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  • The Clues That Neanderthals Didn't Know How to Make Fire

    I find these new discoveries about Neanderthals very interesting because they may reveal clues of what the earth was like before God created man ( Adam ) . The earth brought forth the animals like the Neanderthals, but God made and created man. God breathed the breath of life ( the spirit) into Adam and that is what made Adam a man created in God's image. None of the animals had a spirit. Adam was the first man and he had a spirit. The Neanderthals did not have a spirit and were animals. Men have wanted them to be men and so made conclusions to support what they wanted to be true.- Lou Newton

    The Clues That Neanderthals Didn't Know How to Make Fire



    New evidence from two caves in Western France deepens an old mystery about our fellow hominins.

    https://www.theatlantic.com/science/...hoo&yptr=yahoo
    David Williams / SapiensIn the 1981 movie Quest for Fire, a group of Neanderthals struggles to keep a small ember burning while moving across a cold, bleak landscape. The meaning is clear: If the ember goes out, they will lose their ability to cook, stay warm, protect themselves from wolves—in short, to survive. The film also makes it obvious that these Neanderthals do not know how to make fire.During the Middle Paleolithic, roughly 250,000 to 40,000 years ago, when Neanderthals occupied Europe and much of western Asia, the climate included a couple of major warm periods similar to today, but was dominated by two major cold periods that included dozens of shifts between cold and very cold conditions. Quest for Fire presented a generally accurate portrayal of Europe during one of the cold periods (80,000 years ago, according to the film’s title card), but almost all researchers agreed that the movie was flat-out wrong in its suggestion that Neanderthals were incapable of making fire. Now, new fieldwork our team has done in France contradicts some long-held assumptions and shows that the film might have had it right all along.

    Conventional thinking has long held that our human ancestors gained control of fire—including the ability to create it—very early in prehistory, long before Neanderthals came along some 250,000 years ago. For many researchers, this view has been supported by the discovery of a handful of sites in Africa with fire residues that are more than a million years old. But it has also been buoyed by the simple logic of one idea: It is hard to imagine that our ancestors could have left Africa and colonized the higher, and often much colder, latitudes of Europe and Asia without fire. The Neanderthals, after all, lived in Europe during multiple periods in which seasonal temperatures were similar to those that exist today in northern Sweden. (Northern Europe was covered in massive ice sheets during those periods.) There were vast, frigid grasslands populated by herds of reindeer, horses, and woolly mammoths. Fire would have allowed Neanderthals to cook those animals, making the meat easier to chew and more nutritious. And, perhaps more importantly, it would have helped the Neanderthals stay warm during the coldest periods.

    This line of thought is the basis for the long-prevailing notion that our ability to make fire began long before the Neanderthals, as a spark—a single technological discovery that spread widely and quickly and has remained essential to human life, in an uninterrupted line, to the present day. But more recent evidence—some of it coming from our own fieldwork—indicates that hominins’ use of fire was not marked by a single discovery. It more likely consisted of several stages of development, and while we don’t yet know when these stages occurred, each of them may have lasted for hundreds of thousands of years.
    Chimpanzees cannot make fire but they clearly understand its behavior.

    (Jill Pruetz / Sapiens)
    We surmise that during the first stage, our ancestors were able to interact safely with fire; in other words, instead of simply running from it, they had become familiar with how it works. To get a deeper understanding of this stage, we can look to research done on chimpanzees—our closest living relatives—by Jill Pruetz, a primatologist at Iowa State University, who has studied chimps’ interaction with wildfires in West Africa. Pruetz has found that chimps clearly understand the behavior of fire enough to have lost the fear of it that most animals typically possess. In fact, Pruetz has observed chimps monitoring the progress of a passing wildfire from a few meters away and then moving in to forage in the burned-out area. So while chimps cannot build or contain fires, they understand how fire moves across the landscape, and they use this knowledge to their benefit. It is not hard to imagine a similar scenario playing out among small groups of our own early ancestors, perhaps the australopithecines, who lived from around 4 million years ago until about 2 million years ago in East Africa. The first stage may have persisted throughout much of prehistory. The second stage would be when people could actually control fire—meaning they could capture it, contain it, and supply it with fuel to keep it going within their living areas—but they were still obtaining it from natural sources like forest fires. It is difficult to establish when this stage occurred, for a couple of reasons. One is that some claims for very old fires were simply incorrect. For example, at the famous Chinese site Zhoukoudian, what were originally thought to be the remains of 700,000-year-old Homo erectus fires turned out to be natural sediments resembling charcoal and ash.

