The Art of the Mesolithic Era
Updated on March 25, 2011 SubtleMoon moreContact Author The Mesolithic Era and Art
The Mesolithic Era is also known because the “Middle Stone Age” because it links the older, Upper Paleolithic Era otherwise known as the “Old Stone Age” to the Neolithic Era which is also known because the “New Stone Age”. The Mesolithic Era covered approximately 2,000 years and came about between 10,000 and 5,000 years ago. The earth was going though temperature changes during this time, glaciers were receding and a number of the larger mammals became extinct. Forests were soon established across northern Germany and Poland, southern Sweden and Norway, and all of Denmark. The changes in temperature and the extinction of assorted large animals forced humankind make lifestyle changes as well. Humans went from nomadic, hunter gatherers that followed animal migrations for food search more for edible plants and to live near the sea, lakes and streams for fishing and to hunt what sea life was available to them. This era also saw the beginnings of the domestication of food animals. The people of the Mesolithic Era tended to settle into small communities and stay in one place. Life became more sedentary for the Mesolithic people. The art became utilitarian and was created with a purpose to be used.
Breaking News! Mesolithic Peoples Lived in Texas!
Texas Find Turns Back Clock On Settlers In America
A newly excavated site in central Texas contains evidence that the first human settlers within the Lone Star state arrived greater than 15,000 years ago. That is more than 2,000 years earlier than scientists originally thought.
Read the entire story by clicking on the photo!
Late Mesolithic Pottery A Site Showing Excellent Mesolithic Art Photos
Stock photos can give you great views, but don’t copy unless you purchase
This is a site that has some excellent photos of Mesolithic art, sculpture and pottery. However, it is a stock photo site and you aren’t permitted to copy or use any of those images unless you purchase the precise to do so. I have included this site because of the exquisite views of Mesolithic art that are contained here. Please have a look, your time will probably be well spent. Click on the link below to view:
The Lessing Photo Archive
Flint Spear Heads The “Microlith” Era
Flint knapping becomes important
Because metal and metalworking had not yet come about, flint was the mainstay for weapons and tools. The Mesolithic people became very skilled in working flint in arrow heads, spear heads, knives and scrapers. We will assume that the villages who had the perfect flint knappers were able to use the products as trade goods and to create some form of wealth. Archeologists have found many Mesolithic Era dig sites strewn about with flint points, tools and the waste from flint knapping. Thus, the Mesolithic Era is not only called the “Middle Stone Age” but it is also called the “Microlith” Era as well.
Microliths were also used as a cutting edge for a bigger spear head fabricated from bone, antler or wood. The smaller, razor-sharp pieces were embedded along the edges of the spear point to present it greater cutting and piercing abilities.
Flint Knapping was Important to the Mesolithic People
Flint Knapping Great Books on Flint Points and Tools
Arrowpoints, Spearheads, margin:0px !important;” /> Arrowheads margin:0px !important;” /> Flintknapping: Making and Understanding Stone Tools Buy Now Primitive Technology: A Book of Earth Skills Buy Now Fish basket trap from the Meaolithic Era Types of Art Created by Mesolithic People
A whole change from the Upper Paleolithic Era
Bow and Arrows – The bow and arrow were invented throughout the Mesolithic Era. The spear thrower, which was invented within the Late Upper Paleolithic Era was probably beginning to be phased out because it was more for hunting large game, and much of the massive game was becoming extinct.
Flint Knapping – Flint knapping for arrow and spear points was crucial. Other tools corresponding to scrapers for cleaning hides and knives were also made from flint.
Pottery for Food Storage – The primary fired pottery was created to be used as food storage. The clay was fired over an open fire during this time. There were also some small sculptures created of clay that have been found.
Small Sculpture- Small sculptures were carved from stone and a few have been found fabricated from fired clay.
Rock Art – Art moved from inside on cave walls to outside on cliff walls and rock outcroppings. The subjects were mostly people in various groups or hunting scenes. Lots of the paintings use stick-like figures and red coloring. Researchers believe that these painting represented mostly religious practices and / or were used to record various groups and communities. The colorful paintings of the Upper Paleolithic Era gave way to stick-like drawings of groups of people painted mostly in red.
Basketry – There may be fossil evidence of wicker fish traps and nets utilized by Mesolithic fisherman. Head dresses made of woven plant fiber and shells have also been present in burial sites.
Jewelry and Ornamentation – the Mesolithic people had belts and necklaces made with beads of shell and animal teeth. The females were buried with “jewelry” on and the men were mainly buried with flint tools.
