Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • adj. Of or relating to the cultural period of the Stone Age beginning around 10,000 B.C. in the Middle East and later elsewhere, characterized by the development of agriculture and the making of polished stone implements.
  • n. The Neolithic Period. Also called New Stone Age. See Usage Note at Three Age system.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Of or relating to the New Stone Age.
  • proper n. The New Stone Age, from circa 8500 to 4500 BCE.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Of or pertaining to, or designating, an era characterized by late remains in stone; the late stone age. Estimated as beginning around 9000 b. c. in the Middle East, this period is characterized by the beginnings of farming, the domestication of animals, and the manufacture of textiles and pottery.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Belonging to the period or epoch of highly finished and polished stone implements.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. latest part of the Stone Age beginning about 10,000 BC in the Middle East (but later elsewhere)
  • adj. of or relating to the most recent period of the Stone Age (following the mesolithic)

Etymologies

From Ancient Greek νέος (neos, "new") + λίθος (lithos, "stone"). (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • Gordon Childe in the early part of the twentieth century, although the term Neolithic meaning “New Stone Age” was first used by the British antiquarian Sir John Lubbock in his 1865 book Prehistoric Times, one of the first works to bring archaeology to the general public.

    The Goddess and the Bull

  • Gordon Childe—the Australian archaeologist who coined the term Neolithic Revolution—clearly defined the basic assumptions of culture history: We find certain types of remains—pots, implements, ornaments, burial rites, and house forms—constantly recurring together.

    The Goddess and the Bull

  • Gordon Childe coined the term Neolithic Revolution in the 1920s, archaeologists had assumed that sedentary life was necessary for successful agriculture: farmers had to stay close to their crops and animals.

    The Goddess and the Bull

  • They named it the Ethnic Corridor (minzu zoulang) and argued that a full understanding of early migration through this pass would shed light on many myths of ethnicity, language, and ritual around Yunnan. 21 The influence of the Di and Qiang nomadic culture was evident in Neolithic relics in Yunnan, revealing the close relationship among Yunnan, Tibet, and Central Asia. 22

    Between Winds and Clouds: The Making of Yunnan (Second Century BCE to Twentieth Century CE)

  • Researchers analysing the DNA in Neolithic human remains claim to have uncovered the first direct evidence that modern humans have evolved changes in response to natural selection.

    DNA Lactose Surprise? Not to Me.

  • But the word Neolithic (“New Stone Age”), as well as the term for the earlier and much longer epoch of human prehistory, the Paleolithic (“Old Stone Age”), was coined during the nineteenth century by John Lubbock, also known as Lord Avebury.

    The Goddess and the Bull

  • Some nine thousand years ago or more, certain long-headed, square-jawed, short-limbed, but agile hunters and fishermen, whom we call Neolithic Man, established themselves in Scotland.

    The Outline of Science, Vol. 1 (of 4) A Plain Story Simply Told

  • Approximately 10,000 years ago, in the so-called Neolithic Revolution, our ancestors made a fateful decision that would affect who and what we became, and would ultimately lead to the problems we face today.

    Arthur Rosenfeld: Must Humans Go the Way of the Dinosaurs?

  • It might reflect what is effectively the obvious, that the Neolithic was a boon particularly to coastline communities, including some Mid IE-speaking peoples nearer to the Bosporus.

    The PIE and Pre-PIE pronominal system from the perspective of a wave model

  • It was the food court of the ancient world containing the wild progenitors of all eight of what are called the Neolithic founder crops, emmer and einkorn wheat, barley, flax, chick peas, peas, lentils, and bitter vetch, a grain legume sort of like red lentils.

    Giving Over an Ancient Farmland to Heroin Production

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