Main History: The Definitive Visual Guide (From The Dawn of Civilization To The Present Day)
History: The Definitive Visual Guide (From The Dawn of Civilization To The Present Day)Adam Hart-Davis (ed.)
This is the definitive, 4.4 million year-old story of human history - from the origins of mankind to the 21st century, spanning the globe and based on the latest research, the complete story of the people, events, themes, ideas and forces that have shaped human existence. Find out about our history's turning points: eye witness accounts and biographies give a personal angle to major events. Explore humankind's legacy from architecture and artefacts to the big ideas that have changed our world. Examine the effect we've had on nature and vice versa. And discover how the past has been unlocked: from interpreting ancient documents to analysing ice cores. This book is a compelling look at human existence: perfect for the family bookshelf.
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HISTORY EDITOR IAL CON SU LTANT ADAM HA RT-DAVI S HISTORY t h e d e f i n i t i v e v i s u a l g u i d e f r o m t h e d aw n of c i v i l i z at i on t o t h e p r e s e n t d ay LONDON, NEW YORK, MELBOURNE, MUNICH, AND DELHI DORLING KINDERSLEY Senior Art Editors Ina Stradins, Maxine Lea Art Editors Alison Gardner, Mark Lloyd, Francis Wong Designers Brian Flynn, Kenny Grant, Peter Laws, Matt Schofield, Rebecca Wright DTP Designers John Goldsmid, Laragh Kedwell, Robert Strachan Jacket Designers Lee Ellwood, Duncan Turner Cartographers Ed Merritt, John Plumer, David Roberts, Advanced Illustration Ltd: Paul Antonio, Russel Ikin Picture Researcher Louise Thomas Senior Managing Art Editor Phil Ormerod Art Director Bryn Walls Senior Editor Angeles Gavira Guerrero Section Editors Nicola Hodgson, Rob Houston, Constance Novis, Ruth O’Rourke, Rebecca Warren, Ed Wilson Editors Sam Atkinson, Tom Broda, Kim Bryan, Mary Lindsay, Ferdie McDonald, Sue Nicholson, Paula Regan, Nigel Ritchie, Carey Scott, Giles Sparrow, Steve Setford, Alison Sturgeon, Claire Tennant-Scull, Miezan Van Zyl, Jo Weeks Editorial Assistants Tamlyn Calitz, Manisha Thakkar US Editor Christine Heilman Indexing Specialists (UK) Ltd. Production 001–HD107–April/2012 Copyright © 2007, 2012 Dorling Kindersley Limited All rights reserved Without limiting the rights under copyright reserved above, no part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in or introduced into a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form, or by any means (electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise), without the prior written permission of both the copyright owner and the above publisher of this book. Published in Great Britain by Dorling Kindersley Limited. Elizabeth Warman A catalog record for this book is available from the Library of Congress. Managing Editor ISBN 978-0-7566-7609-4 Sarah Larter Publishing Manager Liz Wheeler Reference Publisher Jonathan Metcalf Managing Editor Ed Simkins David John Designer Project Editor Ben Ruocco 07 08 09 10 11 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1 Indexers TALL TREE Art Director First American Edition, 2007 This edition published in 2012 Published in the United States by DK Publishing 375 Hudson Street New York, New York 10014 Rob Colson DK books are available at special discounts when purchased in bulk for sales promotions, premiums, fund-raising, or educational use. For details, contact: DK Publishing Special Markets, 375 Hudson Street, New York, New York 10014 or SpecialSales@dk.com. Color reproduction by Media Development Printing Ltd., UK Printed and bound in Singapore by Star Standard PTE Ltd. Discover more at www.dk.com Editorial Consultant Adam Hart-Davis Main Consultants Professor Brian Fagan Dr. Karen Radner Professor Richard Lim Dr. Roger Collins Origins Rulers and Hierarchies Thinkers and Believers Warriors, Travelers, and Inventors Emeritus Professor of Anthropology, University of California, Santa Barbara, CA Lecturer in the Ancient Near East, University College London, UK Professor in the Ancient Mediterranean World and Late Antiquity, Smith College, Massachusetts Honorary Fellow, School of History and Classics, University of Edinburgh, UK Dr. David Parrott James Freeman Professor Richard Overy Renaissance and Reformation Industry and Revolution Population and Power Fellow and lecturer in Modern History, New College, Oxford University, UK Postgraduate researcher, specializing in 18th and 19th century history, Cambridge University, UK Professor of History, University of Exeter, UK Contributors and Specialist Consultants Contributors: Simon Adams, Lindsay Allen, Robin Archer, Debbie Brunton, Jack Challoner, Nick McCarty, Thomas Cussans, Erich DeWald, Brian Fagan, Emma Flatt, Abbie Gometz, Reg Grant, Alwyn Harrison, Ian Harrison, James Harrison, Michael Jordan, Ann Kay, Paul Kriwaczek, Keith Laidler, Siobhan LambertHurley, Sarah Lynch, Margaret Mulvihill, Liz Mylod, Owen Miller, Sally Regan, Nigel Ritchie, J. A.G Roberts, Natalie Sirett, Giles Sparrow, Paul Sturtevant, Jenny Vaughan, Philip Wilkinson. Consultants: Early Mesoamerica and South America Dr. Jim Aimers, UCL Institute of Archaeology, UK; India Professor David Arnold, University of Warwick, UK; Food and diseases Professor Kenneth Kiple, Department of History, Bowling Green State University, US; Latin America Professor Alan Knight, Department of History, University of Oxford, UK; Japan and Korea Dr. Angus Lockyer, Department of History SOAS, UK; How We Know Dr. Iain Morley and Dr. Laura Preston, McDonald Institute for Archaeological Research, University of Cambridge UK; Consulting editor Philip Parker; China J.A.G Roberts CONTENTS Precious Metal 42 From copperworking to the Bronze Age, the impact of the discovery of metalworking. Town Planning 44 The development of increasingly complex and expanding communities. ORIGINS 4.5 MYA – 3000 BCE 12 Introduction and Timeline 14 Our Remote Ancestors 16 20 The emergence of speech, language, and artistic ability in early humans. The Ice Age 22 Climate changes that began about 1.5 million years ago and how they affected humans. Out of Africa 24 The migrations from Africa that resulted in human colonization of Earth. Hunters and Gatherers 30 The Spirit World Early rituals and beliefs in the afterlife. N EARLY SOCIETIES 34 First Harvest 36 The development of societies based on agriculture and the domestication of animals. Village Life 38 The cultivation of domestic crops and livestock brought about the ﬁrst settled communities. Rites and Rituals Unraveling the mysteries of megalithic structures such as Stonehenge. 40 64 The rise and fall of ancient Egypt from the order of the Middle and New Kingdoms to the chaotic Intermediate Periods. N RAMESES II 66 The Realm of Osiris 68 N EGYPTIAN ARTIFACTS 70 Building for Eternity 72 People of the Jaguar 3000 – 700 BCE 46 The ﬁrst great civilizations of Mesoamerica and South America—the Olmecs and the Chavíns. Introduction and Timeline 48 Europe’s First Civilization 52 The Minoans, who ﬂourished on the Mediterranean island of Crete during the Bronze Age. 54 Bronze Age Collapse Illness, disease, and early attempts to understand and treat them. The Cradle of Civilization 32 Egypt in Order and Chaos The architecture of ancient empires, including the monumental tombs of ancient Egypt and the ziggurats of Mesopotamia. RULERS & HIERARCHIES Sickness and Health The prehistoric way of life—foraging and hunting for food. 62 The independent development of writing systems throughout the world, including cuneiform and hieroglyphs. The cult of the god Osiris, and the extensive rituals surrounding death and the afterlife in ancient Egypt. The human family tree from our earliest relatives to the dominance of Homo sapiens. The Art of Communication The Writing on the Wall The rise of complex societies between the Tigris and Euphrates rivers in Mesopotamia. The Divine Pharaohs 56 Egypt’s Old Kingdom, which ﬂourished on the banks of the Nile River, over 2000 years bce, and saw the construction of the pyramids. Mysteries of the Indus 58 The cities and civilization that developed in the Indian subcontinent’s Indus Valley. Bronze Age China 60 The Shang dynasty, which produced two major achievements: writing and bronze casting. 84 Introduction and Timeline 86 Frontiers of Power 90 How the vast ancient empires of Eurasia were shaped by the landscape and environment. The Persian Empire 92 The Achaemenid empire of Persia, the extent of which was on an unprecedented scale, stretching across Asia to the Mediterranean. The Greek City-States 94 The great city-states of ancient Greece, including Athens, Sparta, and Corinth. 96 74 The Greeks in Asia 98 76 The Birth of Democracy 78 From Myth to History The aftermath of Alexander the Great’s conquests in the Middle East and Asia, and the cultures that adopted Greek ideas. 80 82 The complex network of trade routes that developed over the Mediterranean Sea and across the deserts of Arabia and Africa. 100 The development of the democratic system in ancient Athens, whose principles inform the most common form of government today. 102 The rediscovery of writing in ancient Greece and the shift from oral to written history. Triumphs of Greek Science The great Assyrian Empire, which dominated the Middle East for two centuries during the Iron Age, from the 9th century bce. Conquering Sea and Desert 700 BCE – 600 CE N ALEXANDER THE GREAT The diplomatic and trading community of civilizations that existed in the Middle East, and the mysterious collapse of the Bronze Age system. Rulers of the Iron Age THINKERS & BELIEVERS 104 The roots of modern scientiﬁc method lie with the ancient Greeks who sought logical answers to life’s mysteries. The Rise of Rome 106 From humble beginnings on the hills above the Tiber River, a mighty city and empire rose. N JULIUS CAESAR 108 From Republic to Empire 110 The Roman empire gave rise to a remarkable culture, whose inﬂuence is still seen today. The Roman Army 114 Classical Art 116 The sculpture, pottery, painting, mosaics, and architecture of ancient Greece and Rome. Greek and Roman Egypt 148 N BATTLE OF MILVIAN BRIDGE The structure and organization of the professional Roman army. 150 Decline and Fall? The end of the Roman Empire, the changing balance of power in the West, and the rise of the Christian Byzantine Empire in the East. 118 Egypt’s transition from a kingdom ruled by Greeks to a Roman, then Byzantine province. 174 The Ascent of Islam The spread of the Islamic faith throughout the world following the death of Muhammad. N ISLAMIC TREASURES 178 The Delhi Sultanate 180 The great Islamic kingdom that was founded in India. South of the Sahara 182 N CLEOPATRA 120 The trading centers and empires of Africa, including Great Zimbabwe, Songhay, and Mali. The Revival of Persia 122 The Silk Road Persia after the Greeks—Parthian expansion and the period of Sassanid rule. India’s First Empire 124 The Mauryan domination of the Indian subcontinent and the rise of Buddhism. The Uniﬁcation of China 126 The “Warring States” period, which gave rise to the Qin state. The Centralized State 128 Han Dynasty China and the development of its highly efﬁcient civil service. Classical Thought 130 The emergence of key philosophical ideas in ancient Greece, including the work of Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle. A Wider World 132 Increasing commercial and cultural exchange, forging links across the ancient world. Celtic Warriors 134 The spread of Celtic culture across Europe, which leads to contact with Romans, Greeks, and Christianity. WARRIORS, TRAVELERS, & INVENTORS The plague that decimated Europe during the medieval period. Medieval Europe 600 – 1450 N BATTLE OF HASTINGS 192 152 The Power and the Glory 194 Introduction and Timeline 154 The might of the Roman Catholic Church in medieval Europe. Diffusion of Knowledge 158 Muslim scholarship and the spread of ideas to the West. China’s Golden Age 160 The Tang dynasty’s rule of China, which saw a great ﬂowering of Chinese culture. The Song Dynasty 162 China under the Song, a period of upheaval and key reforms. Nomads of the Steppes 138 The Ming Dynasty 166 Gods and Goddesses 168 The establishment of the Shogunate and the domination of the warrior class in Japan. 142 The polytheistic religions and pantheons of deities that developed in the ancient world. Spreading the Faith China under the Ming, during which Beijing became capital and the Great Wall was built. The Rise of the Samurai 144 The emergence and expansion of the great world religions. Korea in the Middle Ages 170 The ascendency of the Choson kingdom, which dominated Korea until 1910. Lost Empires The empires of Southeast Asia, including the Khmer, Pagan, and Dai Viet. 198 The Crusades 200 The religious wars for control of the Holy Land (Palestine). 