Historum - History Forums  

Go Back   Historum - History Forums > World History Forum > General History
Register Forums Blogs Social Groups Mark Forums Read

General History General History Forum - General history questions and discussions


Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
Old November 11th, 2012, 02:46 AM   #11
Historian
 
Joined: Sep 2011
Posts: 2,423

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ashiusx View Post
No. Homo heidelbergensis or Homo antecessor is the most likely candidate to wear ''proper'' clothing since they wear the first ones in Europe. The colds of Europe should have driven them to do so.
Maybe, or maybe not. The large size of Heidelbergensis, like that of Neanderthal, might well be a matter of handling cold without resource to tailored clothes, which is what I would think the OP is specifically asking for.

Not actual evidence either Heidelbergensis, Neanderthal etc. didn't wear clothes of course. Some Heidelbergensis needles would be nice circumstancial evidence though.
Larrey is offline  
Remove Ads
Old November 12th, 2012, 01:07 PM   #12

Earl_of_Rochester's Avatar
Scoundrel
Member of the Year
 
Joined: Feb 2011
From: Perambulating in St James' Park
Posts: 10,566

Just read this:


Quote:

The inhospitable environment challenged human ingenuity to the limit, so much so that Neanderthal bands of 50,000 years ago rarely ventured onto the plains. They lacked the clothing and technology to survive in such savage terrain, except at the height of summer. Even then, only a handful of hands hunted there for a few short weeks before retreating southward. But where the Neanderthals rarely ventured, Homo sapiens sapiens thrived. The newcomers faced their environmental challenges with great ingenuity. The plains and valleys were treeless, which meant that wood was unavailable, so they dug low-profile, semi-subterranean houses into the soil and roofed them with a framework of mammoth bones, hide and sod. Instead of brush and logs, they burned mammoth bones as fuel for their large hearths, storing the bones near their dwellings in large pits dug deep into the permafrost. Plant foods were so rare that almost all the diet came from meat, from quarry that was constantly on the move. Some groups in river valleys lived off fish and waterfowl. The hunting toolkits were light and portable, with lethal antler and bone spearheads that could inflict severe wounds at close quarters. These innovations would have been worthless, however, without a simple and little appreciated invention that is still in use today - the needle and thread.

No one knows who first made this simplest of artefacts, a small tool that revolutionized humanity's ability to thrive in environments with extremely cold temperatures. Needle and thread made it possible for humans to handle the kinds of dramatic temperature shifts characteristic of northern latitudes, where icy winds can chill the skin in minutes or sharply warmer climatic shifts can endure for years. For tends of thousands of years, humans had relied on skin cloaks and crudely sewn clothes to survive Ice Age winters. The eyed needle allowed people to fashion garments that not only fitted the individual precisely but also combined fur from several animals, so that the user could benefit from the unique properties of each kind of skin. Modern-day Eskimo use an astonishing array of furs for their traditional garments. For example, they use only wolverine fur for the opening of an anorak hood, to prevent the wearer's head from frostbite, but only caribou leg skin for knee-length boot uppers.

The needle also brought another sartorial innovation - layered clothing. Any backpacker, skier, or sailor knows the merits of layering clothes: close-fitting undergarments, a middle layer to provide additional warmth and some wind protection, and an outer windproof anorak and pants. Our ancient forebears developed layered garments at last 30,000 years ago and perhaps earlier - thanks to the humble needle.
The Long Summer, p27. Brian Fagan.

Brian Fagan is an authority on the subject so this should be a good source, I also highly recommend the book.

Brian M. Fagan - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Earl_of_Rochester is offline  
Old November 12th, 2012, 01:26 PM   #13

Naomasa298's Avatar
Bog of the Year
 
Joined: Apr 2010
From: T'Republic of Yorkshire
Posts: 20,751

Quote:
Originally Posted by Larrey View Post
Maybe, or maybe not. The large size of Heidelbergensis, like that of Neanderthal, might well be a matter of handling cold without resource to tailored clothes, which is what I would think the OP is specifically asking for.

Not actual evidence either Heidelbergensis, Neanderthal etc. didn't wear clothes of course. Some Heidelbergensis needles would be nice circumstancial evidence though.
An interesting case of cause and effect. Were primitive hominids able to survive in colder climates by inventing clothing, or were they only able to migrate to those climates in the first place by the prior invention of clothing?

Clothing doesn't necessary require needles though. The earliest clothing would be likely to be simple wraps of skins and furs, which wouldn't require needles to fabricate.
Naomasa298 is online now  
Old November 12th, 2012, 02:11 PM   #14

Ancientgeezer's Avatar
Revisionist
 
Joined: Nov 2011
From: The Dustbin, formerly, Garden of England
Posts: 4,890

Quote:
Originally Posted by Naomasa298 View Post
An interesting case of cause and effect. Were primitive hominids able to survive in colder climates by inventing clothing, or were they only able to migrate to those climates in the first place by the prior invention of clothing?

Clothing doesn't necessary require needles though. The earliest clothing would be likely to be simple wraps of skins and furs, which wouldn't require needles to fabricate.
The San are about the closest to early humans.
Although the San people knew how to sew, they rarely needed the skill as a loincloth--essentially a thong, was about all the day-to-day clothing in their wardrobe, however it can still get cold on uplands, at night or in the wet season, so they had capes of animal-skin called Karosses. No sewing, no tailoring, just a large skin with a hole in it for the head, a bit like a Mexican peasant in his poncho. It was probably a very early skill.
Ancientgeezer is offline  
Old November 13th, 2012, 04:42 AM   #15
Lecturer
 
Joined: Mar 2012
Posts: 352

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ancientgeezer View Post
The adoption of clothing has been dated by research on human body lice.
The common head louse is different from the body louse and genetic research suggests that they diverged between 150.000 and 170,000 years BP, that is around the last ice age but one and before the exodus from Africa.
Anthropologists have speculated that clothing may have originated in the idea of wearing animal skins as a disguise when approaching animals on the hunt and then discovering that they were comfortable in cooler weather.
Tailoring though had to wait a while, the oldest bone needles are dated around 15,000 BP and Amarni and Boss couldn't get going before 8000BP when spinning and weaving seems to have taken off in the middle east.
I think you have the only answer that be considered scientifically correct.

