Iberians


Iberians

The Iberians were a set of peoples that Greek and Roman sources (among others, Hecataeus of Miletus, Avienus, Herodot and Strabo) identified with that name in the eastern and southern coasts of the Iberian peninsula at least from the 6th century BC. These included: the Airenosi, Andosini, Ausetani, Bastetani, Bastuli, Bergistani, Castellani, Cessetani, Ceretani, Contestani, Edetani, Elisices, Iacetani, Ilercavones, Ilergetes, Indigetes, Lacetani, Laietani, Oretani, Sedetani, Sordones, Suessetani, and Turdetani (notice that there are some doubts regarding the ethno-linguistic affiliation of some of these). The Roman and Greek sources often diverge about the precise location of each Iberian people and also about the list of Iberian peoples.

The Iberians were not a clearly defined culture, ethnic group or political entity. The name is instead a blanket term for a number of peoples belonging to a pre-Roman, Iron Age culture inhabiting the Iberian peninsula who have been historically identified as "Iberian". Although these peoples shared certain common features, they were by no means homogeneous and they diverged widely in other respects.

History

The Iberians lived in isolated communities based on a tribal organization. They also had a knowledge of metalworking, including bronze, and agricultural techniques. In the centuries preceding Carthaginian and Roman conquest, Iberian settlements grew in social complexity, exhibiting evidence of social stratification and urbanization. This process was probably aided by trading contacts with the Phoenicians, Greeks, and Carthaginians. Among the most important goods traded by the Iberians were precious metals, particularly tin and copper.

The Phoenicians established their first colony on the Iberian Peninsula in 1100 B.C. ("Gadir", "Gades", modern Cádiz) and probably made contact with Iberians then or shortly thereafter.

Greek colonists made the first historical reference to the Iberians in the 6th century B.C. The Greeks also dubbed as "Iberians" another people, currently known as Caucasian Iberians. It is not known whether the two had any connection.

Origins

[
Neolithic expansion.] The origin of the Iberians is not certain, but there are two theories concerning such:
*One theory suggests that they arrived in Spain sometime during the Neolithic period, with their arrival being dated from as early as the fifth millennium BC to the third millennium BC (see Cardium culture). Most scholars adhering to this theory believe from archaeological, anthropological and genetic evidences that the Iberians came from a region farther east in the Mediterranean. Others have suggested that they may have originated in North Africa. The Iberians would have initially settled along the eastern coast of Spain, and then possibly spread throughout the rest of the Iberian Peninsula later on. [ [http://encyclopedia.jrank.org/I27_INV/IBERIANS_Iberi_I_3r7Aes_.html IBERIANS (Iberi, "I(3r... - Online Information article about IBERIANS (Iberi, "I(3r ] ] [ [http://encarta.msn.com/encyclopedia_761568486/Iberians.html Iberians - MSN Encarta ] ] [ [http://www.encyclopedia.com/doc/1E1-Iberians.html Iberians - Encyclopedia.com ] ] [ [http://historymedren.about.com/library/text/bltxtspain2.htm Spain: Historical Setting - Library of Congress Country Study - Iberia] ] [ [http://www.lhhpaleo.religionstatistics.net/LHH%20neolithic.html THE GREAT COLONIZATIONS - THE NEOLITHIC] ]

*An alternative theory states that they were part of the original inhabitants of Western Europe and the creators/heirs of the great megalithic culture in all this area, a theory possibly supported by genetic studies. The Iberians would then be similar to the populations subdued by the Celts in the first millennium BC in Ireland, Britain and France. [ [http://indoeuro.bizland.com/archive/article7.html Picts and Pictish language: an article by Cyril Babaev ] ] [ [http://encyclopedia.jrank.org/I27_INV/IBERIANS_Iberi_I_3r7Aes_.html IBERIANS (Iberi, "I(3r... - Online Information article about IBERIANS (Iberi, "I(3r ] ]

Celts crossed the Pyrenees into Spain in two major migrations in the ninth and the seventh centuries B.C. The Celts settled for the most part north of the Rio Duero and the Rio Ebro, where they mixed with the Iberians to form groups called Celtiberians." [ [http://historymedren.about.com/library/text/bltxtspain2.htm Spain: Historical Setting - Library of Congress Country Study - Iberia] ] [ [http://www.lhhpaleo.religionstatistics.net/LHH%20neolithic.html THE GREAT COLONIZATIONS - THE NEOLITHIC] ] [ [http://www.lhhpaleo.religionstatistics.net/LHH%20iberia.html FIRST NEOLITHIC] ]

External influences

The Iberians traded extensively with other Mediterranean cultures. Iberian pottery has been found in France, Italy, and North Africa. The Iberians also had extensive contact with Greek colonists. The Iberians may have adopted some of the Greeks' artistic techniques. Statues such as the Lady of Baza and the Lady of Elx are thought to have been made by Iberians relatively well acquainted with Greek art. Thucydides stated that one of the three original tribes of Sicily, the Sicani, were of Iberian origin, though "Iberian" at the time could have included what we think of as Gaul. [cite news|url=http://www.bestofsicily.com/mag/art141.htm|publisher=Best of Sicily|title=Sicilian Peoples: The Sicanians|date=7 October 2007]

The Iberians were placed under Carthaginian rule for a short time between the First and Second Punic Wars. They supplied troops to Hannibal's army. The Romans subsequently conquered the Iberian Peninsula and slowly absorbed the local culture and language.

