THE HORSE THE WHEEL AND LANGUAGE HOW BRONZE AGE RIDERS FROM THE EURASIAN STEPPES SHAPED THE MODERN WORLD

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The Horse The Wheel And Language

Author : David W. Anthony
ISBN : 1400831105
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 68.41 MB
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Roughly half the world's population speaks languages derived from a shared linguistic source known as Proto-Indo-European. But who were the early speakers of this ancient mother tongue, and how did they manage to spread it around the globe? Until now their identity has remained a tantalizing mystery to linguists, archaeologists, and even Nazis seeking the roots of the Aryan race. The Horse, the Wheel, and Language lifts the veil that has long shrouded these original Indo-European speakers, and reveals how their domestication of horses and use of the wheel spread language and transformed civilization. Linking prehistoric archaeological remains with the development of language, David Anthony identifies the prehistoric peoples of central Eurasia's steppe grasslands as the original speakers of Proto-Indo-European, and shows how their innovative use of the ox wagon, horseback riding, and the warrior's chariot turned the Eurasian steppes into a thriving transcontinental corridor of communication, commerce, and cultural exchange. He explains how they spread their traditions and gave rise to important advances in copper mining, warfare, and patron-client political institutions, thereby ushering in an era of vibrant social change. Anthony also describes his fascinating discovery of how the wear from bits on ancient horse teeth reveals the origins of horseback riding. The Horse, the Wheel, and Language solves a puzzle that has vexed scholars for two centuries--the source of the Indo-European languages and English--and recovers a magnificent and influential civilization from the past.
Category: Social Science

The Lost World Of Old Europe

Author : David W. Anthony
ISBN : 0691143889
Genre : History
File Size : 88.9 MB
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In the prehistoric Copper Age, long before cities, writing, or the invention of the wheel, Old Europe was among the most culturally rich regions in the world. Its inhabitants lived in prosperous agricultural towns. The ubiquitous goddess figurines found in their houses and shrines have triggered intense debates about women's roles. The Lost World of Old Europe is the accompanying catalog for an exhibition at New York University's Institute for the Study of the Ancient World. This superb volume features essays by leading archaeologists as well as breathtaking color photographs cataloguing the objects, some illustrated here for the first time. The heart of Old Europe was in the lower Danube valley, in contemporary Bulgaria and Romania. Old European coppersmiths were the most advanced metal artisans in the world. Their intense interest in acquiring copper, Aegean shells, and other rare valuables gave rise to far-reaching trading networks. In their graves, the bodies of Old European chieftains were adorned with pounds of gold and copper ornaments. Their funerals were without parallel in the Near East or Egypt. The exhibition represents the first time these rare objects have appeared in the United States. An unparalleled introduction to Old Europe's cultural, technological, and artistic legacy, The Lost World of Old Europe includes essays by Douglass Bailey, John Chapman, Cornelia-Magda Lazarovici, Ioan Opris and Catalin Bem, Ernst Pernicka, Dragomir Nicolae Popovici, Michel Séfériadès, and Vladimir Slavchev.
Category: History

Pastoralist Landscapes And Social Interaction In Bronze Age Eurasia

Author : Michael David Frachetti
ISBN : 0520942698
Genre : History
File Size : 47.60 MB
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Offering a fresh archaeological interpretation, this work reconceptualizes the Bronze Age prehistory of the vast Eurasian steppe during one of the most formative and innovative periods of human history. Michael D. Frachetti combines an analysis of newly documented archaeological sites in the Koksu River valley of eastern Kazakhstan with detailed paleoecological and ethnohistorical data to illustrate patterns in land use, settlement, burial, and rock art. His investigation illuminates the practical effect of nomadic strategies on the broader geography of social interaction and suggests a new model of local and regional interconnection in the third and second millennia B.C.E. Frachetti further argues that these early nomadic communities played a pivotal role in shaping enduring networks of exchange across Eurasia.
Category: History

