A female shaman was buried at Bad Dürrenburg, Germany, around 8000 years ago. She was reverently covered with a 30 cm thick layer of red ochre. She probably limped due to an irregularity in her first vertebra.
Her regalia: a headdress with two deer antlers, several boar-tusk plaques, 16 deer incisors, 3 turtle shells, 2 crane bones, and a variety of shells, needles, knives, and microblades. 120 freshwater mussels; and bone needles, flint knives, antler hoe, and a crane-bone container with 31 microliths.
The woman had been buried in an upright posture, as it was typical for the hunter-gatherers.
when? 8700-9000 years ago ................ where? Bad Duerrenberg in Germany
In the middle of the park in Bad Duerrenberg during construction a sensational finding was made in 1934 - the grave of a woman.
About 8000 Years ago she was buried squatting, with a 6-12 month old child on her lap. Being embedded in a thick layer of red ocher earth, unusual rich grave goods and special anatomical features (a cervical abnormality which helped to get into states of trance) of the female ancestor, bring archaeologists to the realization: This woman was a border crosser between the human and spirit world, so she must have been a shaman.
For grave goods a hatchet, awls for net production and retoucher (for striking blades) perforated boar tusks, Prehistoric bison incisors, deer skull with antlers, turtle shells, stone tools (microliths) and more were found. These grave goods suggest a high social prestige. However, not only the grave goods are remarkable, also her height which with 164 cm was for their time very tall and surely made her appear exceptional.
more information: books, films etc.
- V Geupel: Das Rötelgrab von Bad Dürrenberg, Kr. Merseburg. In: J.Herrmann (Hrsg.): Archäologie als Geschichtswissenschaft (= Schriften zur Ur- und Frühgeschichte. Bd. 30). Berlin 1977, S. 101 - 110.
- Judith M. Grünberg: Die mesolithische Bestattungen in Mitteldeutschland.. In: Harald Meller (Hrsg.): Katalog zur Dauerausstellung im Landesmuseum für Vorgeschichte Halle. Bd. 1, Halle Saale 2004, S. 275–291.
- Martin Porr: Grenzgängerin – Die Befunde des mesolithischen Grabes von Bad Dürrenberg. In: Bernd Beispiel (Hrsg.): Katalog zur Dauerausstellung im Landesmuseum für Vorgeschichte Halle. Bd. 1, Halle Saale2004, S. 291–300.