|Boiling water on the beach of Coloured Sands near Cooktown in Queensland,|
Some years ago.
There has always been fire, but when was it used with a purpose?
From Wikipedia :
Discovery of FireThe controlled use of fire was an invention of the Early Stone Age. The earliest evidence for controlled use of fire is at the Lower Paleolithic site of Gesher Benot Ya'aqov in Israel, where charred wood and seeds were recovered from a site dated 790,000 years ago.
In a paper published in Nature in March 2011, Roebroeks and Villa report their examinations of the available data for European sites and conclude that habitual use of fire wasn't part of the human (meaning early modern and Neanderthal both) suite of behaviors until ca. 300,000 to 400,000 years ago. They argue that the earlier sites are representative of opportunistic use of natural fires.
Natural fires are caused by volcanic eruptions or by lightning. Lateron people discovered a way to make fire themselves. This was very important.They could change their diet from raw food into cooked food. They could now live in better conditions and build fireplaces and hearths.
A hearth is a deliberately constructed fireplace. The earliest fireplaces were made by collecting stones to contain the fire, or simply reusing the same location again and again and allowing the ash to act as hearth construct.
Those are found in the Middle Paleolithic period (ca 200,000-40,000 years ago, in caves in South Africa and in Israel. Later fire was used to produce pottery and clay objects. This all happened already in 40,000-20,000 BC.
It was great to have lunch near this fireplace in a cosy corner of this restaurant in Holten, Netherlands.
My baby granddaughter was fast asleep in front of the fireplace. She was very cold after the ride at the back of the bicycle.
It was foggy when we arrived, and cold!