Movements of Peoples. It is still uncertain to what extent the spread of all the various cultures was due to trade and borrowing, and to what extent it involved wholesale movements of peoples. The population of Europe in the early part of the Mesolithic period probably consisted largely of the descendants of the food gathering Upper Palaeolithic peoples and was predominantly of the long-headed, White or European stock, sometimes called Atlanto-Mediterranean. Round-headed peoples began to crowd in early in Mesolithic and Neolithic times, from the east (as shown at the site of Off net in Bavaria) and possibly from Africa (as shown in certain sites in Portugal and Spain).
During the succeeding millennia the three fundamental modem European types became established in their respective areas: the Mediterraneans in southern Europe, the Alpines in central and western Europe, and the Nordics in northern Europe. During the latter part of the Bronze Age and especially in the Iron Age we have further witness to great movements of peoples in the spread of IndoEuropean languages over the larger part of Europe. Greek-speaking and Illyrianspeaking peoples came down through the Balkans into Greece, and Italic-speaking peoples into Italy; Celtic-speaking peoples moved west through central and northern Europe as far as France and the British Isles, and were followed over much the same route by Teutonic-speaking and, for part of the way, by Slavic-speaking peoples. We know that these groups were of mixed types, but we still have insufficient information about their physical characteristics.