Paleolithic Age, also known as the old stone age appeared in India in the Pliestocene period of Ice Age. Paleolithic Age sites in India are found in Chhota Nagpur Plateau, Kurnool district in Andhra Pradesh, Belan Valley in Mirzapur. The human beings living in the this Age where essentially food gatherers and depended on nature for food. The art of hunting and stalking wild animals individually and later in groups led to these people making stone weapons and tools. The Puranas speak of people who lived on roots and fruits.
First evidences of Paleolithic Age are evident from crudely carved out stones where used in hunting , but as the size of the groups began to increase and there was a need for more food, these people began to make “specialized tools” by flaking stones, which were pointed on one end. These kind of tools were generally used to kill small animals and for tearing flesh from carcass of the hunted animals. The basic technique of making these crude tools was by taking a stone and flaking its sides with a heavier stone. These tools were characteristic of this age and were very rough . By this time, human beings had come to make and use fire. This phase can be further divided into 3 parts according to the nature of stone tools used and the change in the climate:
Categories of Paleolithic Age :
- Lower Paleolithic Age (500000 B.C. to 50000 B.C.):
- It covers a greater part of the early Ice Age.
- Use of hand axes, cleavers and choppers.
- Sites found in Sohan valley, Belan Valley, Didwana in Rajasthan, Bhimbhetka caves near Bhopal.
- Middle Paleolithic Age (50000 B.C. to 40000 B.C.):
- Flakes, blades, points and scrapers.
- Sites are found near Narmada and south of Tungabhadra river.
- Upper Paleolithic Age (40000 B.C. to 1500 B.C.):
- Less humid phase which coincided with the last phase of the Ice Age when climate became comparatively warm.
- Marked apperance of new flint industry and men of modern type i.e Homo Sapiens.
- Blades and burins have been found in Andhra Pradesh, U.P., central M.P.
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