The Tomb of a Male Warrior. Individual Burials

Enterramiento campaniforme Pulse para ampliar Enterramiento campaniforme. Sala 8, vitrina 8.4

Prehistory: Bronze Age (2,200 – 850 BC)Salto de línea

For the first time in history, in Bronze Age populations certain individuals began to rise above the rest. They were the young warrior chieftains, whose graves can be identified thanks to the fact that only they were entitled to use certain luxury objects and weapons. Luxurious Bell-Beaker pottery, archer's wrist-guards to protect the forearm from the sharp impact of the twanging bowstring, arrowheads and daggers made of copper, the prestigious new metal—these were their identifying symbols, which were buried with them in individual tombs or separately in collective tombs. Burials with these grave goods have appeared across a large part of Europe and the Iberian Peninsula, indicating that the elite members of different groups were in contact with each other.

The burial of a young warrior in Fuente Olmedo (Valladolid) is a good example of a tomb from Bell-Beaker period. He was buried in a grave covered by a mound of stones visible throughout the environment and accompanied by one of the richest bell-shaped trousseau in Western Europe. This trousseau consist of an archer's wrist-guard, a set of Bell-Beaker pottery, a set of metallic weapons and a simple gold band in his head. All these objects may have been powerful status symbols.

These burials denote a conception of power as something linked to the possession of weapons and to the celebration of certain funerary or memorial rituals, where people came together to drink alcoholic beverages like beer out of the beakers from which Bell-Beaker pottery takes its name. This pottery was also associated with the beginning of the social inequality