8000BC – The Beginning


8000BC marked the end of the Ice Age (that pesky climate change!).  This meant the glaciers receded across the tundra and welcomed the ancient Palaeolithic (Stone Age) and Mesolithic (Middle Stone Age) hunter-gatherers from Europe as evidenced in the discovery of the Cheddar Man who lived around 7150BC.  It wouldn’t be until 6500BC that Britain became an island when the land bridge joining us to Europe was flooded and became what is now known as the English Channel.  The beginning of settlements though happened in 4500BC with the introduction of agriculture and by 3840BC, the Sweet Track is built in Somerset.  Maiden Castle soon had activity with neolithic structures in 3600BC and four-hundred years later in 3200BC saw the first construction project of Stonehenge attempted.  Another site of importance (UNESCO World Heritage Site I may add) is Silbury Hill which is in Avebury, the tallest prehistoric man-made mound in Europe.  Speaking of UNESCO sites, another is Skara Brae on Orkney Island (2500BC) off the coast of Northern Scotland, the most complete neolithic village in the world, reason being is that the original inhabitants were washed away in a storm so that fact probably scared off populating the village again.

All this human activity on Our Islands and as we move onwards, not only is Stonehenge is continued to be tinkered with but Cairnpapple Hill in Scotland is made use of, proving that the ancient Britons were organized and on the whole, peaceful.  This site was so important as it would be a focus of ritual activity in Britain until the time of Christ.  In 1200BC Mam Tor was constructed in Derbyshire, one of the highest and oldest hillfort sites developed in the era.

Although no fort could prepare these Britons for the next nine-hundred years as a religious cult began at Flag Fen near Peterborough and would become one of the major sacrificial centres in Europe.

The earliest mention of the Pretanic (or Britannic) Islands is by Pytheas of Massilia (Marseilles) in 325BC and set in motion the start of a wonderful and at times, brutal relationship with Europe.  And until the Romans arrived in 55BC, the tribes traded (and fought) with eachother, banded together and fought off invaders and continually sought to improve their fortifications against the hostile world that it was.

So this covers the birth of the British Isles.  Okay, not much to shout about but Britain makes up for that later I assure you.  At least Stonehenge is standing.

AntarcticaDomeCSnow

What the Ice Age looked like

Cheddar Man

Cheddar Man

stonehenge-xmw-1024

sweet track

Sweet Track

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One response

1 05 2010
ravi

bokkalaga vundhi ra yadhava

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