27 May 2017

Swiss pile-dwellings ~ archaelogy and reconstruction

Reconstruction of the Neolithic lake dwelling site discovered in Zurich [source]

These finds have been relevant in the discussion about OLB's authenticity as they can be considered as a confirmation. Hoax-theorists, however, argued that the manuscript must have been compiled after the remains had been found and made public in 1853, which would mean that Cornelis Over de Linden (and his witnesses) must have lied about having had the manuscript in his possession since 1848.

From Ottema's introduction of 1872 (translated by Sandbach):
Since the last twenty years attention has been directed to the remains of the dwellings on piles, first observed in the Swiss lakes, and afterwards in other parts of Europe. (See Dr E. Rückert, "Die Pfahlbauten;" Wurzburg, 1869. Dr T. C. Winkler, in the "Volksalmanak," t. N. v. A. 1867.) When they were found, endeavours were made to discover, by the existing fragments of arms, tools, and household articles, by whom and when these dwellings had been inhabited. There are no accounts of them in historical writers, beyond what Herodotus writes in book v. chapter 18, of the "Paeonen." The only trace that has been found is in one of the panels of Trajan's Pillar, in which the destruction of a pile village in Dacia is represented.
Doubly important, therefore, is it to learn from the writing of Apollonia that she, as "Burgtmaagd" (chief of the virgins), about 540 years before Christ, made a journey up the Rhine to Switzerland, and there became acquainted with the Lake Dwellers (Marsaten). She describes their dwellings built upon piles—the people themselves—their manners and customs. She relates that they lived by fishing and hunting, and that they prepared the skins of the animals with the bark of the birch-tree in order to sell the fare to the Rhine boatmen, who brought them into commerce. This account of the pile dwellings in the Swiss lakes can only have been written in the time when these dwellings still existed and were lived in. In the second part of the writing, Konerèd oera Linda relates that Adel, the son of Friso (± 250 years before Christ), visited the pile dwellings in Switzerland with his wife Ifkja.
Later than this account there is no mention by any writer whatever of the pile dwellings, and the subject has remained for twenty centuries utterly unknown until 1853, when an extraordinary low state of the water led to the discovery of these dwellings. Therefore no one could have invented this account in the intervening period. Although a great portion of the first part of the work—the book of Adela—belongs to the mythological period before the Trojan war, there is a striking difference between it and the Greek myths. The Myths have no dates, much less any chronology, nor any internal coherence of successive events. The untrammelled fancy develops itself in every poem separately and independently. The mythological stories contradict each other on every point. "Les Mythes ne se tiennent pas," is the only key to the Greek Mythology.

Relevant fragments in the OLB:

Appolánja's account (p. 109 of original), new provisional translation:
Above the Rhine, between the mountains, I have seen Marsata or lake dwellers. Their houses are built on poles, for protection against wild beasts and evil people. There are wolves, bears and terrible black leopards. They are also the 'Swetsar' - or neighbours - of the near Creeklanders, Kelta-followers, and the savage Twiskers, all eager to rob and plunder. The Marsata gain their livelihood by fishing and hunting. The skins are prepared with birch bark and sewn by the women. The small skins are soft like Maidens' felt. The burg-Maiden at New Fryasburg told us that they were good and simple [110] people, but without that knowledge, I would have thought they were savages rather than Fryas, judging by their brutal looks. Their skins and herbs are traded by the Rhine dwellers. and exported by the sailors.
Koneréd's account (p. 156 of original), translation Sandbach:
From Texland they went to Westflyland, and so along the cost to Walhallagara; thence they followed the Zuiderryn (the Waal), till, with great apprehension, they arrived beyond the Rhine at the Marsaten of whom our Apollonia has written.

More information:
"Neolithic lake dwelling found in Zurich reconstructed" 2017 link
"Neolithic and Bronze Age lakeside settlements in the Alpine region" 2007 link
Pfahlbau Museum

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