CBSE Notes For Class 6 History Chapter 2 From Hunting Gathering To Growing Food

CBSE Notes For Class 6 History Social Science Chapter 2 From Hunting Gathering To Growing Food

The Earliest People

  • The people who lived in the sub-continent two million years ago are described today as called hunter-gatherers.
  • The hunter-gatherers got their food by hunting wild animals, catching fish and birds, and gathering fruits, roots, nuts, seeds, leaves, stalks, and eggs.

Movement of Hunter-Gatherers

  • The hunter-gatherers moved from place to place. The reasons for their movement were as follows
  • Staying in one place for a long period might have depleted all the available plant and animal resources, so they traveled from place to place.
  • The animals moved from one place to another in search of their own food, which led the people that hunted them, to move from one place to another.
  • Plants and trees bear fruits in different seasons, so people might have moved from season to season in search of different plants.
  • People, plants, and animals need water to survive. So, people living on banks of seasonal lakes and rivers would have had to move to another place in search of water during the dry seasons (summer and winter).

Sources of Information about the Earliest People

Tools used by the Hunter-Gatherers

  • Tools of stone, wood, and bone have been found by archaeologists. These tools were used to cut meat and bone, scrape bark from trees and hides (animal skins), and chop fruit and roots.
  • Some tools may have been attached to handles of bone or wood in order to make spears and arrows for hunting.
  • Other tools were used to chop wood for the firewood.
  • Apart from firewood, wood was also used for making huts and tools.

Places to Live:  Archaeologists have found evidence of hunter-gatherers from the sites of Bhimbetka, Hunsgi, and Kurnool caves.

  • Apart from the above three sites, the evidence of hunter-gatherers also have been found in other places which were mostly located near sources of water like rivers and lakes.
  • People tried to find places where good quality stones were found.

Finding out about Fire: From the site of Kurnool caves, traces of ash have been found, which suggests that the use of fire was known in the past.

Fire could have been used for many purposes like as a source of light, to cook meat, and to scare away wild animals.

Rock Paintings: Many caves in which the early people lived have paintings on the walls. For example, caves in Madhya Pradesh and Southern Uttar Pradesh. These paintings show wild animals that were drawn with great accuracy and skill.

Names and Dates: Archaeologists divided the early period of human history into the following

  • Paleolithic Period The word ‘piano’ means old and ‘Uthos’ means stone. This period extended from 2 million years ago to about 12,000 years ago.
  • It is divided into the Lower, Middle, and Upper Palaeolithic. This long span of history covers over 99% of human history.
  • Mesolithic (Middle Stone) Period This period extended from 12,000 years ago to about 10,000 years ago. Stone tools found during this period were small, so they were called microliths, For Example. sickles.
  • Neolithic Period This period started about 10,000 years ago. Advanced stone tools were made in this period.

Class 6 History Social Science Chapter 2 A Changing Environment

  • There was a change in the climate of the world, around 12,000 years ago, with a shift to relatively warm conditions. This led to the development of grasslands in many areas.
  • The increase in grasslands led to an increase in animals that survived on grass like deer, antelope, goats, sheep, and cattle.
  • The people who hunted these animals started learning about their food habits and breeding seasons.
  • This helped people to start herding and rearing animals. Fishing also became an important activity.

Beginning of Farming and Herding: In different parts of the subcontinent, several grain-bearing types of grass, including wheat, barley, and rice started to grow naturally.

  • These grains were probably collected by men, women, and children, and they also learned about the place where they grew and when they were ripened. In this way, people became farmers.
  • People could have begun to tame animals by leaving food for them near their shelters (homes). The first animal to be tamed was the wild ancestor dog.
  • Later, people encouraged other animals such as sheep, goats, cattle, and pigs to come near the camps where they Lived.
  • These animals lived in herds and most of them ate grass. People also protected these animals from attacks by other wild animals. In this way, people became herders.
  • It is the process in which people grow plants and look after animals. The plants and animals that are domesticated by the pump are different from wild plants and animals.
  • The people select those plants and animals for domestication that are not prone to disease.
  • They select plants that yield large-size grain and have strong stalks, capable of bearing the weight of the ripe grain. They select animals that are relatively gently selected
  • Domestication was a gradual process that took place in many parts of the world. It began about 12,000 years ago.
  • Some of the earliest plants to be domesticated were wheat and barley. The earliest domesticated animals include sheep and goats.

Class 6 History Social Science Chapter 2 A New Way of Life

  • When people began growing plants, it meant that they had to stay in the same place for a long time till the grain ripened.
  • This process involved looking after the plants, watering them, weeding, and protecting them from animals and birds.
  • In many areas, people started making large clay pots, and baskets and dug pits into the ground in order to store grains for food and seeds.

First Farmers and Herders:  The evidences of early farmers and herders have been found from the sites of Burzahom, Chirand, Daojali Hading, Koldihwa, Mahagara, Hallur, Paiyampalli and Mehrgarh (now in Pakistan).

  • The remains of burnt grains have been recovered from these sites. This suggests that a number of crops were grown in different parts of the subcontinent.
  • Apart from these, the bones of different animals also have been found.

Towards a Settled Life: In Burzahom (in present-day Kashmir), people built pit houses, which were dug into the ground, with steps leading into them. These may have provided shelter in cold weather.

  • Cooking hearths have been found both inside and outside the huts. This suggests that people could cook food either indoors or outdoors, depending on the weather.
  • Stone tools have been found on many sites which were different from the earlier Palaeolithic tools and they are called Neolithic tools.
  • These included tools that were polished to give a fine cutting edge. Mortars” and pestles were used for grinding grain and other plant produce. Some of the tools were made of bone.
  • Various kinds of earthen pots have also been found, which were sometimes decorated, and were used for storing things.
    People started using pots for cooking food, especially grains like rice, wheat, and lentils.
  • People also started weaving cloth, using different kinds of materials, For Example. cotton.
  • However, in many areas, men and women continued to hunt and gather food, and elsewhere people adopted farming and herding slowly, over several thousands of years.

Animals as a Store of Food

  • Breeding of animals is a natural process. If they are looked after carefully, they are an important source of food and meat, whenever required.
  • In other words, animals that are reared can be used as a ‘store’ of food.

Class 6 History Social Science Chapter 2 A Closer Look: Site of Mehrgarh

  • Mehrgarh site is located in a fertile plain, near the Bolan Pass, which is one of the most important routes into Iran.
  • Mehrgarh was probably one of the places where women and men learned to grow barley and wheat, and rear sheep and goats for the first time.

The sources that have been found on this site are

  • Bones of many animals such as deer, pig, sheep, and goats have been found in Mehrgarh.
  • The remains of square and rectangular houses have been discovered from this site. Each house had four or more compartments, some of which may have been used for storage.
  • Several burial sites have also been from Mehrgarh.
  • The dead person was buried with goats, which were probably meant to serve as food in the next world. There was a belief that there was some form of life after death.

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