London: Researchers have shed light on how Neolithic Britons invented the ‘art of raving’.
In gatherings equivalent to Glastonbury festival, stone-age man would spend a number of days eating, drinking and dancing.
Men and women from different communities would meet up on causewayed enclosures to have fun.
Researchers led by professor Alasdair Whittle of Cardiff University and Dr Alex Bayliss of English Heritage found out that it was basically agriculture, which brought such a revolution in the social fabric of the community.
After the stone-age man brought farming to Britain about 6,000 years ago, many enclosures were constructed where priests and chieftains held ceremonies.
Hambledon Hill is thought to be one of the places where these Neolithic gatherings occurred.
The basic idea of such ceremonies was to have fun. Herds of cattle were slaughtered to provide food as dancing continued late into the night, during the summer months.
Surprisingly archaeologists only recently discovered as to when did the farming start in Britain and how long it took to create these enclosures.
``We knew the first long-barrow chambers, often used for communal burials, and the first causewayed enclosures appeared not long after the first farmer started taking over the land from existing hunter-gatherer tribes, but we thought these processes took hundreds of years `` Daily mail quoted Bayliss as telling ‘The Observer.``
However when the researchers used a revolutionary technique for dating remains to create a time-line, they realized that the process from agriculture to the development of long barrow chambers and causewayed enclosures happened much quicker than originally thought.
The technique developed by the researchers for the study is known as ‘Bayesian chronological modelling’.
It basically uses the theory of 18th Century mathematician Thomas Bayes and allows pieces of wood and bones to be dated with an accuracy for a couple of decades.
The team has now won a grant of 2 million pounds from the European Research Council to date Neolithic sites.