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Tumulus culture
SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: Tumulus Bronze Age, Tumulus period
CATEGORY: culture
DEFINITION: A Middle Bronze Age culture of the central Danube region in Czechoslovakia, Austria, and Bavaria, with burials beneath round barrows, dating c 1500-1200 BC. The heartland of the Tumulus culture was Bavaria, Württemberg, and the area previously occupied by the Unetice culture, but distribution extended into north Germany and west as far as Alsace. With the introduction of urnfield burial, the Tumulus culture and the Middle Bronze Age came to an end. It is defined mainly by the dominant burial rite of inhumation beneath a burial mound, as well as a number of characteristic bronze types, found both in the burials and in hoards. It continued earlier trends in ceramics and metalwork, though more elaborate in form and decoration.
CATEGORY: feature
DEFINITION: A mound of earth or stones built over a burial - most often a large, circular tomb. Tumuli were used for the burial chambers of Etruscan aristocrats in the Archaic period (6th-5th centuries BC), also in the Bronze Age, and later revived by the Roman emperors Augustus and Hadrian.

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