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Stone Age DNA shows hunter-gatherers shunned farming

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posted on May, 11 2014 @ 10:19 PM
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How did farming take over the world? One theory is that farming was such an evidently good idea that it spread on its own. As hunter-gatherers encountered farmers, they were converted to an agricultural way of living. But a large-scale genetic analysis of Stone Age remains in Sweden suggests that this wasn't the case.

Instead, it seems like early farmers and hunter-gatherers had deep-rooted genetic differences. This suggests that European farmers were so successful that they displaced hunter-gatherers as they spread across the continent.

Pontus Skoglund of Uppsala University in Sweden and his colleagues sequenced the DNA from 11 early hunter-gatherers and farmers dating back to between 5000 and 7000 years ago. Four were associated with late Stone Age farming settlements; seven were identified as coastal hunter-gatherers.

DNA analysis showed that the farmers and hunter-gatherers descended from distinct genetic lineages. "It is quite clear that the two groups are very different," says Skoglund. Comparisons with the genes of modern populations revealed them to be more distinct that the genomes of modern Scandinavians and Italians.

Previous analyses of the isotopes in the bones of the 11 Stone Age individuals also showed the hugely different diet the two groups had. The hunter-gatherers relied primarily on seals and fish, while the farmers ate mostly land protein – presumably from the animals that they took care of.

www.newscientist.com...

It's becoming clearer to me that some folks simply don't give up their way of life because it looks easier and more advanced,I am reminded of the same kind of mind that resulted in sud busters VS cowpokes or cattle prodders wars right down to the American west cowboys vs homesteaders, that took place all over the globe the herders generally warriors and often predatory none the less eventually lost out to the farmers every time,one reason population density and social organization, somewhat related is the often belated adoption of certain technologies Kush and Kmt slow in making use of Iron had unfortunate consequences when they ran up against the Assyrian's Iron clad military machine,or Oda Nobunaga adopted the use of firearms while most of the Samurai's elites considered it a weapon of cowardliness,predictable out come brave guys lost Nobunaga won big.




posted on May, 11 2014 @ 11:58 PM
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a reply to: Spider879

Luddites never win.

The comparisons you made with this throughout history is very apt. Just extrapolate that into the future and you will see where we are headed with our political parties.



posted on May, 12 2014 @ 01:29 AM
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originally posted by: Spider879

...It's becoming clearer to me that some folks simply don't give up their way of life because it looks easier and more advanced,I am reminded of the same kind of mind that resulted in sud busters VS cowpokes or cattle prodders wars right down to the American west cowboys vs homesteaders, that took place all over the globe the herders generally warriors and often predatory none the less eventually lost out to the farmers every time,one reason population density and social organization, somewhat related is the often belated adoption of certain technologies Kush and Kmt slow in making use of Iron had unfortunate consequences when they ran up against the Assyrian's Iron clad military machine,or Oda Nobunaga adopted the use of firearms while most of the Samurai's elites considered it a weapon of cowardliness,predictable out come brave guys lost Nobunaga won big.

I don't have time to consider this, tonight...but, am responding to your OP so as to allow for further review, tomorrow.
Thanks for the fodder!



posted on May, 12 2014 @ 02:35 AM
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originally posted by: Cuervo
a reply to: Spider879

Luddites never win.

The comparisons you made with this throughout history is very apt. Just extrapolate that into the future and you will see where we are headed with our political parties.

Yes this failure to adopt and industrialize is part and parcel of why ancient African kingdoms ultimately vanished after losing out to mass produced cheaper European goods killing off local markets basically of cottage industries this was the case in textiles and glass making.



posted on May, 12 2014 @ 04:22 AM
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a reply to: Spider879

The evidence, so far, seems to suggest that the primary motivation for adopting agricultural techniques, both in terms of arable and pastoral farming, was as 'insurance' against scarcity. It therefore stands to reason that in regions where scarcity was not an issue that farming would be resisted or rather not considered. This seems to be particularly the case in those hunter-gatherers that followed a riparian lifestyle for much of the year and explains why it took so long for farming to be adopted in the Nile Valley. It was only with the population explosion caused by a sedentary lifestyle, exacerbated by the end of the subpluvial, that many of those groups were forced into farming, or otherwise genetically delineated, due to competition.



posted on May, 12 2014 @ 04:31 AM
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I have heard the theory that the invention of agriculture was "the fall" mentioned in the Genesis of the Bible and that Cain and Abel are just metaphors. I'm not saying one way or another, but it's an interesting perspective.



posted on May, 12 2014 @ 04:32 AM
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a reply to: Spider879

This is fascinating because I read a book about the different blood types and how our blood type affects our digestive systems.

