early england from hunter-gatherers to the romans

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    From Hunter-gatherers to the Romans

  • The evolution of the British Isles

    The geological stages of the formation of the island (reflected in the present landscape)

  • 2700 mln. years ago

    Volcanic eruptions

    Rocks in the Scottish Highlands

  • mln. years ago-

    seas covered the south of Britain

  • Later

    alternation of floods and drying outs (growing forests, swamps)rottening of vegetationpeat formed and compressedcoal in S.Wales, Yorkshire, Kent, N.England

  • 280-200 mln. years ago

    Britain was a desert

  • 150 mln. Years ago

    plants and animals appeared again

  • 70 mln. Years ago

    seas at the highest level Britain was blanketed by the fragments of algae CHALK(up to 500 m thick in some places white cliffs of the s. coast)

  • 2,5 mln. years ago succession of ice ages (~12)Average temp. 6-9 C(As far as to London)Signs of erosion in the Lake District, Snowdonia, Scottish Highlands


  • Old Stone Age (Paleolithic)70,000-8000 BC Alternation of warm and ice-age conditionsFor most Britain is glaciatedSea level is low. Land-bridges between England and Europe. People could walk to and from the continent.Hunters-gatherers. Lived in caves. No cave artThe only evidence stone tools (flint axes)

  • Middle Stone Age (Mesolithic)8300 3500 BCClimate warmer, glaciers retreated. Britain is an island.Hunters-gatherers started to settle for longer periods in Britain.Communities began to hunt in localised areasRegional trends

  • New Stone Age (Neolithic)3500-2500BCIntroduction of agriculture (cultivation of crops and domestication of animals) Permanent settlementTradeClearance of forests Depended on communal effortMines (to get flint)A cult of the dead communal burials

  • Bronze Age2500-700 BCIncreased inequality between the rich and the poorCommunal burials replaced with individual gravesBeaker PeopleChiefdoms and ornaments of power Farming (horse-riding equipment. Wheel?)

  • Stone CirclesOver 900 in the British IslesThe original purpose is unclearHypotheses:For ceremoniesAs trading placesAs ancient observatoriesLocation : the Lake District, the Lands End and Wiltshire Downs (Avebury, Silbury Hill and Stonehenge)


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