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BY

F. ASflFQRD




fv






CHILD-MAN
IN BRITAIN



AN ENGLISH PRIMARY
SCHOOL

By A. K. PRITCHARD & F. ASHFORD

Crown 8w, is 6d net.

"In this charming volume there is an
account of what really intelligent teaching
can do for children. Teaching is too often
a matter of subjects and time-table* and
schemes of work and diaries. Here is a
description of a living school, and teachers
would do well to read it." Glasgow Herald.

"There is a real breath of vivifying air
that makes the whole school-day alive and
enjoyable. The authors are in the forefront
of their time in recognizing that the teacher's
part is to remain in the background and to
let the child do what is to be done. Their
success in a school bound by regulations,
both central and local, is really remarkable."
Educational Timei.



CHILD-MAN
IN BRITAIN

BY F. ASHFORD B.SC.

JOINT AUTHOR OF "AN
ENGLISH PRIMARY SCHOOL"




LONDON

GEORGE G. HARRAP &f COMPANY

3 PORTSMOUTH STREET KINGSWAY W.C.

MCMXIII



PRINTED AT

THE BALLANTYNE PRESS
LONDON



NOTE

FOR the contents of this little book I am much
indebted to the contributors to Archceologia ;
to Sir John Evans' works ; the work of the
Hon. John Abercrombie on Bronze Age Pottery ;
the contributions of Sir Norman Lockyer to Nature
on Stone Circles and Cromlechs. I have also used
the work of Mr. Munro on Lake Dwellings ; of Mr.
Blackmore on the Blackmore Museum ; of Messrs.
Hubbard on Neolithic Dew Ponds and Cattle Ways
(though their work is a subject of controversy) ;
and the guides to the prehistoric galleries in the
British Museum. The greater number of the
drawings are from objects in the British Museum ;
in the case of objects which were not available, I
have borrowed from the above-mentioned works.
The British Museum, the Ethnological Section of
the Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge, the Black-
more Museum, Salisbury, the Torquay Museum,
the Hazlemere Museum, afford specimens of great
interest to students of primitive and prehistoric
man.

F. A.
March 9, 1913



2019046



CONTENTS

CHAP. PAGE

FOREWORD 9

I. FLINT- WORKINGS 15

II. A COMMUNITY OF THE NEW-STONE AGE 34

III. EARLY LAKE-DWELLINGS 48

IV. POTTERY 57
V. USE OF VEGETABLE FOODS AND CORN 69

VI. SKIN-DRESSING, SPINNING AND WEAVING 77

VII. EARLY COPPER WORKING AND MINING 90

VIII. THE MAKING OF THE HOME 103
IX. THE CHILD-MAN COUNTS, MEASURES

AND WEIGHS 121
X. SOME BEGINNINGS OF SCIENCE AND

WORSHIP 145
XI. WEAPONS AND TOOLS, BROOCHES AND

TOYS 156



FOREWORD

IN England when three parts of the country
was darkened with forest, when strange crea-
tures lions and tigers, the Irish deer, and the
great hairy elephant with the noble tusks roamed
about and had their day before they passed into
extinction, certain little handfuls of people, not half
a step above the animals in manners and intelligence,
lived in their own curious animal-like way.

Many of the animals were set on being what they
were, and have continued so, or disappeared ; but
these particular people were set on being what they
were not, and through years which only the gods
would not be weary to count they have partly
achieved what they wanted, and are Us ! With
additions and subtractions in the way of fleshly
descent, there probably exists some strain of blood
so called, more modernly, germ-plasm between
us and them.

They lived in the closest proximity to their mother
Earth. She dominated them and oppressed them
starved them in winter, cosseted them in summer
but in this climate her sterner mood predominated,
and these Child-People had a strenuous youth of it.
The difficulties of the path, contrariwise, caused
them to persevere in it ; there were no inducements
to linger, one comfort after another had to be
snatched out of the cruel environment and closely
cherished. When it became a necessity to a higher
idea of living, their minds were stirred to fresh

9



Child-Man in Britain

conquests over things. The open weather was ex-
changed for the appropriation of a natural cave,
" his " because he had it and the pleasure of it.
Possession warranted him in the exclusion of all his
enemies and the admission of his very few friends.
From his cave to his hut of wood and turves, to his
house of wattle-and-daub or of superior stones, we
can trace him ; and there he is twenty ages or so
nearer us than his poor progenitor, the digger with
the " eagle-beak " flint.

