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Thread: Colossal Bronze Age Battle in Northern Germany

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    Senior Member Coillearnach's Avatar
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    Colossal Bronze Age Battle in Northern Germany

    About 3200 years ago, two armies clashed at a river crossing near the Baltic Sea. The confrontation can’t be found in any history books—the written word didn’t become common in these parts for another 2000 years—but this was no skirmish between local clans. Thousands of warriors came together in a brutal struggle, perhaps fought on a single day, using weapons crafted from wood, flint, and bronze, a metal that was then the height of military technology.

    Struggling to find solid footing on the banks of the Tollense River, a narrow ribbon of water that flows through the marshes of northern Germany toward the Baltic Sea, the armies fought hand-to-hand, maiming and killing with war clubs, spears, swords, and knives. Bronze- and flint-tipped arrows were loosed at close range, piercing skulls and lodging deep into the bones of young men. Horses belonging to high-ranking warriors crumpled into the muck, fatally speared. Not everyone stood their ground in the melee: Some warriors broke and ran, and were struck down from behind.

    When the fighting was through, hundreds lay dead, littering the swampy valley. Some bodies were stripped of their valuables and left bobbing in shallow ponds; others sank to the bottom, protected from plundering by a meter or two of water. Peat slowly settled over the bones. Within centuries, the entire battle was forgotten.

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    That's some creepy LotR type crap right there!

    The Dead Marshes
    Close observation may result in feelings of horror, wonder and awe at world you find yourself inhabiting.

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    Fascinating article. This happened about the same time as the Trojan War.

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    One of the things that -if I recall correctly- is quite amazing is the sheer amount of combatants in a lot of battles in Antiquity far exceeds anything brought to bear in the Middle Ages well up until the Napoleonic era.

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    Quote Originally Posted by renownedwolf View Post
    One of the things that -if I recall correctly- is quite amazing is the sheer amount of combatants in a lot of battles in Antiquity far exceeds anything brought to bear in the Middle Ages well up until the Napoleonic era.
    The bronze age was incredibly violent. At least compared to the neolithic period that preceded it. In the neolithic there were lots of small scale skirmishes between village communities but the bronze age was the first time that large armies fought using edged metal weapons. Also horse riding and chariots made their first appearance. Bronze swords and spears are much more durable effective and deadly weapons than flint spears and stone axes.

    The bronze age was the first time that nomadic tribal people realised that the rich and numerous but at the same time poorly organised and fragmented agricultural communities that had built up during the neolithic could be conquered en-mass.

    And they descended upon them like plagues of locusts. It seems it was the beginning of a bit of a military free for all that lasted well into the Iron age and beyond.
    Close observation may result in feelings of horror, wonder and awe at world you find yourself inhabiting.

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    Quote Originally Posted by The Horned God View Post
    The bronze age was incredibly violent. At least compared to the neolithic period that preceded it. In the neolithic there were lots of small scale skirmishes between village communities but the bronze age was the first that large armies fought using edged metal weapons. Also horse riding and chariots made their first appearance. Bronze swords and spears are much more durable effective and deadly weapons than flint spears and stone axes.

    The bronze age was the first time that nomadic tribal people realised that the rich and numerous but at the same time poorly organised and fragmented agricultural communities that had built up during the neolithic could be conquered en-mass.

    And they descended upon them like plagues of locusts. It seems it was the beginning of a bit of a military free for all that lasted well into the Iron age and beyond.
    Were chariots mentioned here? Horses were mentioned. If chariots where not here that could indicate a different method of warfare between Europe and the Near East at this time.

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