5 Ancient Cultures in Germany, All Over 3 Thousand Years Old!

5 Ancient Cultures in Germany, All Over 3 Thousand Years Old!

Germany as a well-known country and has a very crucial position in the heart of Europe certainly has a rich culture or tradition. The existence of this country has been important since ancient times. Because Germany is one of the centers of concentration of various old cultures that are growing rapidly and bringing influence to the surrounding countries.

Modern Germany may also be known for having a population with a high level of work ethic and intelligence. This is the same as the inhabitants of Ancient Germany thousands of years ago.

Curious about what life, traditions, and physical knowledge of German society were like in the past? Come on, find out below.

  1. Unetice Culture

The Unetice culture, which is believed to have developed since the mid or late 3rd millennium BC, is centered in Bavaria (Germany), Bohemia (Czech Republic), and various surrounding areas. This Bronze Age culture got its name from a village near Prague (the modern capital of the Czech Republic) which harbors many ancient graves.

This culture became the center of the first bronze medal craft in the Bohemia region. In addition, Unetice Culture also presents the latest tradition of its time which is still relevant today, namely the lined graves in a large complex.

However, there is an artifact that is believed to be Unetice’s most important relic, the Nebra sky disk. The mysterious relic in the form of a bronze disc with a golden symbol of the sun and moon is the oldest cosmological item in the world.

The Unetice culture was an important pioneer of the Bronze Age in Central Europe which would later influence many successive cultures up to the Iron Age. This is proven true because various new cultures dominate and outperform the Unetice Culture.

  1. Tumulus Culture

The Tumulus culture, one of the successors of the Unetice Culture, flourished in southern Germany and Hungary in the 2nd millennium BC. The name of this culture is derived from the burial tradition of ancient residents there who made a mound of earth above the tomb called tumuli or tumulus.

This culture outperformed the Unetice in metalworking, being able to manufacture more complex items, such as bracelets, axes, and bronze swords. On the other hand, bronze is also used massively in making pottery (including plates, bowls, and cups) which sometimes has quite detailed ornamental reliefs.

  1. Urnfield Culture

The Urnfield culture originated from mainland Central Europe (including Germany and Poland) in the 12th century BC as well as the successor of the Tumulus culture. This Late Bronze Age culture derives its name from the tradition of cremating human remains and placing the ashes in a large container or urn (similar to those in modern columbariums).

Urnfield turned out to be one of the first to introduce and popularize the tradition of cremation in the region as well as Europe. The ancient people of this culture were known to be very “territorial” or defending their homes. Because, they will build settlements with high walls, both on land and water.

In addition, the residents of Urnfield produced a wide variety of weapons, metal crafts, and pottery, the majority of which were made of bronze. This culture was very influential and eventually spread to other countries, such as Italy, France, and the Czech Republic. Around the 8th century BC, Urnfiled was replaced by several other, increasingly superior cultures.

  1. Lusatian Culture

The culture that got its name from the Lusatia region (eastern Germany) had developed from the 12th century BC at the end of the Bronze Age and the beginning of the Iron Age. Lusatian culture derives direct influence from Urnfield in the field of human burial techniques, namely cremation.

Stretching from eastern Germany to Slovakia and Poland (the Vistula River and the Buh River), this culture has left some evidence for the existence of ancient settlement complexes, such as Biskupin in Poland.

Based on archaeological finds, the Lusatians are known to have mass-produced jewelry, weapons, luxury goods, and “cult chariots”, a kind of object that describes the ancient ritual activities of the people there. All these bronze items were sometimes given to other tribes for the sake of alliances or inter-tribal marriages.

  1. Hallstatt Culture

Hallstatt is one of the great cultures believed to have existed since the 12th century BC. Although some scholars have different views as to the original date of its beginning, this culture certainly flourished from the 8th century BC and included areas of Germany, Switzerland, and Austria.

Hallstatt culture developed thanks to two main factors, namely the progress of the metal “industry” and the rapid trade in mineral salts. Compared to Urnfield, Hallstatt craftsmen were able to produce metal items that were stronger and of higher quality.

The skyrocketing metal output was also followed by the extensive mining of mineral salts, which became one of the main trading commodities. This culture of course also produced various enduring works of art, particularly the Strettweg “cult train”. The complex and detailed artifacts are in the form of miniature bronze chariots depicting sacrificial rituals involving animals and humans.

Hallstatt is believed to have declined to start in the 6th century BC by several factors, such as competition from other inhabitants and exploitation of nature. In the end, their mainstay salt production ran out and another culture took control and drowned Hallstatt.

There are various ancient and advanced cultures in Germany. This proves that the residents there already have a sufficient level of knowledge.

The inhabitants of Ancient Germany were already able to produce “stuff” that was unusual, but interesting when viewed from a modern perspective. It can be concluded that Germany has a rich and influential culture both in the present and in the past.