Iberian culture

Iberian language

The Iberian language, like the rest of paleohispanic languages, became extinct by the 1st to 2nd centuries AD, after being gradually replaced by Latin. Iberian seems to be a language isolate. It is certainly not an Indo-European language. Links with other languages have been claimed, but they have not been demonstrated. One such proposed link was with the Basque language, but this theory is also disputed.

Iberian scripts

The Iberians use three different scripts to represent the Iberian language.

* Northeastern Iberian script
** Dual variant (4th century BC and 3rd century BC)
** Non-dual variant (2nd century BC and 1st century BC)
* Southeastern Iberian script
* Greco-Iberian alphabet

Northeastern Iberian script and southeastern Iberian script share a common distinctive typological characteristic, also present in other paleohispanic scripts: they present signs with syllabic value for the occlusives and signs with monofonematic value for the rest of consonants and vowels. From a writing systems point of view they are neither alphabets nor syllabaries, they are mixed scripts that normally are identified as semi-syllabaries. About this common origin, there is no agreement between researchers: for some this origin is only linked to the Phoenician alphabet while for others the Greek alphabet had participated too.

Further reading

* Beltrán, Miguel (1996): "Los iberos en Aragón", Zaragoza.
* Ruiz, Arturo; Molinos, Manuel (1993): "Los iberos", Barcelona.
* Sanmartí, Joan; Santacana, Joan (2005): "Els ibers del nord", Barcelona.
* Sanmartí, Joan (2005): [http://www.dpz.es/ifc2/publi/fichapublic.asp?recid=2622 «La conformación del mundo ibérico septentrional»] , "Palaeohispanica" 5, pp. 333-358.

Gallery



ee also

"Modern peoples of Iberia:"
*Spanish people
*Catalan people
*Asturian people
*Galician people
*Basque people
*Portuguese people

"Pre-Roman cultures of Iberia:"
*Pre-Roman peoples of the Iberian Peninsula
*Tartessos
*Celts
*Celtiberians
*Lusitanians

"Archeological sites:"
*Lucentum

"Related to Iberian culture:"
*Iberian language
*Iberian scripts

References

External links

* [http://www.arqueotavira.com/Mapas/Iberia/Populi.htm Detailed map of the Pre-Roman Peoples of Iberia (around 200 BC)]
* [http://www.webpersonal.net/jrr/index.htm Iberian Epigraphy Page, by J.R. Ramos]


Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Iberians — I·be·ri·an || aɪ bɪərɪən n. resident of the Iberian Peninsula; resident of the ancient country of Iberia (located in the eastern part of the present day Georgian Republic) adj. of or pertaining to the Iberian Peninsula or its inhabitants; …   English contemporary dictionary

  • Caucasian Iberians — The Caucasian Iberians was a Greco Roman designation for ancient Georgians, Ibero Caucasian people (South Caucasian or Kartvelians) who inhabited the east and southeast of the Transcaucasus region in prehistoric and historic times. [ The… …   Wikipedia

  • Caucasian Iberia — This article is about the people of ancient Georgia. For the Iberians of ancient Iberian Peninsula, see Iberians .Iberia (Georgian mdash; იბერია, Latin: Iberia and Greek: polytonic|Ἰβηρία), also known as Iveria ( ka. ივერია), was a name given by… …   Wikipedia

  • Iberian language — language familycolor=Isolate name=Iberian states=Modern Spain and France region=Mediterranean coast of the Iberian Peninsula extinct=1st 2nd century AD family=Language isolate iso3=xibThe Iberian language was the language of a people identified… …   Wikipedia

  • Battle of Dertosa — Infobox Military Conflict conflict=Battle of Dertosa partof=the Second Punic War date= Spring 215 BC place= Tortosa, present day Spain result=Roman victory combatant1=Carthage combatant2=Roman Republic commander1=Hasdrubal Barca commander2=Gnaeus …   Wikipedia

  • Latin America, history of — Introduction       history of the region from the pre Columbian period and including colonization by the Spanish and Portuguese beginning in the 15th century, the 19th century wars of independence, and developments to the end of World War II.… …   Universalium

  • Georgians — Infobox Ethnic group group = Georgians ქართველები Kartvelebi image caption = Top row (left to right) Peter the Iberian • Vakhtang I of Iberia • David the Builder • Queen Tamar of Georgia • Shota Rustaveli • Erekle II • Middle row Ilia… …   Wikipedia

  • Spanish people — Infobox Ethnic group group =Spanish people Pueblo español caption = 1st row: Isabella of Castile • Ferdinand II of Aragon • Cortés • Loyola • Charles V • Teresa of Ávila 2nd row: Cervantes • Francisco Goya • José María de Pereda • Rosalía de… …   Wikipedia

  • South America — South American. a continent in the S part of the Western Hemisphere. 271,000,000; ab. 6,900,000 sq. mi. (17,871,000 sq. km). * * * Continent, Western Hemisphere. The world s fourth largest continent, it is bounded by the Caribbean Sea to the… …   Universalium

  • Spain — /spayn/, n. a kingdom in SW Europe. Including the Balearic and Canary islands, 39,244,195; 194,988 sq. mi. (505,019 sq. km). Cap.: Madrid. Spanish, España. * * * Spain Introduction Spain Background: Spain s powerful world empire of the 16th and… …   Universalium


Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.