    Second, and perhaps most crucial, is that some of the earliest fire residues have been found in open-air settings—not inside caves—and consist of isolated fragments, small scatters of burned bones, or patches of discolored sediments. While it is possible that these residues are the remains of hominin campfires, it is equally possible, if not probable, that they were produced by naturally occurring wildfires. Every year, lightning causes tens of thousands of wildfires across Africa, Asia, and Europe. In the past, some of these would have burned the remains of hominin camps, including bones, stone tools, and sediments. In such cases, the fire residues have nothing to do with hominin occupation of the sites.

    During the final stage, humans learned how to make fire, but again, we are not yet sure when this happened. Starting about 400,000 years ago, we begin finding much better evidence for human-controlled fire, such as intact campfires, or “hearths,” that contain concentrations of charcoal and ash inside caves, where natural fires don’t burn. Furthermore, the number of sites with such evidence increases dramatically. So it is clear that by this time, some hominins in some regions could manage fire and thereby control it, but whether they could make it remains an open question.

    Between 2000 and 2010, our research team—made up of three Paleolithic archaeologists who focus on stone tool technology and two geo-archeologists who study how archaeological sites form—excavated two Middle Paleolithic sites, Pech de l’Azé IV and Roc de Marsal, in the Périgord region of southwestern France. Pech IV and Roc de Marsal are caves that were regularly used as campsites by small groups of Neanderthals from 100,000 to 40,000 years ago, which is about when Homo sapiens, modern humans, arrived in Europe.
    Experiments show that fires leave behind evidence—charcoal, ash, and burned artifacts—that gets buried under layers of sediment. These layers accumulate over time, leaving a record that can persist for many thousands of years.

    (Vera Aldeias / Sapiens)
    One of the more interesting discoveries we made during our years of excavating Pech IV was strikingly abundant evidence of fire use. In the lowermost deposits, those resting directly on the cave’s bedrock floor, we found a 40-centimeter-thick layer full of charcoal, ash, and burned artifacts marking where individual campfires had been built 100,000 years ago. There were also thousands of stone tools, many of which had been incidentally burned by nearby fires. (Paleolithic people were producing, using, and discarding stone tools on a daily basis, so their occupation sites are full of these artifacts—along with bone fragments from their prey animals—which were eventually buried under sediments that accumulated over time. Later people who used the sites could not help but build their fires on top of concentrations of discarded tools and bones.) We found similar evidence at Roc de Marsal, which also has a thick sequence of successive layers containing tens of thousands of stone tools and the bones of butchered animals. Just as at Pech IV, the oldest layers at Roc de Marsal contained abundant evidence of fire, including dozens of intact hearths so well-preserved that they looked like they could have been abandoned just days before.

    We were not surprised to find signs of fire at these two sites, since other, even older sites also offered good evidence of fire. And given the prevailing notion of a spark—that once fire-making was “discovered” it quickly became part of everyday life—we simply assumed that the Neanderthals at Pech IV and Roc de Marsal knew how to make fire.

