For most of Europe's long past we have no writing, no named individuals, no recorded deeds. This means that its history is almost entirely that of the ordinary individual--the hunger-gatherer, farmer, or metallurgist--rather than the king. Evidence of privileged elites and material splendor is not lacking, however. The skills and expertise of prehistoric Europeans were often employed in the production of exquisite jewelry, elaborately woven cloth, beautifully made tools, and finely wrought weapons. Though the palaces that have attracted excavators in other lands are absent, there are few monuments elsewhere in the world to rival Europe's massive megalithic tombs or great stone circles. And though individuals preserve their anonymity and many of their secrets, modern technology has made it possible to reveal parts of their life history in astonishing detail.
Handbook to Life in Prehistoric Europe gathers the results of recent archaeological discoveries and scholarly research into a single accessible volume. Organized thematically, the handbook covers all aspects of life in prehistoric Europe, including the geography of the continent, settlement, trade and transport, industry and crafts, religion, death and burial, warfare, language, the arts, and more. Complemented with more than 75 illustrations and maps, the result is a fascinating introduction to the 7,000-year period that immediately preceded the Roman Empire.