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The Stone age It is a period of prehistory which is known under that name for being the period in which human beings began to use primitive stone tools.
It lasted approximately 2.5 million years, and ended approximately 5000 years ago, when humans in the Near East began working with metal, making both tools and weapons from the alloy of bronze, thus ushering in the Age of Bronze.
During the Stone age, humans had to share the planet with a large number of close hominid relatives, as was the case with the Neanderthals. All these species have become extinct and today only archaeological evidence for them remains.
Some experts believe that the use of stone tools may have been developed even before 2.5 to 2.6 million years before the present time, not by us but by our relatives the primates.
This idea is given because some of the modern apes, including bonobos (with which we share a great deal of our genetic material), also make use of tools made of stone to obtain food.
The artifacts manufactured during the Stone age they tell anthropologists a lot about the earliest humans, including the way they did things, how they lived, and the way human behavior has progressed through the ages.
Characteristics of the Stone Age?
Very early in the call Stone ageHumans used to live in small, nomadic groups. For much of this period in prehistoric time, the Earth was covered in ice. This is what we know as the Ice Age, where global temperatures were much lower and there was a great glacial expansion.
Animals of the Stone Age
Impressive animals that today might sound like something out of some of the wildest archaeologist fantasies like mastodons, saber-toothed tigers and giant sloths, roamed the Earth. Was the age of megafauna, where large mammals, including mammoths, and giant deer and bison, dominated.
Our ancestors of the Stone age They used to use stone tools to cut and grind, making the task of extracting meat and other nutrients from animals and plants more efficient, thus exceeding the strategies of their ancestors.
More than 14,000 years ago, the Earth began to go through a period of warming, and this was precisely the moment when many of the huge animals of the Ice Age they gradually became extinct.
The step from nomadism to sedentary lifestyle
During this stage of the Stone age, a boomerang-shaped region was created on the western side of the Mediterranean Sea and the eastern Persian Gulf, where certain foods (such as wild wheat) began to grow in abundance as the weather got warmer and warmer.
Some humans began to build permanent houses in the region, thus abandoning their mainly nomadic lifestyle of their ancestors in order to start farming activities.
The human artifacts of the Stone age that were found in the American continent begin to appear at approximately the same time as in the aforementioned area. Experts are not completely sure who these first people to inhabit the Americas were, or where they came from, although it is true that there is some evidence that these people from the Stone age they may have followed the path that linked the northern part of the American continent with Asia.
This bridge that is talked about so much, and with which the Native Americans are related to those originating from the Asian continent, no longer exists since it was submerged once the glaciers melted towards the end of the Ice Age.
The tools of the Stone Age
Many of the things we now know about people and life in the Stone age we know it precisely because of the tools that they were leaving behind.
For example, stones with hammer purpose They are a clear example of one of the earliest and simplest forms of stone tools.
The humans of prehistory used these types of tools to be able to turn other stones into blades with sharp edges. In the same way they used these rocks in the Stone age to break nuts, seeds and bones. In addition, it is known that it was common for them to crush clay and other rocks to obtain pigments.
As technology progressed, humans began to create tools with increasingly more sophisticated features. These include axes and spearheads that were very useful to get food through the activity of the house.
It is important to make it clear that, although the Stone age For stone tools, not all tools of the era were made of precisely this material. It is well known that different groups of humans experienced with many other raw materials, such as bone, ivory, and even the horns of different animal species, especially if we talk about the Stone age at a more advanced stage.
The further we go more diverse are the tools of the Stone Age, and innovation and the way in which different forms of cultural identities were emerging more and more.
From these came different types of petroglyphs that give us more knowledge about the way in which these primitive societies functioned, how they behaved, what their ideas and priorities were, and how things have been changing until we reached the place where we find ourselves today.
Images: Stock Photos / Shutterstock