By Alasdair W. R. Whittle
This uniquely extensive and not easy publication reports the newest archaeological proof on Neolithic Europe from 7,000-2,500 BC. Describing very important components, websites and difficulties, Dr. Whittle addresses the key subject matters that experience engaged the eye of students: the transition from a forager way of life; the speed and dynamics of switch; and the character of Neolithic society. A revised model of Whittle's Neolithic Europe: A Survey (CUP, 1985), the e-book displays radical adjustments in facts and in interpretive ways during the last decade.
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Additional resources for Europe in the Neolithic: The Creation of New Worlds
And thus we do not know whether intercourse with the daughter was simply an aggravating circumstance to the charge of adultery with the mother, or whether the two cases – man sleeps with mother and daughter, father and son have sex with same woman – were considered to be worse than merely improper. 1500 years later Egypt was brought into a learned discussion about the legality of a marriage with two sisters. The writers of Late Antiquity were rarely averse to the thought of imputing all kinds of vice to the people of the ancient Near East.
For Edmund Leach the matter was clear. 72 The evidence was absolutely damning to the universalist view of incest. This attitude is, unfortunately, not shared by one of today’s most foremost experts on incest Françoise Héritier. She does not, like so many others, dismiss the ancient evidence out of hand. After having given the impression that it has been duly considered, she instead rejects it: A first theory challenges the universal nature of the incest prohibition. It suggests that certain societies, far from prohibiting incest or reserving it for certain social classes, as in ancient Egypt, made the incestuous union an obligation, as in Old Iran.
It is therefore interesting to see that when more serious matters were at stake, the ancients might play a different 45 INCESTUOUS AND CLOSE-KIN MARRIAGE role. Faced with the allegation that one of his colleagues, Diodorus, Bishop of Tarsus, who was later denounced as a Nestorian, would have approved of a marriage with a deceased wife’s sister – the prototypical instance of incest of the second type – Basil the Great, bishop of Caesarea in Cappadocia (c. 330-379) writes a letter to Diodorus proscribing that form of relationship.