Mesolithic, from Greek, “mesos” (middle) and “Lithos” (stone), the Mesolithic is considered as an intermediate bridge between the Paleolithic and the Neolithic.
Mesolithic: Definition and dating
This period is characterized by the development and improvement of superior paleolithic techniques and by offering the first timely samples of the “Neolithic Revolution”.
However, this period is established with a general nature, as prehistory can cover different periods depending on the regions because many of them have remained in Neolithic when some have already succeeded in entering the metal age.
Thus, the Middle East begins earlier than in Europe when it was still in Magdalen. Its date range between 10,000 and 7,000 years. B.C. In Europe, this period begins around 7,000 BC.
From the point of view of life, the Mesolithic does not bring much change in the previous period. Only improving the quality of life should be highlighted on the basis of better food-making techniques and the beginning of a period of withdrawal from glaciation, which gave rise to a more favorable climate.
Rooms are no longer built in rock, and huts are grouped into small villages.
The most widespread feature of the Mesolithic period was the use of small stone tools called microlith. These are objects that rarely exceed three centimeters and where the sculpture technique has reached maximum perfection.
In the field of technology, we find some tools dedicated to fishing, the finality, and utility of which is surprising. The emergence of these fishing gears should have been linked to the gradual disappearance of large mammals at the end of the last ice age, which has led to an increase in fish consumption.
Also, a large number of objects dedicated to personal decoration appear in Mesolithic. But, above all, it highlights the domestication of species such as goat and sheep, which signifies the first signs of animal economics.
Agriculture in Mesolithic
As far as agriculture is concerned, it is not certain that it was practiced in a rigorous way, ie the planting of a seed whose fruit was harvested later, but it seems that the Mesolithic people had the habit of making massive wild cereal collections.
However, during this period the important change from the Paleolithic to the Neolithic economy was made; communities begin to produce food. For this reason, this stage of human history has first begun in the Middle East, where natural resources have allowed human groups to become sedentary.
The main species of grain and domestic animals already axing in the wild in ecosystems in the Near East.
In fact, about 7,000-8,000 years ago, harvester-hunters already knew how the life cycles of plants and animals were working, they did not nurture them for thousands of years, so it would not be difficult to adapt to the new times.
The evolution of agriculture did not emerge immediately but was a gradual process of harvesting, hunting and fishing activities, which are currently practiced by some primitive peoples and which was most likely established in domesticated animals.
There is evidence that the holdings have been mixed, combining agriculture and livestock. Domestication served two basic functions: ensuring the supply of meat without hunting and using animals as labor.
It is known from the archaeological find that the dog was the first domestic animal 8,000 years ago, and later the sheep, the ox, and the pig. Thus, a ” Neolithic revolution ” was produced when agriculture and animal domestication were discovered to be perfect, combined to survive in new sedentary living.
On the other hand, in the field of art, the paintings of the Mediterranean area should be highlighted, with some specific features that will need to be developed throughout the Neolithic Age.