164 140 The Byzantine Empire The great empire of the East, centered on Constantinople (Istanbul). N GENGHIS KHAN The cultures of Mesoamerica and South America—Maya, Zapotec, and Nazca. 188 The establishment of the Holy Roman Empire, and the feudal system in Europe. 136 Early American Civilizations 186 The Black Death N CELTIC METAL The tribes of the vast grasslands of Eurasia, such as the Scythians and Kushans. 184 The greatest trading route of the 13th–14th centuries, which spread from Europe to East Asia. Raiders and Traders 202 The Vikings—the warrior tribes from Scandinavia that spread across Europe. N BATTLE OF ’AYN JALUT The Rise of Ottoman Power 220 Voyages of Discovery 224 European expeditions around the globe and the discovery of “new worlds”. N ISABELLA OF CASTILE 226 N COLUMBUS LANDS IN THE CARIBBEAN 228 Contact Americas 230 The Spanish conquistadors in South and Central America. The Great Exchange 232 The two-way exchange of plants, animals, and disease between Europe and the Americas. Spanish Silver 234 The discovery and exploitation of South America’s vast natural resources. The Pilgrim Fathers 236 The religious refugees who became the founding fathers of the US and whose colonies set the tone for future colonization. 206 208 210 N AZTEC TO INCA 214 Polynesian Expansion 216 The colonization of the islands of the South Paciﬁc. Introduction and Timeline The vast European trading empires that stretched to Africa, Asia, and the Americas between the 15th–18th centuries. The rich and complex societies of the Maya, Aztecs, and Incas. 172 218 Trade and Empire The rise of commerce and city-states, such as Genoa and Venice, in medieval Europe. Pre-Columbian Americas 1450 – 1750 204 The foundation of the Ottoman Empire by nomadic warriors in Anatolia (Turkey). Cities and Trade RENAISSANCE & REFORMATION The Three Emperors 238 240 The “prosperous age”, when China’s empire expanded to its greatest extent. Japan’s Great Peace 242 The Edo period, when Japan isolated itself from the rest of the world, and developed a unique cultural identity. The Great Mughals 244 The empire that at its peak ruled over 100 million subjects across the Indian subcontinent. The Ottoman Empire 246 N ABRAHAM LINCOLN The Ottoman Empire at its height and the beginnings of its decline. N BATTLE OF LEPANTO The Renaissance 250 N LEONARDO DA VINCI 254 The Reformation 256 The immense religious changes that swept through Europe during the 16th century. N ELIZABETH I 260 The 30 Years War 262 The most devastating and costly war the world had yet seen. 264 The war between parliament and monarchy that changed the face of England. Scientiﬁc Revolution 266 The radical breakthroughs in science and technology that changed our perception of our place in the universe. N LISBON EARTHQUAKE 268 The Enlightenment 270 An intellectual movement born from scientiﬁc method that dared to question the status quo. Masters of War 272 As war became the dominant method of settling trade disputes, so military tactics became increasingly sophisticated. Completing the Map 274 The Rise of Capitalism 276 The emergence of the free market economy and the beginning of modern ﬁnancial institutions. 318 Conﬂicts between Britain and China during the 19th century. 320 World exploration during the 18th and 19th centuries. INDUSTRY & REVOLUTION City Living 322 The urban explosion that took place in the 19th century throughout the world. Germ Warfare 326 1750 –1914 284 The increasing knowledge and understanding, of anatomy, medicine, infection, and disease. Introduction and Timeline 286 Our Country The Food Revolution 290 The idea of nationalism in Europe and the US, and its consequences. Dramatic increases in food production that sustained a rapidly expanding population. The Industrial Revolution 292 The technological and social developments that transformed the Western world from an agricultural to an industrial society. The First Global Conﬂict 296 The Seven Years War—the ﬁrst conﬂict to be fought across continents. US Declaration of Independence 298 The war between the American colonies and Britain, which resulted in the formation of the United States. N STORMING OF THE 300 Revolution in France 302 BASTILLE N ARMS AND ARMOR The Opium Wars The struggle for freedom in the Spanish and Portuguese colonies of South America. 248 The remarkable ﬂourishing of European art, architecture, and culture during the 15th and 16th centuries. The English Civil War Latin America Liberated The violent events and terror that shook France at the end of the 18th century. N NAPOLEON BONAPARTE 304 The Napoleonic Wars 306 Europe Redeﬁned N KARL MARX 334 Workers Unite! 336 Political movements that aimed to organize the expanding working class and share the wealth of the Industrial Revolution. The Romantic Movement 338 Ideas of self-expression and imagination that led to a growing distinction between art and science. Origin of Species 340 Charles Darwin and the theory of evolution. Science vs. God 342 The public debate that pitted science against religion in the wake of scientiﬁc advances. Ingenious Inventions 344 The explosion of technology in the 19th century. The Slave Trade 280 N WILLIAM WILBERFORCE 308 The empires that dominated the world map by 1900. Expanding the Frontier 310 N QUEEN VICTORIA 348 Colonial Resistance 350 282 How European exploration and colonization of the Paciﬁc became viable with the invention of an accurate device for measuring longitude. The Imperial World N AMERICAN INDIAN 300 The relationship between the colonial powers and the indigenous populations of the Paciﬁc and Southeast Asia. The American Civil War 314 The British Raj CULTURE The conﬂict that ripped the United States apart between 1861 and 1865. The Young Turks Revolt 358 Islamic states and governments in the late 19th century. The Scramble for Africa 360 How Europe came to dominate and colonize the continent of Africa. 330 French imperial ambitions in Europe and beyond during Napoleon’s reign. Exploring the Paciﬁc 356 Japan’s emergence as a modern industrialized power after centuries of isolation. How Europe’s map was transformed in the 18th and 19th centuries. 278 The American pioneers, and their “manifest destiny” to colonize an entire continent. Rising Sun 328 N LOUIS XIV The brutal trade that saw 10 million Africans shipped across the Atlantic to work in colonial plantations. 354 316 India as the jewel in the crown of the British Empire. 346 352 POPULATION & POWER 1914 – present 362 Introduction and Timeline 364 N THE ASSASSINATION AT SARAJEVO 370 The Great War 372 World War I (1914–18), which devastated Europe, wiping out an entire generation, and reshaped the map of the world. The Russian Revolution 376 Ten days that shook the world—the old order in Russia overthrown and the foundation of the ﬁrst communist state. N JOSEPH STALIN 378 The Hammer and Sickle 380 The Soviet experiment—collectivization, industrialization, and the oppression of Stalinist rule. N SOVIET PROPAGANDA 382 The Great Depression 384 The global economic depression that resulted from the Wall Street Crash. Fascism 386 The rise of fascism in parts of Europe, accompanied by increasing militarism and state control of all aspects of society. Spanish Civil War 388 The conﬂict between fascism and communism that tore Spain apart. N ADOLF HITLER 390 Blitzkrieg 392 How Hitler’s armies swept through Western Europe in the early days of World War II. N STALINGRAD 394 Total War 396 War in the Atlantic, North Africa, and the turning tide against Nazi Germany. N D-DAY The Holocaust 398 400 Mass murder on an unprecedented scale— the Nazi concentration camps. War in the Paciﬁc 402 The Paciﬁc theater of war, from Pearl Harbor to 1945. N THE DEATH OF KENNEDY Viva la Revolución! Apartheid and Beyond 422 The end of the system of Apartheid and a new beginning for South Africa. The revolutionary and popular movements that transformed Latin America. China’s Long March 424 Nationalism, communism, and Mao’s rise to power in China. N BERLIN WALL 426 The Sixties 428 Sexual equality, radical politics, and pop music—the decade that changed attitudes. The Vietnam War 430 America’s war against communism in Southeast Asia. N MARTIN LUTHER KING JR. 432 Civil Rights 434 The nonviolent struggle for black civil rights in the US and other rights-based movements. The Troubles 436 The 30-year sectarian conﬂict between Catholic nationalist and Protestant Unionist communities in Northern Ireland. Dictatorship and Democracy 438 Latin American politics and society in the later part of the 20th century. N HIROSHIMA 404 The Oil Crisis The Cold War 406 Rising fuel consumption and dependence on foreign imports that focused global attention on the Middle East. The world divides between the communist East and the capitalist West. N MAHATMA GANDHI 408 The Partition of India 410 Independence for the former British Raj as the subcontinent is divided into India and Pakistan. End of the Colonial Era 440 442 The overthrow of the US-backed government and the foundation of the Islamic state of Iran. War in Afghanistan 444 Russia’s invasion of Afghanistan and the decade-long war that ensued. 412 The assertion of independent rule by the former colonies in Africa, the Middle East, and Southeast Asia. The Promised Land The Iranian Revolution 414 The foundation of the State of Israel and its effects on the Middle East. N ALBERT EINSTEIN 416 The American Dream 418 The booming economy and increase in mass production that created postwar afﬂuence in the US. Perestroika 448 The end of the Eastern Bloc as the Soviet satellite states assert their independence. War in Yugoslavia 450 The ethnic nationalist divisions in postcommunist Yugoslavia that led to civil war. United Europe Tiger Economies 456 Modern Technology 458 The innovations that transformed the 20th and 21st centuries. Feeding the World 462 The revolution in biotechnology that boosted agricultural productivity around the world. World Health 464 How astonishing advances in health and medicine have signiﬁcantly improved and extended our lives. N 9/11 466 The Gulf Wars 468 The wars against Iraq. Globalization 470 The increased mobility of goods, services, labor, technology, and capital as a result of new communications technologies. Superpower China 472 The rapid social and economic transformation of China after embracing the free market. Dynamic Populations 474 The continual growth of cities as more and more people ﬂock to urban centers. Climate Change 476 The continual warming of the world as a result of human activity. Shrinking World 452 The formation and progress of the European Community. South America 478 The erosion of the barriers of time and distance through technological advances that have created a global community. 480 North and Central America 482 502 United Kingdom, Ireland, France, Monaco, Spain, Andorra, Portugal, Italy, Vatican City, San Marino, Malta, Switzerland, Liechtenstein, Slovenia, Austria, Germany, Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg, Iceland, Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Finland, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Romania, Moldova, Bulgaria, Croatia, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Serbia, Montenegro, Macedonia, Albania, Cyprus, Greece, Russian Federation, Ukraine, Belarus. Africa 548 Morocco, Algeria, Libya, Niger, Chad, Sudan, Egypt, Mauritania, Mali, Burkina Faso, Cape Verde Islands, Senegal, Gambia, GuineaBissau, Guinea, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Ivory Coast, Ghana, Togo, Benin, Nigeria, Cameroon, Equatorial Guinea, São Tomé & Príncipe, Gabon, Central African Republic, Congo, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Eritrea, Djibouti, Ethiopia, Somalia, Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda, Burundi, Angola, Zambia, Malawi, Mozambique, Madagascar, Comoros, Mauritius, Seychelles, Namibia, Botswana, Zimbabwe, South Africa, Swaziland, Lesotho. Asia 562 Turkey, Georgia, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Syria, Lebanon, Jordan, Israel, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Oman, UAE, Bahrain, Qatar, Kuwait, Iraq, Iran, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Afghanistan, Pakistan, India, Nepal, Bhutan, Sri Lanka, Maldives, Bangladesh, Burma, China, Mongolia, North Korea, South Korea, Japan, Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam, Malaysia, Singapore, Philippines, Brunei, Indonesia, East Timor. Oceania NATIONAL HISTORIES 494 Colombia, Venezuela, Guyana, Suriname, Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia, Brazil, Paraguay, Chile, Uruguay, Argentina. Europe Asia’s economic boom. 446 Mikhail Gorbachev and the collapse