In 2018, the ERC Advanced Project The Yamnaya Impact on Prehistoric Europe – YMPACT was granted, led by Professor Volker Heyd (University of Helsinki, Finland). Only four months after the official start, an international workshop took place in Helsinki on the 25th and 26th of April 2019 in Helsinki (posters and abstracts booklet can be found here). The workshop was intended to be organised by invitation only, to make sure only latest research by the leading specialists on the topic of Yamnaya and 3rd millennium BC archaeology were represented. It was also decided purely on archaeological grounds that no geneticists or linguists being directly invited to contribute, although many archaeologists inevitably included results of both palaeogenetics and palaeolinguistics in their presentations. Two Yamnaya Interactions pathways were tracked: A southern route, focusing in the regions west of the Black Sea, into the Balkans, Transylvania, Carpathian Basin, and Transdanubia; and a northern route, starting northwest of the Black Sea, pursuing the Yamnaya–Globular Amphora and Yamnaya–Corded Ware interactions, and following them deep into Central and Northeastern Europe. This way, the workshop aimed to provide as versatile and comprehensive as possible an overview of 3rd millennium BC transformations in Europe. Overall, the workshop brought together scholars from 12 countries of Southeastern, Central, and Northern Europe giving altogether 15 presentations in two sessions each covering a day.
Many debates of the then conference are still now, two-and-a-half years later, well visible in the 20 contributions of the herewith presented ‘Yamnaya Interactions’ proceedings. Yamnaya definition, migrations, identity and interaction with local societies and cultures in the late 4th and much of 3rd millennium BC Europe still dominate discussions and considerations. The addition of more and more genetic data, increasing dramatically every year, has not resolved these big questions. On the contrary, one gets the impression it has only complicated the overall picture.
This is the second volume of the monograph series ‘The Yamnaya Impact on Prehistoric Europe‘ which deals with the testimonies of the Yamnaya people, their culture and legacy in Southeastern Europe and beyond. Following a material edition in volume 1, we are pleased for this volume to be a publication of conference proceedings comprising scholarly articles around a major Yamnaya topic. Volume 3, edited by Piotr Włodarczak and his team from the Institute of Archaeology and Ethnology, Polish Academy of Sciences, Kraków branch, and dealing with the ‘Danubian Route of the Yamnaya Culture’ has also just been published. In preparation are currently volume 4, the Early Bronze Age kurgans in Southern Romania by Bianca Preda-Bălănică, and volume 5, proceedings of a session held at the (virtual) EAA meeting Budapest 2020. We estimate their publication for summer and autumn 2022.
All YMPACT volumes are published by Archaeolingua Publishing House and volumes 1-3 will be available on their website from January 2022.
YAMNAYA INTERACTIONS. Proceedings of the International Workshop held in Helsinki, 25–26 April 2019. Edited by Volker Heyd, Gabriella Kulcsár, and Bianca Preda-Bălănică. Budapest: Archaeolingua 2021. 552p. ISBN 978-615-5766-49-7