A stone tool is, in the most general sense, any tool made either or out of stone. Although stone tool-dependent societies and cultures still exist today, most stone tools are associated with prehistoric cultures that have become extinct. Archaeologists study such prehistoric societies, refer to the study of stone tools as lithic analysis. Ethnoarchaeology has been a valuable research field in order to further the understanding and cultural implications of stone tool use and manufacture. Stone has been used to make a wide variety of different tools throughout history, including arrow heads and querns. Stone tools may be made of either ground stone or chipped stone, a person who creates tools out of the latter is known as a flintknapper. Chipped stone tools are made from cryptocrystalline materials such as chert or flint, chalcedony, obsidian and quartzite via a process known as lithic reduction. One simple form of reduction is to strike stone flakes from a nucleus of material using a hammerstone or similar hard hammer fabricator.
If the goal of the reduction strategy is to produce flakes, the remnant lithic core may be discarded once it has become too small to use. In some strategies, however, a flintknapper reduces the core to a rough unifacial or bifacial preform, further reduced using soft hammer flaking techniques or by pressure flaking the edges. More complex forms of reduction include the production of standardized blades, which can be fashioned into a variety of tools such as scrapers, knives and microliths. In general terms, chipped stone tools are nearly ubiquitous in all pre-metal-using societies because they are manufactured, the tool stone is plentiful, they are easy to transport and sharpen. Archaeologists classify stone tools into industries that share distinctive technological or morphological characteristics. In 1969 in the 2nd edition of World Prehistory, Grahame Clark proposed an evolutionary progression of flint-knapping in which the "dominant lithic technologies" occurred in a fixed sequence from Mode 1 through Mode 5.
He assigned to them relative dates: Modes 1 and 2 to the Lower Palaeolithic, 3 to the Middle Palaeolithic, 4 to the Advanced and 5 to the Mesolithic. They were not to be conceived, however, as either universal—that is, they did not account for all lithic technology. Mode 1, for example, was in use in Europe. Clark's scheme was adopted enthusiastically by the archaeological community. One of its advantages was the simplicity of terminology; the transitions are of greatest interest. In the literature the stone tools used in the period of the Palaeolithic are divided into four "modes", each of which designate a different form of complexity, which in most cases followed a rough chronological order. KenyaStone tools found from 2011 to 2014 at Lake Turkana in Kenya, are dated to be 3.3 million years old, predate the genus Homo by half million years. The oldest known Homo fossil is 2.8 million years old compared to the 3.3 million year old stone tools. The stone tools may have been made by Australopithecus afarensis —also called Kenyanthropus platyops— the species whose best fossil example is Lucy, which inhabited East Africa at the same time as the date of the oldest stone tools.
Dating of the tools was by dating volcanic ash layers in which the tools were found and dating the magnetic signature of the rock at the site. EthiopiaGrooved and fractured animal bone fossils, made by using stone tools, were found in Dikika, Ethiopia near the remains of Selam, a young Australopithecus afarensis girl who lived about 3.3 million years ago. The earliest stone tools in the life span of the genus Homo are Mode 1 tools, come from what has been termed the Oldowan Industry, named after the type of site found in Olduvai Gorge, where they were discovered in large quantities. Oldowan tools were characterised by their simple construction; these cores were river pebbles, or rocks similar to them, struck by a spherical hammerstone to cause conchoidal fractures removing flakes from one surface, creating an edge and a sharp tip. The blunt end is the proximal surface. Oldowan is a percussion technology. Grasping the proximal surface, the hominid brought the distal surface down hard on an object he wished to detach or shatter, such as a bone or tuber.