Out of the horrors of winter, the horror of the
beasts and the dark woods their home, the horrors
of flood and tempest, the bewildered Child-People
conceive awesome demons of evil intent towards their
helplessness, and with appetites hardly to be satisfied.
The hunger of the bare season drives them very
likely to devour their kind, and terror drives them
to devote vicarious victims to the hungry devils
around. Out of the pleasant sun, the promise of
spring, the blessings of summer, they conceive the
beneficent influence of man-befriending godhead,
to whom the grateful Child-People offer sacrifice of
corn and meat with thanksgiving. In the battle of
the elements man may stand a chance of being left
in peace. The good is scarcely stronger than the
evil. How should they spy a hidden unity in
diversity and postulate a One-ness behind the Many-
ness, an Omnipotence behind the warring forces, a
Thinker behind the solid things of earth ? Yet all
the while a many-eyed curiosity peers into the
secrets and daring fingers handle the unknown, while
the bulk are content to Be, a few are discontent to
Know, and a few to Be Better.
10



Foreword

The tediously constructed edifice of knowledge
and culture our children are called upon to build
again. But speedily, with the ease of the practice
of their forefathers and fortunately, with the confi-
dence of a cleared and trodden path. Yet if the
stones of the foundations are omitted the wall will
scarcely stand, even with added buttresses, and the
broader and deeper the foundations the greater the
superstructure that can be raised on them. The
slower the child's development, the greater his
promise ; the better animal he is at seven, the more
promising boy he will be at seventeen. Let him
wrestle with mother Earth and subdue what he can
of her. Let him be creature, cub, what not of wild
vigorous life, sturdy of limb, broad of chest, un-
trammelled by our conventions, learning to master
himself in order to master them over which it is said
he shall have dominion. The soil, stones, streams,
trees, fruits of the wild earth, and the things of air
and sun that bring them forth are his heritage. Not
the tables and chairs, and knives and forks of our
manners and perfections. The swift foot, the slide,
the leap the wheeled wagon and the sled are his,
not the railway engine and the automobile, though
savagely he delights in the black art of their velocity.
The steep hill is his to climb and subdue, the distance
to see over, the nuts and fruits to eat, the spot of
wild ground to camp on, the cave to possess. His
instinct is towards and among these things, his
delight is to live " cavily in a cave," it is of the
essence of childhood. Here he kings it and gathers
his possessions round him and does his queer cooking,
most sane and wise to his own judgment ; dons his

II



Child-Man in Britain

queer adornments, fabricates his queer tongue and
lives unconscious of the strange tall moderns who
think they are instructing him how to be a modern
citizen. Let him learn in his own ways and by his
own devious footpaths. He will have none of the
dusty high road to learning ; he will pasture in his
own fields and lose himself to us in his own obscure
wanderings. He has no part with our dress and our
conversations, with our gloves and shoes and our
philosophy. His life has its roots hidden in the
earth and its branches in the sun ; beware lest you
pluck it too soon to starve in the vase for the adorn-
ment of the house. His instincts are true enough,
they will take him by the hand and let him thread
the mazy byways of the past. Our way is straight
and parched with the tar-spray of adult habits. Let
him alone. God will tell him the how and the when.
We know well enough not to interfere with his
pre-natal life, we allow nature to do her work in
her own best way. Afterwards we shall also beware
of too much interference, lest the protected child
should find himself in a less happy situation than the
neglected child, the fathered than the fatherless.
The bonneted, booted infant trailing beside his
nursemaid envies with a bitter envy the uncultivated
sprite paddling in the warm dust of the summer
roadway. Disinherited he looks at the fair domain
of free play, sunshine and heat, wind and cloud,
berried hedge and mantling pond, bonfire and
woodshed, rickyard and paddock. The cottager
has all these, and he has only the painted
walls of his nursery and the order of the garden.
" Take away these baubles." " Give me health and

12



Foreword

a day and I will make the pomp of emperors
ridiculous."

