By Norman J. G. Pounds

The crucial subject matter of this booklet is the altering spatial trend of human actions over the past 2,500 years of Europe's background. Professor kilos argues that 3 elements have decided the destinations of human actions: the surroundings, the attitudes and types of social association of the numerous assorted peoples of Europe and finally, the degrees of know-how. in the huge framework of the interrelationships of atmosphere, society and expertise, numerous very important issues pursued from the 5th century BC to the early 20th century: payment and agriculture, the expansion of towns, the advance of producing and the function of alternate. Underlying every one of those topics are the discussions of political association and inhabitants. even if the booklet relies partially of Professor Pound's magisterial 3 volumes An historic Geography of Europe (1977, 1980, 1985), it was once written in particular for college students and readers attracted to a common survey of the topic.

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To some extent this vast enclosure derived from the need, especially in earlier times, to have space into which to drive animals in time of emergency. As the city grew it commonly spread out over lower and flatter ground, and most of the last cities to be founded were built on flat land beside a river which provided them with water. The older, hilltop towns were wholly without regular plan. Streets were narrow and twisting, with alleys and courts opening off them. " 4 This has been confirmed by excavations carried out near the Areopagus: "a minor street and narrow alleys.

Beyond the Alps lived Celts. Traditionally one speaks of their social organization as tribal. In fact they formed communities perhaps of several hundreds, with some kind of "king" or leader and a central-place for their tribal territory. The latter appears as a general rule to have been a rounded fort, protected by bank, ditch, and palisade. Like the central-place of the polis, it probably contained the homes of part of the population and accommodation for the whole in time of emergency. Here the chieftain would live alongside the tribal gods, and here the store of grain would have been kept, possibly, as in southern Britain, in deep, lined pits cut in the ground.

The picture which results is broadly similar, but those qualities which had distinguished the Greek world of the eastern Mediterranean are seen to have diffused westward and northward. The levels of material culture were lifted as the Romans spread their cities and villas to northern Britain, the Rhine, and the Danube. And even beyond its frontier the empire cast its long shadow over the Germanic tribes of the north, developing among them tastes for things Roman and a desire to enter within the empire and to share in these delights.

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