Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 2.djvu/721

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701
THE CAVE-DWELLERS OF FRANCE.

E. Lartet, De Verneuil, and Falconer. It will be seen to contain an engraved design of the mammoth, as his carcass is to this day found on the banks of the Lena. (See vol. i. of The Popular Science Monthly, p. 215.)

The Troglodytes of the Reindeer Age had but rarely the opportunity of measuring strength with the mammoth. Their game was more commonly the aurochs, the horse, the ox; and doubtless it was in the pursuit of these great animals that they used their long spears tipped with flint. Still, nearly all their weapons were light, and mostly tipped with reindeer-horn. The bow became their principal weapon, in proportion as the animals they hunted grew more timid and wary. Their arrows were of two kinds: a small one, with pointed tip, without a barb, for small game and birds; and a large one, with two rows of barbs, for hunting the reindeer. The rest of their equipment consisted of light lances with blunt heads, darts with conical points, and long, sharp daggers, for close quarters. They had also a whistle to summon their companions in the chase; this was made of reindeer-bone.

That our Troglodytes followed fishing also is shown by the number of fish-bones found in their caves; but, strange to say, salmon was their only fish. At the present day salmon does not go up the Vézère, nor is it found in the Dordogne as far up as the mouth of the Vézère. There is every reason for believing that these ancient fishers did not use a line, for with a line the fisherman takes fish of every kind. If they employed only the harpoon, we can well understand why they could take only large fish, and why among these they should select the salmon, whose flesh they prized most. But did they fish from boats? We have no evidence bearing on this point; but the Vézère was so closely confined by steep banks, that the salmon might easily be harpooned from the shore. The harpoon used by our Troglodytes was a small dart of reindeer-horn, with barbs on one side only, and having a projection at its base, to fasten it to the line.

Fig. 2.
PSM V02 D721 Bone harpoon.jpg
Bone Harpoon from Terra Del Fuego.

On returning from the chase or from fishing, the Troglodytes got ready the feast in their cave. The carcasses of reindeer and the smaller game were brought in whole, but large-sized animals, the horse or the ox, being too heavy to carry away whole, were cut up on the spot, the head and legs being carried off, and the rest of the skeleton left behind. Hence, among the leavings found in the caves, we scarcely ever meet with any bones from the trunk of large mam-