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Prehistoric Medicine

  • Date Submitted: 09/24/2011 04:51 AM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 61.2 
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Historians studying prehistoric medicine have to use many types of evidence. Examples include archaeological finds, such as skeletons or seeds, skeletons can show what kind of injuries people had or in what condition their teeth were in, also how long people lived. There are also written descriptions by people who visited Britain, as well as evidence recorded by the Roman conquers soon after the prehistoric period.

Historians can also get evidence from how aborigines live today, as their way of life and their approach to medicine is believed to be very similar to the people in prehistoric times. These types of evidence are valuable, as they tell us about prehistoric people and medicine.

However, there are problems with using these types of evidence.
Skeletons only help to answer some specific questions but not everything. Bones may have been damaged during the excavations, this makes it harder for historians to know if an ‘injury’ was caused due to a careless excavator or a battle injury or trephining.

There are only a few sites that actually contain human bones. This is believed to be because prehistoric people used to leave dead bodies exposed and allowed them to rot, and only after that would the remaining bones be buried. As the body was left exposed, animals could have access to it. This meant that these animals could carry some of the bones away.

The skeletons found at the site may also not represent all the ages that lived in the area, as only the bones of certain people were buried. In some cases the people might have only have kept the skulls of their enemies as trophies.

Belief in supernatural spirits was very strong and they were at the heart of the prehistoric peoples world. They believed that spirits had created the world and that everyone had their own personal spirit.

They also believed that if a spirit leaves your body, you would become sick. Another way you could become ill was if an evil spirit could find its way into your...


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