Occasional caves and temporary tents Early humans are often thought of as dwelling in caves, largely because that is where we find traces of them. The flints they used, the bones they gnawed, even their own bones – these lurk for ever in a cave but get scattered or demolished elsewhere. Caves are winter shelter. On a summer’s day, which of us chooses to remain inside? The response of our ancestors seems to have been the same.
But living outside, with he freedom to roam widely for the purposes of hunting and gathering, suggests the need for at least a temporary shelter. And this, even at the simplest level, means the beginning of something approaching architecture. Confronted with the need for a shelter against sun or rain, the natural instinct is to lean some form of protective shield against a support – a leafy branch, for example, against the trunk of a tree.
If there is no tree trunk available, the branches can be leant against each other, reading the inverted V-shape of a natural tent. The bottom of each branch will need some support to hold it firm on the ground. Maybe a ring of stones. When next in the district, it makes sense to return to the same encampment. The simple foundations will have remained in place, and perhaps some of the superstructure too. This can be quickly repaired. The first reliable traces of human dwellings, found from as early as 30,000 years ago, follow precisely these logical principles.
There is often a circular or oval ring of stones, with evidence of local materials being used for a tent-like roof. Such materials may be reeds daubed with mud in wet areas; or, in the open plains, mammoth bones and tusks lashed together to support a covering to example of such an encampment, from about 25,000 years ago, has been found at Dolan Victories in eastern Europe. Read more: http://www. Historically. Net/world’s/plenipotentiaries. Asp? History=babe#assassinations
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