Straižys, V., Klimka, L.
Journal for the History of Astronomy, Archaeoastronomy Supplement, Vol. 28, p.S57
In the present territories of Lithuania and Latvia archaeologists find habitation sites established eleven or twelve thousand years ago, at the end of a 60,000 year long glacial period during which the Baltic region was under the ice sheet at least for three long periods. With the recession of the ice, the land gradually turned into tundra with herds of reindeer going further north in the summer. Reindeer were followed by hunters who left their permanent settlements somewhere in the northern parts of Europe. These were men of the Paleolithic Swiderian and Magdalenian cultures, armed with spears, bows and flint-head arrows, bone and horn harpoons, and stone slings, and followed by their domesticated dogs. Art finds that reflect the spiritual world of Paleolithic man are scarce. However, burial grounds of that period have survived to the present day. The fact that ancient people were buried together with their clothes, decorations, daily-life utensils, as an extension of the earth, may also appear in the Paleolithic, the starry sky being inhabited by different animals, while the Sun and the Moon were symbolically imagined as deer.
"In the Mesolithic (7500-3500 B.C.) the Baltic area was gradually covered by forests with abundant fauna. The people of the Nemunas and Kunda cultures who inhabited these forests lived on hunting, fishing and gathering the food that nature provided. From that period, a number of artifacts, made of bone and decorated with ornaments demonstrating some king of symbolic script, have survived to our day. Among them is the symbol of the Sun, a circle, and the symbol of fire, a cross with arms of equal length. It is quite probable that the myth of European and Asian peoples that explains the world as formed from a duck egg, originated in the Mesolithic, or even earlier . . ."
FIG. 8 Symbolic representation of heavenly bodies and atmospheric phenomena used by the Balts.