Stone Age Timeline

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  • c. 2600000 BCE - c. 12000 BCE
    The Palaeolithic (or Old Stone Age) period, ranging from c. 2,6 million years ago until c. 12,000 years ago.
  • c. 2600000 BCE - c. 12000 BCE
    The Pleistocene epoch, ranging from c. 2,6 million years ago until c. 12,000 years ago. It is characterised by repeated cycles of glacials and interglacials.
  • 40000 BCE - 10000 BCE
    Venus figurines are produced in Europe.
  • c. 17000 BCE - 15000 BCE
    Lascaux cave paintings.
  • c. 12000 BCE - c. 9000 BCE
    The Mesolithic (or Middle Stone Age), lasting from the end of the last Ice Age until the start of agriculture, between c. 9000-c. 4000 BCE.
  • c. 11700 BCE
    End of the most recent glacial episode within the current Quaternary Ice Age.
  • 9000 BCE
    Wild sheep flocks are managed in the Zagros mountains.
  • 9000 BCE
    Cultivation of wild cereals in the Fertile Crescent.
  • c. 9000 BCE - c. 3300 BCE
    The Neolithic (or New Stone Age), lasting from the start of agriculture between c. 9000-c. 4000 BCE until the beginning of bronze use c. 3300 BCE.
  • 8000 BCE
    Ovens in use in the Near East are applied to pottery production.
  • 7500 BCE
    Long-distance trade in obsidian begins.
  • 7000 BCE
    Domestication of goats.
  • 6700 BCE
    Domestication of sheep.
  • 6500 BCE
    Textiles of flax.
  • 6500 BCE
    Domestication of pigs.
  • c. 6200 BCE
    First copper smelting in Anatolia.
  • c. 6000 BCE
    First irrigation.
  • 6000 BCE
    Domestication of cattle.
  • 5000 BCE
    Irrigation and agriculture begin in earnest in Mesopotamia.
  • 5000 BCE
    Hierarchical societies emerge in southeast Europe.
  • 5000 BCE - 3000 BCE
    Megalithic structures erected at Carnac, north-west France.
  • 5000 BCE - 4000 BCE
    Megaliths are erected at the Neolithic site of Locmariaquer, north-west France.
  • 4500 BCE
    Invention of the plow.
  • 4300 BCE
    First megalithic tombs in Europe.
  • 4000 BCE
    Use of wool for textiles.
  • 3650 BCE
    Invention of the wheel.