Archaeologists uncovered thousands of Stone Age underground tunnels, stretching across Europe from Scotland to Turkey, perplexing researchers as to their original purpose.
German archaeologist Dr Heinrich Kusch, in his book ‘Secrets of the Underground Door to an Ancient World’ revealed that tunnels were dug under literally hundreds of Neolithic settlements all over Europe and the fact that so many tunnels have survived 12,000 years indicates that the original network must have been huge.
‘In Bavaria in Germany alone we have found 700metres of these underground tunnel networks. In Styria in Austria we have found 350metres,’ he said. ‘Across Europe there were thousands of them – from the north in Scotland down to the Mediterranean.
The tunnels are quite small, measuring only 70cm in width, which is just enough for a person to crawl through. In some places there are small rooms, storage chambers and seating areas.
The Stone Age was the first of the three-age system of archaeology, which divides human technological prehistory into three periods: The Stone Age, The Bronze Age, The Iron Age. The transition out of the Stone Age occurred between 6000 BC and 2500 BC for much of humanity living in North Africa and Eurasia. While many believe Stone Age humans were primitive, incredible discoveries such as the 12,000 year-old temple called Gobekli Tepe in Turkey, the pyramids of Egypt and other structures such as Stonehenge, which demonstrate extremely advanced astronomical knowledge indicates that they were not as primitive as many believe.
The discovery of a vast network of tunnels indicates that Stone Age humans were not just spending their days hunting and gathering. However, the real purpose of the tunnels is still a matter of speculation. Some experts believe they were a way of protecting man from predators while others believe they were a way for people to travel safely, sheltered from harsh weather conditions or even wars and violence. However, at this stage scientists are only able to guess, as the tunnels have not yet revealed all their secrets of the past.