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All the cultures that emerged on the territory of present-day Romania can be included in the fourth group, and the Cernavoda I culture holds a special place because it belongs to a group with cord-ornamented pottery originating in the North Pontic steppes. A decisive role was played in the beginning by the influx of populations from the south, directly or indirectly related to Asia Minor Cambridge Histories Online © Cambridge University Press, 2008 22 I. THE PREHISTORY OF ROMANIA and the eastern Mediterranean.
Are missing. Consequently, the Ceramic Neolithic is the oldest stage, but an Aceramic Neolithic may be discovered in the future. Nevertheless, independent transition to foodproduction would be improbable even in that case. In the opinion of most botanists the cereals identified north of the Balkans and the Danube originated south of the Balkans and in Western Asia. As the oldest Neolithic cultural group found north of the Danube — Gura Baciului (Transylvania)64 - Circea (Oltenia)65 - comprises painted pottery of the Proto-Sesklo type (Greece),66 it seems that the Neolithic revolution reached the Danube as a result of the northward advance of a group of populations from Thessaly, a statement which is corroborated by similar discoveries in north-eastern Yugoslavia and north-western Bulgaria.
The Petre§ti culture probably ended earlier than Gumelnija and Cucuteni as a result of sporadic penetration of the Tiszapolgar culture from the west-northwest. C. The Sa/cufa culture,138 which superimposes a late phase of the Vinca culture in western Oltenia and the Vadastra culture in eastern Oltenia, occupied the whole of Oltenia and western Muntenia and extended west into the Banat during an evolution into four phases. It is regarded as one constituent of the Salcufa—Krivodol—Bubanj complex (of Romania, Bulgaria and Yugoslavia, respectively), but many common elements with the Gumelnija culture make us consider it a regional variant of this culture, although we do not deny some Vinca inheritance (absent from Gumelnija) and influences of the Macedonian Bronze Age.