In and through his little community of playmates
he will learn the strict laws of give and take, the
age-old doctrine of fairness his plain idea of justice,
an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth, the emblem
of the balances in the hand of the impartial goddess.
The fair play of the child's camp is in healthy con-
trast to the perverse despotism of the idol of the
nursery. Grown-ups save his weakness from the
shocks of strength, his littleness from contact with
bigness, and he becomes inflated with a sense of his
own power pretty enough in a baby, but how tire-
some and unheroic in a boy or man. Let alone, his
will is unable to raise the stone, his foot is chilled by
the brook, his way impeded by the briar only the
amiable dog will attend him in amused service. He
is little, and is taught to realize himself as such ; but
his pride is large and impels him to strive to be
great, and having subdued his own will to that end
he may subdue others to his will, and even learn
that that is not his highest aim.

There is nothing so melancholy as idleness. Never
amuse your children ; occupy them, or leave them
to occupy themselves. All parties, toys, entertain-
ments devised purely for the amusement of children
are the beginning of boredom. It is the child's
business to be doing, to be learning how to live after
the simple manner of his ancestors ; he is not a
baby, but a man of prehistoric tastes. He lives in
the Dark Ages and the Age of Heroes ; a grunter,
a namer, a deviser of charms, a singer of sagas, he
passes on his way to adolescence and do not fancy

13



Child-Man in Britain

that you can make him other than a prig by pressing
modern humanity or science into service in his
instruction. Neither be afraid that this blood-
thirsty little ruffian will never turn Christian. Let
him do and think after his own manner, and he will
subdue his laziness to his curiosity, his inclinations to
his creative impulse, his selfishness to his generosity,
and then turn about like the great conqueror for
new worlds, striving for his share in making the
Is-to-Be.



CHAPTER I

FLINT-WORKINGS

FROM the basement bed of the Red Crag of
Suffolk certain " eagle-beak " flints have been
dug up. One is shown (Fig. i). It was made
from a small flint. One end is rounded and covered
with the natural flint crust, and the other is of the
inside material shaped into a curved point and some-
what battered at the end. It is considered that these
flints were shaped by the hand of man. They would
be formed by two or three strokes at one end of an
oval flint, chipping off three pieces and leaving a
triangular point. Good imitations have been made
recently. There seems great probability that they
are the work of a very primitive people ; and if [so,
Man existed in Britain in early Pliocene times. This
Man has been named Dawn of the Stone Age. We
must imagine him of low intelligence, hairy, and
unclothed, grubbing for roots with his eagle-beak
implements, seeking out some natural cave to sleep
in, and reduced in numbers by the numerous animals,
now extinct, who preyed upon him.

The other tool, like a hand-axe, shows more
workmanship. The crust of the flint has all been
removed. It was found in the London Clay floor
near Ipswich (Fig. 2).

There is a long interval of time between the date
of these discoveries and that of the River-drift and
Cave-earth implements which follow them.



Child-Man in Britain




Eagle-beak A'ttt,
ostrnent (bone-) beot (
Craa Suffolk.




London Cloy fl



Dawn of Stone Age



Near Gravesend an Old-Stone Age workshop has
been found. The River-drift gravels were discovered
to be full of flint chips and cores, and some finished
and half-finished implements were found. These
primitive people only used the flints that lay
scattered on the surface of the ground, or that were
16



Flint - Workings

just below the surface. As these exposed flints are
the hardest to work, they had more difficulties to
overcome in shaping a good flint flake than the
New Stone Age man, as well as less skill in dealing
with the material.

A squatting figure, clothed in a rough hairy skin
garment, is grubbing for flints. He selects some of
regular shape and then picks one up, places it across
a large flint and strikes it in the middle with a large
flint pebble of great hardness. Suddenly the flint
is divided, showing two black smooth surfaces. He
stands it up on end on his flint " anvil " and with
a smaller pebble or " hammer-stone " strikes the
fresh surface near the edge. He gets a good flake of
the rough crust to split off. With a couple of
strokes to the left and right of the first, he clears
away two more small flakes of crust, and makes a
ridge between them. Above and behind this ridge
he strikes again, and hits off a nice new flake with
a strengthening rib down the middle of its back and
two new sharp edges. When they are blunt, he
will have to take a fresh flake, for he has no idea of
sharpening them by working the edge or by grinding
it. He is a very skilled worker for the period, but if
he wants a larger tool, a scraper or an axe, his task
is not so straightforward. He takes perhaps his
other half flint, flattens it by removing successive
flakes from opposite sides, and then works little
chips off the edges until they are roughly sharp.
A flint scraper and a triangular tool or hand-axe are
shown from Stamford Hill. Their irregular sur-
faces distinguish them from later work. The marks
can be seen quite plainly where the chips have been
B 17



Child-Man in Britain




struck off the edges. Other remains of the River-
drift men have been found at various places at
Salisbury and near Axminster, in the gravels of
18



Flint- Workings

London, and the brick-earth of Hoxne in Suffolk, for
example.

