Man Made Glue from the Stone Age

A glue formula used by people in South Africa 70,000 years ago required more intelligence than archaeologists normally attribute to Stone Age men. It was made by mixing red ochre with the gum of acacia trees. It turns out that the red ochre serves more than a decorative purpose, as researchers found out when they made some of the glue themselves.
"We discovered that when we used ochre, the glue is much more robust, and the stone tool doesn't come off the shaft," said study team member Lyn Wadley of the University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg, South Africa.

But making the glue wasn't easy for the ancient Africans.

It was mentally taxing work that would have required humans to account for differences in the chemistry of gum harvested from different trees and in the iron content of ochre from different sites.

"They couldn't possibly have known about chemical pH or iron content … but they knew that certain combinations of things worked very well," Wadley said.


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@Foreigner1

Yeah, I totally agree with you. Modern man has such a dependency on things that are made almost instantly available, that we have lost a great deal of our innovation and creative thinking abilities that we once had. I am a strong believer in tools and methods that are simple yet effective, and agree with the philosophy that sometimes in order to take two steps forward you need to take one step back. So many doors of knowledge we refuse to look in just because we consider them to be obsolete, or that we just have completely forgot they were there in the first place.
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Gauldar is right- I take out my bow and arrow to use them in the wrong playfield, let alone the target... But I get triggered where I read the information.

I beg forgiveness.

I get somewhat heated up if I read lines like "...70,000 years ago required more intelligence than archaeologists normally attribute to Stone Age men" or "It was mentally taxing work that would have required humans to account for differences in the chemistry of gum harvested from different trees and in the iron content of ochre from different sites".

I've had discussions with lots of traditional-lined archeologists and scientists who still seem convinced that the mere fact that humans lived in the stone age also meant that they therefore could not have equal intelligence capacities to us. Yet after some personal experiences with reënactment and experimental archeology, I am firmly convinced that since those ... roughly 150.000 years ago, have not even gained grains more intelligence. We humans from today are just as intelligent as those stonetool makers from then. They were just as intelligent as us. And this glue is just a point in case. And they dearly needed to use that intelligence to survive in a very dangerous world. Intelligence seemed to be their main tool of survival. The only difference is that we by now after all those years as a whole of humanity accumulated far more little bits of how to do and how to make things and our effictiveness in communicating that information. And that makes that nowadays we live in materialistically highly complicated structures and surroundings. That is not more intelligence- that is accumulation and heritage.

But I'll submit these post also in some different places, where they are more appropriate. :-)
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