Stonehenge, the stone rows of Carnac, and of other ancient cult sites of large stones kindle until today, the imagination of the people. A yet unresolved question is: Where was the origin of this megalithic culture? Apparently, researchers now say this was in the North-West of France. From there the culture spread in the rest of Europe, presumably via the sea route. The archaeologist Bettina Schulz Paulsson of the University of Gothenburg, in the journal PNAS.
A mystery was for a long time, why in Europe, scattered cult sites so are very similar. In order to clarify this question, analyzed by Schulz Paulsson, the data of 2140 samples of carbon-containing Remains, which were found in the area of megalithic sites in different European regions. Mostly it was charcoal or human bones. Among other things, the geological layer, in which the Remains were found already allows a rough determination of the age.
stone tombs over Europe scattered
The oldest known megalithic place of worship, therefore, is the tumulus of St. Michel in Brittany's Carnac, that must have been erected around 4700 BC. This burial type has spread to about 4000 BC to present-day Spain, southern France and Italy. Around the year 4300 BC, a further form of Grave, which could be opened for new burials re-emerged in the mid-West of France. Also, this took place later in Spain and the United Kingdom imitation. In a third wave of the megaliths to reached then, finally, Scandinavia and, by about 3000 BC, in Germany. Since the respective locations lie in the vicinity of the sea, is likely to spread by sailors, says the study.
The hypothesis that all of the megalithic cultures have a common origin, was already more than 100 years ago. At that time the Near East was, however, as a starting point. Earlier datings, disproved this theory, however, so it was a long time of a simultaneous development in multiple locations. The construction of the megalithic-graves spread out probably about the Maritime, open a "new debate on maritime mobility in the Neolithic period," says Schulz Paulsson. That it is shipping in Europe at the time, already, is well known. New would be, however, that the early sailors spread their religious ideas in this way.