Identify the types of evidence by which Kenya is proved to have been inhabited by humankind as far back as two million years ago or earlier
Tools attributed to Homohabilis were found in Koobi Fora near Lake Turkana
Hand axes, cleavers and other tools attributed to Homoerectus have been found at Olorgesailie near lake Magadi, Mtongwe near Mombasa, around lakes Victoria and Turkana and at Kariandusi
Tools associated with the late Stone age such as the Crescent, arrowheads, pottery, bone harpoons and ornamental egg shells have been found near lake Naivasha, lake Nakuru, Lukenya hills and Athi river
Microlith tools, axe heads, polished stones, stone bowels, platters and grinding stones have been discovered all over Kenya
Iron was used as far back as 270AD. Evidence of iron use have been found at Urewe near Ngâiya in Siaya and in Kwale at the coast
Animals such as cattle, sheep and goats were domesticated in Kenya during the late stone age
Describe the lifestyle of early inhabitants of Kenya
Their language resembled that of the Khoisan.
They originally were nomadic peoples.
They gathered fruits and dug up tubers and roots to supplement their diet.
They used stone tools, bows and arrows.
They fished in rivers and lakes, using harpoons.
They lived in rock shelters and caves.
They made and used pottery.
They buried or cremated their dead.
Because of their nomadic lifestyle, they lived in seasonal camps and had no permanent homes.
Being hunter-gatherers, they were very few, with very few belongings i.e. a variety of stone tools, bows and arrows.
By the 7th century BC, they had learnt and practised fishing. They started living in semi permanent homes of rock shelters and caves.
After acquiring the skill of food production, they settled down in more permanent homes and owned more materials such as grinding stones, pestles and stone bowels, pots and calabashes.
They kept humpless long-horned cattle and grew food-crops like sorghum and millet.
They passed on many customs such as circumcision, age-set organization, the taboo against eating fish, etc. There was a lot of cultural exchange between them and the new comers.
These early inhabitants of Kenya may have been subdued by other stronger peoples, particularly the Bantu and the Nilotes through intermarriage, assimilation and war.
Identify the communities that descended from early inhabitants of Kenya and much of east Africa
The Irak and Burungi of Tanzania,
The Boni, Dahalo and Sanye of the River Tana basin.
The Nguye and Okuro in western Kenya.
Some remnants of these early inhabitants speak the languages of the groups near or with whom they live. E.g. some speak Kikuyu while others speak Olmaa: the language of the
Maasai. A majority of them speak Kalenjin dialects. The Kalenjin refer to them as Okiek while the Maasai call them Dorobo. In western Kenya, the Nguye and Okuro were totally assimilated by the Luo and Bantu groups.
Identify the races of people that make up modern Kenya
Identify three main linguistic groups into which African Kenyan communities are divided
Of these groups, Bantu speakers form the largest group, followed by the Nilotes. The Cushites form the smallest.
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