The Lives of the Hunter-Gatherers

The Lives of the

Hunter Gatherers

A.    Choose the correct option:

Q. 1 Ans – Paleolithic       
Q.2 Ans – Mesolithic        
Q.3 Ans – Both of them
Q. 4 Ans -Pebble tools

B. Fill in
the blanks:

The places where humans lived are
called Habitation sites.

Microliths have been found near Narmada and and Tapi rivers.
Early humans lived in groups called Bands.
Tools made from large pieces of stone
are called Core tools.

C. State True or False:

Isampur was a factory site in Hunsgi
Valley.                                    False

Animals were domesticated in the
Palaeolithic Age.                        False

Humans learnt to make canoes from
trees in the Mesolithic period. True

Palaeolithic period paintings have
been found in Bhimbetka Caves.True

D. Give
one word answers:

A habitation and factory site in

Hunsgi Valley

A small tool of the Mesolithic period

A weapon used by early humans to kill


The longest period of human past

Short –answer questions:

Why did the early humans live in

Ans. The
early humans lived in bands because by working together, they were able to hunt
bigger animals like mammoths and bisons.

2.     How did the early
man start making stone tools?

Ans. The
initial tools were probably stones which were used to kill small animals.
Later, man observed that if the stone had a sharp edge, it caused injury to the
animal that was hit. Slowly he started making sharper tools by hitting stone
against stone.

3.     How were the tools

Pebble tools were made by hitting pebbles against each other, so that the
broken bit had sharp edges. Though these tools were simple and crude, they were
undoubtedly made by human hands. Core tools were made by taking a large piece
of stone and striking off bits from it with another stone till it acquired a
suitable shape. The large piece is called a core and the pieces are called
flakes. Tools made from large pieces of stone are called core tools and those
made from flakes are called flake tools.

4.     What was the
subject of cave art?

Ans. The
most common subject of the art was hunting scenes which were beautifully and
realistically depicted. They also depicted animals, dancing scenes and scenes
from everyday life.

5.     What did the early
humans wear?

Ans. The
early humans wore tunics by knotting animal skins together. Later on, they even
began to sew animal skins to make clothes. They made needles from bones and
thin strips of leather worked as thread.

F. Long-answer questions:

two differences between the Palaeolithic and Mesolithic Periods.

     Paleolithic Period
     Mesolithic Period
  Paleolithic Period extends from 200,000 BCE to 12,000
  Mesolithic Period extends from 123,000 BCE to 10,000
   Crude stone tools were used in the Palaeolithic
  Small and sharp
tools called Microliths were made during the Mesolithic Period.

did the discovery of tools help man? Explain with examples.

Ans. With the help of tools they could perform some tasks easily and
also protect themselves from wild animals. Making the tools required time,
effort, skill and patience. Stone tools were used to kill animals, scrape the
animal skins, dig roots, chop meat and fruits.

the life led by the hunter-gatherers.

Ans. The lives led by the hunter-gatherers were not very different from
those of other animals. They spent all day prowling about in the jungles and
swamps, protecting themselves from other beasts and searching for food. Life
consisted of collecting fruits, seeds and nuts, leaves, digging up roots,
trapping animals and birds for food and killing them with stone tools. They had
to take whatever nature offered. Securing food was not easy. They had to be
very alert, quick and strong. Gradually they learnt to distinguish which
berries were poisonous, which parts of the plants were edible, which animals
were easy to kill and how to catch fish in the rivers. They learnt to use
tell-tale signs such as footprints and broken branches to hunt down animals.
They studied the land and learnt where animals would gather or take shelter.
Also, they learnt that bees made honey which was sweet. They could not stock
food, so their food obtaining activities came to a halt when they had enough.

G. Give reasons for the following:

hunter-gatherers led a nomadic life.

Ans. The hunter-gatherers were nomads moving from one place to another
due to the following reasons:

Their movement depended on
the availability of water in the rivers. When the seasonal rivers dried up,
they moved to places where lakes or perennial rivers existed.

If they did not move, the
plants and animal resources would finish off in that place. Thus, they had to
move to other places in search of food.

They moved according to the
seasonal availability of plants bearing fruits.

Animals moved in search of
prey so humans had to follow them to hunt them for food.

humans made cave paintings.

Ans. Some historians are of the opinion that early man may have had
certain religious beliefs which they thought would help them in their quest for
food. These paintings may have been part of a secret ritual to make the hunt
more successful. Another belief is that the paintings were a means of
communication with each other.

humans had a short life.

Palaeolithic humans had a short life because
most perished before thirty-five years of age. The probable causes could be
cold climatic conditions or diseases. 

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