23:52.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ygorbr View Post
    Granted, but certainly not that difficult to imagine in the ancient history of Egypt, Semitic societies in the Levant and even Arabia (Khadija, Muhammad's first wife and counsellor, was clearly an independent businesswoman and trader), or in many Native American societies, and certainly not that difficult to imagine, too, in non-Indo-European Europe if the apparent depictions of women's status in Minoan culture are really truthful. That is not to say that they were very free and stuff, no, but I'm not sure the existence of women warriors among some Indo-Europeans demonstrates that Neolithic Near Easterners were substantially more patriarchal than Indo-Europeans.
    That is, as the analog of Catherine and Victoria, women supreme rulers of large countries, you point to usual wife of the future polygamous man in society with "harems".
    Such metodology can prove any thesis.

    In fact, all these your examples are not analogous. Except ancient Egypt. But I talk about other times.

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    1 out of 1 members found this post helpful.
    ^^Yes, you talk about almost modern times, after thousands of years of cultural development, and ignore the effect of different religions among other cultural variables.

    Give it a rest. Pastoral societies like the Indo-Europeans and the Semites were more patriarchal, farming societies not as much so.
    End of story.

    Everything else is just your agenda and ********.

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    1 out of 2 members found this post helpful.
    There is such an opinion, but it is not always correct.
    Above was the material that the phenomenon of the Amazons appeared precisely in the pastoral Sarmatians and Scythians. While in Athens, women were in "harems".

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dov View Post
    I asked to refrain from intuition. Ancient authors assert the opposite things.
    This is not "intuition". This is the opinion of modern, critical historiography, trying to keep things objective and scientific, and based on a much wider set of evidences and sources, something that almost all ancient authors lacked as they wrote from their partial and personal points of view, and also often according to some personal or political agenda under the constraints of their societies' relations with other peoples. Ancient authors are very important, but not only was Sparta's system a sometimes shockingly different political and social regime in Greece, those authors often tended to exaggerate things a lot. I'll always take them with (many) grains of salt.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dov View Post
    That is, as the analog of Catherine and Victoria, women supreme rulers of large countries, you point to usual wife of the future polygamous man in society with "harems".
    Such metodology can prove any thesis.
    I could've mentioned Zenobia of Palmyrene Empire, a Semitic kingdom under a powerful supreme ruler,, or even the mythical and probably South Arabian Queen of Sheba. But of course that wouldn't be useful to your manichaean depiction of freedom in IE societies versus oppressive Near Eastern societies regardless of specific circumstances and historic period (not even considering that the IE and Semitic expansions in the Bronze Age completely changed the ethnic and cultural makeup of that region compared to Neolithic times, when it was really dominated by farmer cultures)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ygorbr View Post
    This is not "intuition". This is the opinion of modern, critical historiography, trying to keep things objective and scientific, and based on a much wider set of evidences and sources, something that almost all ancient authors lacked as they wrote from their partial and personal points of view, and also often according to some personal or political agenda under the constraints of their societies' relations with other peoples. Ancient authors are very important, but not only was Sparta's system a sometimes shockingly different political and social regime in Greece, those authors often tended to exaggerate things a lot. I'll always take them with (many) grains of salt.
    If you read modern authors who studied Spartan and ancient societies, such as Y.V. Andreev, then you would know that they refer almost exclusively to ancient authors. We simply do not have other knowledge. Societies not described by ancient authors are absolutely unknown. While the Sparta were studied is pretty good, the benefit was in enriching written civilization. I suggest you still read the material, and not act by intuition. Then you will know that Spartan women owned about 40% of the economy of Sparta (land). It's as if modern women were in 40% of the Forbes list. They were much more economically emancipated and freer than modern women.
    Then you would not write your unsupported intuitive guesses like this:
    There aren't evidences that those were independent and emancipated women. They had certainly much more freedom to act, to move and to expose themselves than women in other - equally Indo-European - neighboring societies, but they were far from liberated women in positions of equal status.
    Last edited by Dov; 22-09-17 at 22:57.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ygorbr View Post
    I could've mentioned Zenobia of Palmyrene Empire, a Semitic kingdom under a powerful supreme ruler,, or even the mythical and probably South Arabian Queen of Sheba. But of course that wouldn't be useful to your manichaean depiction of freedom in IE societies versus oppressive Near Eastern societies regardless of specific circumstances and historic period (not even considering that the IE and Semitic expansions in the Bronze Age completely changed the ethnic and cultural makeup of that region compared to Neolithic times, when it was really dominated by farmer cultures)
    The mythical queen is certainly an analogue of Queen Victoria of modern times. As and Muhamed's wifes.
    Outside of Europe, the women rulers of New Age are few.

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    I think this is an excellent post also. Imagine a group of people with declining population (from interbreeding), coming across another group, who had women that were exotic, compared to their own. Of course they would think they were prized possessions and offer techniques and knowledge and/or peace in exchange.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Wheal View Post
    I think this is an excellent post also. Imagine a group of people with declining population (from interbreeding), coming across another group, who had women that were exotic, compared to their own. Of course they would think they were prized possessions and offer techniques and knowledge and/or peace in exchange.
    I think the inbreeding problem happens in first few generations. Later the bad genetic combinations are weeded away and all gets back to normal. After all the healthiest and long living populations come from small secluded communities like islands or mountainous areas. Likewise, Amazon jungle tribes have inbred for thousands of years and yet exist till today fine. It doesn't look like they are dying off and need "fresh" blood.
    Be wary of people who tend to glorify the past, underestimate the present, and demonize the future.

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    It depends to some extent on the effective population size.

    https://www.nature.com/scitable/topi...on-size-772523

    Some groups who practice very high within group marriage do indeed have a lot of genetic load leading to a high incidence of genetic disease, as, for example, Askenazi Jews.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Medical_genetics_of_Jews

    While some Sardinians are very long lived, they also carry a high genetic load. There's been a lot of work done on identifying these diseases.

    The same thing has plagued populations like the Druze, and is indeed implicated in the high incidence of genetic disease in some areas of the Middle East. Osama Bin Ladin's family is only one example.
    https://gnxp.nofe.me/2017/09/11/inbr...ladens-family/

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