Iron Age

The Iron Age is on the material used for making tools designated period of prehistory and early history . In the simple structure of the three periodic it applies to the Stone Age and the Bronze Age as the third great period of early history. In this era began, iron for tools and weapons to use. In the Iron Age followed – depending on the culture – the ancient or prehistoric culture .

The onset of written tradition defines the beginning of the early history. Thus, the beginning of one iron smelting and processing in some regions to prehistory (eg, Central and Northern Europe ), and in some to the early history ( Mediterranean , Middle East , China , India ). For Central Europe the term Iron Age is only applied to prehistoric periods in northern Europe is a distinction between pre-Roman Iron Age (as prehistoric period) and Roman Iron Age (as some early historic period, synonymous to the usual in the German research term Roman Empire .) Northern Scandinavia for the Pre-Roman Iron Age is still a separate metal time prefixed, because the classical periodization for the classification of the finds proved to be unsuitable.


Greece’s former Iron Age is the period between the mid-11th Century and the end of the 8th Century BC It is regarded as a period of change and transition between the Mycenaean world of the Bronze Age and the world of the Greek city-states of the Archaic period. This period is traditionally based on the sparseness of the sources with the term ” dark ages “means.

Northern Europe

In Northern Europe, including the Baltic region of the Roman Iron Age follows (Nordic equivalent of the Roman Empire ) (0-375N. BC) not as in Central Europe, the migration period , but the so-called ” Germanic Iron Age “(375-650 AD), which in Sweden with the Vendel (650-800 AD) in Denmark even before the Viking era (800-1050 AD) ends, which then applies for all of Scandinavia.
Sub-Saharan Africa

In Africa you come up against limits of European-influenced three periodic table , because in Africa the Iron Age began without a previous copper or bronze age. The earliest evidence of iron smelting come from Taruga in Central Nigeria ( Nok culture ) and north of N’Djamena in Chad . There has been excavated several Verhüttungsöfen whose dating to the first millennium BC falls (800-500 BC). [2]

In all probability, the iron smelting is an indigenous invention. Earlier assumptions of origin from Meroe have been disproved by the datings Tarugas, because the latter are slightly older than Meroe. The influence of Carthage seems excluded because the Sahara was to cross at that time barely.

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