(Chapter V, section 13)

Summary and conclusions


The Bronze Age covered, in most of Europe, the brief span of some six centuries, as compared with an expanse three times as long in Egypt and Mesopotamia. During these six centuries, however, important racial changes took place in many parts of the European world, while in the two valleys from which European civilization emanated, the personnel remained constant. The parts of Europe most affected by Bronze Age movements of people were the north and west; and hence these activities may be interpreted as a late phase of the displacements initiated by the retreat of the last glacier, and continued by the discovery of the principles of food production. By the end of the Bronze Age, the centers of civilization had begun their movement northward and westward, toward Greece and Italy, movements which were later to push much farther in the same direction. It is perhaps no coincidence that, since the beginning of the Neolithic, people from the east and south had migrated to the north and west ahead of this progression.

Among the problems left over from the Neolithic which the evidence of the Bronze Age has helped to clarify is that of the immediate origin of the Danubians. In the Neolithic Danubian-like peoples cultivated the rich soil of southern Russia and of western Turkestan. We now know that they must have formed a large bloc of agriculturalists occupying Asia Minor as well, and probably also the Caucasus. Thus they may have come into the Danube Valley from either southern Russia or Anatolia, or both; and their earlier derivation from the agricultural higlands is established.

A second problem, which arose only during the Bronze Age, is the origin of the new racial type which appeared, shortly before 2000 B.C., apparently from nowhere, in Asia Minor, Palestine, and Cyprus. This new type was tall, round headed and frequently planoccipital; its nose was prominent and narrow; its face triangular and of moderate length. In its associated morphological features, it forecast the appearance of the Dinaric race.

Brachycephals of this type followed the old Megalithic sea route to Italy, the Italian islands, and Spain. In Spain some of them seem to have associated themselves with cultural phenomena known as the Bell Beaker complex. As the Bell Beaker people, these newcomers travelled from Spain to the Rhinelands and to central Europe, where they were the first disseminators of metal. Having appeared in the Rhineland in considerable numbers, they mixed with the older Borreby sub-stratum which had remained there since the Mesolithic, and with Corded people coming from the east. This triple combination moved bodily down the Rhine and across the North Sea to Britain. Thus, during the Early Bronze Age, England and Scotland were invaded by people of entirely new types, who came in numbers sufficiant to change the population of these countries in a radical manner. At the same time, other movements of these brachycephals from the eastern Mediterranean passed by sea from Spain to Ireland and from Ireland to Scotland.

The appearance of these early Dinarics on the Asiatic and European scene marks the advent of the third important brachycephalic racial type which we have encountered in our survey of the post-glacial prehistory of the white race. Unlike the Borreby and Alpine types, it cannot be easily or plausibly explained as a simple Palaeolithic survivor. Facially it is basically Mediterranean; it seems to be a Mediterranean type brachycephalized by some non-Mediterranean agency. 104

These Dinarics did not come from central Asia, nor from Mesopotamia or Egypt. Facially, they resemble the dolichocephalic residents of Asia Minor and the eastern Mediterranean coast lands of the period during which they first appeared, in that both have in common a high-bridged, high-rooted nose, high orbits, and a sloping forehead. Until further evidence is found, it is safer to hold that the culture-bearing Dinarics of the Bronze Age developed in the Syrian highlands, where a similar type of brachycephaly is now present, than to try to bring them from a distance.

Another Bronze Age event of racial movement was the gradual disappearance through amalgamation of the Corded people and of the Danubians, and the emergence of an intermediate long-headed form. This latter, which inhabited the immense stretch of territory from Germany and Austria to the Altai Mountains, occupied an intermediate position in the total roster of greater Mediterranean racial variations.

In Austria and Bohemia the high vault and narrow face of both Corded and Danubian strains persisted, but from southern Russia over to the Altai, the vaults were lower and the faces broader. Two variants thus appeared, a western and an eastern. There is evidence that the eastern group, at least, was partly if not prevailingly blond. Both eastern and western divisions may with some confidence be compared to the "Nordic" peoples who appeared historically during the Iron Age.

At the end of the Bronze Age, for a period of two or three centuries, the pall of cremation falls over the racial history of Europe. When the smoke has lifted during the Early Iron Age, we shall see what changes have taken place during this period of darkness.


104. The principle of Dinaricization will be explained in Chapter VIII, section 6, and Chapter XII, sections 11, 12, and 17. See also legend, Plate 35.