Archaeology Magazine

A publication of the Archaeological Institute of America

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Stone Age Violence

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

EDINBURGH, SCOTLAND—Linda Fibiger of the University of Edinburgh and her team examined 478 late Stone Age skulls found in Sweden and Denmark for signs of violence, and found that up to one in six of the skulls had been injured. Men suffered from more nonfatal wounds, but the researchers were surprised to find that women were as equally likely to die from a blow to the head as men. It had been thought that women would have been spared during raids because of their potential to bear and raise children. Now Fibiger thinks that women may have been easy targets during an attack “because you’re probably going to try and protect your children rather than being able to properly defend yourself,” she explained.