From what I remember Blood type A which came after blood type O, which was the earliest, was better at a vegetarian diet and so perhaps came from the later evolving farmers. Blood O was better at digesting moulds etc but in short what the people with it forraged for. The later blood types were more adaptable. The plus and negative I simply can't remember their affect etc. Fascinating all the different things thst influence evolution and the choices we make.



posted on May, 12 2014 @ 06:09 AM
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It looks like it was a gradual assimilation into the agricultural way of life, a process which took over 2,000 years to happen. I'd imagine the larger access to food from agriculture was more useful during more periods of drought and it was much easier to have more children when you're living on a farm.


ndigenous hunter-gatherers and immigrant farmers lived side-by-side for more than 2,000 years in Central Europe, before the hunter-gatherer communities died out or adopted the agricultural lifestyle. The results come from a study undertaken by the Institute of Anthropology at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU) that has just been published in the eminent journal Science. A team led by Mainz anthropologist Professor Joachim Burger studied bones from the 'Blätterhöhle' cave near Hagen in Germany, where both hunter-gatherers and farmers were buried. "It is commonly assumed that the Central European hunter-gatherers disappeared soon after the arrival of farmers," said Dr. Ruth Bollongino, lead author of the study. "But our study shows that the descendants of Mesolithic Europeans maintained their hunter-gatherer way of life and lived in parallel with the immigrant farmers, for at least 2,000 years. The hunter-gathering lifestyle thus only died out in Central Europe around 5,000 years ago, much later than previously thought."


German Study



posted on May, 12 2014 @ 09:07 AM
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a reply to: Spider879

Hi spider,


A little tidbit from the author,

“We see clear evidence that people from hunter-gatherer groups were incorporated into farming groups as they expanded across Europe. This might be clues towards something that happens also when agriculture spread to other parts of the world,” Dr Skoglund said.


The source and a discussion on the genetics in question
dienekes.blogspot.com...
edit on 12-5-2014 by punkinworks10 because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 12 2014 @ 09:46 AM
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HI. CANT SAY WHAT CAUSED THE DIVERGENCE OF PRACTICE AMONG GATHER/FARMER...THOUGH CAN SAY THAT THE EXPLOITATION OF FARMING IS A REQUIREMENT FOR SLAVERY. IN OTHER WORDS, IF PEOPLE CANNOT FEED THEMSELVES (GATHER) THEN THEY RELY UPON OTHERS (FARMER) AND WHEN SOMEONE (LEADER/RULER) WANTS SOMETHING - CONTROL THE FOOD AND CONTROL THE PEOPLE.
IMPORTANT TODAY, ESPECIALLY IN CIITES...WE ALL COULD USE MORE FOOD SOVEREIGNTY! (A LITTLE HUNT/GATHER/FARM SKILLS OF OUR OWN)

LOVE∞



posted on May, 12 2014 @ 11:37 AM
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Maybe there were religious reasons for shunning it. Maybe they thought that God is supposed to provide for them and it's not right to try to insert yourself in between "god" and the people or "take over gods job"?

interesting thread! thanks for sharing bud!

sharing may have been a key factor...somewhere in there



posted on May, 12 2014 @ 03:49 PM
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originally posted by: twfau
It looks like it was a gradual assimilation into the agricultural way of life, a process which took over 2,000 years to happen. I'd imagine the larger access to food from agriculture was more useful during more periods of drought and it was much easier to have more children when you're living on a farm.


Hunter gatherers also seem to have had social conventions that helped to control reproduction, such as the structures of festivities to ensure that babies are born in spring, when food is most abundant and allowing for the infants to gain strength, and body fat, before winter sets in. Likewise for the mothers to be similarly recouperated. Communal living during harsh weather, sexual segregation of tasks, all serve to minimise opportunity for procreation. Sedentary living, particularly in individual huts, allows for privacy and therefore procreation can take place any time, and with stored food that is not initially a problem. It only becomes a problem when the population expands to the point of needing to increase resources, and the only way that that can be done is by increasing territory. There is ample evidence of hunter gatherers and farmers living in close proximity, peacefully. Even of hunters trading game joints with the farmers, and no doubt there was inter-marriage. In most case though, as the settlement expands, the hunter gatherer site abruptly ceases to be visited seasonally. There are any number of possible explanations for that ranging from assimilation to denial of access by force.



posted on May, 12 2014 @ 04:41 PM
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Specifically, when talking about farming moving into north and western Europe, the people moving in first , followed the rivers. They then had to clear land, which was done via slash and burn.
It took quite some time for the farmers to come into regular contact with the Hg's and the foragers.



posted on May, 12 2014 @ 07:18 PM
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Thanks guys and Gals very informative info,but there was a seemingly special group of HGs that threw a monkey wrench in the low population density theory,that of the folks who constructed Göbekli Tepe can you very bright people hazard a guesstimate of the probable population of the folks who built that complex, the later first farmers the Natufians were equally impressive but they seemed less secure as they built their complex with a wall and a watch tower at Jericho,off whom were they afraid?



posted on May, 13 2014 @ 04:01 AM
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originally posted by: Spider879
Thanks guys and Gals very informative info,but there was a seemingly special group of HGs that threw a monkey wrench in the low population density theory,that of the folks who constructed Göbekli Tepe can you very bright people hazard a guesstimate of the probable population of the folks who built that complex, the later first farmers the Natufians were equally impressive but they seemed less secure as they built their complex with a wall and a watch tower at Jericho,off whom were they afraid?


