Home Germany News “Scientific guerrilla warfare”: New quarrel over the Nebra sky disk

“Scientific guerrilla warfare”: New quarrel over the Nebra sky disk


According to a recent study, the famous Nebra Sky Disc dates from the Bronze Age. Two prehistorians, however, have serious doubts. According to them, the artifact is much older. One of them speaks of a “scientific guerrilla war”.

The Nebra Sky Disc remains a matter of contention among scientists. The study by a team of 13 researchers, according to which the disc dates from the Bronze Age, does not convince the prehistorians Rupert Gebhard and Rüdiger Krause from Munich and Frankfurt. In the article “Critical comments on the complex of finds of the so-called Nebra sky disc” (Archaeological Information 43), they claimed that the hoard find did not constitute a “closed find”, that the sky disc might not have come from the determined location and thus as an individual find without context in The Iron Age belongs and is about 1000 years younger than previously assumed.

And they want to add more. “The essay by the research group in no way gives the impression that a scientific qualification has been secured here. Something will come from us,” said Krause of the dpa. However, he did not give a specific date. He demanded “that a final complete publication, which was announced in 2008, should finally be submitted”.

“Disk clearly dates from the early Bronze Age”

The Nebra Sky Disc is considered to be the oldest concrete astronomical representation in the world. It is one of the best-researched archaeological finds in recent decades. “The disk clearly dates from the early Bronze Age,” said regional archaeologist Harald Meller. A few days ago, his research team presented the facts from their point of view in an article in the Viennese journal “Archaeologia Austriaca” (Volume 104/2020, Austrian Academy of Sciences, Vienna).

Krause has the impression that his objections are not handled appropriately and speaks of a “scientific guerrilla warfare”. “I mean, if you sat down together, then maybe you could break the whole thing down properly,” said Krause. If it were up to him, an international team of experts should be consulted. According to Krause, a huge point of criticism is the soil adhering to the pane. These had apparently been thrown away. The State Museum for Prehistory counters that it is like landing on the moon. One could no longer convince the people who were of the opinion that this landing never took place.

Two robbers found the bronze artifacts on July 4, 1999 on the Mittelberg near Nebra in the Burgenland district. Along with the sky disc, there were two swords, two axes, two arm spirals and a chisel stuck in the ground. The gold plating on the almost circular sky disc shows, among other things, the constellation of the Pleiades. Since 2013 the disc has also been Unesco’s world document heritage.

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