Mesolithic traits of Scandinavia

As it showed, Mesolithic Scandinavia was settled by people after the 11th millennium BC and temperate mode of colonization was undefined. But the suggestion can be made that the southern part of Scandinavia was warmer than the northern part. Because there were many forests and any other wind safety places. Arctic cold mass of air stopped by them. It provided temperature mode for living there.

The last evidence of the carbon in the fishes’ bones gives information that the temperature of the coastal Norwegian waters was the biggest in the July,August and the lowest in the February, March in Skipshelleren during from the Late Mesolithic Age to the older Iron Age.


But the information of the Mesolithic fishing was already showed here and there was fishing on the southern part of the Scandinavian Peninsula. The modern investigation approves that there was winter fishing in Skipshelleren but it was far from the southern Scandinavia where many Scandinavian cultures were formed.

The hunter-gathering and fishing are the basis of the Neolithic cultures in the Scandinavian Peninsula because the farming appeared in Danubiun culture in the central Europe after the middle of the 7th millennium BC. And it couldn’t appear in Scandinavia before that.

The base of Scandinavian Mesolithic cultures was the result of its forests in the southern part and tundra and empty lands on the in the northern and central parts after the last Glacial Period. According to Rowley’s article, the world sea level was lower in the first Maglemosian stage (around 8300 BC) than in the beginning of the Neolithic Era more than the 25 meters (the beginning of the Kongemose stage of Mesolithic, Around 9400 BC).

It was a cause for the disappeared some northern cultures that were submerged literally by the rising of the sea level. But the target of this article is to give common traits and reasons for braking of the Scandinavian cultures. The rising of the sea level couldn’t give a very strong effect onto Scandinavian Peninsula but the destruction of its environment could form that influence. The Last Glacial Period lasted from the 110000 BC to the 11700 BC. The last Glacial Period’s ice shield had the next area of spreading.59

References, Project “High latitude climate variability and its effect on human settlement and fishery resources as revealed by fossil otoliths”

  • “History of the English language”, Albert C. Baugh, Thomas Cable, Routledge, 2002
  • “Mesolithic seasonal sea temperatures revealed

from stable isotope analysis of cod otoliths”, Journal of Archeological and science, 37 (2010) 78-83

  • “Economic prehistory in Southern Scandinavia”, Peter Rowley-Conwy

This article was written by Ilya Duchanin.

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