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How Ancient Europeans Saw the WorldVision, Patterns, and the Shaping of the Mind in Prehistoric Times$
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Peter S. Wells

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780691143385

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: October 2017

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691143385.001.0001

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The Visual Worlds of Early Europe

The Visual Worlds of Early Europe

(p.34) Chapter 3 The Visual Worlds of Early Europe
How Ancient Europeans Saw the World

Peter S. Wells

Princeton University Press

This chapter discusses the visual world of late prehistoric Europe. It first uses Teniers's painting of the interior of an inn at the beginning of the chapter in order to introduce the topic of light as an important issue in any consideration of seeing in times previous to the ready availability of electric light. It then describes changes in the landscape, in the character of settlements, houses, and in other aspects of the visual environment during the two millennia between the beginning of the Early Bronze Age and the end of the Iron Age. These changes were most often gradual. A number of significant trends are recognizable in the environmental evidence pertaining to changes in the landscape; and there is archaeological evidence pertaining to changes in tool use, the digging of ditches, the building of walls, and the construction of settlements and houses.

Keywords:   light, visual world, late prehistoric Europe, settlement, landscape, houses, Early Bronze Age, Iron Age

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