ARP 1008 – Europe in Prehistory

Module Overview

This module introduces students to the later prehistory of Europe and the Mediterranean, from the beginnings of settled farming society in the Near East (c.10,000 years ago) to the European Iron Age and the dawn of historic times (c. 50 BC). The geographic scope of the module encompasses all of Europe and the Mediterranean, from Russia and the Levant to Ireland, Spain and Portugal. The thematic focus is on major developments affecting the social and economic conditions of prehistoric societies throughout this period, e.g. the introduction of farming, metallurgy, urbanism and the emergence of statehood. Students are introduced to these themes through a structured series of lectures and small-group tutorials. In addition, a fieldtrip to one of the major megalithic cemeteries in the island of Ireland introduces students to some of the practical aspects of studying prehistoric monuments.

Learning outcomes

You will gain a broad overview of the development of human societies in Europe from c. 10,000 years ago to the 1st century BC and an appreciation of the nature and range of the archaeological record. You will also develop an awareness of the complexities and limitations of archaeological interpretation, and learn to situate present debates and controversies in prehistoric archaeology in a wider context.


Module Co-ordinator: Dr Dirk Brandherm


Other Contributor: Dr Melie Le Roy


(Image: Stonehenge, Wiltshire – R. Rabett)