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Archaeology Publication

The Paleolithic Age in India

InArchCenter ID:- IACBN002

The Paleolithic Age in India is divided into three phases in accordance with the type of stone tools used by the people and also according to the nature of climatic change.

The first phase is called Early or Lower Paleolithic, the second Middle Paleolithic, and the third Upper Paleolithic.

Until further and adequate information is available about the Bori artefacts, the first phase may be placed broadly between 600,000 and 150,000 BC, the second between 150,000 and 35,000 BC, and the third between 35,000 and 10,000 BC.

However, between 35,000 and 1500 BC, tools relating to both Middle and Upper Paleolithic ages have been found in the Deccan Plateau.

The Lower Paleolithic or the Early Old Stone Age covers the greater part of the ice age. The Early Old Stone Age may have begun in Africa around two million years ago, but in India it is not older than 600,000 years. This date is given to Bori in Maharashtra, and this site is considered to be the earliest Lower Paleolithic site. People use hand axes, cleavers, and choppers. The axes found in India are more or less similar to those of western Asia, Europe, and Africa. Stone tools were used largely for chopping, digging, and skinning.

Early Old Stone Age sites have been found in the valley of river Son or Sohan in Punjab, now in Pakistan. Several sites have been found in Kashmir and the Thar desert. Lower Paleolithic tools have also been found in the Belan valley in UP and in the desert area of Didwana in Rajasthan. Didwana yielded not only Lower Paleolithic stone tools but also those of the Middle and Upper Paleolithic ages. Chirki-Nevasa in Maharashtra has yielded as many as 2000 tools, and those have also been found at several places in the south.

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