• Barry Turner
Part of the The Statesman’s Yearbook book series (SYBK)


The prehistory of Belgium begins around 20,000 years ago with flint objects excavated in Limburg. The Neanderthal Mousterian culture of the Ardennes region produced flint tools between 80–35,000 years ago. Omalien tribes of the early Neolithic period (5–4,000 BC) developed settled agricultural practices, sophisticated tools and decorated black pottery. The Bronze Age Hilversum culture left evidence of contact overseas in Wessex, southern England. During the pre-Roman period Celtic and Germanic tribes moved across the region. Much of northern Gaul and southern Britain was settled by a Celtic group known as the Belgae, forming numerous tribes including the seafaring Morini and Menapii in what is now Flanders and the bellicose Nervii in Artois. In alliance with Germanic and other Belgic tribes, the Nervii led resistance to the invasion of Julius Caesar in 59 BC, succumbing five years later. Roman control was extended as far north as the Rhine and the area divided into the provinces of Gallia Belgica and Germania Inferior. Several tribes survived as Roman administrative.


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Further Reading

  1. The Institut National de Statistique. Statistiques du commerce extérieur (monthly). Bulletin de Statistique. Bi-monthly. Annuaire Statistique de la Belgique (from 1870).—Annuaire statistique de poche. (from 1965).Google Scholar
  2. Service Fédéral d’Information. Guide de l’Administration Fédérale. OccasionalGoogle Scholar
  3. Deprez, K., and Vos, L., Nationalism in BelgiumShifting Identities, 1780–1995. London 1998CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Fitzmaurice, J., The Politics of Belgium: a Unique Federalism. Farnborough., 1996Google Scholar
  5. Hermans, T. J., et al., (eds.) The Flemish Movement: a Documentary History. London, 1992Google Scholar
  6. Riley, R. C., Belgium. [Bibliography] Oxford and Santa Barbara (CA), 1989Google Scholar
  7. Witte, Els, Political History of Belgium from 1830 Onwards. VUBPress, Brussels, 2000Google Scholar
  8. National Statistical Office:. Institut National de Statistique, Rue de Louvain 44, 1000 Brussels.Google Scholar
  9. Service Fédérale d’Information:. POB 3000, 1040 Brussels 4.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Palgrave Macmillan, a division of Macmillan Publishers Limited 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Barry Turner

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