How did the Neolithic Revolution set the stage for early civilizations?

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pholland14 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The Neolithic Revolution marked the beginning of agricultural practices.  Without agriculture, early civilization would not have been possible.  A steady source of food allowed tribes to stay in one place during much of the year.  This meant that tribes claimed land as their own in order to ensure that they had the best fields.  This meant that people needed to form governments and laws.  Governments and laws needed a written language, and this led to the formation of writing.  Since agriculture was more efficient than hunting and gathering, the entire population did not have to be concerned with food production, which allowed some people to specialize in other things, such as the creation of weapons or pottery.  Also, while famines can still affect agricultural societies, it is less likely than with a gathering society. Accordingly, the human population grew after the Neolithic Revolution.  Also, people looked to domesticate draft animals in order to plow the fields more efficiently.  Trade soon grew between kingdoms as the amount of trade goods increased, and people sought different foods from other regions.  

pohnpei397 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The Neolithic Revolution was the time in history when people first started to practice agriculture.  At this point, they started to domesticate plants and animals.  This changed the world forever and led to the the creation of civilizations.

The beginnings of agriculture lead to civilization in a number of ways:

  • They produce more food, allowing some people to become artisans, merchants, government officials, etc -- all the things you need to have a civilization.
  • They allow people to live together in dense towns and cities.   These are necessary for civilization and they also cause a need for governments to keep the peace between all these unrelated people.
  • They (in some places) give rise to a need for public works like irrigation projects.  This also makes governments more necessary.


rashmishibulal | Student

Neolithic Period

It is considered as last phase of Stone Age. This phase refers to transition in land use. Food gathering and hunting societies started to settle in village and cultivation became prime work in their life.

Here is the step by step change of Neolithic revolution

1.About 12,00 0 years ago when people in the Middle East  instead of wandering for food, they started cultivation of crops and domestication of animals.

2. An idea of family set up developed in them, and started living with families.

3. Family life led to permanent homes.

4. For meeting the needs of the family members food storage facilities and need for possessions came.

5. Density of population concentrated on particular areas.

6. Encouraged the invention of new technologies such as pottery making and looms for weaving.

7. Farmers learned to grow more food than they needed for their own use, resulting in a surplus.  

8. Settlements traded with each other for this agricultural surplus - commerce began

9.Accumulation of wealth.

10. Job specialization – people selected their own convenient jobs life agriculture, pottery making, becoming priests or government officials etc.

  1. Written language was needed & developed.

12. Art, music, clothing became more refined.

13. Some form of rules and government developed.

14.Trade routes were established.

15. Leaders emerged


                        Hence the stage is fully set for the development of early civilisations