6000 BCE

The term lithic is defined as of the nature of or relating to stone. The making of stone tools is known as Lithic technology.  Generally known as the stone age, the technology and use of stone tools is divided into three periods, Palaeolithic (old stone age), Mesolithic (middle stone age), and Neolithic (new stone age).

The first occupants of the Corca Dhuibhne (Dingle Peninsula) appeared around 6000 BCE and were of the Mesolithic cultural stage.  The Mesolithic hunter was far more efficient than their Palaeolithic forefathers.  They were a material culture characterized by greater innovation and diversity.

The hunters would have competed with brown bear, wild cars, and the grey wolf for the elk, pine martin, and red deer.  The great auk, a flightless bird that resembles a penguin, would have been found near along the shore.  They also fished extensively first from shore with harpoon-like tools and later from boats made of skins stretched over wooden frames or dug-outs.

Mesolithic house
Mesolithic house

Food would have been returned to their campsite where it was prepared over a communal fire and shared.  The Mesolithic man was a conservationist.  They would have used every part of the animal for survival.  Beyond the meat, the skins would have been tanned and used as roofs on their dome-shaped huts, clothing, and boats.  Bones were fashioned into tools including spoons, awls, scrapers, and fishhooks.  They were also used decoratively as combs, pins, and pendants.

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