Mesolithic Age: Meaning & Characteristics
It is a concept that has gained widespread acceptance that the Mesolithic age is the age that followed the Old Stone Age. In the history books, the old stone age is often referred to as the Palaeolithic age. This is simply another name for the stone age.
There is also an age known as the Mesolithic age, which is also frequently referred to as the Microlithic age. In addition to these names, there is also an age known as the Paleolithic age. This is because the Mesolithic age was only a transitional time between the Neolithic age and the Palaeolithic age. The Neolithic age came first, followed by the Palaeolithic age.
This period has been determined to be anywhere between 8000 BC and 4000 BC by geologists as well as archaeologists. BC stands for “before Christ.” In terms of technology, the Mesolithic period is distinguished by the widespread usage of mircoliths, which, to put it another way, can be described as little pointed and sharpened stone tools.
The oldest evidence for the domestication of animals like as the cow, the horse, and several other fowl and agricultural animals has been found in the regions of Adamgarh in Madhya Pradesh and Bagar in Rajasthan. Mesolithic artwork and paintings can be found in abundance in locations such as Bhimbetka, Adamgarh, Patap-garh, and Mirzapur.
The main characteristics of Mesolithic age or period are as explained under:
Tools and implements: The stone tools that had been developed during the Palaeolithic period were continued to be utilised by people who lived during the Mesolithic age. In spite of this, they were able to make some fresh progress when they added some tools made from bone and ivory to their collection. This was a successful move. On the other hand, the instruments that they developed had a tendency to be on the smaller side. Stones and animal bones were used to make a wide variety of cutting devices, including knives, blades, chisels, spares, daggers, burins, and so on. These cutting implements were employed for a number of purposes. These instruments were utilised quite regularly.
Food and Dress:- Meat and vegetables were the two principal components of the diet of humans who lived during the Mesolithic period. Vegetables were also a significant part of the diet. They obtained their food through a combination of hunting and gathering throughout their daily life. Their food consisted of several types of wild roots, as well as wild fruits, fish, and honey, as well as tortoise, deer, and reindeer. Mesolithic people, like Palaeolithic people, wrapped their bodies with the skin of animals that they had hunted. These creatures included both large and small game.
Houses: They continued to reside in the primitive dwellings they had always had, which comprised of caves, branches, and grass; as a result, they did not make any headway in terms of bettering their living conditions because they did not change their housing situation.
Religion: It is impossible to talk with any degree of authority regarding the religion that was practised by individuals living in the Mesolithic period. On the other hand, the skeleton was discovered in a crouching position, which indicated that they had buried their remains in red ocher.
Art: There have been several paintings uncovered that date back to the Mesolithic period. These paintings portray both humans and animals. These paintings portray a diverse assortment of human activities, including, amongst other things, hunting, fishing, sexual unions, birthing, and funeral rites.