of the Soviet Union. Raising the Iron Curtain 454 420 588 Australia, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Tuvalu, Samoa, Fiji, Tonga, Antarctica. United States, Canada, Mexico, Guatemala, Belize, Honduras, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama, Cuba, Jamaica, Haiti, Dominican Republic, Bahamas, Antigua & Barbuda, St. Kitts & Nevis, Dominica, St. Lucia, St. Vincent, Barbados, Grenada, Trinidad & Tobago. INDEX 594 ACKNOWLEDGMENTS 608 Foreword he history I learned at school was a mass of seemingly endless lists, formed of dates and the names of kings and queens. As a result, I hated it, and never saw the connections between the various strands of the subject. I now realize that history is important and that we can all learn from the triumphs—and mistakes—of our ancestors. Both utterly fascinating and hugely informative, History is a reference book that teases out the sparks of wars and revolutions, and uncovers the deep roots of great civilizations. It brings the subject to life, painting broad pictures of history’s great sweep, aiming to excite and enthuse the reader by focusing on the most interesting, exciting, and dynamic people, events, and ideas of the past. T The photographs, maps, and graphics throughout History are spectacular, compelling you to dip in and discover what each page will reveal. This image shows some of the ancient standing stones at Callanish, Scotland, where 20 stone circles jut out from the bare, peaty landscape. The primary purpose of these stones, which have weathered through 4,000 years of human history, seems to have been to mark a curious lunar event that happens only once every 18.61 years—those early astronomers must have been persistent. One of the joys of this book is that most subjects, however vast in scale, are presented within self-contained spreads. Some describe hundreds of years of ancient Egyptian civilization, or momentous periods of upheaval like the religious Reformation in 17th-century Europe or the Industrial Revolution of the 19th century. Others take as their theme much shorter periods of history, such as the English Civil War or the Russian Revolution. There are also spreads devoted to “Decisive Moments”, key events that proved to be historical turning points, for example the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand, which triggered World War I, or the 1755 Lisbon earthquake, which shook Europe to its very foundations. But History isn’t just about the events that have shaped us. A key strand in the book focuses on the ideas that have changed the world, exploring concepts such as democracy, evolution, and globalization. It also features biographies of some of history’s most important and inﬂuential individuals from Alexander the Great to Adolf Hitler. And, as an enthusiast of science and technology, I am delighted to see coverage of the crucial innovations, inventions, scientiﬁc discoveries, and theories that have had an impact on the human story, from metalworking to the internet, and DNA to global warming. ADAM HART-DAVIS ORIGINS 4.5 MYA–3000 BCE Evidence of the earliest hominins, the ancestors of modern humans, has been found in Central and East Africa, and dates back millions of years. Discoveries of early human remains reveal the remarkable ability to adapt to Earth’s changing environment that has been so significant in the evolution of our species. 4 . 5 M YA – 3 0 0 0 B C E ORIGINS 4.5 MYA–3000 BCE 4.5 Olduvai Gorge 30,000 1 MYA MYA c. 1 MYA Homo erectus well established in North Africa and Middle East. c. 600,000 YA Homo heidelbergensis flourishes in Central Europe; introduces Acheulean stone tools (carefully flaked on both surfaces). c. 4.5 MYA Emergence of an early ancestor of modern humans, Ardipithecus ramidus, in Ethiopia. 10,000 YA BCE c. 150,000 YA Emergence of first Homo sapiens, Africa; subsequently coexists with Homo erectus in Asia and Homo neanderthalensis (Neanderthals) in Europe and Middle East. c. 10,000 BCE Rising temperatures, retreating ice sheets, rising sea levels. Siberia separated from North America, continental shelves flooded. Neanderthal skull Domesticated goats “Lucy” skeleton Ice age landscape c. 3 MYA Australopithecus afarensis, known as “Lucy,” lives in East Africa. c. 2.5 mya First genus of human, Homo habilis, Olduvai Gorge, East Africa. c. 30,000 ya Cro-Magnon cave art and decorated artifacts in Western and Central Europe. c. 2.75–1 MYA Earliest known stone tools found, Ethiopia. Meat now apparently a central part of energy-rich diet of hominins. c. 1.8 MYA–500,000 YA Evidence of deliberate use of fire. c. 24,000 YA Disappearance of Homo neanderthalensis. c. 10,000 BCE First settled agriculture in Anatolia (Turkey), Middle East, and Mesopotamia. Evidence of early sheep and goat domestication in northern Mesopotamia. Mammoth-bone house Homo sapiens skull c. 70,000 YA Population spread halted, possibly due to catastrophic volcanic eruption of Toba, Sumatra; global temperatures lowered for a millennium. c. 20,000 YA Ice Age populations live by hunting and gathering, building shelters from available resources. Hunter-gatherers Fire c. 4.2 MYA Earliest of the australopithecines (“southern apehumans”), East Africa; walks on two feet, has a brain one-third the size of modern humans’. c. 350,000 YA Homo neanderthalensis emerges in Europe. Acheulean hand-ax 14 c. 10,000 BCE Earliest pottery from Jomon, Japan, heralds gradual revolution in transportation and storage of food. Village settlement Jomon pottery ORIGINS Measured against the estimated 4.5-billion-year age of Earth itself, humans—anatomically modern humans in particular—evolved remarkably recently. Modern man—Homo sapiens—appeared only about 150,000 years ago, rapidly migrating from African homelands to join other human species—Homo erectus in Asia and, across Europe and the Middle East, 8000 6000 BCE the Neanderthals. By about 24,000 years ago, Homo sapiens, socially more sophisticated, had become the sole human species. Then, in the Middle East, about 6,000 years ago, settled and increasingly complex societies emerged. With them came the first cities and the first states. It was the birth of civilization as we know it today. 5000 BCE 4000 BCE Obsidian BCE c. 4000 BCE First use of plow in Mesopotamia. c. 7000 BCE First Chinese agricultural communities, Yangzi Valley. Agriculture spreads to southeast Europe from modern Turkey. Stonehenge c. 6000 BCE Early town cultures, such as the Halafian in southwest Asia, flourish. Linearbandkeramik pot Corn c. 5000 BCE Corn cultivated in Ecuador and parts of North America. Cultivation of corn begins in Tehuacán valley, Central America. c. 3100 BCE King Narmer completes unification of Upper and Lower Egypt and becomes first pharaoh. Nekhen, Egypt, an important trading town. Çatalhöyük figurine c. 6500 BCE Copper smelting and trade in obsidian at Çatalhöyük, modern Turkey. c. 8000 BCE Foundation of Jericho, Palestine, the world’s oldest continuously inhabited town. c. 6500 BCE Cattle successfully domesticated in North Africa, the Indus Valley, and Asia. c. 5500 BCE World’s earliest irrigation system, Mesopotamia. Gold from Varna c. 3500 BCE Emergence of world’s first city-states in Mesopotamia; Uruk possibly the world’s first city. c. 3350 BCE “Ötzi the ice man” dies in the Alps. c. 5000 BCE Copper first used in Mesopotamia; gold and copper artifacts produced in southeast Europe. Domesticated cattle Nekhen ivory c. 5500–4500 BCE Linearbandkeramik farming culture flourishes, Central Europe. Halaf figurine Warka vase, Uruk c. 4500 BCE Introduction of irrigation techniques in Indus valley. Horse domesticated in Central Asia. c. 3200 BCE First hieroglyphic script in Egypt. Evidence of use of wheeled transport in Sumer. Stone circles and rows of standing stones built in north and west Europe. 15 O U R R E M OT E A N C E S TO R S B E F O R E No one knows when human beings ﬁrst appeared. Our only clues lie in fossils and stone tools. The journey started some time around six million years ago (mya) in Africa. THE HUMAN FAMILY Humans are classiﬁed as primates, a group that includes apes and monkeys. Our closest living relatives are chimpanzees, with whom we share almost 99 percent of our genes, but this tiny genetic difference is what makes us so far CHIMPANZEE removed from apes. OUR ROOTS Sahelanthropus tchadensis 18 ½½, found at the southern edge of the Sahara in Chad, and dating to between 6 and 7 mya, may be the earliest human ancestor. Although very early, this skull seems more advanced in some ways than later species and it is unclear how it ﬁts into the evolutionary story. Other very early ancestors about whom very little is known include Orrorin tugenensis and Ardipithecus ramidus. Some of these species came to a dead end on the human family tree. Others may have led directly to our own ancestors. THE MOLECULAR CLOCK Evolutionary biologists have developed a way of dating the evolution of more than 60 primate species. It is known as the molecular clock. The clock starts with the last common ancestor of all primates about 63 mya, and dates the split between chimpanzees and humans to about 6.2 mya. This is the moment when the human story truly begins. “ Human consciousness arose but a minute before midnight on the geological clock.” STEPHEN JAY GOULD, EVOLUTIONARY BIOLOGIST, 1992 Our Remote Ancestors The evolution of modern humans extends back millions of years. It is not easy to trace, as our evidence comes from scattered, unrelated finds, making it difficult to form a cohesive picture. The dominance of Homo sapiens is a comparatively recent development. n the 19th century, Charles Darwin, the father of the theory of evolution by natural selection (see pp.340–41), identiﬁed tropical Africa as the cradle of humankind. Pioneering paleontologists Louis and Mary Leakey found evidence of this in the 1950s with discoveries in Olduvai Gorge, a deep gash in the eastern Serengeti Plains in Tanzania, East Africa (see left). It was in East Africa that our human ancestors evolved at least 4.5 mya (million years ago). A wide range of fossil ﬁnds provide evidence of a remarkable diversity of early hominins that ﬂourished in this area. I HOMININ The term used to refer to all early humans and their ancestors, including Homo erectus, Homo ergaster, Homo neanderthalis and Homo sapiens. Also includes all the Australopithecines, Paranthropus boisei, and Ardipithecus. Earliest ancestors The “cradle of humankind” Olduvai Gorge in Tanzania is the most important prehistoric site in the world, where many finds that have furthered our knowledge of early human evolution have been made. The oldest artifacts found at the gorge— stone flakes and tools—are 2 million years old. DISCOVERY FIRE Fire is one of the most important discoveries ever made. Possibly around 1.8 million years ago and certainly by 500,000 years ago—the date is uncertain—early humans tamed ﬁre, perhaps by taking branches from a blazing tree caused by a lightning strike. Creating ﬁre at will was another step forward. The control of ﬁre enabled humans to live in cold environments, and in deep caves, and provided protection against predators. The use of ﬁre to cook also led to a greater variety of foods in the diet. One of the earliest known human ancestors is a small forest-living primate named Ardipithecus anamensis, which ﬂourished in Afar, Ethiopia, some 4.5 mya. Ardipithecus was probably the ancestor of the Australopithecines—highly diverse hominins that appeared for the ﬁrst time one million years later. The earliest found, Australopithecus afarensis, was famously nicknamed “Lucy” by the archaeologists who found her in 1974. Although it seems that this longlimbed hominin spent a great deal of time in the trees, some well-preserved footprints reveal that the species was bipedal (walked on two feet) (see p.18). As such, “Lucy” is an important link between us and our treedwelling ancestors. The next generation By 3 mya, the Australopithecines had diversiﬁed into many forms. They ﬂourished throughout much of sub-Saharan Africa, especially in more open grasslands. These early humans were fully bipedal. Nimble and ﬂeet of foot, species including Australopithecus africanus were skilled at scavenging meat from predator kills. Their brain size was also larger than their predecessors’. INVENTION STONE TOOLS Homo habilis used the simplest stone technology, which was reﬁned by Homo erectus into stone axes and cleaving tools for particular tasks such as butchering animals. The Neanderthals were the ﬁrst to mount scrapers, spearpoints, and knives in wooden handles. Modern humans developed more sophisticated technology, punching off parallel-sided blanks from carefully prepared ﬂint nodules. They turned these blades into scrapers, chisels, and borers to work antlers, bone, and leather. After the Ice Age (see pp.2223), hunters added tiny stone barbs to their arrows. FLINT HAND-AX are thought to date from about 1.8 mya, and were made by Homo habilis (“handy man”), who left what could be the remains of a camp by a lake, including a scatter of stone tools and broken The first humans Ancestors of modern humans appeared animal bones. Homo habilis probably slept in trees, in relative safety from about 2 mya in eastern Africa, quickly lions and other dangerous animals. spreading to the west. Tools dating In this predator-rich environment, from 1.8 mya have been found in a humans were both the hunters and dry stream bed at Koobi Fora on the the hunted. shore of Lake Turkana, PALEOLITHIC A period covering The evidence Kenya. The tools were the time from the first use of stone from the Olduvai made of stone from tools about 2.5 mya to the beginning camp suggests several miles away. of agriculture in about 10,000 BCE. that Homo It is not known habilis was who the tool breaking up parts of animal carcasses users were, but they may have scavenged from predator kills. been some of the earliest humans, At about the same time, what could possibly a group who paused here be termed the ﬁrst true human had and butchered antelope. appeared. Large-brained, with a receding forehead, and prominent Handyman brow ridges Homo ergaster had strong Clearer evidence of the earliest limbs similar to those of modern toolmakers and their descendants has humans. These newcomers were been found on the ancient lake beds at hunters rather than scavengers. Olduvai Gorge in Tanzania. The tools ½½ 17 4 . 