Ancient Ireland Life Before the Celts

Author: Laurance Flanagan

Published: February 15, 1999

Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan

ISBN: 978-0312218812

Pages: 288 including sketches, figures and glossary.

Synopsis: When the Celts first arrived in Ireland around 250BC, the island had already been inhabited for over 7,000 years. These pre-Celtic peoples have left no written records, but they have left extensive archaeological evidence, of which Newgrange is the most celebrated example. Who were these peoples and how did they live? Using archaeological evidence, Laurence Flanagan pieces together the sort of houses they built, the way they cultivated the land, their social and economic systems, and many other aspects of daily life in pre-Celtic Ireland. Combining scholarship with an accessible style, the book provides a unique and fascinating insight into a lost, fabled world. 

Review: This book doesn’t talk about the Celts at all but deals with everything that came before them. The text is divided into two parts, the first is an archaeolgical survey of Ireland before the Celts and the second part is a social study of the archaeological evidence.

As I said the first part is an archaeological study and it spans in detail the Irish Mesolithic, Neolithic, Copper and Bronze Ages. There is a lot of interesting information for someone who is not familiar with these time periods.

Part two is an interpretation of the archaeological record. It talks about the wealth, social order, manufacturing, and climate just to name a few.

All in all I liked the book. It was a good overall look at pre-Celtic Ireland.


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