What actually played the cave children? Were there already mumps? And how the little ones were wrapped? Urbia on the tracks of the cavity humans.

Quite modern: Both parents were "working"

Stone Age girl on rock panthers Thorsten Mann

Photo: © panthermedia / Thorsten Mann

When you see sometimes muddy his offspring obliviously in the mud, one happens sometimes quite archaic in our so intent on cleanliness time. And it's not that easy, relaxed watching and then to carry into the house, the small mud monster without complaint and with pointed fingers. But we are pedagogically trained and also knowing deep inside: The fun of dirt and mud is as old as mankind. Certainly the cave children have baked pound cake and toasty eingesaut from top to bottom, right? And what have actually else played so? What was your everyday life? Had already mumps? Was there already diapers?

Since we do not feel more with the squat Neanderthals now quite used we prefer to take a look at our direct ancestors, Homo sapiens sapiens, who resembled us already spitting. He appeared before about 40 to 30,000 years on the scene. A "Average family" this time lived by hunting wild animals and collecting of edible of all kinds. This way of life maintained the so-called hunter-gatherers to about 10 000 years ago at. While Dad and the other powerful men now so perhaps were once again for days on mammoth hunting and Mama wandered a few hours to gather berries, roots or bird eggs, creativity was needed in the children. "You probably have to play very much alone and with each other because the adults were engaged in the procurement of food and had little time for them"Explains Dr. Linda Owen, a specialist in Neolithic Age (Neolithic) and gender studies, currently visiting professor at the University of Vienna. "The toy was probably a large part of miniature tools and weapons. So playing at the same time also served to learning." but the children had to help at an early stage in collecting the food.

Cave Kids knew no caries

Which brings us to the subject of snacking food, and above all. I wonder if the stone-age children already had holes in the teeth? Hardly likely. For they had indeed no toothbrushes, but tart wild berries and rare wild honey or even occurring only in tiny amounts sweet juice, excrete the aphids were contrary to Lolly, licorice and Co. hardly dangerous for the teeth. For this there was the sweet treats too few and too small quantities. Instead, there was meat enough when the hunting luck laughed - and it was starving when no deer, roe deer, wild boar or at least show some fat birds wanted. So the little ones regularly received at least eating, they were almost exclusively breastfed approximately three years. This also made for a good protection against infections and in the mother for contraception. But where came out what came out after feeding down again? Also had diapers have similar ancestors? "Presumably, the mothers took soft, absorbent moss that was put children under the clothes to catch the droppings. So also the women who just had their monthly menstrual made do by the way well"So the scientist.

Living stone-age children dangerous?

Now if you think of saber-toothed tigers and giant cave bear, one can hardly resist the impression that the life of the Stone Age kids must have been very dangerous. "Actually, however, today's children live much more risky if one thinks, for example, on the road"Said Dr. Owen. "Sure, there were wild animals, but who rarely attacked on its own people." And in a steppe landscape, for example, a young child may eventually not easily crash far as on escalators at outlets, in swimming pools or playing on high walls. "On the other hand, a child of the Stone Age could also burn the fire of course. What does it but probably learned quite early."

But how did it from the plagues that today no child is without its first ten years of life, children's diseases? Also got Cave Kids have the chickenpox? "The risk of infection was not so great because the Stone Age people lived in very small, manageable groups and had little contact with other groups"Says Owen. The disease could not spread nationwide itself. Therefore, until the modern era, there were people who there are (children's) were diseases unknown. "In addition, it is thought today that many infectious diseases were ever only transferred to humans when he started to keep animals. That some agents only made the jump from animal to man, and modified or specialized on him." So it was for many of the children because when a plague: the non-eradicated fleas and lice.

Infant mortality was higher

Despite all this, the infant mortality rate was obviously higher than today in the Stone Age. Medicine was limited probably due to the knowledge of some helpful herbs, serious illnesses (pneumonia, for example) or injury was hardly get at. It threatened hunger by lack of good hunting, life expectancy was generally low. The children were therefore used to grow up? "Probably not", The Stone Age specialist, "one suspects the contrary, that they were sexually mature later. namely because the meager food and physical work slowed the ripening process. but which did not mean that young people were not quite early married. "

How do scientists have all these assumptions? Exactly one naturally do not know today how exactly is now the everyday life of the Cave Kids looked. But there are remains of Stone Age cultures have held up into modern times (for example, among the Eskimo, the African Bushmen or the people in Papua New Guinea), scientists who deal with the prehistory and early history of man can derive much here.

Children Books

Book Active box. Stone Age people. Research, play, experiment. Ars edition, Munich 1997. Mark 19.90 (ISBN 3760754937).

Auler, Jost: Dog Boy and flowers moon. A youth story from the Middle Stone Age.

Ballinger, Erich: The cave painters (from 10 years). Üeberreuter, Vienna. 29.80 Mark (ISBN 3800026252).

Baumann, Gipsy and Franz: With mammoth after Neandertal. Children play Stone Age. Ecotopia Verlag Münster 1995. 36 Mark (ISBN 3925169814).

Beyerlein, Gabriele and Lorenz, Herbert: The sun does not stop. A story from the New Stone Age (aged 12 and older). Arena Verlag Würzburg 1992. 9.90 Mark (ISBN 3401017160).

Craig, Ruth: Malus Wolf (from 12 years). Ravensburger Buchverlag, 1999. Mark 10.90 (ISBN 347352137X).

Heyne, Isolde: tanea. On the big river (from 12 years). Loewe publishers Bindlach 1994. 7.95 Mark (ISBN 378552689X). And other tanea adventure.

Hohler, Franz: Tschipo in the stone age (from 10 years). Ravensburger Buchverlag, 2000. Mark 10.90 (ISBN 3473521531).

Kuhn, Wolfgang: with jeans in the Stone Age. A holiday adventure in southern France (learning materials). DTV Munich 1996 (ISBN 3423701447).

SchlauMax. So the Stone Age people lived (from 6 years). Arena Verlag, Wurzburg 2000. 4.95 Mark (ISBN 3401050427).

Lindberg, Margareta: Suspended. (From 12 years) in the country of seal hunters. Beltz u. Gelberg 2000. Mark 12.90 (ISBN 3407784309).

Lornsen, Dirk: Tirkan (from 12 years). Thienemann, Stuttgart 1994. Mark 19.80 (ISBN 352216864X).

Sklenitzka, Franz S. and Martens, Ute: I want to know. The Stone Age people. Arena Verlag, Wurzburg 1995. Mark 16.80 (ISBN 3401045334).