38 – Use of ornaments (beads and shells)

110,000 years ago

Many archaeologists regard shell bead ornaments as proof that anatomically modern humans had developed a sophisticated symbolic material culture. Bead manufacturing likely arose independently in different cultures. Two beads made from ostrich shells, dated to 110,000 years ago are the first evidence of ornamentation. Ocean shells were used to make beads some 82,000 years ago. Other beads, made from perforated snail shells, have been recovered at Blombos Cave in South Africa dated to 75,000 years ago.

Image credit Jamie Hodgkins et al https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-021-02804-z


    Pleistocene2.58 million to 11,700 years ago

Environmental and Climate Changes

  • Earth’s climate remains relatively stable with alternating glacial and interglacial periods

Changing Species