Rock Art and the Prehistory of Atlantic Europe: Signing the Land

Front Cover
Psychology Press, 1997 - Art - 238 pages
Along the Atlantic seaboard, from Scotland to Spain, are numerous rock carvings made four to five thousand years ago, whose interpretation poses a major challenge to the archaeologist.
In the first full-length treatment of the subject, based largely on new fieldwork, Richard Bradley argues that these carvings should be interpreted as a series of symbolic messages that are shared between monuments, artefacts and natural places in the landscape. He discusses the cultural setting of the rock carvings and the ways in which they can be interpreted in relation to ancient land use, the creation of ritual monuments and the burial of the dead. Integrating this fascinating yet little-known material into the mainstream of prehistoric studies, Richard Bradley demonstrates that these carvings played a fundamental role in the organization of the prehistoric landscape.
 

What people are saying - Write a review

We haven't found any reviews in the usual places.

Contents

New directions new points of view The experience of prehistoric rock art
3
A chart of the northern seaways An introduction to the prehistory of Atlantic Europe
17
The circle and the stag An introduction to Atlantic rock art
33
Time out of mind The origins and chronology of Atlantic rock art
49
ROCK ART AND THE LANDSCAPE OF BRITAIN AND IRELAND
67
The rules of engagement The character of British rock art
69
The shepherd on the rock Rock art in the British landscape
90
Reading Roughting Linn Rock art and ritual monuments
105
Imaginary Landscapes
151
ROCK ART AND THE LANDSCAPE OF ATLANTIC EUROPE
157
In comparison Rock art and the prehistoric landscape from Brittany to Portugal
159
The carnival of the animals The distribution of Galician rock art
173
The monarch of the glen The symbolic character of Galician rock art
190
Sign language Rock art in the prehistory of Atlantic Europe
208
Bibliography
217
Index
233

The circle and the crag The microtopography of British and Irish rock art
127
Public faces in private places Rock art and Early Bronze Age burials
136

Other editions - View all

Common terms and phrases

Popular passages

Page 1 - Italy — or whatever land it is you now inhabit — as a place given you by the gods, readymade in all its placid beauty? It is not. It is a created place. If the gods are with you there, glowing out of a tree in some pasture or shaking their spirit over the pebbles of a brook in clear sunlight, in wells, in springs, in a stone that marks the edge of your legal right over a hillside; if the gods are there, it is because you have discovered them there, drawn them up out of your soul's need for them...
Page 1 - How can I give you any notion— you who know only landscapes that have been shaped for centuries to the idea we all carry in our souls of that ideal scene against which our lives should be played out— of what earth was in its original bleakness, before we brought to it the order of industry, the terraces, fields, orchards, pastures, the irrigated gardens of the world we are making in our own image.
Page 1 - Do you think of Italy — or whatever land it is you now inhabit — as a place given you by the gods, ready-made in all its placid beauty? It is not. It is a created place. If the gods are with you there, glowing out of a tree in some pasture or shaking their spirit over the pebbles of a brook in clear sunlight...

About the author (1997)

Richard Bradley is Professor of Archaeology at the University of Reading. He is the author of many works on prehistoric archaeology, including The Social Foundations of Prehistoric Britain, Altering the Earth and co-author of Landscape, Monuments and Society.

Bibliographic information