Date of Neolithic Revolution
c8,000 BCE
Why would the Neolithic Revolution be called the Neolithic transition?
It took hundreds / thousands of years to fully diffuse / be practiced
Who first discovered agriculture?
The first method of farming
slash-and-burn agriculture
Define slash-and-burn agriculture
Slashing bark and burning trees to ground
Effects of slash-and-burn agriculture on soil
Initially very fertile soil, became infertile after a few years.
Effects of slash-and-burn agriculture on spread of agriculture
Diffused agriculture as people had to migrate every so often due to infertile soil
The second great discovery of the Neolithic Era
Animal breeding
What two things allowed humans to be stationary
Breeding and farming
What determined the crops being domesticated?
Climate and type of plants present
Two examples of grains
Wheat and barley
What was first cultivated in Mesopotamia
Grains: wheat and barley
What was first cultivated in East Asia along the Yangzi River and Huang He rivers?
Rice and soybeans
What was first cultivated in sub-Saharan Africa?
Yams and sorghum
What was first cultivated in Southeast Asia
taro and bananas
What was first cultivated in the Americas
maize, beans, and potatoes
Effects of agriculture in regards to population
Population growth at an exponential rate
Population - 10,000 BCE
4 million
Population - 5,000 BCE
5 million
Population - 3,000 BCE
14 million
Population - 2,000 BCE
27 million
Population - 1,000 BCE
50 million
Population - 500 BCE
100 million
What enabled food surpluses?
Creation of permanent villages, tools.
What did food surpluses enable?
Job specialization
What enabled the creation of a wealthier class?
Land ownership
What did Neolithic peoples study in regards to the changes of the season?
Sun, moon, and stars
The main religious goal of neolithic peoples
Ensure fertility (land and people)
What did religious beliefs capitalize on?
Life cycle of birth, growth, death, and regenerated life
Three main craft industries
Pottery, metallurgy, and textiles
Earliest metal used
First functions of copper
Jewelry and simple tools
What was copper the foundation of?
Bronze and iron
Who created bronze? When?
Mesopotamian metalworkers in c3200 BCE
Composition of bronze
Copper and tin
Use of bronze
Agriculture and weaponry
How common is copper?
Relatively common
How common is tin?
When were iron tools and weapons first developed?
c1300 BCE
What happens when carbon is added to iron tools?
It becomes steel - much stronger, more durable
Societal effects of iron
Metal became more affordable among lower class which resulted in changes of warfare and politics (in Greece particularly).
Diffusion routes of metalworking
From Mesopotamia to Mediterranean, into Africa, and across Asia
Origin of wheel
When was the wheel invented?
c3200 BCE
Use of wheels among Sumerians
wheeled carts
Describe rate of diffusion with wheeled carts
Very fast
Why would wheels have no value in America?
Absence of draft animals
Role of pastoralist people and diffusing technology and why did this happen?
Diffused such very quickly because they had contact with many farming communities
Two examples of tech diffused by pastoralist peoples
Chariots and iron blades
What did pastoral nomads depend on?
Their herd
Where did pastoral nomads live?
Central Asian steppe and grasslands
Describe conditions and relate them to Central Asian grass
Low rainfall but grass could live off of less water
Why did pastoral nomadism dominate in steppe and grasslands?
Grass was more suited for grazing than farming
What determined who would farm and who would be pastoral nomads?
Geography and climate
How did pastoralist nomads respond to difficult interactions with communities?
Developed offensive and defensive fighting tactics
What were the farmers after that the pastoralist nomads had?
Their animals - hence they got good at fighting
What did heightened military ability cause overall among the pastoralist nomads?
Future focus on fighting tactics among not only pastoralist nomads but farmers too