Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 55.djvu/27

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17
THE ORIGIN OF EUROPEAN CULTURE.

sudden appearance of a more highly developed civilization, brought by an immigrant broad-headed race from the East. Two waves of invasion were described: the first bringing polished stone, a later one introducing bronze, cereals, agriculture, and the domestication of animals. Not even credit for the construction of the great stone dolmen tombs was granted to the natives in Gaul, for these were all ascribed to an invasion from the North. The undoubted submergence of the primitive long-headed population of France by a brachycephalic type from the East, to which we have already adverted, was held accountable for a radical advance in civilization. Even the existence of a bronze age was denied to this country, it being maintained that the introduction of bronze was retarded until both metals came in together from the Orient in the hands of the cultural deliverers of the land. The absence of a distinct bronze age was speedily disproved; but the view that France and western Europe were saved from barbarism only by a new race from the East still held sway. It is represented by the classical school of G. de Mortillet, Bertrand, Topinard, and a host of minor disciples. The new school, holding that a steady and uninterrupted development of culture in situ was taking place, is represented notably by Reinach[1] in France and by Sergi[2] in Italy. Their proof of this seems to be unanswerable. Granting that it is easier to borrow culture than to evolve it, a proposition underlying the older view, it seems nevertheless that the West has too long been denied its rightful share in the history of European civilization.

PSM V55 D027 Neolithic ivory carving from mas dazil.png
Neolithic Ivory Carving. Mas d'Azil. (By special permission. Further reproduction prohibited.)

A notable advance in the line of culture entirely indigenous to southwestern Europe has been lately revealed through the interesting discoveries by Piette at the station of Brassempuoy and in the grotto of Mas d'Azil. Carvings in ivory, designs upon bone, evidence of a numerical system, of settled habitations, and, most important of all, of a domestication of the reindeer, of the horse, and the ox in the pure stone age have been found; and that, too, in the uttermost southwestern corner of Europe. In the lake dwell-


  1. Le Mirage Orientale, 1893 a; and in his admirable outline of sculptural origins in Europe (1894-'96).
  2. Arii e Italici, Torino, 1898, especially pp. 199-220.