5 M YA – 3 0 0 0 B C E ❯❯ to Homo erectus, the ﬁrst humans Homo ergaster was closely related The remarkable ﬁnds at Schöningen are the earliest preserved wooden tools yet discovered. Homo heidelbergensis lived in small, mobile groups. Each group probably returned to the same locations to hunt and forage at different times of the year. However, their communication and reasoning abilities were limited (see pp.20–21), which affected their ability to adapt and may be one reason why they do not appear to have settled in intensely cold environments or reached the Americas and Australia. to spread out of tropical Africa into Europe and Asia as part of a general radiation of mammals and their predators some 1.8 mya. Homo erectus was a skilled hunter and a brilliant opportunist, quick to take advantage of different environments—a key factor in the success of the human species. These early humans soon settled in South and Southeast Asia, reaching Dmanisi in Georgia by 1.7 mya (see pp.24–25). They were well established in Western Europe by at least 800,000 years ago. Warmer conditions than today may have attracted Homo heidelbergensis to Northern Europe by 400,000 years ago. At about the same time, small bands of early humans were using long-shafted, aerodynamic wooden spears to hunt wild horses and larger game at Schöningen, Germany, and at Boxgrove in southern England. HOW WE KNOW THEY WALKED ON TWO FEET About 3.75 mya, a volcanic eruption left a layer of ash at Laetoli, Tanzania that preserved the footprints of Australopithecus afarensis (“Lucy”). They were identiﬁed as those of a young adult who walked on two feet with a rolling gait, slower than that of modern humans. This bipedal posture—an important human anatomical feature that appeared before 4 mya—allowed our ancestors to live away from forests in open terrain. Adapting to different environments By 500,000, early humans had adapted successfully to a wide variety of tropical and temperate environments, moving as far north as China, where numerous fragments of an evolving Homo erectus have come to light in Zhoukoudian Cave, near Beijing. The ability to use ﬁre (see p.16) was crucial in making settlement possible in cold locations 3–2.4 mya 2.5–1.8 mya Site Africa Sites Africa Brain size 375–500 cc Brain size 750 cc Australopithecus afarensis Known as “Lucy,” this early hominin was relatively short at 3 ft 3 in (1 m) in height, had shorter limbs than later species, and, significantly, walked on two feet. Homo rudolfensis, a contemporary of Homo habilis, has been the subject of much debate concerning its age and relationship to the hominin species. It had a relatively large brain and was bipedal. Human family tree New discoveries of fossils that add to our knowledge of human evolution are being made all the time. The size and shape of the skulls help us to understand the abilities of our ancestors. Brain size is measured in cubic centimeters (cc), with an average modern human brain measuring 1,400 cc. 6.2–5.8 mya 5.8–5.2 mya Sites Africa Sites Africa Brain size Unknown Brain size Unknown Orrorin tugenensis is known to us through finds of large canine teeth. Little is known about the species, except that it may have been bipedal. Ardipithecus kadabba was one of the earliest species to be placed on the human tree. Like Orrorin tugenensis, this species had primitive canine teeth. Homo rudolfensis Ardipithecus kadabba Australopithecus afarensis Orrorin tugenensis 7 MYA 6 MYA 5 4 MYA MYA Sahelanthropus tchadenis 3 MYA Ardipithecus ramidus 2.5 MYA 2 MYA Australopithecus africanus Australopithecus anamensis Homo habilis 4.5–4.3 mya Sites Africa Brain size Unknown Ardipithecus ramidus is a very early hominin. Fragmentary remains include large canine teeth found in Ethiopia, which are similar to those of the australopithecines. 6.7 mya Sites Africa 4.3–4 mya 3.3–2.4 mya Brain size 320–380 cc Sites Africa Sites Africa 2.5–1.8 mya Brain size Unknown Brain size 400–500 cc Sites Africa Australopithecus anamensis is little known as few remains have been found. The jawbone from Kenya resembles that of a chimpanzee, while the teeth are closer to human teeth. Australopithecus africanus was a slenderly built species. Its facial features appear to have been more human than earlier australopithecines. It had longer legs and shorter arms than modern humans. Sahelanthropus tchadenis may be one of the first humans or may be more closely related to apes, as it shows a mixture of human and ape characteristics. Only the fragments of a skull have been found. 18 Brain size 590–650 cc Homo habilis had relatively long arms, marking it out from later humans. The species may descend from the australopithecines. O U R R E M OT E A N C E S TO R S AF TER during the climatic swings of the Ice Age, but population levels remained very low and the survival of early humans must have been precarious at times. The Neanderthals By 200,000 years ago, Homo neanderthalensis had evolved in Europe and Eurasia. The Neanderthals had large brains and more rounded heads than their predecessors. Their body shape was also more recognizably “human,” but it is believed that their reasoning power and speech were not as developed as those of Homo sapiens. They were, however, expert hunters, who pursued animals such as bison with wooden and stone-tipped spears. They made sophisticated tools and dwelt in caves, rock shelters, and open camps. Theirs was a tough life in savage environments, and they probably lived for 30–40 years. Most experts agree that Neanderthals were not the ancestors of modern humans. The appearance of modern humans Intense controversy surrounds the origins of Homo sapiens—ourselves. Most geneticists use DNA evidence (see pp.26–27) to argue that modern humans ﬁrst appeared in tropical Africa by about 180,000 years ago. The earliest fully modern human fossils come from Huerto, Ethiopia, and date to about 160,000 years ago. From Africa, Homo sapiens spread across the Sahara and into southwestern Asia by 100,000 years ago. No one knows when humans developed the abilities that set them apart from their earlier ancestors, but they were fully developed by 45,000 years ago, when the ﬁrst modern humans settled in Europe alongside the Neanderthals. The arrival of Homo sapiens may have spelled the end for the Neanderthals. EXTINCTION AND SUCCESS Although Neanderthals and Homo sapiens lived alongside one another, DNA evidence suggests they did not interbreed. Neanderthals died out, perhaps at the hands of Homo sapiens, who were successful in adapting to every corner of the globe. More than any other species, humans have used their skills to their own advantage. 2.75–1 mya 2–0.5 mya 350,000–24,000 ya Sites Africa Site Africa, Asia, Europe Site Africa and Eurasia Brain size 500–550 cc Brain size 810–1250 cc Brain size 1125–1550 cc Paranthropus boisei is the most extreme version of the early “robust” humans living in eastern Africa. Boisei flourished in the dry savanna areas that existed in Africa at that time and may have died out after climate change. Homo erectus was a powerfully built human with massive brow ridges, a large face, and a long, low skull to accommodate a much larger brain. Homo neanderthalensis may have lived alongside modern Homo sapiens in Europe. The species had a large brain and short robust build with powerful limbs. Paranthropus boisei Homo erectus 1.5 MYA Homo neanderthalensis 1 MYA Homo ergaster 0.5 MYA PRESENT DAY Homo heidelbergensis Homo sapiens 1.9–1.4 mya 600,000–250,000 ya From 150,000 ya Sites Africa Sites Africa and Europe Sites Worldwide Brain size 600–910 cc Brain size 1225–1300 cc Brain size 900–2000 cc Homo ergaster was relatively tall, with a brain size well below that of modern humans. The skull was thick and the face long, with a “modern” projecting nose, a massive jawbone, and large teeth. Homo heidelbergensis may have been an ancestor of Homo neanderthalensis in Europe. The skull had a large brow ridge like Homo ergaster and Homo erectus but its brain was larger. Homo sapiens roughly translates as “wise man.” Our brain size is larger than earlier humans’, and it is perhaps this which has enabled us to thrive in a variety of environments around the world. 19 B E F O R E Little is known about the development of human speech and conscious thought. Physical evidence can yield some clues. LOOKING AT THE EVIDENCE Internal casts of human skulls (endocasts) reveal the relatively small brains of Australopithecus ¿¿ 16–19 as apelike and incapable of speech. The Art of Communication Speech and language were key developments in human history, perhaps even more so than toolmaking. They turned the simple signs and grunts of our ancestors into increasingly sophisticated communication. Archaeology and studies of human anatomy help to indicate when these important traits evolved. NO TALKING Homo habilis ¿¿ 16–19, who lived from about 2.5 million years ago, is thought to have had very limited communication skills, possibly using a range of signs and grunts to foster cooperation between members of a group. 20 ur knowledge about when and how speech evolved remains a controversial area in the study of early human history. Articulate speech is an important threshold in human evolution because it opened up new vistas of cooperative behavior and the enrichment of human life. From archaeological evidence alone, it is difﬁcult to know accurately when speech ﬁrst developed. Homo habilis had a slightly more humanlike frontal lobe (where speech control is located) than earlier australopithecines. Other clues are found in the position of the larynx (voice box)—unlike all other mammals, the larynx of Homo sapiens is positioned low, permitting a wide variety of vocal O A BRAIN FIT FOR THE JOB The brain size of our early ancestors grew gradually over millions of years, allowing increasing levels of sophistication in communication and culture. Homo sapiens’ brain measures 97½ cu in (1,600 cm3), almost three times the size of that of Homo habilis, whose brain capacity was 36½ cu in (600 cm3). Discovering speech The hyoid bone is found in the neck and is required for speech to occur. Finds such as these fossilized pieces of 400,000-year-old Homo heidelbergensis hyoid bone from Atapuerca, Spain, help date the first human speech. sounds. Homo erectus, from around 1.8 million years ago, was the ﬁrst human with a lower larynx, and ﬁnds from Sima de los Huesos, in Atapuerca, Spain have shown that Homo heidelbergensis had developed a hyoid bone—a small, U-shaped bone that lies at the root of the tongue, between the larynx and pharynx—about 400,000 years ago. It was only about 300,000 years ago, however, that the base of the skull evolved, physically allowing fully articulate speech to develop. The Neanderthal debate Neanderthals may have had some capacity for speech and communication, and were apparently capable of T H E A R T O F C O M M U N I C AT I O N AF TER Artistic ability 17-000-year-old art from the Lascaux cave in France shows a high level of sophistication. Modern humans created these images that we can still relate to today. Africa