However I don't think the dates make sense unless you mean for social reasons.

Once humans left africa it was a necessity to wear furs, which means your talking about a time frame of 2-3 million years ago.

Either way, I'd think it's highly likely humans used furs for warmth about as as soon as they were capable of skinning animals, which is likely even later in history.

Even a dog will use a blanket for warm, I don't think the instinct to cover up in and of itself is such a stretch.
Terranovan is offline  
Old November 13th, 2012, 05:26 AM   #16
Scholar
 
Joined: Sep 2012
From: Prague, Czech Republic
Posts: 683

Quote:
Originally Posted by Terranovan View Post
I think you have the only answer that be considered scientifically correct.

However I don't think the dates make sense unless you mean for social reasons.

Once humans left africa it was a necessity to wear furs, which means your talking about a time frame of 2-3 million years ago.

Either way, I'd think it's highly likely humans used furs for warmth about as as soon as they were capable of skinning animals, which is likely even later in history.

Even a dog will use a blanket for warm, I don't think the instinct to cover up in and of itself is such a stretch.
2-3 million years ago is probably stretching it. Whilst Homo erectus colonised parts of Europe and Asia, their remains are found in souther Europe, and no further north in Asia than northern China. They're usually associated with animal remains that suggest a warm-temperate climate.

The earliest clear evidence of hominids from a place and time that appear to be the frozen north are tools found near Happisburgh in Norwich, England, from about 80,000 years ago. We don't know what hominids made them, because no remains were found. And we don't know if they were wearing clothes or if they had physiological adaptations to the cold/
Kaficek is offline  
Old November 13th, 2012, 08:28 AM   #17

Star's Avatar
Historian
 
Joined: Sep 2010
From: USA
Posts: 3,020

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kaficek View Post
The earliest clear evidence of hominids from a place and time that appear to be the frozen north are tools found near Happisburgh in Norwich, England, from about 80,000 years ago. We don't know what hominids made them, because no remains were found. And we don't know if they were wearing clothes or if they had physiological adaptations to the cold/
Good points, Kaficek. It is definitely possible to imagine those unknown hominids wearing roughly pieced-togeher garments, even with bodies selected for highly-developed cold adaptation.

According to page 35 of Journal of Archaeological Method and Theory: The Prehistoric Development of Clothing: Archaeological Implications of a Thermal Model (Ian Gilligan/Springer Science. 6 January 2012)

...the very oldest eyed needles were found at the Kostenki 15 site in Russia.
Quote:
John Hoffecker of CU-Boulder's Institute of Arctic and Alpine Research said that excavations at Kostenki -- a series of more than 20 sites about 250 miles south of present-day Moscow -- have yielded bone and ivory needles with eyelets that are 30,000 years old
- Excavations in Eastern Europe...CU Boulder newsletter

The question remains, could fitted clothing 'proper' have been made by needles without eyes? Yes, I think so, though they would have been very crude garments. I'm willing to bet anything that Eurasian Neanderthals were using these hooked needles long before cold-climate living Anatomically Modern Humans made and used eyed ones in these cold areas. How would we know if Neanderthals/archaic humans ever did use the hooked needles and awls for such uses? We wouldn't, but we can infer or simply assume they did, given the climate.
Star is offline  
Old November 13th, 2012, 09:03 AM   #18

Star's Avatar
Historian
 
Joined: Sep 2010
From: USA
Posts: 3,020

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ancientgeezer View Post
The adoption of clothing has been dated by research on human body lice.
The common head louse is different from the body louse and genetic research suggests that they diverged between 150.000 and 170,000 years BP, that is around the last ice age but one and before the exodus from Africa.
Anthropologists have speculated that clothing may have originated in the idea of wearing animal skins as a disguise when approaching animals on the hunt and then discovering that they were comfortable in cooler weather.
Tailoring though had to wait a while, the oldest bone needles are dated around 15,000 BP and Amarni and Boss couldn't get going before 8000BP when spinning and weaving seems to have taken off in the middle east.
I missed this on my first read through, excellent points. I think Earl's post quoting Fagan also touched on your point about distinguishing the different uses for garments (ceremonial/hunt/insignia versus cold climate protection). The dates for emergence of the former could very well be earlier than the latter.
Star is offline  
Old November 13th, 2012, 09:08 AM   #19
Suspended indefinitely
 
Joined: May 2010
From: Rhondda
Posts: 2,964

As I understand it, the inhabitants of southern Patagonia - where it is very cold - wore few if any clothes. If so, it does suggest that other motives than warmth governed the adaptation of clothing.
Iolo is offline  
Old November 14th, 2012, 12:12 AM   #20
Scholar
 
Joined: Sep 2012
From: Prague, Czech Republic
Posts: 683

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kaficek View Post
The earliest clear evidence of hominids from a place and time that appear to be the frozen north are tools found near Happisburgh in Norwich, England, from about 80,000 years ago.
To clarify any misunderstanding, I meant to type 800,000 years ago.
Kaficek is offline  
Reply

  Historum > World History Forum > General History

Tags
clothes, hominids, start, wearing


Thread Tools
Display Modes


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Why did men start and stop wearing capes? jeroenrottgering General History 30 April 4th, 2012 01:25 AM

Copyright © 2006-2013 Historum. All rights reserved.