Feral Animals In The American South

Author : Abraham Gibson
ISBN : 9781107156944
Genre : History
File Size : 73.6 MB
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This book retells American southern history from feral animals' perspective, examining social, cultural, and evolutionary consequences of domestication and feralization.
Category: History

The Silk Road A Very Short Introduction

Author : James A. Millward
ISBN : 9780199323852
Genre : History
File Size : 36.96 MB
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The phrase "silk road" evokes vivid scenes of merchants leading camel caravans across vast stretches to trade exotic goods in glittering Oriental bazaars, of pilgrims braving bandits and frozen mountain passes to spread their faith across Asia. Looking at the reality behind these images, this Very Short Introduction illuminates the historical background against which the silk road flourished, shedding light on the importance of old-world cultural exchange to Eurasian and world history. On the one hand, historian James A. Millward treats the silk road broadly, to stand in for the cross-cultural communication between peoples across the Eurasian continent since at least the Neolithic era. On the other, he highlights specific examples of goods and ideas exchanged between the Mediterranean, Persia, India, and China, along with the significance of these exchanges. While including silks, spices, and travelers' tales of colorful locales, the book explains the dynamics of Central Eurasian history that promoted Silk Road interactions--especially the role of nomad empires--highlighting the importance of the biological, technological, artistic, intellectual, and religious interchanges across the continent. Millward shows that these exchanges had a profound effect on the old world that was akin to, if not on the scale of, modern globalization. He also disputes the idea that the silk road declined after the collapse of the Mongol empire or the opening of direct sea routes from Europe to Asia, showing how silk road phenomena continued through the early modern and modern expansion of the Russian and Chinese states across Central Asia. Millward concludes that the idea of the silk road has remained powerful, not only as a popular name for boutiques and restaurants, but also in modern politics and diplomacy, such as U.S. Secretary of State Hilary Clinton's "Silk Road Initiative" for India, Pakistan, and Afghanistan.
Category: History

The Oxford Handbook Of Environmental History

Author : Andrew C. Isenberg
ISBN : 9780199394470
Genre : Science
File Size : 22.4 MB
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The field of environmental history emerged just decades ago but has established itself as one of the most innovative and important new approaches to history, one that bridges the human and natural world, the humanities and the sciences. With the current trend towards internationalizing history, environmental history is perhaps the quintessential approach to studying subjects outside the nation-state model, with pollution, global warming, and other issues affecting the earth not stopping at national borders. With 25 essays, this Handbook is global in scope and innovative in organization, looking at the field thematically through such categories as climate, disease, oceans, the body, energy, consumerism, and international relations.
Category: Science

The Global Prehistory Of Human Migration

Author : Immanuel Ness
ISBN : 9781118970584
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 48.65 MB
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Previously published as the first volume of The Encyclopedia of Global Human Migration, this work is devoted exclusively to prehistoric migration, covering all periods and places from the first hominin migrations out of Africa through the end of prehistory. Presents interdisciplinary coverage of this topic, including scholarship from the fields of archaeology, anthropology, genetics, biology, linguistics, and more Includes contributions from a diverse international team of authors, representing 17 countries and a variety of disciplines Divided into two sections, covering the Pleistocene and Holocene; each section examines human migration through chapters that focus on different regional and disciplinary lenses
Category: Social Science

