October 20, 2019

Stone Age – 5 star living with all mod cons?

Filed under: Consumer Trends,Innovation,Uncategorized — by xrematon @ 1:40 pm
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On a recent holiday to Orkney, I had the opportunity to visit many unexpectedly fascinating Neolithic sites. I am not sure I had much of an opinion about this period in human history beyond a vague inkling that these ‘less civilised’ lifestyles might score higher in terms of overall well being than the settled agriculture communities that came afterwards: lots of fresh air, not too much proximity to lots of other people (reducing the risk of contagious diseases and unsanitary living conditions), and a wide variety of fresh food in one’s diet.

Here, in these Orcadian sites, I realised that there was more to the Stone Age than my simplistic assumptions laid out above. Though homes were not spacious, they seemed snug and secure, including a kind of enclosure for bedding, as well as a sort of ‘chill pool’ to keep fish and seafood caught in the surrounding wasters fresh till the moment of consumption. Ikea might not have existed but these homes had the equivalent of the ubiquitous Billy book case – a spacious stone (of course!) dresser.


As with all things Neolithic, no one is quite sure what the purpose of this object was but it seems fair game to think it was an all-purpose useful storage device situated in the main living area. Everyone should have one.

My favourite Stone Age ‘feature’ was the sauna. I have to admit that, once again, officially there is no agreed use for this stone-lined ‘pit’ approx. 1-2m wide and 1.5m deep, but one suggestion is that it could have been a sauna: the pit would have been filled with water and then heated up by putting in hot stones from a fire. Others suggestions include a kind of laundrette – far less exciting – that doesn’t get my vote. (Alright, I know the photo below doesn’t look like much!).


If I had to become a survivalist, I might opt for following the Neolithic lifestyles as practised in Orkey, complete with mod cons of course!

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