or southwest Asia. It appears that conscious thought evolved after modern human anatomy, for Homo sapiens ﬂourished in tropical Africa at least 160,000 years ago, long before the appearance of the elaborate art traditions of the late Ice Age. First artists considerable intellectual reasoning. information, perhaps about 250,000 The discovery of a hyoid bone in years ago. As group sizes increased, Kebara Cave, Israel, dating to about so did an ability to learn language 60,000 years ago, intensiﬁed the debate that could be used to articulate social about Neanderthal linguistic abilities. relationships. It was only later— The Kebara hyoid is almost identical to perhaps around 40,000 years ago that of modern humans, which has led during a time that has been referred some anthropologists to claim that to as the “Great Leap Forward”— the Neanderthals were capable of that modern humans developed fully articulate speech. Others language of the kind we would disagree, pointing to the high recognize today. position of the larynx, which would limit the Cultural explosion sounds they could Connected to the make. Some believe development of speech that Neanderthals had is the arrival of cognitive the communication thought in early humans. skills of modern infants. This includes qualities The controversy is such as perception of Blombos beads unresolved, but most our place in the world, These 75,000-year-old perforated shell scientists agree that intelligence, and moral beads from Blombos Cave, South Neanderthals did not codes that come with Africa, are perhaps the oldest known human ornaments in the world. have the advanced more elaborate societies. linguistic and None of these advances communication skills of Homo sapiens. would have been possible without sophisticated speech. We don’t know when Homo sapiens acquired the The great leap conscious thought and the abilities we Human language may have evolved have today, but it was at least 40,000 because of the need to handle years ago, and most likely in tropical increasingly complex social The creation of art requires reasoning and an ability to plan ahead and express intangible feelings. Some of the earliest known decorated artifacts, which were found in Blombos Cave in South Africa, are about 75,000 years old (see left) and are very basic. The full range of human artistic skills came into play during the late Ice Age, epitomized by the cave art, jewelry, sculpture, and carving of the Cro-Magnon people of Western Europe (see pp.26–27). The great bulls at Lascaux cave in France, and the polychrome bison at the cave at Altamira, in Spain, reﬂect human societies with complex religious beliefs and relationships with the spirit world. Although we do not know exactly what these paintings mean, it is clear that they had great symbolism for those who painted them. This knowledge would have been passed down through the generations by speech and song. For all later human societies, art has remained an important way of expressing our beliefs and knowledge of the world. Sophisticated levels of speech developed as society became more complex. Written records also became important as a method of communication. POWER THROUGH SPEECH Speech and language enhanced cooperation between hunters, which led to the greater success of human societies around the world. Groups could plan game drives, negotiate exchanges of toolmaking stone, and share intelligence about food and water supplies. KEEPING RECORDS Cuneiform writing 62–63 ½½ developed in West Asia c. 3000 BCE EGYPTIAN WRITING as a means of recording commercial transactions and inventories. Egyptian hieroglyphs developed at around the same time. WRITING HISTORY By the end of the 3rd millennium BCE, writing was widely used for recording history, philosophy, and science 102–103 ½½. PASSING ON KNOWLEDGE Speech and writing allowed knowledge and cumulative experience to be passed on from generation to generation. ABSTRACT THINKING Today, symbols such as road signs are part of an internationally understood language we use every day. ROAD SIGN SYMBOL HOW WE KNOW BRAIN DEVELOPMENT Research into the brain can reveal some evidence about the development of speech. Soft brain tissues do not fossilize, and are only preserved in casts of the inside of the skull case. The earliest signs of development of Broca’s area, the part of the brain that controls speech, occur in Homo habilis about two million years ago. Homo erectus also shows signs of development in Broca’s area, perhaps an indication of slowly evolving speech. However, any study of language abilities from casts is tentative. Unless a well-preserved hominin brain is discovered— which is unlikely—the amount that we are able to discover from Broca’s area is limited, and tangible evidence from hyoid bones will still be needed to learn about ﬂuent speech. Much remains speculative in our knowledge of the evolution of speech. Understanding speech production Broca’s area—showing up red on this brain scan— is located in the left hemisphere of the frontal lobe. As our knowledge of the human brain grows, so does our understanding of how speech developed. 21 4 . 5 M YA – 3 0 0 0 B C E B E F O R E Over millions of years, Earth has experienced a range of temperatures and climatic conditions that have played a part in the extinction or survival of whole groups of species, and changed the face of the planet. THE ICE AGES There is geological evidence (seen in rock surfaces and textures) for four major ices ages in Earth’s history. The earliest of these is believed to have occurred around 2.7 to 2.3 billion years ago during the Proterozoic period. HOT PLANET Temperatures in the past were generally far higher than today. Following the extinction of dinosaurs about 65 million years ago, perhaps due to climatic change, average temperatures rose to about 82ºF (28ºC). Tropical rainforests proliferated on Earth. THE BIG CHILL The abrupt cooling about 1.5 million years ago that led to the last Ice Age, known as the Pleistocene epoch, probably resulted from small shifts in Earth’s tilt toward the Sun. The Ice Age Much of human history unfolded during the dramatic climatic shifts of the most recent Ice Age, which began about 1.5 million years ago. Our ability to adapt to changes in climate has been crucial to the development of civilization but, adversely, may be the cause of future global warming. ontrary to popular belief, an Ice Age is not a continual deep freeze, but a period of constantly ﬂuctuating climate conditions punctuated by periods of intense cold. The earliest millennia of the last ice age—the critical period when our remote ancestors ﬁrst colonized Africa— are little known. The information gleaned from deep-sea cores and ice borings gives us a much clearer picture of ice-age climate after Earth’s magnetic ﬁeld, generated deep inside our planet, abruptly reversed some 780,000 years ago. (It has not reversed since.) Deep-sea cores from the Paciﬁc Ocean reveal at least nine major glacial (icy) periods that have come and gone over the past 780,000 years, the most recent of them ending in abrupt and irregular global warming between C HOW WE KNOW DEEP SEA AND ICE CORES Layers of sediment build up over time on ocean beds, and annual layers of ice are added to polar caps. By extracting cores of ice or deep sea sediment and looking at the composition, scientists can build a picture of climate change. Increases in atmospheric CO2 (carbon dioxide) and CH4 (methane)— both greenhouse gases—can be detected in the ice and indicate warming. Similarly, the ratios of oxygen isotopes in the shells of microscopic marine animals reﬂect changes in sea temperature. The Vostok ice core from Antarctica provides evidence for the last 420,000 years, and shows that major shifts in temperature occur about every 100,000 years. TH E ICE AGE AF TER Environmental change The Ice Age witnessed dramatic shifts in global climate and major changes in natural environments. During glacial periods, huge ice sheets formed over Scandinavia, and covered most of Canada and parts of the United States as far south as modern Seattle and the Great Lakes. Great glaciers formed on the Alps and there were ice sheets on High 39/4 36/2 Level of CO 2 32/0 Degrees ˚F/˚C 10,000 and 15,000 years ago. Sea cores give only a general impression of Ice Age climate change, but, as a rule, cooling proceeds relatively slowly and warming unfolds rapidly, as was the case at the end of the last cold (glacial) period. Glacial periods in the past have been longer than interglacials—brief, volatile intervals of warmer conditions during the Ice Age when the climate was as warm (or warmer than) today. These increases in temperature are caused by changes in Earth’s path around the Sun and its rotation on its axis. Natural increases in greenhouse gases add to the warming. We are currently experiencing an interglacial period caused by these natural phenomena that began about 10,000 years ago. 28/–2 25/–4 Earth is currently experiencing a warmer phase but is still affected by ﬂuctuations in temperature and natural phenomena such as El Niño. 21/–6 18/–8 14/–10 400,000 Low 350,000 300,000 250,000 200,000 150,000 Years before present the Pyrenees, on the Andes, and on Central Asian mountains and highaltitude plateaus. South of the Scandinavian ice sheets, huge expanses of barren landscape extended from the Atlantic to Siberia. These environments suffered nine-month winters and were uninhabitable by ancestors of Homo sapiens, who lacked the technology and clothing to adapt to the extremes of temperature. It is no coincidence that Homo erectus, with their simple technology and limited cognitive skills, settled in more temperate and tropical 90 The number of meters (yards) sea levels around the world dropped at the beginning of the last Ice Age as water froze to form the ice caps of present-day Antarctica and the Arctic. environments. The cold caused sea levels to fall dramatically as more water was converted into ice. Huge expanses of what are now continental shelves (land under shallow coastal waters) were exposed, linking land masses— Siberia was part of Alaska, and Britain was joined to Europe. Only short stretches of open water separated mainland Southeast Asia from Australia and New Guinea. During interglacials, sea levels rose, ice sheets shrank, and forests moved northward as the steppe-tundra vanished. Humans moved north, following the animals they hunted and the plants they foraged, and adapting to a broad range of forested and grassland environments as well as arid and semiarid lands. Humans and the elements The Ice Age climate was volatile and the world’s environments changed constantly, which meant that the opportunism and adaptive ability of humans was continuously challenged from one millennium to the next. These challenges may even have been A harsh world Temperature variations up to 10,000 years ago meant that humans could only survive by adapting to the changing conditions. Our ancestors became successful at surviving and thriving in the cold. 100,000 50,000 0 KEY Level of CO Temperature 2 Temperature variations of the Ice Age Layers of sediment in ice cores taken from Vostok in Antarctica have enabled scientists to chart temperature variations over the past 420,000 years. The levels of CO2 in the atmosphere have also been recorded and are linked to temperature rises, as can be seen here. a factor in human evolution. Our earliest ancestors originated in tropical Africa and were basically tropical animals. During long periods of the ice ages, the Sahara was slightly wetter than today. The desert can almost be seen as a pump, drawing in animals and early humans during wetter periods, then pushing them out to the margins when the climate became drier. This was the ecological effect that allowed Homo erectus and the animals they preyed on to cross the desert and spread into more temperate environments some 1.8 million years ago. A major interglacial raised temperatures, peaking around 400,000 years ago. By that time, Homo erectus was thriving in north Europe, but they could not adapt to the extreme cold of the glaciation that followed around 350,000 years ago. The few hunting bands living there probably moved southward to more temperate regions. By around 250,000 years ago, there are traces of early human settlement in Europe and parts of East Asia. The ﬁnal interglacial peaked about 128,000 years ago, when Neanderthals (see p.19) were thriving in Europe. They adapted to the extreme cold of the last glaciation. After 50,000 years ago, modern humans had mastered all the global environments and were living in even the coldest and most extreme parts of the world. 