Ancient Jewish Sciences And The History Of Knowledge In Second Temple Literature

Author : Seth L. Sanders
ISBN : 9781479863983
Genre : History
File Size : 35.24 MB
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Until very recently, the idea of ancient Jewish sciences would have been considered unacceptable. Since the 1990’s, Early Modern and Medieval Science in Jewish sources has been actively studied, but the consensus was that no real scientific themes could be found in earlier Judaism. This work points them out in detail, and posits a new field of research: the scientific activity evident in the Dead Sea Scrolls and Early Jewish Pseudepigrapha. The publication of new texts and new analyses of older ones reveals crucial elements that are best illuminated by the history of science, and may have interesting consequences for it. The contributors evaluate these texts in relation to astronomy, astrology and physiognomy, marking the first comprehensive attempt to account for scientific themes in Second Temple Judaism. They investigate the meaning and purpose of scientific explorations in an apocalyptic setting. An appreciation of these topics paves the way to a renewed understanding of the scientific fragments scattered throughout rabbinic literature. The book first places the Jewish material in the ancient context of the Near Eastern and Hellenistic worlds. While the Jewish texts were not on the cutting edge of scientific discovery, they find a meaningful place in the history of science, between Babylonia and Egypt, in the time period between Hipparchus and Ptolemy. The book uses recent advances in method to examine the contacts and networks of Jewish scholars in their ancient setting. Second, the essays here tackle the problematic concept of a national scientific tradition. Although science is nowadays often conceived as universal, the historiography of ancient Jewish sciences demonstrates the importance of seeing the development of science in a local context. The book explores the tension between the hegemony of central scientific traditions and local scientific enterprises, showing the relevance of ancient data to contemporary postcolonial historiography of science. Finally, philosophical questions of the demarcation of science are addressed in a way that can advance the discussion of related ancient materials. Online edition available as part of the NYU Library's Ancient World Digital Library and in partnership with the Institute for the Study of the Ancient World (ISAW).
Category: History

What Is Military History

Author : Stephen Morillo
ISBN : 9780745665337
Genre : History
File Size : 40.60 MB
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This clear, readable introduction to the popular field of military history is now available in a refreshed and updated second edition. It shows that military history encompasses not just accounts of campaigns and battles but includes a wide range of perspectives on all aspects of past military organization and activity. In concise chapters it explains the fundamental features of the field, including: The history of military history, showing how it has developed from ancient times to the present; The key ideas and concepts that shape analysis of military activity; it argues that military history is as methodologically and philosophically sophisticated as any field of history; The current controversies about which military historians argue, and why they are important; A survey of who does military history, where it is taught and published, and how it is practiced; A look at where military history is headed in the future. The new edition of What is Military History? provides an up-to-date bibliography and cutting edge new case studies, including counterinsurgency, and as such continues to be ideal for classes in military history and in historiography generally, as well as for anyone interested in learning more about the dynamics of a rich and growing area of study.
Category: History

Vedic Voices

Author : David M. Knipe
ISBN : 9780190266738
Genre : Religion
File Size : 23.60 MB
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For countless generations families have lived in isolated communities in the Godavari Delta of coastal Andhra Pradesh, learning and reciting their legacy of Vedas, performing daily offerings and occasional sacrifices. They are the virtually unrecognized survivors of a 3,700-year-old heritage, the last in India who perform the ancient animal and soma sacrifices according to Vedic tradition. In Vedic Voices, David M. Knipe offers for the first time, an opportunity for them to speak about their lives, ancestral lineages, personal choices as pandits, wives, children, and ways of coping with an avalanche of changes in modern India. He presents a study of four generations of ten families, from those born at the outset of the twentieth century down to their great-grandsons who are just beginning, at the age of seven, the task of memorizing their Veda, the Taittiriya Samhita, a feat that will require eight to twelve years of daily recitations. After successful examinations these young men will reside with the Veda family girls they married as children years before, take their places in the oral transmission of a three-thousand-year Vedic heritage, teach the Taittiriya collection of texts to their own sons, and undertake with their wives the major and minor sacrifices performed by their ancestors for some three millennia. Coastal Andhra, famed for bountiful rice and coconut plantations, has received scant attention from historians of religion and anthropologists despite a wealth of cultural traditions. Vedic Voices describes in captivating prose the geography, cultural history, pilgrimage traditions, and celebrated persons of the region. Here unfolds a remarkable story of Vedic pandits and their wives, one scarcely known in India and not at all to the outside world.
Category: Religion