The earliest known Oldowan tools yet found date from 2.6 million years ago, during the Lower Palaeolithic period, have been uncovered at Gona in Ethiopia. After this date, the Oldowan Industry subsequently spread throughout much of Africa, although archaeologists are unsure which Hominan species first developed them, with some speculating that it was Australopithecus garhi, others believing that it was in fact Homo habilis. Homo habilis was the hominin who used the tools for most of the Oldowan in Africa, but at about 1.9-1.8 million years ago Homo erectus inherited them. The Industry flourished in southern and eastern Africa between 2.6 and 1.7 million years ago, but was spread out of Africa and into Eurasia by travelling bands of H. erectus, who took it as far east as Java by 1.8 million years ago and Northern China by 1.6 million years ago. More complex, Mode 2 tools began to be developed through the Acheulean Industry, named after the site
Aşıklı Höyük is a settlement mound located nearly 1 km south of Kızılkaya village on the bank of the Melendiz brook, 25 kilometers southeast of Aksaray, Turkey. Aşıklı Höyük is located in an area covered by the volcanic tuff of central Cappadocia, in Aksaray Province; the archaeological site of Aşıklı Höyük was first settled in the Aceramic Neolithic period, around 9000 B. C, it is situated 1119.5 metres above sea level, a little higher than the region's average of c. 1000 metres. The site itself is about 4 ha smaller than the situated site of Çatalhöyük; the surrounding landscape is formed by erosion of river valleys into tuff deposits. The Melendiz Valley, where the Aşıklı Höyük is located, constitutes a favourable and diverse habitat; the proximity to an obsidian source did become the base of a trade with the material supplying areas as far away as today's Cyprus and Iraq. Aşıklı Höyük was first investigated by Professor Ian A. Todd when he visited the site in the summer of 1964. Todd emphasised the importance of the obsidian in the area, based on over 6000 obsidian pieces collected from the surface layer alone.
The site was classified as a medium sized mound and destroyed by the river situated next to it. On the basis of the lithics and animal bones located in the surface layers the site became known as a contemporary to the Palestine PPNB, reinforced by 14C dates; the first comprehensive excavations took place late: first when the government launched a plan that would result in the rise of the waters of the Mamasın Lake located close to Aşıklı Höyük, Professor Ufuk Esin started the salvage excavations in 1989. Nine excavations have been undertaken up to 2003, uncovering 4200 m2 on the horizontal plain, making it one of the largest scale excavations in the region; the newest dates for Aşıklı Höyük show that the occupational period was from 8200 to 7400 BC, extracted from 3 layers with a total of 13 phases. It is known as one of the earliest Aceramic Neolithic sites on the Anatolian plateau, the prior mentioned extraction of the obsidian source was to be frequented as far back as the Paleolithic nomadic hunter-gatherers.
Due to its date and structural organization Aşıklı Höyük is known to be "a prime example of a first foray into sedentism". After more than 400 rooms had been excavated, the total number of individual found to have been buried within the settlement did not surpass 70. All these burials were under building floors; the dead were placed in pits cut through the floor during the occupation of the building. The buried are people of all ages. There is a variety of skeletal body postures, from burials in a hocker position to extended skeletons facing upwards. Others are lying on one side with the legs bent at the knees; the orientation of the burials varies within the buildings, as does the number of individuals buried inside them. The male population had individuals up to the age of 55–57 years of age, while the majority of females died between the ages of 20 and 25; the skeletal remains of these women show spinal deformities indicating that they had to carry heavy loads. This does not itself prove; the fact that the men seem to have outlived the women might be interpreted as sign that the women were subject to more strenuous physical labour than their male counterparts.
From Natufian Abu Hureyra there are similar osteological signs, such as pathologies in metatarsals, phalanges and shoulder joints, being specific to females resulting from habitual kneeling in the use of saddle querns. The Neolithic evidence show indications of increased physical workload in the osteological material on both genders, where the male skeletons show signs of joint disease and trauma arguably caused by cutting timber and tilling. Children represent 37.8% of the deceased, with 43.7% mortality within a year of birth. The skeletal remains are complete and with articulations intact, indicating that the burials have been primary; the graves contain either double burials. On one occasion two graves were found under the floor of room AB, belonging to an adjacent court with a large domed mudbrick oven paved with blocks of basalt. In one of the graves were the skeletons of a young woman and an elderly man; the young woman had undergone trepanation and survived only a few days after the operation.
