The Middle Paleolithic /Mesolithic period:
- This period emerged after the end of the upper Paleolithic period in India and many parts of the world. There was no conclusive evidence for the presence of the upper paleolith period in the regions of Tamil Nadu.
- People belonging to the Mesolithic period started using new tools named “Microliths”. The presence of these people was found near Chennai, Coimbatore, Tiruchirappalli, Madurai, Sivagangai and some other parts of Tamil Nadu.
Teri’s- Red dunes
Teri: These are sites belonging to the eastern coasts of Tamil Nadu and are covered by Red dunes which belong to the Mesolithic period. Some Microliths have been discovered in those areas.
- The recent excavations from Keeladi, Sivagangai had revealed some semi-precious stones in addition to the terracotta seals, Carnelian stones and skeletons. Microlith findings include Iron objects, swords and roofs were also discovered.
- The Mesolithic people are also known to have used triangles, lunates and scrapers for hunting purposes. (Lunates – a crescent-shaped tool which was used by the Mesolithic people).
The Neolithic Tamil Nadu
The most important feature of the Neolithic period was the practice of agriculture adopted by the people. After building mud walls using dried clay pieces, they slowly started to settle along the banks of the river. Cattle rearing and domestication of animals were prevalent during this period.
Burnishing: The Neolithic people were the first to make potteries using cartwheels; before finishing the process the pots were rubbed with pebble stones. This process was known as Burnishing.
Riverside Agriculture of Neolithic people
Payyampalli is a place near Vellore, where the early evidence for animal domestication and agriculture were found. These findings also included glimpses of pottery making knowledge displayed by the Neolithic settlers. Small pockets of horse gram seeds were also excavated.
Payyampalli – the treasure trove of Neolithic period Tamil Nadu: