One of the interesting problems I have as an author and historian, is to show people just how inaccurate archaeologists and anthropologists have portrayed our ancestors. We still see pictures in museums and on-line of Mesolithic people either half naked or wrapped in furs - when we know from evidence, in the form of imprints on clay floors found in caves, that thousands of years before the end of the last ice age, Cro-Magnon's (our ancestors) wore woven clothes and some graves (frozen in time) in Russia show the same people with trousers and fur covered shoes.
But this depiction is not the only misinformation archaeologists have perpetuated over the years. Missing from the archaeological time-line is the use of utensils - bowls, spoons etc. They seem to conclude, that until the use of clay and pottery, our ancestors had nothing. This is clearly not true, and my next book 'Dawn of the Lost Civilisation' shows that these people possessed advanced technological tools such as bows and microliths (very small flints) that allowed them to hunt effectively. But moreover, this same technology allowed the production of wooden utensils by making a wood turning lathe. Most people would consider wooden lathes a modern invention, but the first known wooden lathe was found on a Egyptian wall dated at 300 BCE.
|Two man Egyptian Lathe|
But this is not 'Rocket Science' for the Cro-Magnon's as you see from the video, you need string, wood and a tree branch for power - in the video the modern equivalent of this device uses metal for the cutting of the wood (a chisel) and metal points to secure the wood in position. This is the reason the possibility of even more ancient people having this device has been ignored. But we have found these devices in the micolithic tool kit of the 'Magdalenian' period (15,000 - 7,000 BCE).
|Only one found complete is known as the Tvaermose arrow - its NOT an arrow its a chisel!|
These strange 'trapeze' shaped microliths are perfect chisels when mounted on wood and there are other microliths called burins that are known to have been made for engraving and grooving.
|A Burin - perfect for wood turning|
But the main problem for archaeologists is in 'setting' the wood between two points - So try two of these.
|These are perfect Lathe wood holders - with a hole to keep the wood in place when turning.|
|Who needs pottery?|
Anthropologists and archaeologists would have you believe the builders of Stonehenge could make such a colossal construction, but could not use a bow saw to turn wood or live in houses - its pure nonsense. Has this Moroccan boy and his friends the ability to make a Stonehenge - I don't think so!
Moreover, the most interesting aspect of this available technology is that it was 'preferred' to clay pottery. The first Kiln was known to have been built in France in 14,000 BCE - but the Cro-Magnon's did not use them - we believe the reason for using wood over clay is a medical as published in the Feb. 6, 1993 edition of Science News, an article describes research claiming that wooden cutting boards possess some sort of bacteria-killing properties, thus making them less likely to contaminate food than clay, this and other 'naturalist' habits are explored in my new book out in June.
(by Robert John Langdon)