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date: 20 March 2019

Abstract and Keywords

Depending on the geographical position of the observer, several atmospheric phenomena can be seen quite often in the sky. The visibility of the sun and the moon, and the phenomena generated by their light, might also have attracted the attention of peoples in Bronze Age Europe, as many artefacts decorated with celestial symbols (luxury items in particular) attest. I posit that the depiction of different atmospheric phenomena can be found among the abstract symbols that flooded most of Europe, especially the Scandinavian and Carpathian regions, in the second half of the Bronze Age (from c.1600 bce onwards). I further argue that various symbols generally considered as solar differ from each other, as they either represent the sun with various accompanying atmospheric phenomena or it is likely that some of them are actually lunar rather than solar symbols.

Keywords: Bronze Age, sun symbol, moon symbol, atmospheric phenomena, abstract signs, halo

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