A novel by Philip M. Williams

Once upon a time, long ago, an older man, a youth, and a young lady made history. Their time is far enough behind us so that we can reflect upon their significance. A hundred years ago we might have thought that the late Stone Age, known as the Neolithic Era, was a threshold, over which we stepped, to become modern man. Nowadays, in the best new light shed on the expanding boundaries of anthropology, and on the physics of time, we are not sure when modern man began, if it matters. The history of the trio in this narrative is not from the very distant past, before our use of language, or before we made tools. They lived recently, in the late Stone Age, in England, equivalent in time to the early Bronze Age in the Middle East, some five thousand years ago. They did not know their work would be the stuff of myth, although the older fellow, whom we shall call Ralph, believed that much of what he did would outlast him by many years.

• Author's essay "Why I Wrote This Book or How an Essay Became a Romance"

Acknowledgements and Dedication


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