Did Indo-European people mostly displace the inhabitants are Europe and why?

specul8

Ad Honorem
Oct 2016
3,031
Australia
In both Portugal and Spain there are regions that had "proto cities", permanent settlements with stone walls located on the top of hills.

It seems that its builders were descendents of the Neolithic populations who built megalithic monuments in previous centuries.

There are no clear signs of a rigid hierarchy in these communities (at least in the proto cities in western Portugal) and there are some signs of organized violence.

The walls seem to have spots for archers. There is a great production of arrows. Some male bodies were found in common graves, etc.
Are they near the coast ?

These elements were present in the late Neolithic and early Copper Age, well before the arrival of central Europe migrants.

One thing seems certain, in the late copper age and early bronze age there's a radical change. The population are no longer concentrated in proto cities. Most of them are abandoned. People are now living in valleys and open spaces without fortifications. The bell beaker kit is more widespread and even though the societies in Western Portugal seem more peaceful there some signs of a warrior elite.

These are just interpretations though.

Maybe there was no war, just intensive hunting. The walls were made to guard cattle at night. And the change in the pattern of territorial occupation might have been a response to an environment collapse.

Or maybe it was everything I wrote above.
Aha ! Walls to keep things IN ... I was wondering about that, as some settlements that are supposed to be without fortifications seem to be artistically rendered as large enclosures .
 

specul8

Ad Honorem
Oct 2016
3,031
Australia
Lack of fortifications does not mean lack of violence.
Iceland of Sagas and Norway of Viking Age had raids like burning of Njall, yet did not build forts.
Irish had endemic wars and sometimes built ringforts... yet 12th century witnesses say that the warriors lived in unfortified halls and disregarded the "Daneforts" visible in their landscape.

For small villages of 20...40 souls total, 5...10 adult men who often had to be away in fields, the cost-effectiveness of building and then manning fortifications is problematic.
Yes, I can see that in smaller settlements, but I was thinking more around the type of CT cultures;

" .... During the Middle Trypillia phase (c. 4000 to 3500 BC), populations belonging to the Cucuteni–Trypillia culture built the largest settlements in Neolithic Europe, some of which contained as many as 3,000 structures and were possibly inhabited by 20,000 to 46,000 people . "

Cucuteni–Trypillia culture - Wikipedia
 
Jan 2016
1,082
Collapsed wave
There certainly was a wave of first farmers. A dispute is whether the first farmers may already have been Indo-Europeans - or not.

The indo-european languages have many common words for things that didn't exist in the neolithic farmer cultures:
Things like horses, carts, wool products etc.

Language and Time 2: Wool, Wheels, and Proto-Indo-European - The Horse, the Wheel, and Language: How Bronze-Age Riders from the Eurasian Steppes Shaped the Modern World
 
Aug 2014
1,170
Portugal
Are they near the coast ?



Aha ! Walls to keep things IN ... I was wondering about that, as some settlements that are supposed to be without fortifications seem to be artistically rendered as large enclosures .
The walled settlements were built in the Lisboa peninsula, a few km from the sea. In some (if not most) settlements the sea is visible. But these are not "coastal settlements".
The settlements were very close to navigable rivers from which the ocean could easily be reached. And their main harbour might have been in the rivers. A safer solution, maybe.

Probably the walls were built to keep cattle and grain (and people) in. But it also had many towers to keep enemies out, and the settlements were built on hills. Good visibility and good defense. When there is a cliff the towers, or even walls, were not built.

Inside there are vestiges of "industry", housing and "religion", yet no evidence of temples or bigger houses. No vestiges of a clear hierarchy yet. But there are some nice objects, some gold, and that might indicate some kind of elite.
 

betgo

Ad Honorem
Jul 2011
5,978
Interesting points about Italy and Spain. They are both peninulas, which might make it harder for Indo Europeans to get to them. They also both have darker people. It is possible that the Old Europeans looked like that, being partly descended from near eastern farmers who had invaded earlier. It is also possible that "Latin" culture is more pre Indo European culture.

Aside from Basque, Castilian Spanish have a large percentage of non Indo European words. Since, those words came into Latin dialects, non Indo European languages must have been widely spoken at the time of the Roman conquest.

As to the Etruscans, obviously they adopted an Indo European language and were not mostly killed off by the Romans.
 

specul8

Ad Honorem
Oct 2016
3,031
Australia
The walled settlements were built in the Lisboa peninsula, a few km from the sea. In some (if not most) settlements the sea is visible. But these are not "coastal settlements".
The settlements were very close to navigable rivers from which the ocean could easily be reached. And their main harbour might have been in the rivers. A safer solution, maybe.

Probably the walls were built to keep cattle and grain (and people) in. But it also had many towers to keep enemies out, and the settlements were built on hills. Good visibility and good defense. When there is a cliff the towers, or even walls, were not built.

Inside there are vestiges of "industry", housing and "religion", yet no evidence of temples or bigger houses. No vestiges of a clear hierarchy yet. But there are some nice objects, some gold, and that might indicate some kind of elite.
So, they might have been susceptible to the ship form or 'raid and run' .
 
Mar 2015
836
Europe
Aside from Basque, Castilian Spanish have a large percentage of non Indo European words. Since, those words came into Latin dialects, non Indo European languages must have been widely spoken at the time of the Roman conquest.
And yet, there are also attestations of Indo-Europeans in Spain before Romans.
Starting with Celtiberians.
But not only. The few inscriptions in Lusitanian indicate Indo-European... but also that it was not Celtic, but an otherwise unattested branch of Indo-European.
 

robto

Ad Honorem
Jun 2014
5,980
Lisbon, Portugal
My understanding is that the first wave was the Yamnaya -> Corded ware (Balto-slavic and Germanic)
and second wave the Hallstatt->Celtics?

It seems there is some evidence for something like that?
Don't forget the East Bell Beaker expansion, especially on the British Isles and France.
 

betgo

Ad Honorem
Jul 2011
5,978
Probabily there were varoius waves of PIE in Europe, PIE people become the new elite and imposed their languages to Paleoeuropean people.
This seems to have happened in mostly historical times in Spain, Portugal, France, and Italy. There were a mixture of IE and non IE languages.Then much of the area became Celtic speaking, and then it all became Latin speaking.

England at some point became Celtic speaking, then Anglo-Saxon speaking, and then the language was influenced by Vikings, and Norman French conquerors. There is less connection with the pre IE past there, but you see how the language kept being replaced or influenced by conquerors. In Spain, there was an IE Latin based language, influenced by later non IE non European conquerors.
 

Similar History Discussions