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CHAPTER 4

THE NEOLITHIC PERIOD: THE ESSENTIAL HISTORICAL ELEMENTS

The last nomadic hunter-gatherers modified their customs until, at a certain point, they gave birth to a completely new way of life – a sedentary life of food production through agriculture and livestock. Thus, began the Neolithic period.

Just as we did with the Paleolithic, we first examine the most important historical details to gain a clear understanding of the context, using the same structure as in the earlier chapter. After a review of the general features of the period, we describe the key elements following the same format as before: nature, body, mind, spirit, personality and activities. In these pages we learn, amongst other things, what the first sedentary settlements were like, what characteristics the first agricultural methods had and what animals were first domesticated. There is a special emphasis on the Neolithic period in the Middle East, which appeared earlier and from which the later European Neolithic period would develop.

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