Humans were using stone spear points over 1/2M years ago

  1. turbo

    turbo 7,063
    Gold Member

  2. jcsd
  3. Drakkith

    Staff: Mentor

    Interesting. Thanks for the link!
  4. Evo

    Staff: Mentor

    It seems we are finding more and more proof that skills we considered rather recent are instead very old. Too bad that we don't have a history of these people. What a loss.

    The iceman Otzy turned what we thought we knew of his age upside down. Much more advanced than we had believed.
  5. turbo

    turbo 7,063
    Gold Member

    Yep, Take the commonly-held belief that hafting spears with stone points began 300K years ago, and then push that back another 200 (+?) years, and we have an idea how thin our knowledge can be for the early history of humans. The kicker is (IMO) that the techniques could have evolved much, much earlier and been spread to other areas... Can we possibly take samples from one or two archaeological sites and extrapolate with any accuracy? BTW, flint from the Moosehead Lake region of Maine has been found all across the St. Lawrence waters and down through the center of the US, concentrated along the Mississippi valley and tributaries.

    I would love to have concentrated on archaeology, except it would have necessitated "portability" when I had older friends and family members who were not in the best health. I know a doctor of archaeology in west-central Maine, and he is living a pretty spartan existence with no electricity or running water, just so he can follow the digs. He is well-known in the field, but he's spending most of his income just chasing digs.
    Last edited: Nov 15, 2012
  6. Meticulously crafted sharp stone tools, flint I believe, along with spears and axes are found at a good number of sites in England dating from 400,000 years all the way to 980,000 years.

    See the recently published "The British Paleaolithic" by Pettitt and White.

    Back that far in time (in between and before the various ice advances) the climate was much warmer and species of horse, giant deer and rhinoceros were hunted by those early people. The authors above do a nice job of presenting the fauna and flora at each age based on the archaeological evidence.
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2012
  7. I've long thought the earliest hunting "tools" might have been horns and antlers of fallen prey. These would be difficult to discover as such unless tied to a stick - but would make sense if early humans observed various animals engaged in fights and the damage done by the horns or antlers.
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