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Most of us want to know from whence we come. We read about Dacians/Thracians, Illyrians, Greeks, Iberians, Celts, Scandinavians, Balts and so forth, with great interest, but we tend to fall into a trap that to this day remains undetected by most of us; we mix tribal names, languages, artistic expressions and culture and fail to understand that even though e. g. «Illyrians» describes a people the term «Celts» does not. Yes; there never was a «Celtic» people. Celtic is today a language group, but also the name of the Hallstatt culture.
The spread of the so-called Celtic culture from Hallstatt is described or at least understood by most as the spread of a people; that a people spread ut across Europe from Hallstatt. Sorry, but this is simply not correct.
The comparison I am about to make is not perfect, but it illustrates my point very well; today we have Coca Cola, McDonalds, English and Microsoft products pretty much everywhere, but would you say that the presence of English and all these products all over the world is evidence of an American tribe spreading out across the world, conquering it, or would you say that it is a result of trade? Norwegians too drink Coca Cola, eat at McDonalds, speak English and use Microsoft products, just like most Americans do, and yes, their culture has been changed by this, but are they not still ethnic Norwegians?
So why would we say that the «Celts» of e. g. Great Britain and Gaul originally came from Hallstatt? That Hallstatt is their «proto-Home»? Is the USA the «proto-Home» of modern Norwegians? Hallstatt is the origin of a specific culture, and this culture spread out across Europe, but it is not an ethnic phenomena. It did not change society dramatically either, it just added some products and customs to the cultures we today speak of as «Celtic» cultures.
The exact same can be said about the Corded Ware Culture, alias the Battle Axe culture, the (by some) assumed original Indo-European culture, that spread out across most of Europe. Okay, they made some really nice ritualistic battle axes, real macho symbols of power for the warriors, they had really cool burial mounds («I want one too!»), and their Indo-European language spread out across Europe as well, but no; they didn’t! There was no Indo-European warrior people spreading out, conquerring and replacing the peoples of Europe! Just like today good, beautiful and useful concepts, artistic expressions and ideas spread like fire in dry grass. We all do not stem from some Indo-European «race». We (unlike our Basque, Finnish and Magyar brothers and sisters) just happen to have some forebears who were greatly influenced by this European tribe. The Basques, the Finns and the Magyar simply skipped this particular trend. They are no less European because of that though.
And although we (save the Basques, Finns and Magyar) do speak languages that are defined as Indo-European we actually don’t only speak Indo-European. Like did you know that as much as 40% (!) of the Germanic words have a non-Indo-European origin? Yes, they are not Indo-European at all! They are «proto-Scandinavian». They are no less European because of that though.
What complicates this further is of course the fact that these tribes were nomadic hunter-gatherers, so although they didn’t spread out all across Europe and conquerred and replaced the others wherever they went, they did move about a lot. This makes it very hard for us to identify from whence they came in Europe or indeed whither they went before they finally settled down. Nor do we know if they – the tribes creating the cultures that what we know as the Hallstatt or the Corded Ware cultures – were large or small tribes.
What we can know for sure is that all the tribes (or «peoples» if you like) moving about in Stone Age and later Bronze Age Europe were of European stock, and by that I mean Neanderthal stock. Even in Antiquity many of these tribes still looked like Neanderthals, as attested by archeologists in France, investigating graves from French Antiquity (more about that on Atala). They were large and strong men, blonde-haired and fair skinned, with big heads and powerful limbs.
Looking like this (Gauls);
And like this; (Scandinavians);
And like this (Dacians);
And like this (Pict);
Yes, even though the unmixed adult Neanderthals had somewhat different skulls (and some other distinct features too), they still pretty much looked like the Europeans did in Gaul, Scandinavia and Dacia in Antiquity (and like in Scandinavia even until the Viking Age). They still pretty much looked like large, strong and blonde (bearded) Europeans do today. Remeber also always that they were no less beautiful than the most beautiful and fairest of blonde Europeans today. Don’t let the Judeo-Christian lies about the Neanderthals and how they looked fool you!
We know from whence we come; our unique European species (the Neanderthals), and whither we go? To more fame and glory! To Valhalla! HailaR WôðanaR!