All skeletons were buried in the hocker position, a fetal-like positioning were the arms are embracing the lower limbs. From a different grave a woman shows signs of being scalped after her death, according to the cut marks on her skull; as many as 55% of the skeletons show signs of being burned. The burial under the floor AB is accommodated by walls with the interior side were painted in a purplish red colour; the oven in HG indicates that this was indeed "special individuals of an elite class", claiming it can be compared to the "Terrazzo" Building at Çayönü and the "Temple" Building at Nevalı Çori and therefore have been a shrine used for religious ceremonies. Many of the burials contain burial goods consisting of necklaces and bracelets made of beads of various sorts.70 burials in over 400 rooms suggest that some form of selection took place of, buried at the site, implementing that AB indeed could be the residence or resting place of people influential in terms of both economy and political power.
Rooms containing hearths are more to contain burials. It has been argued that the number of burials could be an
History of agriculture
The history of agriculture records the domestication of plants and animals and the development and dissemination of techniques for raising them productively. Agriculture began independently in different parts of the globe, included a diverse range of taxa. At least eleven separate regions of the Old and New World were involved as independent centers of origin. Wild grains were collected and eaten from at least 20,000 BC. From around 9500 BC, the eight Neolithic founder crops – emmer wheat, einkorn wheat, hulled barley, lentils, bitter vetch, chick peas, flax – were cultivated in the Levant. Rye may have been cultivated earlier but this remains controversial. Rice was domesticated in China by 6200 BC with earliest known cultivation from 5700 BC, followed by mung and azuki beans. Pigs were domesticated in Mesopotamia around 11,000 BC, followed by sheep between 11,000 BC and 9000 BC. Cattle were domesticated from the wild aurochs in the areas of modern Turkey and Pakistan around 8500 BC. Sugarcane and some root vegetables were domesticated in New Guinea around 7000 BC.
Sorghum was domesticated in the Sahel region of Africa by 5000 BC. In the Andes of South America, the potato was domesticated between 8000 BC and 5000 BC, along with beans, llamas and guinea pigs. Bananas were hybridized in the same period in Papua New Guinea. In Mesoamerica, wild teosinte was domesticated to maize by 4000 BC. Cotton was domesticated in Peru by 3600 BC. Camels were domesticated late around 3000 BC; the Bronze Age, from c. 3300 BC, witnessed the intensification of agriculture in civilizations such as Mesopotamian Sumer, ancient Egypt, the Indus Valley Civilisation of South Asia, ancient China, ancient Greece. During the Iron Age and era of classical antiquity, the expansion of ancient Rome, both the Republic and the Empire, throughout the ancient Mediterranean and Western Europe built upon existing systems of agriculture while establishing the manorial system that became a bedrock of medieval agriculture. In the Middle Ages, both in the Islamic world and in Europe, agriculture was transformed with improved techniques and the diffusion of crop plants, including the introduction of sugar, rice and fruit trees such as the orange to Europe by way of Al-Andalus.
After the voyages of Christopher Columbus in 1492, the Columbian exchange brought New World crops such as maize, sweet potatoes, manioc to Europe, Old World crops such as wheat, barley and turnips, livestock including horses, cattle and goats to the Americas. Irrigation, crop rotation, fertilizers were introduced soon after the Neolithic Revolution and developed much further in the past 200 years, starting with the British Agricultural Revolution. Since 1900, agriculture in the developed nations, to a lesser extent in the developing world, has seen large rises in productivity as human labour has been replaced by mechanization, assisted by synthetic fertilizers and selective breeding; the Haber-Bosch process allowed the synthesis of ammonium nitrate fertilizer on an industrial scale increasing crop yields. Modern agriculture has raised social and environmental issues including water pollution, genetically modified organisms and farm subsidies. In response, organic farming developed in the twentieth century as an alternative to the use of synthetic pesticides.
Scholars have developed a number of hypotheses to explain the historical origins of agriculture. Studies of the transition from hunter-gatherer to agricultural societies indicate an antecedent period of intensification and increasing sedentism. Current models indicate that wild stands, harvested started to be planted, but were not domesticated. Localised climate change is the favoured explanation for the origins of agriculture in the Levant; when major climate change took place after the last ice age, much of the earth became subject to long dry seasons. These conditions favoured annual plants which die off in the long dry season, leaving a dormant seed or tuber. An abundance of storable wild grains and pulses enabled hunter-gatherers in some areas to form the first settled villages at this time. Early people began altering communities of flora and fauna for their own benefit through means such as fire-stick farming and forest gardening early. Exact dates are hard to determine, as people collected and ate seeds before domesticating them, plant characteristics may have changed during this period without human selection.
