prehistory

(redirected from prehistorian)
Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus.

prehistory,

period of human evolution before writing was invented and records kept. The term was coined by Daniel Wilson in 1851. It is followed by protohistory, the period for which we have some records but must still rely largely on archaeological evidence to provide a coherent account. The study of prehistory is concerned with the activities of a society or culture, not of the individual, and is limited to the material evidence that has survived.
References in periodicals archive ?
(18.) In her careful studies of the paintings in the Grotte of Chauvet, the prehistorian Valerie Feruglio traces an evolution of techniques as well as radical innovations, some of them clearly motivated by the structure of the material painted upon.
The great Australian archaeologist, Gordon Childe, summed it all up with simple elegance in his valedictory address when he retired from his London Chair in 1958: The prehistorian, like any other historian, should aim not 'only to describe, but also to explain: historical description should be at the same time explanatory.
In Rites of the Gods (1981) British prehistorian Aubrey Burl concluded, "At Newgrange ...
In 1987 a sensational "discovery" was made by a Sydney University team, led by Australia's most celebrated prehistorian, D.J.
With regard to the published record on the Temuan, American medical anthropologist and prehistorian Frederick Dunn has made a major contribution with his study of forest collecting (Chapter 6 "Forest Product Collecting and Trade in Modern Malaya" of his 1975 work Rain-forest Collectors and Traders: A Study of Resource Utilization in Modern and Ancient Malaya).(191) Shortly after the publication of Dunn's study came Patricia Gall's "Temuan Socio-economic Change: An Ecological Model" (1977)(192) and then, in 1979, Malaysian anthropologist Alberto Gomes's The Paya Lebar Temuans: A Demographic Study (1979)(193) (much of the latter incorporated into his already-mentioned Ecological Adaptation and Population Change: Semang Foragers and Temuan Horticulturalists in West Malaysia of 1982).
"In the stone age," said ruggedly handsome on-site prehistorian (really!) Klint Janulis.
Quite soon the Estonian prehistorian Harry Moora reached the conclusion that the cultural life in the Early Metal Ages was against all expectations a very active and developed one, and vividly benefitting from intercultural contacts.
(6.) Prehistorian, Margaret Ehrenberg, has argued convincingly against Gimbutas and her spiritual feminist followers.
For a prehistorian these will be familiar themes, but will surely be confusing to other readers.
Three quarters of a century ago, the prehistorian Vere Gordon Childe (1892-1957), a genius at popularizing archaeology, wrote of a 'Neolithic Revolution' in southwestern Asia, which saw people domesticate crops and animals and settle down in permanent villages, a development that he claimed to have taken place in southwestern Asia around 4,000 BC.