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On the Iberian Peninsula, Protohistory comprises the cultures that developed between the Early Iron Age and Romanisation—that is, the first millennium BC.A large proportion of the objects in this collection come from archaeological digs carried out in Spain since the 19th century or even earlier.

Of particular significance are the finds from Ibiza, Villaricos, Toya, Galera, Archena, Aguilar de Anguita and Numancia. The collections of gold and silver objects, with specimens from the Phoenician, Tartessian, Iberian, Celtiberian, Vaccaei and hillfort cultures, are tremendously valuable, especially the Aliseda, Jávea, Salvacañete, Palencia, Cangas de Onis and Vegadeo hoards. Meanwhile, the Iberian sculptures, made out of stone (ladies of Elche, Baza and Cerro de los Santos, reliefs from Osuna) and bronze (Iberian ex‐votos from Despeñaperros), are notable for both their quality and quantity.


These links provide information about objects belonging to different people groups who inhabited the Iberian Peninsula during the first millennium BC. The most important groups were the Phoenicians, who arrived from the eastern Mediterranean and left their mark on the Tartessian culture; as well as in the material culture of Celtic, Iberian, or Punic peoples and the former inhabitants of the Balearic Islands, the Talayotic peoples.