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Dolomites > The Dolomites and their history > First humans

First humans and the language of the Raeti

First humans and the language of the RaetiIn the heart of Europe, the power of the clash of the continents created a characteristic mountain rich in impressive peaks, towers and spires. Over millions of years this landscape was carved and modeled by the action of tropical seas, volcanoes and ice ages. The beauty of these “pale mountains” has fascinated man to such an extent that these mountains are counted among the wonders of the world.

First humans

13,000 years ago, during the summer months, man went more and more from the plains in the south towards the plateaux of the Dolomites. Rocks and improvised refuges provided him with shelter. Here man left to posterity a precious heritage of tools and works of art. The first human tools found in the Dolomites were made of rock crystal and were 8000 years old. Rock crystal were the symbol of clearness and purity.

The Raeti

Over the ages, various groups of peoples mingled: Celts, Norici and Veneti. Soon the Romans referred to the inhabitants of the Dolomites with the collective name of Raeti. This people developed a language of their own, which has survived till the present day: Ladin.

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Foto: Michael Wachtler

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