Object of the Week: This harpoon point was used by hunters in Europe 14,000 years ago

By Culture24 Reporter | 04 May 2016

This Harpoon point, found at the famous Kent’s Cavern in Devon, was used to hunt around 14,000 years ago

A photo of an ancient harpoon used by some of the first modern humans in Europe
© The Trustees of the Natural History Museum, London
Few toolkits were as prehistorically sophisticated as the ones carried by modern humans arriving in Europe around 43,000 years ago. Theirs were varied, lighter boxes of tricks than the Neanderthals they succeeded.

Innovation took place quickly: our ancestors began using different materials, finding them from further away – partly down to the expanded social networks and improved mobility they enjoyed.

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Three places to find prehistoric objects in

Skara Brae Prehistoric Village, Orkney
When a wild storm on Orkney in 1850 exposed the ruins of ancient dwellings, Skara Brae, the best preserved prehistoric village in northern Europe, was discovered. The excavated farming settlement dates back 5000 years.

The Garstang Museum of Archaeology, Liverpool
Between 1904-1914, John Garstang's work at the cemetaries of Beni Hassan, Esna and Abydos in Upper Egypt produced a wealth of objects from burials of all periods of Egyptian civilisation. His work at Nagada and Hierakonpolis, also in Upper Egypt, is critical for our understanding of the earliest phase of Egyptian history.

Grime's Graves Prehistoric Flint Mine, Norfolk
Grime's Graves is the only Neolithic flint mine open to visitors in Britain. A grassy lunar landscape of over 400 shafts, pits, quarries and spoil dumps, they were first named Grim's Graves - meaning the pagan god Grim's quarries, or 'the Devil's holes' - by the Anglo-Saxons.
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