About 10,000 years ago man started to cultivate the land as well. Mankind all of a sudden became more numerous, and probably for the first time in the history of man famine, tyranny, slavery and malnutrition became a reality. Famine because the crops failed from time to time. Tyranny because someone owned the land and decided who was to eat and who was not to1. Slavery because tyrants could make use of humans as ‘cattle’ workers. Malnutrition because settled men had a less varied diet.
1The word “Lord” (“l[ev]ord”, from Norse hleif-vörðr, from proto-Nordic hlaiba-wardaR, from PIO klaiba-wardas) even originally means “guardian of bread”.
But why did they start to cultivate the land?
Because it was easier and less exhausting than to collect wild berries and other eatable growths?
Well, the spread of agriculture in Europe did not come because of “progress” brought about by the lazy and weak mongrelized man – as was the case for domestication of animals. The European knew well how to cultivate the land before 10,000 years ago too, but he only did so when he had to, and he usually only had to when there was not enough room for the hunter-gatherer lifestyle. Domestication of animals had caused an explosion in the human population, and when these human beings spread out they forced more and more Europeans to turn to domestication and agriculture to survive. Even if they were smart enough to see the adverse effects of this they no longer had any choice: they had to drop their healthy and harmonic hunter-gatherer lifestyle in favour of agriculture. There were too many human beings by then….