10,000 The number of years ago that the current interglacial began. Based on past shifts, this warmer phase could last 100,000 years, although the influence of humans may affect this. THE ABANDONED SITE OF CHACO CANYON INCREASED VULNERABILITY For most of human history, people have lived in small, highly mobile bands 30–31 ½½. Farming 36–37 ½½ made humanity more vulnerable to major climatic events because people were unable to quickly move to avoid them. Such short-term events were a factor in the rise and collapse of early civilizations. One example of this is Chaco Canyon in New Mexico, a site that was settled between 900 and 1150 CE and was abandoned following drought and other unknown dramatic climatic changes. THE EL NIÑO PHENOMENON El Niño is a reversal in the ﬂow of water in the Paciﬁc Ocean that causes dramatic changes in the weather every two to seven years. El Niño is one of the most powerful inﬂuences on climate after the seasons. The phenomenon originates in the Southwest Paciﬁc and results from interactions between the ocean and the atmosphere. El Niños have affected human history for at least 10,000 years. Major El Niños have powerful global effects, EL NIÑO causing monsoon failures, and drought or ﬂooding elsewhere. This thermal image highlights El Niño currents in white and red. PERIOD OF STABILITY As temperatures rose after the Ice Age, humans adapted to a rapidly changing world of MONSOON SEASON, INDIA shrinking ice sheets and rising sea levels. After 5,000 years of irregular warming and cooling, the world entered a warming period that has lasted into modern times. The Vostok ice core tells us this period is among the most warm and stable of the past 420,000 years. THE FUTURE The overuse of fossil fuels has increased global warming. The future effects of this humanmade problem are still unknown. 23 4 . 5 M YA – 3 0 0 0 B C E B E F O R E The ancestors of modern humans (Homo sapiens) colonized Africa, Europe, and western Asia. LIFE IN THE FREEZER The last glaciation (colder period) of the Ice Age, when many areas were covered in ice, lasted from 100,000 to 50,000 years ago. During this period, sea levels were far below modern levels and Siberia and Alaska were linked by land. It was also drier than today and tropical climates were slightly cooler ¿¿ 22–23. This was followed by a slightly warmer period before a return to extreme cold about 18,000 ICY LANDSCAPE years ago. ORIGINS OF MODERN HUMANS The original ancestors of modern humans evolved south of the Sahara Desert in tropical Africa. The scattered human population was very small, and groups developed in isolation from each other. N Clovis Evidence of migration Dozens of archaeological sites—caves, rock shelters, open camps, and huge garbage heaps, or “middens,” of seashells and freshwater mollusks— document the great journeys made as humans spread around the globe. Klasies River Mouth in South Africa is one such site where caves were used as shelter by modern humans about 120,000 years ago, showing that by that date the ﬁrst modern people had traveled from their origins in northeastern Africa (see pp.18–19). The techniques of molecular biology are another way in which we can learn more about the movement of these early humans. By comparing certain strands of DNA (the substance found in every human cell that determines the characteristics we inherit), we can 1 MILLION The estimated human population of Earth 500,000 years ago. Meadowcroft Cactus Hill Big game hunters The people associated with Clovis hunted big game. Their presence in America about 12,000 years ago coincides with the extinction of several large species including mammoths, mastodons (a mammothlike species), and giant sloths. 12,000 R I C A This map shows key sites for our early ancestors, as well as the routes that Homo sapiens is thought to have taken from Africa around the world. YEARS AGO Monte Verde The earliest known settlement in South America Human migration YEARS AGO E work out how Earth was colonized by Homo sapiens, and when splits in the population occurred. This was a complex process involving constant movement by small numbers of people. We are only just beginning to comprehend the process of colonization, but one thing seems certain: all nonAfricans are descended from what American biologist Stephen J. Gould once called “a single African twig” on the human family tree. All people alive today have their ultimate roots in the so-called “African Eve” of some 150,000 years ago. This name stems from the fact that MtDNA (mitochondrial DNA) was passed from mother to offspring through every generation since the ﬁrst Homo sapiens. We all share genetic information with “Eve,” with each other, and with our ancestors (see p.27). 12,000 M 24 O A The walls of Lascaux Cave in France are alive with bison, mammoth, wild oxen, and stag. Cro-Magnon artists (see p.26–27) painted these powerful, ageless images in this Ice Age treasure trove of art some 17,000 years ago. R H Mammoth cave painting Earlier forms of humans such as Homo habilis and Homo erectus had long vanished from Earth, forced into extinction on marginal lands where food was not plentiful, or killed by the newcomers, with whom they could not compete. Colonizing the planet was not a deliberate project, undertaken by men and women set on occupying new lands or exploring the world that lay beyond their hunting territories. Rather, the complex population movements that took modern humans to the limits of the harsh late Ice Age world came about as a result of the necessities of hunting and plant collecting in a great diversity of natural environments. In more northern climates, meat was the staple food, while tropical and temperate groups made considerable use of wild plant foods. The secrets to survival were adaptability—the ability to adjust to sudden changes in climatic conditions by technological innovation—and sheer ingenuity, mobility, and opportunism. People responded to food shortages, drought, or extreme cold by moving elsewhere in a world where the total global population was perhaps no more than ﬁve million people, scattered in small groups over hunting territories large and small. T T 100,000 The number of years since small groups of humans began to leave Africa. By 60,000 years ago genetically modern Homo sapiens were colonizing the Earth. Survival of the fittest H Many people may not have encountered more than a few dozen fellow humans during their lives, although we can only speculate about this, as the population ﬁgures can only be educated guesses. U FLINT HAND-AX ixty thousand years ago, modern humans (Homo sapiens) were conﬁned to tropical Africa and a small part of southwestern Asia. These were people with the same physical and mental abilities as ourselves, hunter-gatherers capable of adapting to any environment on Earth, be it one with nine-month winters and subzero temperatures, or steamy tropical rainforests. Then, during the last cold period of the last Ice Age, the most signiﬁcant of all human migrations out of Africa began. Toward the end of the Ice Age 15,000 years ago, this vast population movement was complete. Late Ice Age hunting bands had settled all of mainland Africa and Eurasia and had crossed, or were about to cross, into the Americas. Homo sapiens had mastered tropical waters with canoes or rafts, had drifted or paddled to New Guinea and Australia, and penetrated as far south as Tasmania. S O FLINT HAND-AXES This technology, developed in Africa 2.5 million years ago, was used for millions of years ¿¿ 17. Every human today is the descendant of a small group of modern humans who left Africa around 60,000 years ago to explore the planet. We can see the legacy of these journeys today in the diversity of races and cultures around the world. S EARLY MAN ON THE MOVE Early Homo erectus fossils ¿¿ 19 indicate that they had settled in western Europe by 800,000 years ago. Neanderthals ¿¿ 19 spread into Europe and western Asia by 200,000 years ago. Out of Africa dates from about 13,000 years ago. Finds from the site, at Monte Verde in Chile, include stone tools for chopping, scraping, and pounding. OUT OF AFRICA KEY Beringia Land Bridge Kennewick E R I A C 15,000 Migration of Homo sapiens around the world Site of early Homo sapiens find Site of early Hominin find YEARS AGO M A This archaeologist holds the remains of Homo erectus, which This mammoth bone carving found at Dolní dates from about 1 million years ago, and was found on this site. The first modern humans in China occupied this site by about 40,000 years ago. Vestonice was made by hunters between 28,000 and 22,000 years ago. 25,000 YEARS AGO P C Boxgrove R O Dolní Vestonice Le Moustier A S 50,000 I A O Altamira Atapuerca U I C E Lascaux 45,000 YEARS AGO P E I F AT L A N T I C O C E A N A Zhoukoudian Schöningen YEARS AGO A N C E Dmanisi Shanidar 60,000 YEARS AGO A F R I C A Niah Hadar Huerto The cave paintings of Altamira date from about 15,000 years ago and are famous for their dramatic representations of bison, boar, and red deer in charcoal and earth pigments by people of the Magdalenian (Paleolithic) culture of southern Europe. Nariokotome Olduvai Laetoli YEARS AGO Flores Sangiran “Lucy” (Australopithecus afarensis) was found in Ethiopia in 1974, dates from about three million years ago, and is an important example of an Australopithecus (see pp.16– 17). This area of northeastern Africa is rich with early hominin remains and continues to yield finds that provoke new theories about our own evolution. Malakunanja 45,000 YEARS AGO A 120,000 Koobi Fora Lake Turkana A West Turkana I N D I A N O C E A N I YEARS AGO L 160,000 occupied by hunter-gatherers c. 120,000 years ago and have revealed some clues about how they lived. Some of the earliest known remains of Homo sapiens were found in the caves. T R come from Lake Mungo. Tourists today visit a landscape of strange formations where over 20,000 years ago there was a lake and much human activity. Stone tools and animal bones found in the area have shown us much about the first Australians. S Klasies River Mouth Caves in South Africa were The earliest finds in Australia U Klasies River Mouth A Blombos Cave Lake Mungo 25 4 . 5 M YA – 3 0 0 0 B C E The bone house This reconstruction of a shelter built from mammoth bones is based on the remains of a dwelling that was found by archaeologists in modern-day Ukraine. It demonstrates the ingenuity and adaptability of early humans to local conditions and resources. Sometime after about ½½ 50,000 years ago, when glacial conditions in the north had improved and the climate was more temperate, modern humans moved into Europe and Asia. Tiny numbers of people were involved—in the hundreds—but by 45,000 years ago they were well established in the eastern European plains and in the Don Valley, now in Ukraine, and were moving rapidly across Central and Western Europe. years. DNA research on Neanderthal bones suggests that the newcomers did not interbreed with them, as had previously been believed. One theory is that Europe’s indigenous inhabitants died out because they lacked the adaptability, mental abilities, and technology of modern humans. They survived in some parts of southeastern Europe until as late as 24,000 years ago before becoming extinct. A thriving European culture The Neanderthal controversy Homo sapiens had settled alongside Neanderthal bands that had already been in Europe for about 200,000 The longest journey The first Homo sapiens left Africa to colonize the planet about 60,000 years ago. By the end of the Ice Age 10,000 years ago, they had reached all the continents except Antarctica, adapting to different conditions wherever they went. From about 40,000 to 10,000 years ago, a remarkable array of sophisticated, cold-adapted hunter-gatherer societies ﬂourished in Central and Western Europe. These Cro-Magnon people— named after a rock shelter near Les Eyzies in southwestern France—were opportunists. They relied for their subsistence on a range of plant foods and ﬁsh, taking advantage of salmon runs, for example, when the rapidly changing climate of the late Ice Age allowed. Their success came not only from their superior mental abilities, but also from their ingenious multipurpose ﬂint tools, which worked almost like a modern Swiss Army knife. They used carefully shaped ﬂint nodules to produce standardized, parallel-sided blanks, which they then turned into points, scrapers, and other tools. One of these artifacts—a chisel— allowed them to cut grooves in reindeer antlers, thereby “unlocking” a new technology for manufacturing harpoon heads, spear points, and other hunting weapons. Barbed, antlertipped spears were especially effective on reindeer and other game. The Cro-Magnons produced other revolutionary items, including the spear thrower—a hooked stick that vastly increased