Mesolithic or Middle Stone Age

1. Falls roughly from 10000BC to 6000BC. Transitional phase between the Palaeolithic and Neolithic age.

Mesolithic tools

2. The hunting-gathering pattern of life though continued but they show a tendency to settle for longer periods in an area. Therefore domestication of animals, horticulture and primitive cultivation started

3. There has been a shift from big animal hunting to small animal hunting and fishing. Therefore they started using tiny stone artifacts, often not more than five centimeters in size. The use of bow and arrow began during this period. The characteristic tools of this period are Microliths– pointed, cresconic blades, scrapers, etc. all made of stone.

4. Occasionally, burials of the dead along with some microliths and shells seem to have been practiced. Animal bones are found in these sites include dog, deer, boar and ostrich. The paintings and engravings found at the rock shelters give an idea about the social life and economic activities of Mesolithic people.

5. Some important mesolithic sites are: Langhanj in Gujarat, Adamgarh in Madhya Pradesh, Birhanpur in West Bengal, Belan valley and sarai Nahar Rai in UP, Bagor in Rajasthan, Tinnevelly in Tamil Nadu, etc..

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