Initially, the lava produced by the Earth’s core cooled off to form one landmass, Pangaea. Later, Pangaea broke into pieces, which constitute today’s continents. The most evident argument for this position is that the continents are indeed drifting further apart by a certain distance each year. Also, graphically, if one looks at a globe or a world map, the fact that Africa and South America would fit like pieces of a puzzle is obvious. Of course, the theory has been contested.
Prehistorically, there are several lineages and evolution points in human ancestors. Some lines went extinct, such as Australopithecus. Cro-Magnon is an ancestor of the homo sapiens sapiens, from the Paleolithic era and with remains dating to 35,000 years ago.
During the Pleistocene epoch, millions of years ago (MYA), most species went extinct during the Quaternary Extinction event. These were the times of the megafauna. By the way, the term may be misleading, the prototypical Giant Koala was only a little bigger than its modern counterpart. Stephen Spielberg’s movies Jurassic Park and The Lost World: Jurassic Park is about the Jurassic period (200 MYA – 150 MYA).
Two million years ago, glaciers covered most of North America. Mammoths and mastodons roamed across the arid flatlands of the Bering Strait area, a region formed by a land bridge between Siberia and Alaska.
Some twenty thousand years ago, when the Arctic ecosystem included Boreal forests like those of modern-day Labrador, prehistoric animals such as mammoths, lions and camels abounded. It seems possible that these animals used the land bridge of the Bering Strait to immigrate to America. The disappearance of these mammals about 10 thousand years ago, was possibly caused by a rapid increase in temperature (the probable disappearance of several of today’s species may be a result of present-day climate change).
Ancient Egypt, home to one of the Seven Wonders (the Pyramid of Giza), cradled civilization (5500 B.C.E. – 395 C.E.). In addition to the Egyptians, other calendars go up to those dates. The Babylonians, who settled in Mesopotamia some three thousand years ago, and the Maya (2000 B.C.- 250 A.D.). Among present day civilizations, the Chinese calendar, reportedly invented by an emperor in 2637 before the Christian calendar was instituted is at 4709 or 4648 depending on one’s calculating methods, while Judaic time count is at 5771 for the year 2011.
Nefertiti, Cleopatra and Jules Cesar are predominant figures of the era. Nefertiti is supposed to mean in translation ‘the beauty who came from far away’. Cleopatra was a Greek princess reigning Egypt. On top of being Egyptian royalty, Cleopatra is queen of media, portrayed by legendary Hollywood star Elizabeth Taylor and Italian lawyer by training Monica Belluci. French philosopher Blaise Pascal famously said that this beautiful woman’s nose changed the entire course of human history. Rumour has it that she appeared in front of Cesar naked, enrolled in majestic carpets. In the movie, and by most accounts, the monarch commits suicide by poisonous snake when the kingdom falls.
Classical Antiquity usually involves the Ancient Greeks (8th century BC to 6th century AD) and Romans (the Roman Kingdom was established in 753 BC). The Roman Empire (27 BC – 1453 AD) once covered most of Europe.
The Middle Ages followed. Paradoxically, after the classical period, a true moment of darkness covered the subcontinent only to be revived in the Renaissance. To most art appreciators, the Renaissance is one of the better-known time periods because of its connection to Leonardo Da Vinci, Michelangelo and white powder, wigs and fake beauty marks. In Montreal, one is privileged to be able to attend several Renaissance Fair type venues, in addition to medievally themed restaurants and shops on St.-Denis Street and elsewhere. Of course for the real deal, one must check the historical monuments in Old Montreal, as well as theatrical characterization parks outside the city.
Auberge du Dragon Rouge & Cabaret du Roi (Medieval atmosphere, fine dining and entertainment)
Mtl, QC H2M 1R6
Dracolite (Medieval jewellery)
Sales: 514 444-1114