Lithic Ages-Paleolithic, Mesolithic and Neolithic period
Time line for development of our civilization may be approximated as follows:
1. Paleolithic: 2 million BC -10000 BC
2. Mesolithic: 10000 BC – 8000 BC
3. Neolithic: 8000 BC to 3500 BC
4. Chalcolithic age: 3500 BC – 700 BC
5. Indus Valley Civilisation: 2800 BC – 1900 BC
6. Rigvedic Era: 1500-1100 BC
7. Later Vedic Era: 1000 – 600 BC8. Mahajanapadas: 500-300 BC9. Foreign rulers: 200 BC – 200 AD10. Guptas- 300-500 AD11. Harsha-600 AD12. Prophet Muhammad-700 AD13. Medieval era-800-1600 AD14. Modern era-1700 AD onwards.
1. Paleolithic Age: Stone tools used in this period were very basic and unrefined e.g. Axe and Chopper. People were nomads. Depended of hunting and food gathering. Agriculture was unknown. Fire was discovered.Important Sites-i. Hathnora Narmada Valleyii. Pallavaram, Chennaiiii. Bhimbetkaiv. Adamgarhv. Soan or Sohan Valley, Punjabvi. Belan Valley , Mirzapur District, UP (near Allahabad)vii. Didwana, Rajasthanviii. Bhimbetka, MP.
2. Mesolithic Age: Stone tools become small in size. Therefore this period is also characterized by microliths. Climate became warmer. This results into increase in grassland. With increase in grassland no. of grass eating animals increase. As the no. these animals increases hunting activity and knowledge about these animals also started increasing which leads to Domestication of animals. Fishing activity started.
- Bagor, Rajasthan
- Langang, Gujarat
3. Neolithic:Stone tools were polished. Agriculture started (Wheat, Barley, rice etc.). Pottery was invented to store graineries. To make pottery wheels were made which later evolved into wheels for carts. People started to settle. Houses were made from sun dry bricks. Important sites:
- Maski, Brahmagiri, Tekkalakota in Karnataka
- Paiyampatti in Tamil Nadu
- Piklihal and Hallur in AP
- Garo hills in Meghalaya
From Burzahom site it was found that domestic dogs were buried with their masters. People in neolithic period also used bone tools. Bone tools were found from Chirand near Patna, Bihar.In Mehrgarh site wheat, cotton and mud bricks were found.
4. Chalcolithic: Also known as copper age. Copper was introduced first time. Sites are found in Rajasthan(ahar, gilund), Malwa, Kaytha in Madhya pradesh, Western Maharashtra(Jorwe, nemasa, Diamabad) and also in Southern and Eastern India. Agriculture developed resulting into sedentary life. Domestication of animals. They had knowledge of crop rotation and irrigation. Knew art of smelting copper, used painted pottery. No art of writing known. Female figure of clay found, rare indication of male gods. There was burial practices. Terracotta bull found.
5. Megalithic period:
Emerged in peninsular India. The graves were covered with large rocks. Hence, the name ‘Megalith’. Iron implements were found. Roman coins and pottery were also found indicating Indo- Roman trade. Important sites were Brahmgiri and Maski in Karnataka.