I constructed today’s post to help myself comprehend the enormous breakthroughs in excavating and dating prehistoric sites, and the immediate results achieved by humankind in taking advantage of the climatic opportunity. World Population increased from about 5 million marginally-fed folks (they were hunter-gatherers) to 7.6 billion adequately-fed folks. The population has increased by a factor of about 1,500 times. I made this table for myself, just to contemplate how much has been done in the last 12,000 years.
However, there is a “wild card” that we find happening periodically in the geologic record: something very bad happens with alarming frequency. Impacts upon earth by celestial junk (bolides) such as asteroids and pieces of comets and mega volcanoes that cause multi-year “global winters” with concomitant exterminations occur with alarming frequency (just look at the face of a full moon). In last week’s post, we looked at the bolide impact that appears to explain the abrupt reversal of the warming following the last ice age and return of an ice age for some 1,200 years. Earth’s population after recovery from that event was only about 5 million.
Nonetheless, join me in examining our ancestors’ rapid progress from cave-dwelling hunter-gatherers picking themselves up after the Younger Dryas in the following table— and that progress continuing despite the ongoing global climate traumatic events (marked in red).
|Millennium BCE||Millennium Before Present||Links to Websites of Selected Prehistoric Events|
|10||12||End of Last Ice Age, Pre-Pottery Neolithic A, Gobekli Tepe, Jericho, Wheat cultivation|
|9||11||Pre-Pottery Neolithic B, Quaternary extinction event, Byblos, Sea level rise tops out, Cattle Domestication|
|8||10||Neolithic Subpluvial begins, Çatalhöyük, Amman, Barley cultivation|
|7||9||8.2 kiloyear Event, Ubaid Period|
|6||8||Eridu, Proto-Writing, Chalcolithic|
|5||7||Malta Temples, Cucuteni-Trypillia Culture|
|4||6||5.9 kiloyear Event, Collapse of Ubaid Culture|
|3||5||Writing developed in Sumer, and Egypt|
After putting together this table, I find myself even more astonished at what’s been done in the eight millennia shown.
Thanks for visiting,
R. E. J. Burke