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The Terramare civilization spread in the middle of the Po plain during the middle and recent Bronze Ages (1550-1150 BC). It resulted in a complex and articulate culture that promoted a innovative territorial exploitation strategy, introducing for the first time in the Po plain the intensive agriculture based on irrigation. The area of Terramare was radically deforested to respond to the need for ample space of cultivated land and to provide timbers for the construction of the villages. Water management played a prominent role: a dense net of ditches and canals provided to irrigate the land surrounding the settlements. The civilization of Terramare collapsed at the end of the recent Bronze age The reasons for this crisis are still questioned, they probably have their roots in exploiting resources beyond the limits of sustainability. However a short but dramatic arid spell acted as decisive cause to unleash the collapse.
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