the distance a spear could be thrown. They successfully used this new technology to hunt a wide range of Ice Age animals, including bison, mammoth, and woolly rhinoceros. The eyed needle was another remarkable invention (see below). These people were also skilled artists and developed a distinctive visual tradition, which ampliﬁed their elaborate rituals and beliefs. One of the most famous examples of their art comes from the cave paintings of Lascaux in southwestern France, which are on a huge scale, and renowned for the skill of the artists who created them INVENTION THE NEEDLE The eyed needle was a groundbreaking invention. As early as 30,000 years ago, late Ice Age people in Europe and Asia made needles from polished bone and ivory slivers, perforated with sharppointed ﬂints. They sewed tailored, layered garments that enabled them to work outside in freezing temperatures. It is believed that, like modern Inuits, they used cured and softened animal pelts, sewing the seams with ﬁne thread made of animal and plant ﬁber. Without tailored clothing Homo sapiens would never have settled the Eurasian steppes or colonized the Americas. OUT OF AFRICA (see pp.20–21). For the ﬁrst time, people had the skills to live in harsh environments like the Eurasian steppes, where there is little rainfall and dramatic changes in temperature with hot summers and very cold winters. Despite these skills, the Cro-Magnons appear to have moved south into sheltered locations, only moving north again as temperatures rose. Some of them constructed elaborate dwellings, like the intricate mammoth bone houses at Mezhirich in modern Ukraine (see left), built partially into the ground and roofed with hides and sod. Toward the end of the Ice Age, about 12,000 years ago, human society became more elaborate, as populations grew larger and new areas were colonized. HOW WE KNOW ADAPTING TO CHANGE Study of the genes of modern populations can help to show how the early humans colonized the planet. Mitochondrial DNA, inherited through the maternal line back to a ﬁctional “Eve” (see p.24), can be traced from an ancestral tropical African population to today. The male Y chromosome can also be used to trace through generations. From this evidence we know that 99.9 percent of the genetic code of modern humans is identical throughout the world. The differences in facial features and coloring are down to minor genetic mutations that have taken place over the last 150,000 years. Amazingly, the world’s population outside Africa can trace their genetic history back to perhaps as few as 1,000 individuals who made the journey out of that continent. Chromosome mutations can be used to show when groups arrived in different parts of the world and to construct a genetic family tree that goes back to the Ice Age. Siberia and the tundra Homo sapiens migrated north from southwestern Asia and colonized the river valleys of Central Asia around 45,000 years ago. Small bands lived permanently in the bitter cold of the steppe-tundra—a windswept landscape featuring low-growing vegetation— that extended from central Europe all the way to Siberia far to the northeast. Enduring long winters, each band anchored itself on shallow river valleys like those of the Don and Dnieper in Russia, subsisting for the most part on animals such as the saiga antelope and large game, including the arctic elephant and the mammoth. Between 35,000 and 18,000 years ago, some hunting bands moved northeastward across the steppetundra into the Lake Baikal region of Siberia and farther to the northeast. Some moved to, or formed, new groups, while others moved to ﬁnd new hunting grounds or natural resources. A variety of circumstances linked to hunting and survival contributed to the movement of tiny numbers of these late Ice Age bands across an extremely inhospitable landscape. Such natural population movements led to vast areas of the globe being colonized. Even earlier, from around c. 60,000 years ago, other groups moved east from northeast Africa and southwestern Asia into what is now India and Pakistan, and into the tropical forests of Southeast Asia. We know little of these movements—the groups probably skirted the Eurasian ½½ A hunter’s tool kit As humans traveled around the globe and experienced different environments and climates, they adapted their weapons and tools to survive. These bone tools, found in France and dating to between 18,000 and 10,000 years ago, were used by hunters in Ice Age Europe. OUT OF AFRICA AF TER (see pp.24–25). Most scientists believe that the ﬁrst Americans were Siberian hunters who crossed this bridge into Alaska at least 15,000 years ago, toward the end of the Ice Age. HOW WE KNOW FLORES FIND Excavations in 2003 at Liang Bua Cave (right) on Flores Island, in Indonesia, yielded the remains of a tiny skeleton standing about 3 ft 6 in (1 m) tall. The bones display a unique mix of primitive and more advanced characteristics, and date to about 18,000 years ago. With a small skull (below), large brow ridge, and a delicate face, Homo ﬂoresiensis had slight legs like some early hominins, yet modern teeth. Questions have been raised over whether this is a separate species or a small Homo sapiens. Others suggest this is the remnant of a Homo erectus population, or the descendant of humans who drifted to the island, then developed unique anatomical traits in isolation. Unless more remains are found, Homo ﬂoresiensis may remain an intriguing, unsolved mystery. deserts and settled in northeastern China by 25,000 years ago, after the warmer south part of the continent had been explored. ½½ Sunda, Sahul, and Asia During the late Ice Age, a huge continental shelf—an area of land connecting the continents that is now covered by higher sea levels—known as Sunda extended from mainland Southeast Asia far into the Paciﬁc. Only short stretches of open water separated New Guinea and Australia from this now-sunken land. Another landmass, Sahul, linked Australia and New Guinea themselves. Homo sapiens arrived in mainland Southeast Asia before 50,000 years ago. By 45,000 years ago—the date is controversial— a few hunting bands had crossed open water to Sahul and colonized what is now Australia. They may have crossed on primitive rafts or in dugout canoes. Modern humans had settled New Guinea by about 40,000 years ago, and crossed to the Solomon Islands by about 5,000 years later. Huntergatherers had settled throughout Australia, including Tasmania, by 30,000 years ago. This was the outer limit of human settlement of the offshore Paciﬁc until outrigger canoes (see pp.216–17) and open-water navigation techniques allowed people with domesticated animals and root crops to make the lengthy open-water passages Route south after 1000 BCE. The evidence of human life at Lake Mungo in Australia reveals details of hunter-gatherer life about 40,000 years ago. It is important as it captures a moment in time and a lifestyle that remained largely unchanged for thousands of years. Reaching the Americas Archaeologists have disputed the date of the ﬁrst settlement of the Americas for over a century. Most now agree that native Americans originated in Siberia. Genetic and dental evidence links the two areas and backs up this theory. There are also linguistic ties that hint at population movements from Siberia to Alaska. But it is not known precisely when and how the ﬁrst settlement took place. Until about 10,000 years ago, a low-lying land bridge, Beringia, joined Siberia to Alaska Oldest footprints Clovis points Hundreds of human footprints, preserved for over 20,000 years, have been found at Lake Mungo, Australia. At that time, the lake there would have been home to fish, mussels, and crayfish—all valuable food sources. North American hunters made these flint spearpoints over 11,000 years ago. They are some of the few objects found from this early period. They would have been used to kill and cut up large prey such as mammoth. More controversy surrounds the route by which the ﬁrst Americans penetrated the heart of North America, something which is thought to have taken place at least 13,000 years ago. Huge ice sheets covered most of what is now Canada. One theory favors a movement south along the continental shelves of southeast Alaska and British Columbia, which was then a landscape of steppe-tundra. Another common hypothesis claims a rapid movement south along a narrow corridor between two ice sheets, one mantling the Rocky Mountains and the other extending east toward the Atlantic. The controversy is unresolved, but we know that small numbers of early American hunter-gatherers were south of the ice sheets, and some as far south as Chile, by at least 13,000 years ago. The early Americans are best known from the remains of kills of bison, mammoth, and mastodon in North America. They are often labeled “biggame” hunters, which is misleading, as they relied on plant foods and adapted to temperate and tropical areas, as well as the bleak lands at the margins of retreating ice sheets. They did prey on indigenous species of large mammals, but, by 10,500 years ago, most of this “megafauna” was extinct, probably as a result of drier climatic conditions, perhaps speeded by some overhunting. By 10,000 years ago humans had spread to every continent (except Antarctica) and had learned the skills needed to survive in different environments. Later explorers found their “new world” already inhabited by the descendants of those ﬁrst settlers. ADAPTING TO CHANGE American Indian societies adjusted to warmer, often drier conditions, by intensifying the search for food, whether it be ﬁsh, game, or plant foods. By 4000 BCE, some foraging groups were experimenting with the planting of native grasses 36–37 ½½, such as goosefoot. LATER EXPLORATION Europeans ﬁrst came in contact with American Indians 500 years ago when they traveled the world in search of new land 230 ½½. Dutch settlers EUROPEAN SETTLERS arrived in Manhattan IN AMERICA in the 1800s and traded with the native population before establishing a permanent settlement there. AN ISOLATED CULTURE The culture of the Australian Aboriginals developed in virtually complete isolation. Like other huntergatherer societies, they have a complex relationship with their environment and elaborate spiritual beliefs. ABORIGINAL HUNTER Early evidence The archaeological record of the early Americas is sketchy. Key sites include a 12,000-year-old rock shelter in Meadowcroft, Pennsylvania, a scatter of stone tools from a site at Cactus Hill, Virginia, and a well-documented foraging camp at Monte Verde, Chile, dating to about 13,000 years ago. The ﬁrst welldeﬁned culture is that of the Clovis people, famous for their ﬁne ﬂint tools, who ﬂourished between about 11,200 and 10,900 years ago. One controversial discovery is a 9,500 yearold skull from Kennewick, Washington State, which is believed to have caucasian features and may be an indication that some of the ﬁrst settlers in America came from Europe. However, this has been the subject of much debate. INVENTION ATLATL Atlatls (from an Aztec word) are throwing sticks or spearthrowers, ﬁrst developed by Cro-Magnon hunters over 20,000 years ago. Spear throwers increase a spear’s range and velocity—useful qualities for hunters who rely on stalking to kill their prey. The simplest atlatls are hooked sticks. A weight adds stability and velocity to the throw. Such weights, often called “bannerstones,” are often found on native American sites, as they arrived with the ﬁrst inhabitants of the region. The Aztecs later used them against Spanish conquistadors (see pp.230–31). 29 4 . 