An example is the semi-tough rachis and larger seeds of cereals from just after the Younger Dryas in the early Holocene in the Levant region of the Fertile Crescent. Monophyletic characteristics were attained without any human intervention, implying that apparent domestication of the cereal rachis could have occurred quite naturally. Agriculture began independently in different parts of the globe, included a diverse range of taxa. At least 11 separate regions of the Old and New World were involved as independent centers of origin; some of the earliest known domestications were of animals. Domestic pigs had multiple centres of origin in Eurasia, including Europe, East Asia and Southwest Asia, where wild boar were first domesticated about 10,500 years ago. Sheep were domesticated in Mesopotamia between 11,000 BC and 9000 BC. Cattle were domesticated from the wild aurochs in the areas of modern Turkey and Pakistan around 8500 BC. Camels were domesticated late around 3000 BC, it was not until after 9500 BC that the eight so-called founder crops of agriculture appear: first emmer and einkorn wheat hulled barley, lenti
In archaeological terms, a projectile point is an object, hafted to weapon, capable of being thrown or projected, such as a spear, dart, or arrow, or used as a knife. They are thus different from weapons presumed to have been kept in the hand, such as axes and maces, the stone mace or axe-heads attached to them. Stone tools, including projectile points, can survive for long periods, were lost or discarded, are plentiful at archaeological sites, providing useful clues to the human past, including prehistoric trade. A distinctive form of point, identified though lithic analysis of the way it was made, is a key diagnostic factor in identifying an archaeological industry or culture. Scientific techniques exist to track the specific kinds of rock or minerals that used to make stone tools in various regions back to their original sources; as well as stone, projectile points were made of worked bone, antler or ivory. In regions where metallurgy emerged, projectile points were made from copper, bronze, or iron, though the change was by no means immediate.
In North America, some late prehistoric points were fashioned from copper, mined in the Lake Superior region and elsewhere. A large variety of prehistoric arrowheads, dart points, spear points have been discovered. Flint, obsidian and many other rocks and minerals were used to make points in North America; the oldest projectile points found in North America were long thought to date from about 13,000 years ago, during the Paleo-Indian period, however recent evidence suggests that North American projectile points may date to as old as 15,500 years. Some of the more famous Paleo-Indian types include Clovis and Dalton points. Projectile points fall into two general types: dart/spear points, arrow points. Larger points were used to atlatl darts. Arrow points are smaller and lighter than dart points, were used to tip arrows; the question of how to distinguish an arrow point from a point used on a larger projectile is non-trivial. According to some investigators, the best indication is the width of the hafting area, thought to correlate to the width of the shaft.
An alternative approach is to distinguish arrow points by their smaller size. Projectile points come in an amazing variety of shapes and styles, which vary according to chronological periods, cultural identities, intended functions. Typological studies of projectile points have become more elaborate through the years. For instance, Gregory Perino began his categorical study of projectile point typology in the late 1950s. Collaborating with Robert Bell, he published a set of four volumes defining the known point types of that time. Perino followed this several years with a three-volume study of "Selected Preforms and Knives of the North American Indians". Another recent set of typological studies of North American projectile points has been produced by Noel Justice. Bare Island projectile point Cascade point Clovis point Cumberland point Eden point Folsom point Greene projectile point Jack's Reef pentagonal projectile point Lamoka projectile point Levanna projectile point Susquehanna broad projectile point Plano point Elf-arrows Levallois technique Lithic reduction
Human prehistory is the period between the use of the first stone tools c. 3.3 million years ago by hominins and the invention of writing systems. The earliest writing systems appeared c. 5,300 years ago, but it took thousands of years for writing to be adopted, it was not used in some human cultures until the 19th century or until the present. The end of prehistory therefore came at different dates in different places, the term is less used in discussing societies where prehistory ended recently. Sumer in Mesopotamia, the Indus valley civilization, ancient Egypt were the first civilizations to develop their own scripts and to keep historical records. Neighboring civilizations were the first to follow. Most other civilizations reached the end of prehistory during the Iron Age; the three-age system of division of prehistory into the Stone Age, followed by the Bronze Age and Iron Age, remains in use for much of Eurasia and North Africa, but is not used in those parts of the world where the working of hard metals arrived abruptly with contact with Eurasian cultures, such as the Americas, Oceania and much of Sub-Saharan Africa.
