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Jonn Bearcat Redmond
People of Early Scotland and England (Part 1)


Thousands of years ago Scotland was covered by thick forests, The weather then was very hot and many wild animals roamed the land like the great mammoth lions and wolves, Bones of various animals have been dug up and found in fossils all over Scotland The first scot probably lived like the animals, he would hunt for their food and I dont think they were as tall and big as they are today,because they lived on berrys and fruits and shellfish and probably small animals they could catch, I would imajine with the weather being hot they wouldnt have worn much clothes, and according to history books most lived near rivers, and they would probably hide and hunt when animals came to drink at the river,I think although man was smaller than todays man, chances are he was more clever than the animals, he could always pick up a stone or bit wood and throw it at the animals, and by what people have found he made scrapers to dig and cut,I read that when Scotland began to get colder the bigger animals such as mammoths ,and lions, etc would move away to hotter areas,and as europe and Scotland were all one land would have made it easy for the animals, If early man felt the herat he must have felt the cold also, so he would have wrapped the animals skins around himself, and like the animals looked for caves etc to shelter in from the cold, we all know that early man lived in caves, and I would still say that the cave would be as close to water as could be we always need water to drink and where there is water there is always animals and shellfish, Because early man didn't know anything about daggers and axes and knew nothing about metals, he learned to chip away at stones to make such items what history says is that they made axes etc from sharpened stones and no doubt used to cut wood, I would think even the female species of early man would have done same as they do today with exceptions scraping the inside of skins that could be used to make rugs and clothes, because early man hadnt heard of metals I suppose this would be the Stone age period, If i remember correctly it was the stoneage man that discovered how to make fire by rubbing 2 bits of wood together, another way would have been to cause sparks by striking two stones together this i believe would have been the women that discovered this as they did everything to do with cooking of meals of course there is no actual proof whether it was the man or woman, no doubt children would have helped by collecting wood and helping the mother and no doubt the boys helped the fathers, and learnt to hunt, a fire would have been handy to keep caves warm and also to keep wild animals away, who knows maybe even the cooking of meat may have been a wild animal falling in the fire and the smell encourage the tasting of it which Im sure would have been tasty meal roast boar even to the man in the cave, as it would be to you and me today, mmmmm can almost tasts the crackle, By what has been found by archaeologists the man from stone age were definetely hunters and ate meat with the amount of bones found in fossilized forms,they wouldnt know how to keep animals nor would they know anything about growing food, I have seen in previous documentarys that the man of that age used to follow the animals all over the country so I suppose they came upon other tribes that had new things and they all passed on all the knew, It must have been hard life killing animals with whjat weapons they had, its hard enough these days in those days I am sure they were very good with their bows and arrows, after all if you dont hunt and kill something you will starve, and man would find that like all natives that animals can provide everything man needs to survive, from the bones the meat and the skins, chances are they used splinters from bones to make fish hooks,if one ventures along the beaches in north of scotland there is always masses of shells from when people concentrated there eating on shellfish, Early man even invented his canoe from a tree and eventually hollowed it out and the first boat appeared, in many places in Scotland we see many wall paintings but best i know of are seen not in Scotland but in Africa, but I am quite sure there is cave paintings somewhere in my country just Im not at present sure exactly ,but like all hunters and fishermen they like everyone to know of what there kills were,and what better way than paint it on walls etc, and cahnces are it helped with the magic they may have believed to gain the power from the animals, I have read many books on history and they reckon the dog was first animal to be tamed,used as guard and also to help in hunting, the next tamed animals would have been sheep cows and boars of a variety,

As time went by man would probably have got more clever at making weapons etc from bones and hornsand also I reckon they would have been making pottery by then, man had came on very well in hundreds of years had gone, some flints that have been found are still as sharp as a razor and would have gave the tools and weapons a good sharp edge, as the years went by religion emerged from the country people who were more or less as we know today as Pagans,,, people were mainly in family groups and so they would have build large abodes to share with all in tribe, as we see all around these are like hill forts, In stone age days, families worshipped the sun and the moon, they also believed that spirits lived in streams and trees and in the grass and lonely places all had magic near them, and eventually they would have built Stonehenge in England, and that is very large and tall and people from all over would have went there to worship even for good grops and plenty food or even to have old scores settled...

By then I reckon people started to arrive from the eastern parts of the world bringing with them what we called the green metal, and they called Bronze this was a mixture of tin and copper heated both together Bronze tools were better than stone and lasted longer and when bronze swords were blunted etc, would just need to heat and hammer shape again where as stone would have to be renewed, many things could be made from Bronze, jewellery to adorn there bodies, weapons vessels to cook in spears to use for fishing must have been a great find to see such a thing after been using stone for years, The people from the Bronze age I believe were still farmers and used their weapons only to hunt with, it was about the time of the Bronze age someone invented the wheel, how man had came on from being as low as the animal and now had fire and metals and wheel the greatest invention of all made life easier transported goods from one area to another increased the trading,

After many many more years the Celts arrived in this land,,, the tribes in Scotland before were Picts, they brought another metal with them they brought Iron Iron was better it made weapons harder, maybe not as beautiful and bright but lasted longer,

Of course the human then also had started making cloth first the wool from the sheep and goats had to be twisted into long threads this was spinning and had been done before by other tribes, a stick was placed in one hand, called the spindle, and the round weight at end of that was called the whorlon here shoulder would be a roll of wool and this would be picked between her fingers until she had a bit long enough to tie on the spindle stick which would spin round and round, and twist the wool into a thread, the threads were then weaved into cloths this was called weaving the clothe would be used to barter and also to make clothes, a finer cloth was called linen that was made from flax thats a plant that grew wild it had pretty blue flowers and a woody stem. when the stems were soaked in water and dried in the sun the women could pick out the silky parts and spin it into threads, They would dye the cloth with plants and bark from tree's they all like blues and reds and greens, I think people would have just wrapped cloth round themselves and eventually used the metal to make buckles to hold shirts or dresses closer to the body, and they would have worn shoes made also from animals skins, and decorated again from Bronze and when poplished would have looked like gold, although gold was being found at that time also and metal workers loved to add enamels of red and patterns of coral on there adornments, they would have used all metals for cooking utensils as well as ornaments and as jewellery,

I will bypass the next period of man that was times of the druids and the Romans as for that part of history that alone lasted many hundreds of years and would take many pages to tell you all about Roman Britain so we will move onto the times of the Norsemen, The Angles,Saxons and the Jutes were warriors who actually lived in Germany, but for many many years had been raiding the shores of Scotland and England even the Romans had built forts to keep them away, The long ships you think of when you think of Norsemen and what some called Vikings, actually the word Viking was something the Saxons did when they attacked anywhere, Now the Anglo Saxons were a rare breed of man they all stood tall, fair or blonde haired, even hair on face, and all were warriors, they were armed with large one handed axes spears and and one handed swords They wore armour made from metal rings sewed into leather chest waistcoats and jackets of sorts, and they carried large round shields, These sea raiders loved fighting and were well know for their ferocity, The Saxons who got there names from Seax the name for their favourite sword, were the cruelliest of all fighters, Their Gods were known as Thor and Odin and were just as pitiless as there followers,,,

But thats another story and will be told another day.


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