    However, other evidence from these sites soon led us to question that notion. For one, neither site showed signs of fire in its upper layers. At first, we speculated that since Paleolithic people tended to live right at the mouths of caves, wind or water had removed the fires’ ephemeral traces, like charcoal and ash. At the same time, however, almost none of the thousands of stone tools and animal bones we found in these upper layers were burned. If fire had been present, these objects would have been altered by the heat. Erosional processes like wind and water, after all, cannot selectively remove burned objects and leave behind unburned ones. It was clear, then, that fire had almost never been used at these sites in the later periods.
    Research our team conducted at Roc de Marsal revealed that the oldest layers of occupation contained abundant evidence of fire.

    (Shannon McPherron / Sapiens)
    This seemed strange, especially because the older layers dated to a warm climatic period, while the more recent layers—the ones without fire—were deposited between 70,000 and 40,000 years ago, a time of increasing cold as glaciers again spread across much of Europe. This raised some really interesting questions: Why did Neanderthals stop using fire during cold periods, when the need for warmth would be most important? And if they were using fire only in the warm periods, what were they using it for? Cooking would be one possibility, but then why did they not cook their food during the colder periods?Having fires in warm periods and not in cold periods made little sense. It’s not just a question of having fuel available. While trees are much more common during warmer periods, animal bone, which is also an effective fuel (and was used for the fires at Pech IV), is abundant during both warm and cold periods. This leaves one possible explanation: The Neanderthals at this time were still in the second stage of interacting with fire—they were collecting naturally occurring fire when it was available but did not yet have the technology to start fires themselves.

    It is well-known today that natural fires from lightning strikes occur much more frequently in warm conditions—whether in more temperate places or during warmer parts of the year. Similarly, lightning would have been much more prevalent during the warmer phases of the Pleistocene Epoch (which lasted from roughly 2.6 million years ago to around 10,000 years ago) than during the colder periods. If the Neanderthals lacked the ability to start fire themselves and could thus only obtain it from natural fires, then we would expect to find much more evidence of hearths during warmer periods and less during colder ones. Which is why it is likely that Neanderthals had not yet entered the third stage of interacting with fire. That technological development occurred either elsewhere or at a later time.
    Evidence from both Pech IV and Roc de Marsal suggests that Neanderthals did not have fire during the coldest time periods.
    (Shannon McPherron / Sapiens)
    The evidence from Pech IV and Roc de Marsal clearly shows that the Neanderthals at these sites lived without fire not only for long periods but also during the coldest periods. This alone raises even more questions about how they were able to survive. There is no clear evidence that they could make clothing (although some researchers today seem to think Neanderthals were likely making some articles of clothing, even if they were very crude), so perhaps an old theory about Neanderthals—that they were really hairy—is correct. (This notion, from the early 1900s, was discarded in later decades because it was seen as dehumanizing Neanderthals.) It might also mean that they relied more on food—especially meat—that did not need to be cooked.So while we are obligate fire users today—we could not survive without fire in some form—Neanderthals, according to our research, had no such dependence. Perhaps fire dependency arose later, in the Upper Paleolithic (40,000 to 10,000 years ago), and it is almost certain to have existed by the time agriculture developed at the beginning of the Neolithic period (roughly 10,000 years ago in the Middle East). But there is still much we do not know.

    If chimpanzees can effectively interact with wildfires, can we assume that the same was true for some of the earliest hominins, such as Australopithecus afarensis? When did our hominin ancestors first start to collect burning material and carry it back to their campsites, as portrayed in Quest for Fire and as probably practiced by Neanderthals? And, of course, when did humans first learn how to make fire? These are just a few of the mysteries that remain unsolved.

    The ability to take advantage of the properties of fire is one of the most important technological advances in our evolutionary past. What we are realizing now, however, is that it was not the result of a single accident or stroke of genius. It was, instead, a process that likely unfolded over hundreds of thousands of years. And for the Neanderthals, the process was punctuated by periods of intense cold in which, when the benefits of fire would have been greatest, they simply had to make do without it.

    Toward the end of Quest for Fire, a young Homo sapiens woman teaches a small group of Neanderthals how to start a fire by using the hand-drill technique to create an ember. While it is certainly possible that modern humans developed fire-making technology before arriving in Europe, and perhaps even shared it with Neanderthals, such a scenario remains, at this point, pure speculation.

