Prehistory

A:

The Cenozoic Era began about 65 million years ago and continues today. It is the third documented era in the history of the Earth. It is marked by the proliferation of mammals, birds, grasses and flowering plants.

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  • When did the Triassic period begin and end?

    Q: When did the Triassic period begin and end?

    A: The Triassic period began approximately 248 million years ago and ended 206 million years ago; although, some sources date it to be between 251 and 199 million years ago. It was followed by the Jurassic period; it was the first period of the Mesozoic era.
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  • What did homo erectus wear as clothes?

    Q: What did homo erectus wear as clothes?

    A: Homo erectus, meaning upright man, is thought to have worn animal hides and furs taken from animals it hunted for meat. However, no fossilized remains have survived to fully support this theory.
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  • When did the first animals appear on Earth?

    Q: When did the first animals appear on Earth?

    A: The first occurrence of simple animals was approximately 600 million years ago. These were characterized as multi-cellular organisms with basic structures, but no true tissues. An example would be a jellyfish or marine sponge.
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  • Where did Australopithecus live?

    Q: Where did Australopithecus live?

    A: Australopithecus lived between 2.95 and 3.85 million years ago in East Africa, approximately where Tanzania, Kenya and Ethiopia exist today. It is believed that Australopithecus survived as a species for approximately 900,000 years before giving way to new hominids.
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  • When was the Stone Age?

    Q: When was the Stone Age?

    A: The term Stone Age refers to the prehistoric period before the advent of metal-working, when most tools were fashioned from rocks and stones. According to the Oxford Dictionary, the Stone Age lasted about 2.5 million years.
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  • When did cavemen exist?

    Q: When did cavemen exist?

    A: What are commonly called cavemen were the early European populations of the Pleistocene. Their remains were first discovered in 1868 inside a cave at a site in France, called Cro-Magnon, that was dated to approximately 30,000 years ago.
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  • Where did the barbarians come from?

    Q: Where did the barbarians come from?

    A: Barbarians were people who came from anywhere outside of Greece and later Rome. The term is often used to refer to the Germanic and Slavic tribes that attacked Rome during its decline.
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  • Which era occurred just before the current era?

    Q: Which era occurred just before the current era?

    A: The era occurring before the current geologic era was the Mesozoic, which began roughly 245 million years ago and ended about 64 million years ago. The Mesozoic era consisted of three periods; from oldest to more recent, they are the Triassic, the Jurassic and the Cretaceous periods.
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  • When did dinosaurs roam the earth?

    Q: When did dinosaurs roam the earth?

    A: Dinosaurs first walked the earth 230 million years ago and dominated the land for 160 million years. They became extinct 65 million years ago during the Cretaceous period.
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  • Which species do humans belong to?

    Q: Which species do humans belong to?

    A: Humans belong to the species Homo sapiens. Earlier humans had a heavier bone structure and a smaller brain capacity. Modern humans are lighter in build and have high foreheads with a large brain capacity.
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  • When did the Cenozoic Era begin?

    Q: When did the Cenozoic Era begin?

    A: The Cenozoic Era began about 65 million years ago and continues today. It is the third documented era in the history of the Earth. It is marked by the proliferation of mammals, birds, grasses and flowering plants.
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  • What major events happened during the Jurassic period?

    Q: What major events happened during the Jurassic period?

    A: Major events during the Jurassic included the further breakup of the supercontinent Pangaea, the development of subtropical conditions and larger dinosaurs. The earliest bird also took flight during the late Jurassic, and early mammals emerged that would later dominate the Earth.
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  • What are some Stone Age inventions?

    Q: What are some Stone Age inventions?

    A: Some of the earliest inventions of the Stone Age were simple hammerstones that showed evidence of battering, and stone cores, used for a variety of purposes, such as chopping. These stone cores could also produce sharp stone flakes when struck; the stone flakes were in turn used for cutting.
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  • How did cavemen communicate?

    Q: How did cavemen communicate?

    A: According to archaeologists, Neanderthal people, known colloquially as cavemen, lived in groups with simple social structures, had their own languages and communicated by speaking. Some scientists conclude that analysis of Neanderthal DNA confirms that they possessed the same gene humans have that is associated with the capability for language and speech.
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  • Q: When did the Paleolithic age begin and end?

    A: The Paleolithic age started about 750,000 B.C. to 500,000 B.C. and ended around approximately 8,500 B.C. There is some disagreement among archaeologists concerning exactly when this era began and concluded. Some argue that it started as early 2.6 million years ago and only lasted until 10,000 B.C.
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  • Q: How old is life on Earth?

    A: The earliest fossil evidence found suggests that life has existed on Earth for 3.5 to 3.9 billion years. The surface of the planet was hypothesized to be inhospitable to all life until after the Late Heavy Bombardment, which occurred roughly 3.8 to 4.1 billion years ago.
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  • Q: What is the difference between history and prehistory?

    A: Prehistory generally refers to the time before writing was invented and practiced, while history typically refers to the time period after which written records still exist. However, there is no clear dividing line between the two periods.
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  • Q: What was Cro-Magnon man?

    A: Cro-Magnon Man, or Cro-Magnon One, was one of the first adult Cro-Magnon fossils from 30,000 years ago, which was found in 1868. Three other Cro-Magnon adults and one child were among the fossils found in a French cave during road construction.
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  • Q: What did the Cro-Magnon eat?

    A: Cro-Magnon humans ate large land and marine mammals, fish and plant material. Cro-Magnon humans also turned to hunting smaller mammals, such as rabbits, at the end of the last ice age as the larger land animals began to disappear.
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  • Q: What kinds of food did early man eat?

    A: The earliest humans ate a diet similar to that of apes and chimpanzees, consisting mostly of fruit and leaves with occasional insects and meat. As humans developed tool use, meat became a much larger portion of the human diet. Eventually, the development of agriculture helped round out the omnivorous diet.
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  • How did cavemen survive?

    Q: How did cavemen survive?

    A: Cavemen survived by hunting and gathering. For this reason, they did not live exclusively in caves as their name suggests. Cavemen typically lived in shelters constructed of animal hides stretched across bones, wooden lean-tos or mounds made of dirt. Neanderthals, another species of cavemen, did live in caves almost exclusively, although the harsh climates of their environment forced them to use circulating mobility and radiating mobility to survive.
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