Thousands of years ago, our distant ancestors killedsmall animals with their bare hands, and large animals were stoned. Over time, they began to come up with more sophisticated hunting tools and came to the conclusion that they invented the bow and arrow. They allowed to kill prey from a long distance, so that during hunting trips the ancient people sharply increased the chances of survival. But when exactly did they get the idea to pull the rope on a curved stick and use the string pulling force to shoot with a sharp-pointed arrow? This question remained unanswered for a long time, but artifacts found in caves on the southeastern coast of India opened the curtain of this mystery.
The study was conducted in Fa Hien Cave, which is also known as Pahiyangala. It is located in Sri Lanka. According to legend, the cave got its name in part of the Buddhist monk Faxian.
Ancient bow and arrow
The discovery of Australian scientists was described inscience journal Science Advances. While visiting the Fa Hien Cave, which is also known as Pahiyangala, the researchers discovered many beads and tools for sewing clothes. But the most important discovery for them was the discovery of arrowheads, whose age was estimated at 48 thousand years. This is currently the oldest evidence of the use of bow and arrow. We can assume that in the territory of modern Eurasia, our distant ancestors invented this hunting weapon at this time.
In total, the researchers were able to find130 tips made of stone and bones. All of them were clearly used, because on their surface there are microscopic lesions and traces of ropes with which they were attached to wooden sticks. The fact that the tips were used to make arrows, scientists are unambiguously sure - for copies they are too small in size. Most likely, ancient people began to use spears a little later, when a cold climate formed on the territory of Eurasia and our ancestors needed to hunt large animals.
In 2016, author Hi-News.ru author Sergey Gray shared a video on how to make a bow and arrow in the wild
How exactly did they come up with the invention of arrows,It's not clear yet. It may well be that the inhabitants of the Pahiyangala Cave borrowed the technology of making bow and arrows from other tribes. The true inventors of these throwing weapons may be the ancient inhabitants of modern Africa. Judging by the finds made earlier, arrows with stone tips weighed 50 grams, and with bone - 25 grams. The main advantage of the bow and arrow was the range. It is still unknown how far the arrows made by ancient people flew. But modern options shoot at about 250 meters.
At long distances, the bow and arrow were not particularlyuseful. But this weapon was relatively silent - only a creaky bowstring could make a sound. With proper dexterity, hunters could sneak up on animals at very close range and with one shot pierce the victim through and through. In general, bow and arrow is a very important invention that contributed to the development of ancient people.
The life of ancient people
In addition to arrowheads, in Pahiyangala Cave29 bone tools were found. They could be used to process hides and plant fibers - so ancient people could make fishing nets. Since the cave is located near the humid jungle, the ancient people hardly needed clothes. Although, it is likely that they used all kinds of capes to protect against insects. Researchers also found seashells with holes made in them. Most likely, they were used as jewelry.
While the bow and arrow were inventedancient people 48 thousand years ago, they began to hunt much earlier. This, at least, is indicated by the drawings on the walls of the numerous caves in which they lived. For example, on the wall of one of the caves of the Indonesian island of Borneo, a 4.5-meter image of hunters and animals was recently found. The age of this work of art is estimated at 40,000 years. It is noteworthy that the figure features 14 figures, which include animals and people with animal features. That this image can mean can be read in this material.
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Also in the spring of 2020, I wrote material aboutwhat our distant ancestors ate. There, I briefly described their daily lives and hunting methods for huge animals like mammoths. If you liked this article, then this material is clearly to your liking!