To the question, " For what were they used ? "
Sir John Lubbock replies, " To what use could they
not be applied ? " They may have laboriously cut
down trees, scooped out canoes with the assistance
of fire, grubbed up roots, cut food, broken ice, and
killed animals and enemies. Sling-stones have been
found associated with them, and they were probably
used in the following very simple way. The slinger
took a long strap of leather and wound one end
round his forefinger and held the other between his
finger and thumb. In his left hand he held his
sling-stone, placed it in the loop of the sling, and,
holding both arms above his head, whirled the
weapon round and round, and letting go the end
suddenly at the right moment he would send the
stone flying to the bird or rabbit he wished to kill.
Much practice gave accuracy to his aim.

A stick with a leather strap lashed to the end of
it may have been used, the stick being held in the
hand and the strap let fly as in the first-mentioned
sling. Or the sling-stone may have been inserted
in a slip at the end of a stick which was whirled
round the head until the stone flew out from its
grip. This was naturally a very difficult weapon to
control and would require an immense amount of
skill.

There are large caverns in the compact limestone
in various parts of England in the Devonian lime-
stone of South Devon, in the limestone of Somerset,
and in the Carboniferous limestone of Yorkshire. In
many of these caves a certain deposit known as Cave-

'9



Child-Man in Britain

earth has been found to contain implements similar
in workmanship to the River-drift implements, and
considered to be of the same period. Kent's Cavern
at Torquay, the Brixham Cavern, Wookey Hyena
Den, Somerset, are examples of the dwellings of
Cave Men. They were all used again at later
periods, and the Cave-earth is usually the lowest of
a series of deposits on their stalagmitic floors. With
the human tools are found also bones of certain
beasts of prey, now extinct, the cave-lion and cave-
bear, the mammoth, wild bull and Irish deer ; other
creatures now extinct in Britain the brown bear
and the grizzly bear, the bison, the hyena and the
wolf have left their bones as relics of their life or
death, according as they killed or were devoured.
These creatures must have inhabited the cave during
the periods of the Cave Man's absence ; ; for one
family of men may well have perished during those
strenuous times, and years may have passed before
another sought out the same abode. Hunger-
starved lions may have killed the defenceless Child-
Men, taking possession of the shelter of their cave
and only leaving it when a stronger family should
discover it at a time when the lion or bear was
abroad. They would barricade the entrance to
their stolen dwelling with a pile of loose stones
perhaps, and greet the former owner with a fire of
missiles.

The Cave-men of Kent's Cavern must have traded
for their flints. The nearest are on Haldon, at least
ten miles away as the crow flies, where an outlier of
decayed chalk rests upon Greensand. The decayed
chalk consists almost entirely of flints, which are

20



Flint- Workings



Tart of Harpoon head



bar-bed



O




RG.5



Old Si-one



now dug out for road-making. It required no skill
to find them. They must have bought them un-
broken, for cores of flint and odd flakes of working
as well as flake tools are found in the Cave-earth.
They made also bone harpoon-heads, two of which
are shown (Figs, i and 2). These were lashed to a

21



Child-Man in Britain

wooden handle with sinews, and were very likely
used in fishing, for Kent's Cavern is but a short
distance from the sea. At Happaway Cavern, hard
by, part of a fish backbone was found. Where there
was no systematic fishing it is very likely that fish
abounded, and on a calm day a raft of logs lashed
together, or a canoe of tree-trunk with the hollow
burnt out, would have served for the practice of the
art. Two men, one with the harpoon and the other
with the wooden paddles, would have conducted the
enterprise. Waiting and drifting over the clear
water, at last they espy their prey, and with lightning
swiftness, emulating the * gull, it is speared, and
brought flashing, wriggling and twisting into the
boat. Harpoons are simpler than nets, and the idea of
stabbing a fish is more primitive than that of snaring
it. The Cave-men lived entirely by fishing and
hunting and by grubbing roots stones for pound-
ing the roots have been found. They clothed
themselves, as will be seen in another chapter,
entirely with skins. A bone pin is the only imple-
ment found for securing the garment in this Cave-
earth (Fig. 3).

