View Full Version : Bell Beaker Pilgrimage

10-08-2016, 06:40 PM
I had the chance recently to make a trip to the Saint-Martin-de-Corléans Archaeological Museum in Aosta, Italy. This is the sister site to Petit-Chasseur in Sion (Valais, Switzerland), with both sites being so similar, that it is almost impossible for them not to have been built by related clans.

Here are the things that stood out to me:

1. Knowing now that P312, including U152, has a lot to do with Bell Beaker, the visit took on more meaning... I can't say it was spiritual, but something extra that I can't explain.
2. The museum is right next to the Saint-Martin-de-Corléans church. Needless to say, people have been worshiping here for a long time. Reminds me of how the church where most of my male ancestors were baptized from 1500 on was built on the base of a Greek temple.
3. The museum itself is a big enclosure of the archaeological site. Stations around the site showcase the different artifacts. Replica stelae were put on the site... the real stelae are in the stations so they can be seen up close.
4. The museum is top notch and it looks like no expense or thought was spared in its construction. For example, the lighting on the site changes subtly to give the feeling of day turning to night. All stations are labeled in Italian, French and English.
5. This place could very well be called the "Bell Beaker Museum". Just about everywhere you turn, you see Bell Beaker material.
6. Stele 30, the one with intricately carved Bell Beaker clothing, bows, etc. is massive, and books don't do it justice. For reference, there is dorky me standing in front of it in the picture below. I am 6'1". Even though its on a base, you have to remember that I am a good 5 feet or so closer to the camera and the further an object is to a camera, the smaller it looks. Whether depicting a deity or a chief, this was reverence at the utmost level.
7. It looks like the artist (or someone else) used some kind of coloring paste to accent certain areas of stele 30.
8. The majority of the 66 individuals found in the tombs were male. The great majority were brachycephalic (round-short headed).
9. All archers bracers were of the four holed variety.
10. All graves are collective. Therefore, unlike in other areas, we see brachycephalics with four holed bracers in collective graves which is not typical.
11. I got to see the All-Over-Corded Bell Beakers close up and boy do they look a lot like Corded Ware.
12. In total, I was there for three hours as I read every last plaque.... of course, my wife and children weren't there ;)
13. I bought two books there, including one that has details of many individual stelae from this site and others across Europe (Sion, Ukraine, etc.) It is called "Dei di peitra - Dieux de pierre" (Gods of Stone). The text is in both Italian and French. It is printed on glossy paper, so the pictures really stand out.
14. I highly recommend this museum to anyone who has an interest in Bell Beaker and R1b, and I think its popularity is likely to grow as more people get interested in DNA.
15. The town of Aosta is marvelous and the food is delicious. It is a two hour drive from Geneva, Switzerland or Milan, Italy. The town is surrounded by the Alps and has a typical Alpine charm to it.


10-27-2016, 05:02 AM
I keep seeing disagreements as to whether the Bell Beaker Archers' bracers are really such. I think they are, but I'm open to new ideas and conspiracy theories.