Museum complex

The Early and Middle Paleolithic (2.5 million – 40.000 years ago)

The first hall presents exhibits related to the earliest era of the formation of mankind – the lower and middle Paleolithic (1 million years ago – 40 thousand years ago). The first representatives of the Homo-Pithecanthropus genus (in Latin Homo Erectus), inhabited our territory, moving from South to North. They arrived in Europe in the relatively warm interglacial era. Later, in the era of cooling, Europe was inhabited by new species – Neanderthals (in Latin Homo Sapiens Neanderthalensis). They were adapted to survive in the cold climate, hunt animals, live in rock caves and to build dwellings on the plains. Depending on the quality of the local stone, they had to learn and improve different techniques of its processing.

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Ways to split a stone
When making stone tools, the material was split in principle in two ways: by hitting or pressing. Shock splitting is divided into direct and indirect (indirect) splitting. Most often, for impact splitting, a striker was used, often representing an ordinary cobblestone of suitable size and hardness. To find out that the flakes were repelled from the core using a stone striker, you can use two signs. When a stone hits a stone, a small depression or "wound" appears at the site of the impact, a noticeable impact bump and a trace of the impact is formed on the opposite side of the chip. It is necessary, of course, to take into account the fragility of the material and secondary processing, or retouching, as a result of which the impact marks could be eliminated. However, particularly thin points and knives made of plates can only be made by indirect impact, i.e. using a bone or wooden chisel. The blank, of course, can be separated from the nucleus using a stone striker. If, instead of a stone striker, we use, say, a peg made of hard wood, suitable mainly for well-fissionable materials, such as obsidian or flint, we will find that on the heel of the flake is formed an inconspicuous impact mound, less noticeable than the mound that arose from a direct hit with a stone. It also occurs when a wooden or bone object is pressed hard on a stone nucleus.

Что ж, давайте разберемся. Методики реконструкции внешности по костным останкам разрабатывались учеными с XIX века. В России это направление связано с именем знаменитого антрополога и скульптора М.М. Герасимова. Михаил Герасимов на огромной статистике – изучая современных людей и приматов - выявил закономерности формирования мягких тканей головы в зависимости от особенностей кости. В частности, он убедился, что для человека и для шимпанзе эти закономерности принципиально не отличаются. Значит, их можно применять и к ископаемым человекообразным – что Герасимов и проделал, выполнив классические реконструкции наших предков – от австралопитеков до древних Homo sapiens. Разработанная Герасимовым методика неоднократно проверялась экспериментально: Михаилу Михайловичу предлагали восстановить облик по черепу человека, внешность которого была известна (имелись фотографии, которые Герасимову, естественно, не показывали). Итог: выполненные Герасимовым реконструкции очень походили на оригинал.


In the design of the first three Archaeological halls of the Museum (stucco cornices and floor mosaics) were used main and typical ornamental motifs of the most ancient clay vessels of the stone age of the Russian plain.
The creators of the Museum intended the first two halls for a display of archaeological artifacts of the most ancient and the longest period in human history – the Stone Age. The detailed study of it Russian archeologists began in the 1870s. Since that time prehistoric archeology became one of the greatest interests of one of the founders of the Museum – Aleksey S.Uvarov.
In 1877 Aleksey S.Uvarov examined the slope of the ravine on the territory of his Karacharovo manor in Murom Province, and recorded the location of the Paleolithic site. The same year, he conducted excavations in the valleys of the Oka and the Vetel’ma rivers in the vicinity of Volosovo village and Plekhanov Bor area. Among the findings of Volosovo Camp were carefully crafted tools and pieces of crockery of baked clay.
The hall is decorated with the mosaic floor and a tinted stucco cornice that adorns the upper part of the walls with geometric pattern designed after dimple-combed ornament of Neolithic ceramics.
Almost all mosaic floors in the rooms of the first floor are made by the craftsmen of Sedov artel (team). The stucco works were made by the sculptor G.E.Chizhov.

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