Archaeologist Marija Gimbutas Dead
Feb. 07, 1994
LOS ANGELES (AP) _ Marija Gimbutas, an archaeologist who challenged conventional views by concluding that women were worshiped in Stone Age-Europe, is dead at age 73.
Gimbutas died of cancer Wednesday at UCLA Medical Center, said her friend and editor, Joan Marler.
A professor emeritus of European archaeology at the University of California, Los Angeles, Gimbutas authored 20 books.
Her more recent works, including ''Goddesses and Gods of Old Europe,'' ''The Language of the Goddess'' and ''The Civilization of the Goddess,'' challenged archaeological convention.
She referred to European cultures dating back 6,000 to 8,000 years as ''true civilizations'' without war, boasting organized cities that were run by women.
Based on thousands of female images from those cultures, she concluded that women were worshiped and that the primary deities were goddesses. She maintained that life was peaceful until the worship of warlike gods was imported by Indo-Europeans.
Her work was praised by feminists and colleagues such as mythologist Joseph Campbell.
A native of Vilnius, Lithuania, Gimbutas received a doctorate in archeaology in 1946 from Tubingen University in Germany. She immigrated to the United States in 1949, did research at Harvard University and joined the UCLA faculty in 1963. She retired four years ago.
Survivors include three daughters.