5 M YA – 3 0 0 0 B C E Hunters and Gatherers Hunting and foraging for food was the only way of life for all humans up until 12,000 years ago. It was a successful lifestyle that, in some ways, had significant advantages over a life of farming. Today, only a handful of hunter-gatherer societies survive, in the Amazon Basin and Africa. e have been able to understand more about the hunter-gatherer diet from surviving artifacts such as carved stone and bone tools and decorative items (see pp.34–35), and also from hunting scenes in rock paintings, such as those at Lascaux, W B E F O R E Hunting and gathering, or foraging for food, is the fundamental way that humans and their ancestors lived. The success of the species depended on their ability to use Earth’s resources to their own advantage. HUMAN SCAVENGERS Evidence from bones and ﬂints has shown that early humans may have eaten the remains of animals killed by other predators rather than hunting for most of their food. A VARIED DIET As the ﬁrst modern humans spread around the world ¿¿ 24–29 their diet changed in response to locally available foods. A process of trial and HAZELNUTS error would have been necessary while learning what foods were good to eat and what could potentially be harmful. CHANGING TO SURVIVE Human societies throughout the world had to adapt to radically different environments. Predictability, seasonality, abundance, and distribution of food resources such as ﬁsh and nuts affected their choice to live a nomadic or more settled existence. France, and Altamira, Spain. Rare ﬁnds of wooden digging sticks and ﬂint sickle blades show that people dug for tubers and harvested wild grasses. Broken animal and ﬁsh bones, and fossil plant pollens, reveal details of the hunter-gatherer diet, as do deep shell middens (waste sites) crammed with the discarded shells of edible mollusks. In addition, the few surviving hunter-gatherer societies can tell us ﬁrst-hand about the dynamics of human existence before agriculture and animal domestication. Mammoth hunters overlooking a river valley and nearby swamps. Among the objects found at the site, which dates back to the last Ice Age, is the oldest known ceramic in the world—a “Venus” ﬁgurine (a carving shaped like a female ﬁgure) dating to between 29,000 and 25,000 BCE. Other carvings of bears, lions, and mammoths indicate a culture of some degree of sophistication. A similar date has been given to the Venus of Willendorf (see p.34) found in Austria. It has been suggested that these ﬁgurines represent fertility and the success of the hunter-gatherer group Gathered food they are associated with. Wild plant foods, whether grasses, nuts, or Most huntergatherer bands were constantly on the move, camping near lakes and other strategic locations tubers, were the dominant staple for most during the times Stone age transition ancient hunter-gatherer societies. In most societies, women did the gathering. of year when a The line between nomadic particular plant food hunting and gathering ripened or game was close by. At Dolní and settled farming is not always clear. Vestonice, in what is now the Czech Many communities may have stayed Republic, mammoth hunters lived in in one place while hunting, or moved oval bone-and-timber huts (see p.26) around and cultivated crops. Ten thousand years ago, bands of Mesolithic (Middle Stone Age) ﬁshers The hunter’s equipment and hunters lived by the Baltic Sea, The earliest weapons took the form of simple flint arrowwhich at that stage was newly heads. As hunters became more sophisticated, weapons uncovered by retreating ice. Their diet grew more specialized. The harpoon point, below, is mainly consisted of ﬁsh, supplemented carved from bone and suited to fishing. Arrows would have been used about 8,000 years ago for hunting. by birds, plant foods, and game, caught serrated edge HARPOON POINT FISHING SPEAR twine binding ﬂints stuck in groove of wooden shaft FLINT ARROW ﬂight of duck feathers MESOLITHIC ARROW reproduction shaft 30 using stone-tipped arrows, antler harpoons, and wooden spears. Many groups in this area occupied the same settlements for generations, living along shorelines that shifted constantly. Another site that has revealed details about a community that was hunting and gathering while on the move throughout the year is Star Carr in northeastern England. In 9000 BCE, a small group of Mesolithic people settled on waterlogged ground by a lake there. The wet conditions preserved ﬂint tools, the remains of the elk and red deer they hunted, and the barbed spear points they used to kill them. Teeth and seeds tell us the site was occupied every year from March to June. These people adapted successfully to a rapidly changing post–Ice Age world by H U N T E R S A N D G AT H E R E R S INVENTION BOW AND ARROW Bows and arrows appeared during the late Ice Age and came into widespread use by about 10,000 BCE. At ﬁrst, these would have been simple wooden bows used with stone- or bone-tipped arrows. The composite bow, made of sinews and bone or wood laminated together, is known from 1500 BCE, and reached North America in the ﬁrst millennium CE. INUIT BOW AF TER Some hunter-gatherer groups had turned to farming by 10,000 BCE. Others continued to develop and innovate. WHY NOT FARM? From about 10,000 BCE there was a general transition from the huntergatherer lifestyle to farming. Some groups continued to forage for food, perhaps partly due to conditions in the part of the world they lived in, making growing crops HAIDA HOUSE or staying in one place impossible. Another reason may be that farming needs more time spent devoted to food production and carries a greater risk of starvation if crops fail. Some groups, such as the Haida people of North America and the Aboriginals in Australia, seem to have retained the hunter-gatherer lifestyle. Hunting in the field maintaining a ﬂexible way of life. Lepenski Vir in modern-day Serbia was also repeatedly used over many generations and has yielded a lot of information about a culture between two lifestyles. The site, used from as early as 6000 BCE, was situated on the banks of the Danube River, and the group’s reliance on ﬁshing was heavy. The ﬁsh sculptures found there (see pp.34–35) are signiﬁcant early works of art and may be symbols of a religious cult, such was the importance of ﬁsh to this culture. The people lived in structures whose wide ends faced the river. Revisited for several hundred years, Lepenski Vir provides a portrait of a gradual changeover from nomadic life to more permanent settlement. The seminomadic lifestyle of Lepenski Vir meant that people lived there for part of the year while also traveling to other areas. Finds at the site discovered some distance away provide the evidence for this. A modern San hunter takes aim with bow and arrow. His success depends on meticulous stalking to approach his quarry at close range. Many early hunters used vegetable poisons on their arrows, pursuing wounded animals for hours to kill them before predators struck. A continuing way of life in South Africa. These people, well known for their rock art (see pp.32– 33), were the distant ancestors of the modern-day San hunter-gatherers, tiny numbers of whom still live in the Kalahari Desert of Botswana. Modernday San have long been in contact with farmers, but the ancestry of their culture extends back to ancient times. As in other traditional hunter-gather cultures, the women are responsible for much of the food collection and hunting smaller animals, while the men hunt large prey. Five thousand years ago, much of East and southern Africa was home to nomadic hunter-gatherer bands, which subsisted on a wide variety of animal and plant foods. Some sites, such as Gwisho in Central Africa, have revealed well-preserved wooden arrowheads and digging sticks, as well as traces of brush shelters. Many of these groups regularly visited rock shelters, including those at Nachikufu in present-day Zambia, Pomongwe in Zimbabwe, and Oakhurst rock shelter CULTURAL COMPLEXITY In areas of exceptionally rich food resources, much more elaborate hunter-gather societies developed after about 3000 years ago. In the Paciﬁc Northwest of North America, for example, rich salmon and coastal ﬁsheries and abundant lumber led to the development of complex societies under powerful chieftains. INNOVATION By 2000 years ago, the Norton people in North America had developed sophisticated art styles and an elaborate harpoon weaponry for hunting seals. By 1000 CE, the ancestors of the modern-day Inuit had settled in Canada. MODERN INUIT SETTLEMENT 31 4 . 5 M YA – 3 0 0 0 B C E B E F O R E There is little evidence that early humans before Neanderthals buried their dead or believed in a higher power. NEANDERTHAL BELIEF Neanderthals ¿¿ 19 ﬁrst buried their dead at least 60,000 years ago. CONSCIOUS THOUGHT Homo sapiens is unique in thinking and planning ahead, and in conceptualizing ideas. Such cognitive abilities ﬁrst appeared around 50,000 years ago, and perhaps even earlier ¿¿ 21. A wealth of grave goods Two 25,000-year-old hunter-gatherers buried in Sungir near Vladimir in Russia lie surrounded by spears, bracelets, brooches, and thousands of ivory beads. The Spirit World Ever since humans became conscious of their own frailty and mortality, they have sought the answers to the eternal mysteries of life. Theories about the purpose of our existence and questions about what happens after we die will always be a part of the human experience. t is difﬁcult to know what the beliefs of humans were before the advent of writing. However, from the material remains left to us, we can piece together some of the ideas of the particular culture that created them. The main ways in which we know about prehistoric religion today are from images painted on cave walls, and from objects found in graves (grave goods). Death is often I thought of as a link to another world, and the practices surrounding burial are always signiﬁcant. The art of early humans found in caves and on bone carvings are indications of their beliefs outside of their everyday existence. From about 40,000 years ago, the Cro-Magnons of western Europe developed a ﬂamboyant artistic tradition that survives on cave walls and on beautifully carved and engraved antler tools (see pp.20–21). The cave engravings and paintings depict a wide range of animals, some of them long extinct, such as the mammoth and woolly rhinoceros; others, like wild horses, European bison, and reindeer are more familiar today. The animals on the cave walls reﬂect a harsh late Ice Age environment where people survived THE SPIRIT WORLD Aboriginal dreamtime for much of the year on meat. This reliance on hunting may have been inspired rituals that became the focus of cave art. By contrast, human ﬁgures in cave paintings are rare, and when they do occur are highly stylized or masked. Impressions of human hands and undecipherable signs do, however, appear on the walls of caves including Altamira in Spain, and Chauvet, Niaux, and Lascaux in France. Australian Aboriginals enjoy a complex relationship with the supernatural realm that permeates their living world. Their art, such as this example from a cave wall, depicts mythic animals and humans and forms an important part of their spiritual beliefs—known as the Dreamtime. Magic and ceremony Generations of archaeologists have argued over the meaning of CroMagnon cave art, which ﬂourished until about 14,000 years ago. One theory is that the paintings were done by shamans (see box). In many huntergatherer societies, shamans were believed to act as intermediaries with the spiritual world, using trances and hallucinogenic substances to pass into the realm of the supernatural. They were thought to communicate with ancestors, as well as retelling stories, and legends. They also passed ritual knowledge from one generation to the next. Late Ice Age shamans may have conducted ceremonies in caves, often painted with murals, where the acoustics lend themselves to chanting and singing, and in other less accessible caves far from daylight, where they may have felt closer to powers outside their immediate environment. Surviving clues In cultures that have survived up to more recent times we may ﬁnd further clues to past beliefs. The American Indians and Australian Aboriginals live in worlds where the living and supernatural realms are treated as a continuation of one another. Both enjoyed elaborate ceremonial lives that included initiation ceremonies and seasonal rituals, as well as HOW WE KNOW THE SHAMAN TRADITION Shamans—doctors, priests, or medicine men—still exist in some cultures, including this tribe from the Sepik Region of Papua New Guinea (see right), where the shaman is believed to possess supernatural powers. By observing their practices and rituals, it is possible to draw some useful parallels with early societies. Archaeologist David Lewis-Williams argues that much of the cave art of the San huntergatherers of southern Africa was painted by shamans in hallucinogenic trances. These types of drug- or trance-induced experiences are still seen today in a few societies. commemorations of ancestral spirits. Hunter-gatherer societies that we know about today are almost universal in possessing complex beliefs and world views that are intimately connected to the natural world around them. Although we do not know that people in ancient cultures shared these rituals and beliefs, some of the artifacts and clues we have indicate this as a possibility. Other forms of art provide further clues. The female ﬁgurines of hunter-gatherer societies (see p.30–31) may have been made as objects of worship, and related to a fertility cult. Carved antlers and bones similarly may have been connected with religious belief. Grave goods One of the earliest and most lavish burials found was in Sungir, Russia. The sheer richness and diversity of the ar