In the Neanderthal era, there was the so-called “reasonable man” (Latin Homo Sapiens). Homo Sapiens is the ancestor of today’s man. Scientists believe it appeared late in the Upper Neolithic. At the same time, Homo Sapiens occurs in various parts of the world. It adapts quickly to the environment. He made rough tents or shacks for sleeping. He collected food, which was his main interest. He taught himself to make tools and weapons and to burn fire. Over time, the new man mastered better ways to collect food and expanded his menu. Men were hunting animals and fishing with their hands. Women and children harvested berries, fruits and nutritious roots. They learned to store food supplies during periods of bad weather. They started making simple meals. The new man improved the quality of his tool and increased the number of tools. He perfected new forms of tools and instruments, which he made of bone, flint, stone and wood. Archaeological discoveries show that new techniques have been spread around the world. About 15,000 BC (until the end of the Upper Stone Age) man had an arrow, a sword, an ax, and tools with a handle for agriculture and crafts, fishing harpoons, needles for sewing linen and wool.
When the man found shells, ivory and precious stones, he began making jewelry (bone remains and paintings found in caves around the world). This progress indicates the superiority of the new man over his ancestors. The new man felt the need to express himself. We find the beginnings of art represented very roughly in the cave drawings. These are pictures of the environment of the new man and what was important to him then in life. Carved figures of animals were found in the Sahara because living conditions existed in the Sahara at that time.
Extraordinary works of art (paintings) were discovered in the caves of Spain and France (Altamira Cave). In the cave of Altamira was found drawings of bison in life size, made 35000 years ago. The most famous examples of early art were found in the caves of Lascaux (France) where horses, bison, oxen and deer can be seen painted on the walls of the cave. These pictures were done in yellow, red and black, which is proof that the first person knew and used some of the colors.
By the end of the Upper Paleolithic, a new man had organized small communities on Earth. He chose who to live with and lived in some kind of family community. This is how families today are one of the main features of civilization.
Mesolithic is the middle stone age of human development. Compared to the Paleolithic, the Mesolithic was a short period. It is characterized by rapid progress in precision and the use of stone tools. This progress has not been the same in all areas. In the fertile semi-arid belt stretching from the foot of the hills of northwestern Iraq to the Persian Gulf, the meolithic began about 10,000 years ago and lasted about three thousand years. This era lasted a little longer in northern and western Europe as the influence of civilizations from that period slowly reached northwestern Europe. 7000 BC, a new man has lived in separate tribal communities for generations. He had plenty of time to get to know his surroundings, learn how to use them, and appreciate the nature of nature. He observes that water helps fruits and grain to grow.
Photo: Altamira Cave (Salamnder Region, Spain)
He also observes that the sun turns mud into a solid and resilient substance, creating the first mud huts. The then new man was on the threshold between pre-history and civilization. He becomes ready to raise livestock and produce food. This is one of the most important steps in the development of humanity.
The Neolithic or the New Stone Age (because stone tools were already developed) man engages in farming, growing food plants and growing animals. In China and India, rice is grown, while in North and South America, beans and potatoes are grown. Barley and wheat were grown in the pldon belt. The crop cultivation technique has expanded. In the Neolithic we see the first form of professional occupation-farming.
The new man adapts his lifestyle to farming. He domesticates goats, cattle and sheep so he doesn’t have to hunt them all the time. Soon one crop changes to another, one animal changes to another. This idea of exchange and trade is rapidly expanding, leading to the attachment of man to other people. Now the new man has various tools and tools that allow him to live an organized life. Still, he continues to fight disease, nature and wild beasts. At this stage it can be said that the new man has become civilized.
The Sumerians were the earliest civilized people known by history.