    What has become clear, however, is that before Homo sapiens arrived in Europe, our Paleolithic cousins didn’t just spend a few months or years in a cold land without fire—they spent entire lifetimes, many generations even, without the warm glow of a hearth to take the chill off their toes, cook their meat, and lift their spirits.
    Last edited by Lou Newton; February 5, 2017, 12:39 AM.

  • #2
    I science at first thought that neanderthals were quite smart like us, but it looks like they are not. If you do not have a spirit from God, you are an animal. It looks like they were animals, and that God did not make/create us from them. I bet that makes the scientific community a little disturbed.

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by redsoxmaloney View Post
      I science at first thought that neanderthals were quite smart like us, but it looks like they are not. If you do not have a spirit from God, you are an animal. It looks like they were animals, and that God did not make/create us from them. I bet that makes the scientific community a little disturbed.
      Thanks for the reply Tom. SOME of the scientist are disturbed by this, others are not. Some are looking for truth and they go where ever the evidence leads. Others are Christians and even find comfort in this new discovery.

      Scientists are people and therefore should not be lumped into one group. They act as individuals and should be treated as such. Just as people who profess to be Christians are individuals and God treats us all as individuals. Not one person will be judged on the basis that they are RC, or JW, or Presbyterian. But every single person will be judged by who they trust to save them, NOT the doctrine of that group.

      Certainly if many people judged people who work in drug stores by the manager of one store and assumed everyone that worked in a drug store was like that, it would not be a good thing. One person could be a liberal homosexual and another could be a person trusting in Christ.

      But amen to your comment about the hominids before man were animals. They walked upright, had larger brains than other animals, but did not have a spirit and were therefore animals, not men.

      There are other things these animals had in common: they walked on the earth for periods of hundreds of thousands of years, or even millions of years and made almost no change in their way of life during all of those years.

      Mankind on the other hand has only been here a very short period of time ( maybe 30,000 years or even less) but his way of life has changed drastically. He started with stone tools and was soon building rockets to the moon. The difference; man was created in the image of God, NOT God but looked like Him. ( on the outside and the inside) God breathed the spirit into man and that was the difference. That spirit gave man the ability to walk and talk with God.

      God then revealed many of His secrets to these men who walked and talked with Him:

      Psalm 25New International Version (NIV)

      Psalm 25

      Of David.


      1 In you, Lord my God,
      I put my trust.

      2 I trust in you;

      do not let me be put to shame,
      nor let my enemies triumph over me.
      3 No one who hopes in you
      will ever be put to shame,
      but shame will come on those
      who are treacherous without cause.

      4 Show me your ways, Lord,
      teach me your paths.
      5 Guide me in your truth and teach me,
      for you are God my Savior,
      and my hope is in you all day long.
      6 Remember, Lord, your great mercy and love,
      for they are from of old.
      7 Do not remember the sins of my youth
      and my rebellious ways;
      according to your love remember me,
      for you, Lord, are good.

      8 Good and upright is the Lord;
      therefore he instructs sinners in his ways.
      9 He guides the humble in what is right
      and teaches them his way.

      10All the ways of the Lord are loving and faithful
      toward those who keep the demands of his covenant.
      11 For the sake of your name, Lord,
      forgive my iniquity, though it is great.

      12Who, then, are those who fear the Lord?
      He will instruct them in the ways they should choose.

      13 They will spend their days in prosperity,
      and their descendants will inherit the land.
      14 The Lord confides in those who fear him;
      he makes his covenant known to them.
      15 My eyes are ever on the Lord,
      for only he will release my feet from the snare.

      16 Turn to me and be gracious to me,
      for I am lonely and afflicted.
      17 Relieve the troubles of my heart
      and free me from my anguish.
      18 Look on my affliction and my distress
      and take away all my sins.
      19 See how numerous are my enemies
      and how fiercely they hate me!