These areas with some exceptions in Pre-Columbian civilizations in the Americas, did not develop complex writing systems before the arrival of Eurasians, their prehistory reaches into recent periods. The period when a culture is written about by others, but has not developed its own writing is known as the protohistory of the culture. By definition, there are no written records from human prehistory, so dating of prehistoric materials is crucial. Clear techniques for dating were not well-developed until the 19th century; this article is concerned with human prehistory, the time since behaviorally and anatomically modern humans first appeared until the beginning of recorded history. Earlier periods are called "prehistoric". Beginning The term "prehistory" can refer to the vast span of time since the beginning of the Universe or the Earth, but more it refers to the period since life appeared on Earth, or more to the time since human-like beings appeared. End The date marking the end of prehistory is defined as the advent of the contemporary written historical record.
The date varies from region to region depending on the date when relevant records become a useful academic resource. For example, in Egypt it is accepted that prehistory ended around 3200 BCE, whereas in New Guinea the end of the prehistoric era is set much more at around 1900 common era. In Europe the well-documented classical cultures of Ancient Greece and Ancient Rome had neighbouring cultures, including the Celts and to a lesser extent the Etruscans, with little or no writing, historians must decide how much weight to give to the highly prejudiced accounts of these "prehistoric" cultures in Greek and Roman literature. Time periods In dividing up human prehistory in Eurasia, historians use the three-age system, whereas scholars of pre-human time periods use the well-defined geologic record and its internationally defined stratum base within the geologic time scale; the three-age system is the periodization of human prehistory into three consecutive time periods, named for their respective predominant tool-making technologies: Stone Age Bronze Age Iron Age The notion of "prehistory" began to surface during the Enlightenment in the work of antiquarians who used the word'primitive' to describe societies that existed before written records.
The first use of the word prehistory in English, occurred in the Foreign Quarterly Review in 1836. The use of the geologic time scale for pre-human time periods, of the three-age system for human prehistory, is a system that emerged during the late nineteenth century in the work of British and Scandinavian archeologists and anthropologists; the main source for prehistory is archaeology, but some scholars are beginning to make more use of evidence from the natural and social sciences. This view has been articulated by advocates of deep history; the primary researchers into human prehistory are archaeologists and physical anthropologists who use excavation and geographic surveys, other scientific analysis to reveal and interpret the nature and behavior of pre-literate and non-literate peoples. Human population geneticists and historical linguists are providing valuable insight for these questions. Cultural anthropologists help provide context for societal interactions, by which objects of human origin pass among people, allowing an analysis of any article that arises in a human prehistoric context.
Therefore, data about prehistory is provided by a wide variety of natural and social sciences, such as paleontology, archaeology, geology, comparative linguistics, molecular genetics and many others. Human prehistory differs from history not only in terms of its chronology but in the way it deals with the activities of archaeological cultures rather than named nations or individuals. Restricted to material processes and artifacts rather than written records, prehistory is anonymous; because of this, reference terms that prehistorians use, such as Neanderthal or Iron Age are modern labels with definitions sometimes subject to debate. The concept of a "Stone Age" is found useful in the archaeology of most of the world, though in the archaeology of the Americas it is called by different names and begins with a Lithic sta
A spear is a pole weapon consisting of a shaft of wood, with a pointed head. The head may be the sharpened end of the shaft itself, as is the case with fire hardened spears, or it may be made of a more durable material fastened to the shaft, such as flint, iron, steel or bronze; the most common design for hunting or combat spears since ancient times has incorporated a metal spearhead shaped like a triangle, lozenge, or leaf. The heads of fishing spears feature barbs or serrated edges; the word spear comes from the Old English spere, from the Proto-Germanic speri, from a Proto-Indo-European root *sper- "spear, pole". Spears can be divided into two broad categories: those designed for thrusting in melee combat and those designed for throwing; the spear has been used throughout human history both as a weapon. Along with the axe and club, it is one of the earliest and most important tools developed by early humans; as a weapon, it may be wielded with two. It was used in every conflict up until the modern era, where then it continues on in the form of the bayonet, is the most used weapon in history.