GT wasn't a settlement so I am not sure that that is in anyway a fair comparison. In terms of what the people of Jericho were scared of, the construction of the wall suggests, primarily, flash floods and land slides.



posted on May, 13 2014 @ 05:01 AM
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originally posted by: KilgoreTrout

originally posted by: Spider879
Thanks guys and Gals very informative info,but there was a seemingly special group of HGs that threw a monkey wrench in the low population density theory,that of the folks who constructed Göbekli Tepe can you very bright people hazard a guesstimate of the probable population of the folks who built that complex, the later first farmers the Natufians were equally impressive but they seemed less secure as they built their complex with a wall and a watch tower at Jericho,off whom were they afraid?


GT wasn't a settlement so I am not sure that that is in anyway a fair comparison. In terms of what the people of Jericho were scared of, the construction of the wall suggests, primarily, flash floods and land slides.

Yeah I am not saying GT was a settlement but the amount of work that went into that temple complex had to have had a population that was significant, the folks at Jericho also had a watch tower,that could be used as a look out for flash floods but my money is on marauding bands of..HGs??
edit on 13-5-2014 by Spider879 because: fix



posted on May, 13 2014 @ 05:02 AM
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Oops sorry.
edit on 13-5-2014 by Spider879 because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 14 2014 @ 03:46 PM
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originally posted by: Spider879
Yeah I am not saying GT was a settlement but the amount of work that went into that temple complex had to have had a population that was significant, the folks at Jericho also had a watch tower,that could be used as a look out for flash floods but my money is on marauding bands of..HGs??


The thing with GT though was that it wasn't built in one go, it looks huge, but it represents several 'builds', in fills and re-builds. Of course, it still would have required a significant group, however, by the latest phase those builders seem to have been settling down themselves, some distance from GT but still getting together there for festivities. Plus, you have to consider that the population of Catal Hoyuk was, at a conservative estimate, around 5000. It is highly doubtful that even grouped together, that the H/Gs could equal that.

In terms of the wall of Jericho, contemporary to that period, it does not seem to have circled the whole settlement. There is nothing at the eastern side. Most of the emphasis, including the eight metre high tower, was at the eastern side, facing the threat of flood and mud slides. The increase in rainfall, combined with de-vegetation of the Palestinian hills seem to have been the primary threat to the settlement. That they stayed there, and why after it was abandoned it was repeatedly settled, was because of the fresh water spring. By the fourth occupation though, the Biblical Jericho, the land had been raised to the extent that flooding was no longer a risk. The danger then lay with 'marauding' bands of pastoralists.

That said, you may find this thread that I wrote a while back of interest...

www.abovetopsecret.com...





edit on 14-5-2014 by KilgoreTrout because: appalling spelling and grammar



posted on May, 15 2014 @ 01:02 AM
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originally posted by: KilgoreTrout

originally posted by: Spider879
Yeah I am not saying GT was a settlement but the amount of work that went into that temple complex had to have had a population that was significant, the folks at Jericho also had a watch tower,that could be used as a look out for flash floods but my money is on marauding bands of..HGs??


The thing with GT though was that it wasn't built in one go, it looks huge, but it represents several 'builds', in fills and re-builds. Of course, it still would have required a significant group, however, by the latest phase those builders seem to have been settling down themselves, some distance from GT but still getting together there for festivities. Plus, you have to consider that the population of Catal Hoyuk was, at a conservative estimate, around 5000. It is highly doubtful that even grouped together, that the H/Gs could equal that.

In terms of the wall of Jericho, contemporary to that period, it does not seem to have circled the whole settlement. There is nothing at the eastern side. Most of the emphasis, including the eight metre high tower, was at the eastern side, facing the threat of flood and mud slides. The increase in rainfall, combined with de-vegetation of the Palestinian hills seem to have been the primary threat to the settlement. That they stayed there, and why after it was abandoned it was repeatedly settled, was because of the fresh water spring. By the fourth occupation though, the Biblical Jericho, the land had been raised to the extent that flooding was no longer a risk. The danger then lay with 'marauding' bands of pastoralists.

That said, you may find this thread that I wrote a while back of interest...

www.abovetopsecret.com...





Thanks for dropping knowledge..nuff respect ! I didn't know that the wall did not circle the entire settlement ,in that case the flood defense seemed a better fit will take some time to go over your thread how did I missed that!



posted on May, 15 2014 @ 01:05 AM
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Another point to consider is that the riparian lifestyle wasn't so obviously superior as people now seem to think. The invention of agriculture unbalanced diets, making people unhealthier. The permanent communities agriculture made possible were also perfect breeding-grounds for infectious diseases, parasites and epidemics.

I am not speculating. As some of our archaeological experts here will confirm, skeletons and other evidence from early agricultural communities show signs of stunting, disease, etc. far more than hunter-gatherer remains do.

Another point: in agricultural communities, people had to stay put, follow the punishing routines agriculture imposes on farmers, and obey the orders of religio-political authorities into whose hands the invention of settled, structured communities had put so much more power.

Of course agriculture was resisted. If I'd been around at the time, I'd have resisted it myself.



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