Not very long ago, the common consensus was that “civilization” developed slowly in Europe. Outside of the Mediterranean civilizations of Greece and Italy, ancient Europe was a backwater full of barbaric tribesmen who mostly lived in hut-like dwellings. Most laymen and many historians would say that compared to Sumer, Babylon, China, Egypt, and the Indus River Valley, Europe was far behind the curve. This attitude is undergoing a transformation.
Thanks to recent archaeological discoveries, it’s becoming clearer and clearer that ancient Europe, especially prehistoric Europe, was far more developed than previously thought. This development wasn’t just in the Mediterranean basin, either. Archaeologists have not only unearthed evidence of professional armies, advanced technologies, and elaborate social structures in the mountains of Northern Europe and the Balkans, but they’ve even decoded some of the continent’s oldest mysteries.