Heir of the steppe riders

How a Bronze Age people changed our history

Part of our cultural and genetic heritage is due to the Jamnaja, a semi-nomadic steppe people that existed 5, 000 years ago. Dmitri Chulov / iStock
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In the Bronze Age, our ancestors experienced a tremendous cultural boost. Suddenly they changed their crafting techniques, discovered the nuclear family and property, and buried their dead in new ways. But what was the trigger for this revolution in Bronze Age Europe? And what role do the rider nomads of the Eurasian steppe play?

It has long been clear that Europe's history is shaped by several waves of immigration. First came about 45, 000 years ago, the Homo sapiens, then bring farmers from the Mediterranean area with the agriculture. But in recent years, another, third migration wave has emerged as crucial to the history of Europe: an influx of Jamnaja - semi-nomadic cattle breeders from the steppes of the East. The extent to which these steppe riders have shaped our culture as well as our genetic make-up is becoming increasingly apparent.

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- Nadja Podbregar