Bronze Age

Was this the first calendar?

“Was this the first calendar? Mysterious 3,600 year disc that let ancient farmers track the seasons”

by Mark Priggs via “Daily Mail

It has perplexed astronomers since being dug up in 1999.

The Nebra Sky Disc is thought to have been made during the Middle Bronze Age in around 1600 BC, and experts believe it could be the first ‘sky map’ ever created.

The bronze disc, about 32cm in diameter, has a gold inlay clearly representing the moon and/or sun and some stars.

The Sky Disc was discovered in Germany in 1999 as part of a hoard also containing two bronze swords, two small axes, a chisel and fragments of spiral bracelets.

HOW IT WAS FOUND – AND STOLEN

The disk’s recent history dates to 1999, when two looters using metal detectors discovered the artifact, along with several bronze weapons and tools, in a wooded area near the German town of Nebra, 100 miles southwest of Berlin.

Amateur archaeologists Reinhold Stieber and Hildegard Burri-Bayer tried to hawk the disk for $400 000 – and were seized by police officers in the basement bar of a touristy Swiss hotel.

After a short trial, the duo, along with the looters, were found guilty of illegally trafficking in cultural artifacts.

Experts believe the Sky Disc was a calculator to help Bronze Age people predict the best times for sowing and harvesting in spring and autumn.

It recorded the fact that when the Pleiades, a very obvious group of stars in the night sky which are a familiar sight in the northern hemisphere in winter,  were seen next to a new moon, that signaled the beginning of spring, when seeds should be sown, at the latitude of central Germany.

When the star cluster stood next to a full moon, it was a sign that fall had begun and it was harvest time.

The Sky Disc was discovered in Germany in 1999 as part of a hoard also containing two bronze swords, two small axes, a chisel and fragments of spiral bracelets.

A small piece in wood found in one of the swords allowed scientists to date the hoard to around 1600 BC.

The disc was also used to determine if and when a thirteenth month — the so-called intercalary month — should be added to a lunar year to keep the lunar calendar in sync with the seasons. . . .

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“Fisherman Nets 4,000-year-old Pagan Figurine”

“Fisherman Nets 4,000-year-old Pagan Figurine”

by Pete Thomas via “GrindTV

Nikolay Tarasov pulls Bronze Age artifact, carved in bone and said to be worth more than its weight in gold, from Siberian river

pagan-statuetterelic2

“A fisherman dragging a net through a river in Siberia thought he had snagged a rock. Instead he had snared what experts believe is a 4,000-year-old pagan god figurine.

Nikolay Tarasov, 53, considered throwing the 12-inch statuette back, until he wiped away the muck and saw that a ferocious-looking face had been carved into the artifact.
“I pulled it in by getting my pal to help and I was going to chuck it away,” he told the Siberian Times. “But then I stopped when I saw it was a stone with a face. I washed the thing in the river—and realized it was a statuette.”

On the back of the figurine, snagged in the community of Tisul, was what looked like hair, carved behind the head.

Tarasov was told that the relic could be worth its weight in gold, but decided to donate his rare catch to a local museum, free of charge. “Experts there quite literally jumped for joy, and quite high!” he said.

It was later determined, with the help of experts, that the statuette had been carved in horn, probably during the Bronze Age. . . . .”

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