The Megalith Builders of the SOM


  • G.E. Daniel


(p. 206)

While one example is no proof, it is at least an example that provides a date which fits into our theory. We can now re-see the original idea of the two distinguished archaeologists who invented the SOM culture: we can now see colonists from Iberia traveIling along the Atlantic seaways, along routes aIready pioneered by the Passage Grave Builders and arriving on the coasts of Brittany and Normandy, penetrating up the Seine and settling among an indigenous population of Mesolithic hunters and fishers who had already learned some of the arts of the Neolithic revolution. To a certain extent this reinterpretation of the SOM culture, if accepted, is of great value to our understanding of what the megalith builders were in Europeas a whole, and the concepts of culture-contact and acculturation in northern France may well help us to understand the nature of megalithic "settlement" in other areas like Brittany, Ireland and Scandinavia. Whether as Gordon Childe argued (1957)it is possibIe to distinguish in the Paris Basin between the tombs of chiefs and the communal tombs of followers is another, and more complicated issue.