Re: Digest Number 229
- --- In gothic-l@y..., Ingemar Nordgren <ingemar.nordgren@e...> wrote:
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> > There are 2 messages in this issue.
> > Topics in this digest:
> > 1. Goths, Heruls or Alamanns? The Phalheim Horse Warriors
> > From: dirk@s...
> > 2. Eruli
> > From: Bertil Häggman <mvk575b@t...>
> > Message: 1
> > Date: Mon, 12 Mar 2001 11:22:35 -0000
> > From: dirk@s...
> > Subject: Goths, Heruls or Alamanns? The Phalheim Horse Warriors
> > Hello all,
> > the Nuremberg Germanic National Museum is starting an exhibition
> > about the horse warriors found in the cemetary of Phalheim
> > South Germany) in the early 20th century. This cemetary (5th to7th
> > century) yielded the remains of a considerable number of Germanicdecorated
> > horsemen, who were burried with weapons, shields and highly
> > riding equipment. The interesting thing about the artefactsrecovered
> > in these graves is that their decorations, style and manufactureare
> > almost exclusively East-Germanic - East Roman/Byzantine andlong
> > Mediterranean. Some Archaelologists have stated that the Phalheim
> > warriors were the arch-typical East-Germanic horsemen. This has
> > given rise to interpretations arguing that these were in factGoths
> > or/and Heruls. However, W. Menghin has argued that the Phalheimis it
> > warriors were Alamanns posted their by the Franks to defend an
> > important East-West connection of the Merowingian Empire. At any
> > rate, the exhibition is on until July 15 and a detailed Katalog is
> > also available from the Museum.
> > cheers
> > Dirk
> Hello Dirk!
> When you write Nuremberg is that another place than Nürnberg or
> the same? I never heard of it. Could you please give me the directHello Ingemar,
> adress to the authorities that I may contact them, please!
yes, Nuremberg is the English name of Nuernberg (with Umlaut, exactly
as you wrote it). The address of the National Germanic Museum is:
90 402 Nuernberg
The catalogue was praised as being very well made and detailed, so I
guess it is worth getting.
I wish I could remember the source for an interesting article that I
read about the Phalheim horse warrior graves. The article was
interesting, because it attacked the equation of a typical East
Germanic archaeological assemblage with an ethnic/linguistic group.
The article basically blamed the earlier ethnic attribution of the
Phalheim warriors as East-Germanics (Goths and or Heruls) on an old
and outdated school of archaeological ethnic-ascription. The author
stated that ethnic ascription in archaeology makes the mistake of
selecting certain elements in an archaeological assemblage (in the
Phalheim case the fact that almost all artefacts and decorations were
of East-Germanic/Byzantine and Mediterranean style and manufacture)
as indicative of a certain ethnic group and equated
this 'archaeologically-defined' ethnicity to an ethinic-linguistic
group group named by historical sources.
The author emphasised that characteristical artefacts such as the
East Germanic/Byzantine objects and decorations could have been
transfered without the transfer of any any sense of ethnical
identity. The author stated that W. Menghin has re-interpreted the
Phalheim warriors as Alamannic, (despite of the exclusively East-
Germanic artefacts), who were posted to the Ellwangen area to protect
an important East-West link of the Merowingian Empire.
While this view of archaeological interpretation has clear
advantages, I guess it also means that it is virtually impossible for
archaeology to identify or confirm the existence of certain ethnic
groups outside the strict boundaries postulated for this ethnic group
by contemporary historical sources.
On the other hand, I suppose there are cases were archaeological
finds can indicate the presence of a certain ethnic/linguistic group.
For example in the case of artefacts that are indicative of certain
customs associated with some certainty to an ethnic/linguistic group.
Thus, the recent excavation of the rich 'Alamannic' Lauchheim
cemetary has yielded both Ostrogothic and Langobardic artefacts. The
Ostrogothic artefacts can be accounted for by trade, but also and
most significantly by marriage of noble Gothic women to noble
However, the Langobardic fibulae were found in graves with so called
gold-leaf crosses and other 'Arian' motives. This combination of
Langobardic fibulae and Langobardic burrial customs led to the
interpretation that there could have been a certain Langobardic elite
present not only in modern Bavaria, but also further west on
Oops, sorry for rumbling on...