Thursday, 20 December 2012

Jewellery - 100,000 Years Of Bling

Since the turn of the millennium we have pushed back the date for the earliest known jewellery fashioned by mankind several times. The discovery of holed or pierced shells in South Africa (dated to 75,000 years ago) which were almost certainly strung as beads was soon pre-dated by the discovery of similar shells in Israel which were dated to 100,000 years ago.

It had been assumed that it was not until the arrival of homo sapiens in Europe that our creativity took off - a theory based on the discovery of archaeological treasures from the dawn of man such as the painted caves of Lascaux, which have no equivalent anywhere else in the world. Yet it now seems that this was a misreading of the situation and our creative instincts did not suddenly bloom thanks to local European conditions but were already instilled within us when we arrived.

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