Three-year-old boy. A girl who is about seven years old. Four teenagers, including three boys and a girl. Four young women and one young man. Two middle-aged men …
In total, the skeletal remains of about forty people are found in the mass grave of Potochani in present-day Croatia. Now researchers have used scientific methods, including DNA, to find out who died and what may have caused this massacre.
The results were published this week in PLoS one The lead authors are DNA researcher David Reich in Boston and archaeologist Ron Penhasi in Vienna.
This is an individual Another was killed in a flare of anger something. Getting one group of organized and planned people killing another is another thing.
There are some hypotheses about how long such organized massacres took place, and the factors that could have triggered them.
For example, it has been said that the “first war” took place in relation to agriculture, or at least in relation to the settlement of the people.
But this thing with planting is just not true. In Mount Sahaba in present-day Sudan, at least 60 people were killed in a massacre more than 12,000 years ago. They lived as hunters and gatherers and did not farm. However, they seem to have settled somewhat, so far the old assumptions are correct.
In Nataruk, west of Lake Turkana in present-day Kenya About thirty people were killed, Including at least six children, more than 10,000 years ago and were definitely hunters / gatherers with a nomadic lifestyle.
From the stone age of the peasants And early Indo-European eras in Europe, there are many examples of massacres in which all the victims examined were men and may have died in battle. There are massacres indicating a conflict against a particular family in a village. There are examples of villagers being slaughtered at rest only when Indo-European groups moved from the steppes to the east towards Central Europe. For example The mass grave of EulauIt is on display at the Museum of Ancient History in Halle.
The Eulau mass grave is one of the first examples of researchers who were able to use DNA technology to find out who was killed and how they were related to each other. The results indicate that the murdered villagers belonged to the newly immigrated Indo-European Shepherd culture, while those who kept clubs and arrows belonged to the former peasant population of the area.
Thirteen years have passed since that study, and now DNA technology has come a long way.
David Reich, Ron Penhasi Their authors successfully analyzed the DNA of 38 of the 41 individuals found in the mass grave in Potochani.
Thus, they can say that the dead seem to be a cross section of the peasant population who lived in the area, by archaeologists who call it the Lingel culture. It was women, men, girls and boys. Nothing, neither the DNA nor other archaeological evidence, indicates that there was any migration to the area during the massacre. Not at all, as in the case of Eulau and many other places where conflict appears to have arisen when Indo-Europeans arrived.
Masacern and Botocany It occurred at a time when livestock was becoming more common in the area, which added to the pressure on the ground and may have contributed to competition between neighbors. Trading copper has also become more widespread, which has likely increased trade and possibly also friction.
Climate change and a sharp increase in population may be important reasons in this context.
Above all, it is important to understand, and to write to Reich, Bahnasi and their authors, the mental mechanisms that lead to massacres: that leaders refer to a certain group, “others” as responsible for all kinds of problems in society, this hatred accumulates, and it seems that the end is The only viable way for these “others” to die.
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