The concept of prehistory and the invention of the terms ‘prehistoric’ and ‘prehistorian’: the Scandinavian origin, 1833–1850

  title={The concept of prehistory and the invention of the terms ‘prehistoric’ and ‘prehistorian’: the Scandinavian origin, 1833–1850},
  author={Peter A. Rowley-Conwy},
  journal={European Journal of Archaeology},
  pages={103 - 130}
  • P. Rowley-Conwy
  • Published 1 April 2006
  • History
  • European Journal of Archaeology
It is usually assumed by historians of archaeology that the ‘concept of prehistory’ and the terms ‘prehistoric’ and ‘prehistorian’ first appeared in Britain and/or France in the mid-nineteenth century. This contribution demonstrates that the Scandinavian equivalent terms forhistorisk and förhistorisk were in use substantially earlier, appearing in print first in 1834. Initial usage by Molbech differed slightly from that of the present day, but within three years the modern usage had been… 

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