      20 Guard my life and rescue me;
      do not let me be put to shame,
      for I take refuge in you.
      21May integrity and uprightness protect me,
      because my hope, Lord, is in you.

      22 Deliver Israel, O God,
      from all their troubles!



      Lou Newton
      Last edited by Lou Newton; February 6, 2017, 02:25 PM.

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by Lou Newton View Post

        Thanks for the reply Tom. SOME of the scientist are disturbed by this, others are not. Some are looking for truth and they go where ever the evidence leads. Others are Christians and even find comfort in this new discovery.

        Scientists are people and therefore should not be lumped into one group. They act as individuals and should be treated as such. Just as people who profess to be Christians are individuals and God treats us all as individuals. Not one person will be judged on the basis that they are RC, or JW, or Presbyterian. But every single person will be judged by who they trust to save them, NOT the doctrine of that group.

        Certainly if many people judged people who work in drug stores by the manager of one store and assumed everyone that worked in a drug store was like that, it would not be a good thing. One person could be a liberal homosexual and another could be a person trusting in Christ.

        But amen to your comment about the hominids before man were animals. They walked upright, had larger brains than other animals, but did not have a spirit and were therefore animals, not men.

        There are other things these animals had in common: they walked on the earth for periods of hundreds of thousands of years, or even millions of years and made almost no change in their way of life during all of those years.

        Mankind on the other hand has only been here a very short period of time ( maybe 30,000 years or even less) but his way of life has changed drastically. He started with stone tools and was soon building rockets to the moon. The difference; man was created in the image of God, NOT God but looked like Him. ( on the outside and the inside) God breathed the spirit into man and that was the difference. That spirit gave man the ability to walk and talk with God.

        God then revealed many of His secrets to these men who walked and talked with Him:

        Psalm 25New International Version (NIV)

        Psalm 25

        Of David.


        1 In you, Lord my God,
        I put my trust.

        2 I trust in you;

        do not let me be put to shame,
        nor let my enemies triumph over me.
        3 No one who hopes in you
        will ever be put to shame,
        but shame will come on those
        who are treacherous without cause.

        4 Show me your ways, Lord,
        teach me your paths.
        5 Guide me in your truth and teach me,
        for you are God my Savior,
        and my hope is in you all day long.
        6 Remember, Lord, your great mercy and love,
        for they are from of old.
        7 Do not remember the sins of my youth
        and my rebellious ways;
        according to your love remember me,
        for you, Lord, are good.

        8 Good and upright is the Lord;
        therefore he instructs sinners in his ways.
        9 He guides the humble in what is right
        and teaches them his way.

        10All the ways of the Lord are loving and faithful
        toward those who keep the demands of his covenant.
        11 For the sake of your name, Lord,
        forgive my iniquity, though it is great.

        12Who, then, are those who fear the Lord?
        He will instruct them in the ways they should choose.

        13 They will spend their days in prosperity,
        and their descendants will inherit the land.
        14 The Lord confides in those who fear him;
        he makes his covenant known to them.
        15 My eyes are ever on the Lord,
        for only he will release my feet from the snare.

        16 Turn to me and be gracious to me,
        for I am lonely and afflicted.
        17 Relieve the troubles of my heart
        and free me from my anguish.
        18 Look on my affliction and my distress
        and take away all my sins.
        19 See how numerous are my enemies
        and how fiercely they hate me!


        20 Guard my life and rescue me;
        do not let me be put to shame,
        for I take refuge in you.
        21May integrity and uprightness protect me,
        because my hope, Lord, is in you.

        22 Deliver Israel, O God,
        from all their troubles!



        Lou Newton
        I see that Lou. I didn't quite mean it that way, but I should take care to say just what I mean. Some scientists look for truth, and some people who attend church certainly don't believe everything they're told, and do not trust the minister for answers.

        Comment

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