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Encyclopedia > Stoneage
Stone Age fishing hook.

The Stone Age is a broad prehistoric time period during which humans created tools from stone (for lack of better technology). Wood, bones and other materials would also be used, but stone (in particular flint) was shaped for use as cutting tools and weapons. The term is from the three-age system. The Stone Age is now subdivided into Paleolithic, Mesolithic and Neolithic periods, which in turn are often further subdivided.

Beginning and end of the Stone Age

The date range of this period is ambiguous, disputed, and variable according to the region in question. While it is possible to speak of a general 'stone age' period for the whole of humanity, some groups never developed metal-smelting technology, so remained in a 'stone age' until they encountered technologically developed cultures. However, in general, it is believed that this period began somewhere between 2 and 5 million years ago, starting with the first human (or pre-human) tool-making.

The Stone Age was usually followed by the Bronze Age, during which metalworking technology allowed bronze tools to become common. In some regions, the Stone Age was followed directly by the Iron Age. The transition out of the Stone Age occurred between 6000 BC and 2500 BC for much of humanity. It is generally believed that the Middle East and southeastern Asian regions progressed past stone age technology around 6000 BC. Europe, and the rest of Asia and Africa became post-Stone Age societies by about 4000 BC. The civilizations of the Americas continued at a Stone Age level until 2500 BC.

Popular culture

As English slang, "Stone Age" can be used to describe a modern civilization or group of people that live in relatively primitive conditions, even though its use is often a blatant misnomer. The phrase "bomb [a region or people] back into the Stone Age" implies a fierce attack that utterly destroys its target's infrastructure and presumably forces its survivors to revert to primitive technology in order to survive.

The American comedy television show The Flintstones, which took place in the strangely advanced Stone Age town of Bedrock and featured primitive versions of modern technology (such as cars and cameras), became one of the most popular cartoons of all time.

See also

Three-age system: Stone Age | Bronze Age | Iron Age

  Results from FactBites:
Stoneage - Sintered Diamond Beads and Diamond Wires for Marble and Granite (152 words)
Used with equal convenience with fixed machines as well as for profile cutting, the diamond wire is a versatile technology.
Stoneage was the first in India to make diamond beads by the sintering process.
Based on our own in-house technology developed and refined over the last 25 years, Stoneage beads and wires have consistently outperformed products imported from countries well-known for production of these goods.
Shona Sculpture from Zimbabwe - StoneAge Art Company - Granville Island (1187 words)
All the sculptures in StoneAge are sculpted by professional artists who export their work all over the world.
StoneAge is on the waterfront, downstairs from the Sandbar Restaurant.
StoneAge donated this sculpture to a silent auction benefiting the Canadian Red Cross, ‘Seeing Red’ campaign setup to help people afflicted with aids in Zimbabwe.
  More results at FactBites »



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