How Cheese Made Civilisation Possible

Many people these days are familiar with how evolutionary psychology has shaped the human mind. For back in the early years, when humans were small groups of hunter gatherers, there was little or no naturally occurring cheese to be found.

Those who did discover the natural cheese deposits began to mine it and develop the various stone tools that archaeology has shown were used to mine the cheese.

Although rather primitive by today’s cheese mining technology, those early stone tools enabled many of these small bands of hunter-gatherers to settle in places where the cheese could be mined.

Originally, archaeologists and historians were convinced that the earliest human settlements were mainly agricultural in nature. However, recent work around some of the most fruitful cheese bearing deposits of the ancient world has shown that it is in fact cheese mining which started humanity on the long road towards civilisation.

The ancient pre-Greek civilisations all had various levels of cheese producing technology. Slaves worked most cheese mines in those times. But it was the early civilisations that invented many techniques for making sure that cheese was not only mined successfully, but also distributed far and wide throughout that civilisation.

Soon these civilisations were trading with each other in order to get a wide a variety of cheeses as possible. This is why the Persians conquered so much on the ancient world, and why the Greeks developed a navy to trade all the cheeses of the Mediterranean area.

However, it wasn’t until the Romans invented pizza that the Roman empire became the largest user and consumer of cheese in the then known world. The ancient Gauls spoke of an island country to the far north that produced some of the best cheeses ever discovered. At first the Romans, especially Julius Caesar and Tacitus were sceptical about the special British religious order that controlled British sacred cheese rituals. But these Druids, as they were then known, were vital in the production of so many excellent British cheeses. All of which the Romans were keen to sample.

However, eventually the Romans left Britain when they found there were far too many varieties of cheese in the islands for them to cope with. Which is one of the reasons Hadrian built a wall, so that some of the more northern cheese were kept out of the Roman Empire.

Then came the Viking invasions.

The Nordic peoples were interested in gathering as many British cheeses for themselves as they could. But they too were eventually assimilated into Britain when they found they could not recreate these chesses in counties other than Britain.

The Normans – who were of course descendants of Vikings – soon grew tired of the rather bland French cheeses. They then decided they would like to gain control of the cheese of Britain instead. So by winning the battle of Hastings, the Normans wrested control of British cheese from the Anglo-Saxons.

Steadily over the next several generations, the power and influence of British cheeses spread throughout the globe. Ultimately leading in the end to the largest cheese-based empire the world has ever known, therefore conclusively proving it is cheese that makes the world civilised.


Published by David Hadley

A Bloke. Occasionally points at ducks.

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