The caves of La Madeleine in France were in-
habited by people of a higher degree of culture.
They flaked flints with great skill ; they had many
large ones at hand on which to practise. They
picked cup-shaped holes in softer stones ; some-
times they even practised grinding of flints on sand-
stone. But their greatest skill was shown in
fashioning bone implements. A dagger handle in
the form of a reindeer and knife-handles ornamented
with drawings of the reindeer and mammoth are

22



Flint- Wo r kings

examples of their work. The bone or deer-horn
was worked with a sharp-pointed flint implement ;
the drawings are made with the cut of a pointed
flint upon the bone. They are very spirited and
decorative, showing a high degree of feeling. These
Cave-men, though of the Stone Age, were sur-
prisingly clever, and their skulls indicate a marked
development of the more intellectual centres of the
brain, being smaller in the jaw and broader in
the forehead than would be expected. No skulls
remain of the Cave-men or River-drift men of
Britain.

The men of the New-Stone Age began to dig for
their flints, and while some of them still lived in
caves (there are remains of their habitation in the
" Black Band " of Kent's Cavern, for example) yet
most of them took themselves to the chalk downs
where flint was in abundance. They learned to
build huts and could live in larger communities.
The high downs were the home of the pasturing
animals the wild horse, the red deer and the wild
ox, all good for food, and they were more or less
free from the wolf, the hyena and the wild bear.
The little pits and huts that they learned to build
were by no means so protective as the recesses of a
cave, but the larger number of men learned to erect
earthworks and palisades for their safety. They
digged the flints out of the chalk, finding that the
fresh ones were easier to work than those that had
been hardened by exposure to the air.

At first they merely digged irregular pits, but
by and by, with generations of accumulated experi-
ence (for man has learned very, very slowly), they

23



Child-Man in Britain

began to sink shafts and to work at certain superior
layers of flints. The flints occur in the chalk, not
anyhow, but in the lines of bedding ; one layer
known as the " fire-stone " layer (used for the gun-
flints and strike-a-lights) is exceptionally good, and
some of our New-Stone men had discovered and
worked it. At Grimes' Graves near Brandon,
Sussex, within Cissbury Ring (Fig. i) and at St.
Martinsel's Hill, flint mines have been discovered
and explored. It is possible that the " Dene Holes "
are flint mines. An indication of the section of a
shaft is shown (Fig. 3), and a plan of one of the pits
at Cissbury with its radiating galleries is given
(Fig. 2). There are also illustrations of the imple-
ments used at Grimes' Graves.

Let us picture the flint miners at work. They
have heard from some men making earthworks down
the hill, that some distance below the surface they
should find the layer of prized flints, and they have
spent many days digging out a pit and shaft to get
to it. The pit is in the pure white chalk, and all
round is dazzling chalk debris. Men stand round
naked for the weather is hot and the work is warm,
and clothes cannot easily be replaced hauling up
baskets of chalk rubble by means of ropes of plaited
leather. They seize the basket and stand clear while
the contents are tipped out, for they do not want
their feet to be bruised upon the instep. Below
are three men. The shaft is not very wide for them
all, but they are rather timorous and company gives
them courage. They must labour, cut off from
their fellows, depending upon the others above to
get them out of their underground workshop. Two
24



Flint -Workings




Se c t n\
across
Ting.



FIG. 2




men are loosening the chalk with big wooden or
stone wedges driven into the cracks with their stone
hammers. With picks of stag-horn (Fig. 4) they
break apart the lumps and rake them out. The

2 5



Child-Man in Britain




Grimes Grave*




third man is stooping, and with the bladebone of
an ox he is shovelling the lumps of chalk into a rough
basket of withies which the men above are waiting
to pull up. They let down the rope into the blue
shadowy pit, he ties it on the basket, and up it goes,
bump bump to the top. His two companions
give a shout " Hey, hey."
26



Flint- Workings

The man above answers it and knows that the
fire-stone flints have been " struck."

The flint-workers are called together, for the
flints should be worked straight from the mines
before they have time to harden. The flints are
levered out of the chalk one by one, another basket
of rubble is cleared away, and then the basket is
filled with new flints, which are hauled up. Next
one of the men below takes the rope, twisting
it round his hands, those above give a united
steady pull and help him to climb the rugged
sides of the shaft. By placing his feet against
the wall of chalk he steadies himself and does


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