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Ireland in Prehistory

Ireland in Prehistory by Michael Herity and George Eogan. Ireland in Prehistory by Michael Herity and George Eogan.

First published in 1977, Ireland in Prehistory was written primarily for university level students. However the general reader should also find the story of prehistoric Ireland of interest.


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Contents:

  • The Background, Geographical and Historical
  • Stone Age Beginnings: Hunter-Fishers and First Farmers
  • The Boyne Culture: Passage Grave Builders in Ireland and Britain
  • Late Neolithic: Single Burials, New Technology and First Central European Contacts
  • Beaker Peoples and the Beginnings of a New Society
  • Food Vessel People: Consolidation of the Single Grave Culture
  • Urn People: Further Arrivals and New Developments
  • Industrial Changes Late Second-Early First Millennia
  • Final Bronze Age Society
  • Later Prehistoric Events: The Iron Age and the Celts

Preface:

Though the last forty years have seen a great acceleration in archaeological discovery in Ireland, no work of synthesis covering the whole prehistoric period in the island has appeared since the publication of Raftery's Prehistoric Ireland in 1951.

Irish archaeologists have been very active in this period however; a growing body of professional workers - there are now forty-five - have been accumulating a formidable body of primary evidence from both field and museum studies. Chance discovery and planned excavation have both contributed their share of information.

The present work was conceived from the realization that a general prehistory was needed to order the large body of fact and to provide new orientations. Though this book is designed primarily to serve the large numbers of young people who are now studying archaeology in our universities, it is hoped that the general reader also will find the story of prehistoric Ireland told in its pages of interest.

The writers both specialize in the prehistoric period: Herity's work is related mainly to the Neolithic, and he has written chapters 1-4 and 11; Eogan's work centres upon the later Bronze Age, and he has written chapters 5-10. The material presented in a book of this kind is inevitably only a selection, and both writers are well aware that alternative selections of material and other interpretations can be put forward, particularly in the areas in which they are not specialists. It is hoped, however, that the present compilation will at least have indicated Ireland's wealth of prehistoric material and raised new questions about pre-Christian Ireland.

The writers are indebted to their colleagues in the Department of Archaeology at University College, Dublin, for their willingness to discuss numerous points during the writing of the book. The bibliography is an eloquent tribute to the work of individual prehistorians in Ireland.


     


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Early Ireland an Introduction to Irish Prehisory by Michael J. O'Kelly Early Ireland - An Introduction to Irish Prehistory by Michael J. O'Kelly. Early Ireland offers an authoritative introduction to the riches of Irish prehistory - a span of eight thousand years from the end of the Ice Age to the first centuries of the Christian era. The book provides an account of the development of Irish society from its beginnings as a postglacial culture of hunters and gatherers to the technological advances stimulated by the discovery of iron and, in the last centuries BC, the growth of a Celtic art style of unrivalled power and individuality.  More ...


Irish Passage Graves Irish Passage Graves: Neolithic tomb-builders in Ireland and Britain 2500 B.C by Michael Herity. Published in 1974 by Irish University Press, Dublin, Ireland. The book presents a description of the tombs, art, burials and grave-goods, and then attempts a reconstruction of the everyday life of their builders: subsistence, habitations, technology, even the industries of this remarkable people, the remains of whose civilization we call the Boyne Culture.  More ...
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