Spear manufacture and use is not confined to humans. It is practiced by the western chimpanzee. Chimpanzees near Kédougou, Senegal have been observed to create spears by breaking straight limbs off trees, stripping them of their bark and side branches, sharpening one end with their teeth, they used the weapons to hunt galagos sleeping in hollows. Archaeological evidence found in present-day Germany documents that wooden spears have been used for hunting since at least 400,000 years ago, a 2012 study suggests that Homo heidelbergensis may have developed the technology about 500,000 years ago. Wood does not preserve well and Craig Stanford, a primatologist and professor of anthropology at the University of Southern California, has suggested that the discovery of spear use by chimpanzees means that early humans used wooden spears as well five million years ago. Neanderthals were constructing stone spear heads from as early as 300,000 BP and by 250,000 years ago, wooden spears were made with fire-hardened points.
From circa 200,000 BC onwards, Middle Paleolithic humans began to make complex stone blades with flaked edges which were used as spear heads. These stone heads could be fixed to the spear shaft by gum or resin or by bindings made of animal sinew, leather strips or vegetable matter. During this period, a clear difference remained between spears designed to be thrown and those designed to be used in hand-to-hand combat. By the Magdalenian period, spear-throwers similar to the atlatl were in use; the spear is the main weapon of the warriors of Homer's Iliad. The use of both a single thrusting spear and two throwing spears are mentioned, it has been suggested. In the 7th century BC, the Greeks evolved the phalanx; the key to this formation was the hoplite, equipped with a large, bronze-faced shield and a 7–9 ft spear with an iron head and bronze butt-spike. The hoplite phalanx dominated warfare among the Greek City States from the 7th into the 4th century BC; the 4th century saw major changes. One was the greater use of light infantry armed with spear and javelins.
The other was the development of the sarissa, a two-handed pike 18 ft in length, by the Macedonians under Phillip of Macedon and Alexander the Great. The pike phalanx, supported by peltasts and cavalry, became the dominant mode of warfare among the Greeks from the late 4th century onward until Greek military systems were supplanted by the Roman legions. In the pre-Marian Roman armies, the first two lines of battle, the hastati and principes fought with a sword called a gladius and pila, heavy javelins that were designed to be thrown at an enemy to pierce and foul a target's shield; the principes were armed with a short spear called a hasta, but these fell out of use being replaced by the gladius. The third line, the triarii, continued to use the hasta. From the late 2nd century BC, all legionaries were equipped with the pilum; the pilum continued to be the standard legionary spear until the end of the 2nd century AD. Auxilia, were equipped with a simple hasta and throwing spears. During the 3rd century AD, although the pilum continued to be used, legionaries were equipped with other forms of throwing and thrusting spear, similar to auxilia of the previous century.
By the 4th century, the pilum had disappeared from common use. In the late period of the Roman Empire, the spear became more used because of its anti-cavalry capacities as the barbarian invasions were conducted by people with a developed culture of cavalry in warfare. Muslim warriors used a spear, called an az-zaġāyah. Berbers pronounced it zaġāya, but the English term, derived from the Old French via Berber, is "assegai", it is a pole weapon used for throwing or hurling a light spear or javelin made of hard wood and pointed with a forged iron tip. The az-zaġāyah played an important role during the Islamic conquest as well as during periods, well into the 20th century. A longer pole az-zaġāyah was being used as a hunting weapon from horseback; the az-zaġāyah was used. It existed in various forms in areas stretching from Southern Africa to the Indian subcontinent, although these place