Giclee Print”>Knapped Flint Tools
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Doggerland Doggerland – Where Many Artifacts are Bring Found in Europe
Now submerged in the North Sea
Doggerland is what many archeologists and anthropologists call the area where various new artifacts from the Mesolithic Era are being found. This was a land area that contained rich soil for growing and supported many wild edible plants in addition to providing a considerable amount of shoreline for fishing and gathering from the sea.
Doggerland was a land mass that connected Great Britain to Europe and extended to the the east coast of the Netherlands. It also included the western coasts of Germany and Denmark. This area was said to be the richest hunting and fishing ground in Europe at that time, so of course early man would have settled there.
Doggerland became submerged in the North Sea once the glaciers of the last ice age melted around 6500 B.C., although scientist believe that a part of Doggerland remained as an island (now called the “Dogger Bank”) until about 5,000 B.C. when the water level rose considerably.
In 1931, a fishing boat discovered a barbed antler point which created interest in the realm and since that time archeologist and discovered many artifacts from under the sea on this area commonly referred to as the Dogger Bank.
Read more about Doggerland at Wikipedia
Mesolithic Era Art – Photos found around the web
Click thumbnail to view full-sizeEarly Jomon Pottery 10,000 – 8,000 B.C.Early Mesolithic Tools from EstoniaMesolithic Rock ArtBhimbetka, Rock Art In Mesolithic Period (India)Rock paintings belonging to the Mesolithic period found near Bundi in Rajasthan.Mesolithic Rock ArtMesolithic Rock art in Gilf Kebir, EgyptEarly Mesolithic Rock ArtEarly Mesolithic Rock ArtEarly Mesolithic Rock Art Kamennaya Mogila Some other Mesolithic Art Sites
Click on the name of the positioning to read more about each
Kamennaya Mogila – Located in the Ulraine near Melitopol. Carved and scratched depictions of mammals near a recent excavation of a Mesolithic settlement.
Gobustan (Kobystan) – Located between the good Caucasian Range and the Caspian Sea. Numerous petroglyphs including groups of people, bulls, deer , predators and even reptiles and insects.
Zaraut-Kamar – Located in Uzbekistan within the lower range of the Kugitang mountains. Ocher paintings of 4 groups of depictions of anthropomorphs and bulls.
Bhimbetka – Located in North Central India. The location contains numbers rock paintings on sandstone of groups of people and animals.
Mesolithic Art Books
A very good book on just Mesolithic Art is difficult to seek out. Many times you will have to buy an art history book to search out Mesolithic Art.
Hunters in Transition: Mesolithic Societies of Temperate Eurasia and their Transition to Farming (New Directions in Archaeology) Buy Now Mesolithic Europe Buy Now Mesolithic Britain (Shire archaeology series) Buy Now First Farmers: The Origins of Agricultural Societies Buy Now More Art from the Mesolithic Era – Mesolithic art found around the online
Click thumbnail to view full-sizeMesolithic rock paintingSculpture from Lepenski VirLepenski Vir is the name of the situation where a series of Mesolithic villages were built on a high sandy terrace of the Danube River, on the Serbian bank of the Iron Gates Gorge. This site was the placement of at the least six village occupations, beginnLate Mesolithic (Flint Tools 4500 BC)The skeleton of an 18 year old male wears a shell hat and necklace in a burial at the Mesolithic site of Arene Candide in Italy.Pendant from the Sunghir archaeological site situated near of Vladimir city, not removed from MoscowThis ‘medallion’ probably belonged to the building level of Lepenski VirKhartum Variant potteryLascaux, FranceMesolithic Rock Painting Popular
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Very interesting stuff, particularly on Stone Age Texas. I am sure the story of the first Native Americans has got more surprises in store.
Teri Villars 6 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona
Cool lens. I’ve lensrolled this to my CAVEMAN WRITING DECIPHERED! AMAZING DISCOVERIES! Not really true stuff, just just a little satire to pass the time…hope you enjoy it!
Blackspaniel1 6 years ago
Michelle Collins 6 years ago from Florida
Very informative! Nicely done! *Blessed*
ShamanicShift 6 years ago
I discovered intriguing stuff here and learned.
Mona 7 years ago from Iowa
This was an interesting read and quite informative. I see that though this isn’t your first lens you might be relative new to it, so welcome from a squidoo greeter. I am looking forward to what more from you. 🙂