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Unformatted text preview: y, and because the storable food surpluses resulting from agriculture could be used to feed full-time craftspeople and inventors. By also feeding full-time kings, bureaucrats, nobles and soldiers, those food surpluses led to social stratification, political centralization and standing armies. All of these overwhelming advantages are what enabled farmers eventually to displace hunter–gatherers1.
Evolution of epidemic infectious diseases Consequences of domestication
Consequences for human societies Beginning around 8500 BC, the transition from the hunter–gatherer lifestyle to food production enabled people to settle down next to
NATURE | VOL 418 | 8 AUGUST 2002 | www.nature.com/nature The main killers of humans since the advent of agriculture have been acute, highly infectious, epidemic diseases that are confined to humans and that either kill the victim quickly or, if the victim recovers, immunize him/her for life1,25–28. Such diseases could not have existed before the origins of agriculture, because they ca...
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- Fall '08