Sunday, 20 August 2017

Stone Age 'Lunch Box' found

Over the past 100 years glaciers and ice fields of the European Alps have lost half their volume to global warming, and their continued retreat, like that of glaciers everywhere, is accelerating. By 2100 many scientists predict they will have all but disappeared. As glaciers recede, they are releasing human artifacts that they have absorbed through the ages, including humans themselves. Ötzi the iceman, the five-thousand-year-old mummified mountaineer discovered in 1991, being the most amazing.

An object four thousand years old was found in 2012: a circular box, several inches wide, made of willow and pine and sewn together with twigs. The recovery of a wooden artifact so old and well preserved is remarkable. Even more remarkable was it's contents, a blob found to be “some sort of wheat”.

As far back as seven thousand years ago, people who lived in the lower valleys brought their goats and sheep to graze in high-elevation fields for days or weeks at a time. The wooden containers held several days’ worth of meals.