The Lhedwinic Isles became ice-free around 12 millennia BCE, at the end of the last ice age. Ancient migrations onto the Isles have come via two routes: along the north Asuran and northwest Cataian coasts. The first settlements came in the Palaeolithic and Mesolithic periods. The earliest evidence of human presence dates back to roughly 11,000 BCE in Crylante, and in Aenyos and Glanodel in 10,500 BC.
The Lhedwinic Stone Age began at that time with, Upper Paleolithic cultures, giving way to the Mesolithic hunter-gatherers by the 7th millennium BC. The Neolithic stage is marked by the Funnelbeaker culture (4000–2700 BC). They were later followed by the Pitted Ware culture (3200 – 2300 BCE), notable for their pottery, which is the primary source of archaeological research.
Around 2800 BC, metal was introduced in Lhedwin in the Corded Ware culture. In much of Lhedwin, a Battle Axe culture became prominent, known from some 3,000 graves. The period 2500 – 500 BCE also left many visible remains to modern times, most notably the many thousands of rock carvings (petroglyphs) along the eastern and southern parts of the islands. A more advanced culture came with the Lhedwinic Bronze Age (1800 – 500 BCE). It was followed by the Iron Age by the 4th century BCE.
Human colonization of this region following the receding of large glaciers and the advent of an ice-free Lhedwin around 11,000 BCE, led to the beginning of the Lhedwinic Stone Age. As the ice receded reindeer grazed on the plains of [other nations] and central Glanodel. This was the land of the Upper Paleolithic cultures, which followed cultural traditions similar to those practiced throughout other regions in the far north such as modern day Navorgska and Helvianir and hunted over territories 100,000 km2 vast and lived in teepees on the tundra. On this land there was little forest but arctic white birch and rowan, but the taiga slowly appeared.
Later cultures from around (6000-5200 BCE) lived in forest and wetland environments using fishing and hunting tools made from wood, bone and flint microliths. A characteristic of the culture are the sharply edged microliths of flintstone which were used for spear heads and arrowheads. The finds from this period are characterised by long flintstone flakes which were used for making the characteristic rhombic arrowheads, scrapers, drills, awls and toothed blades.
During the 6th millennium BC, southern regions were clad in lush forests of temperate broadleaf and mixed forests. In these forests roamed animals such as aurochs, wisent, moose, and red deer. Cultures from this period lived off these animals. Like their predecessors, they also hunted seals and fished in the rich waters.
During the 5th millennium BCE, the local cultures took up pottery from the more advanced cultures to the south, whose members had long cultivated the land and kept animals. About 4000 BC South Lhedwin became part of the Funnelbeaker culture (4000–2700 BC), a culture that originated in central Asura and slowly advanced upward via trade. These tribes have been named for their characteristic ceramics, beakers, and amphorae with funnel-shaped tops, which were found in dolmen burials. Tribes along the southeastern coasts of the modern nations of Crylante, Glanodel, and Navack learned new technologies that became the Pitted Ware culture (3200 BC – 2300 BC). Named for the unique designs of their pottery (horizontal rows of pits pressed into the body of the pot before firing), shards of their pottery have served as a plentiful source of evidence for archaeological studies.
It is not known what language these early Lhedes spoke. It might have been similar to early Helvianirians or Navorgskan, due to the distribution of the monuments by early megalith builders. Towards the end of the 3rd millennium BC, they were overrun by new groups who many scholars think spoke Proto-Asuran, the Battle-Axe culture. This new culture advanced up to modern Glanodel, and they probably provided the language that was the ancestor of the modern Lhedwinic languages. This new culture was individualistic and patriarchal with the battle axe as a status symbol, and were cattle herders. However, soon a new invention would arrive, that would usher in a time of cultural advance in Lhedwin, the Bronze Age.
The period between 2300 and 500 BC was the most intensive petroglyph-carving period in Lhedwin, with carvings depicting agricultural activities, animals, hunts, ships, ceremonies, warfare, among others, along with themes of a sexual nature around 800 to 500 BCE. During the Lhedwinic Bronze Age from 1700 - 500 BCE, an advanced civilization appeared in Crylante and East Glanodel. They manufactured bronze tools and weapons as well as jewelry and artifacts of bronze and gold. All the bronze and gold was imported and it has been assumed that the civilization was founded in amber trade, through contacts with North and West Asuran cultures and cultures along the coasts of the Asur Ocean.
Related article: Dalish people
The first millennium BCE saw increased immigration from mainland Asura, resulting in the establishment of Lhedwinic languages in the islands, though much of Lhedwin still existed on the periphery of the literate world. What languages were spoken on the islands before is unknown. With the exception of the passing references to the Dalish culture (precursor to the Glanish culture) and [other nations], much of Lhedwin remained unrecorded by Asuran authors.
Around 750 BCE iron working techniques reached Lhedwin. Iron was stronger and more plentiful than bronze, and its introduction marks the beginning of the Iron Age in Lhedwin. Iron working led to numerous improvements in many aspects of life, such as iron tipped ploughs and iron axes, both of which led to increases in agricultural efficiency. There was a landscape of arable, pasture and managed woodland. There were many enclosed settlements and land ownership was important. Iron tools become the most widespread in Lhedwin around the middle of the 5th century BCE.
Though not all of the early Lhedwinic tribal cultures were conquered by invading Fiorentine armies, most tribes still sustained continued contact with the culture and military presence of the Fiorentine Empire. Throughout Lhedwin, there was a great import of goods, such as coins, bronze images, glass beakers, enameled buckles, weapons, etc. Moreover, the style of metal objects and clay vessels was markedly Fiorentine. There are also many bog bodies from this time in Crylante. Together with the bodies, there are weapons, household wares and clothes of wool. Great ships made for rowing have been found from the 4th century in Glanodel. Many were buried without burning, but the burning tradition later regained its popularity.
The period succeeding the fall of the Fiorentine Empire is known as the Northern Iron Age, which saw the emergence of the Dovahkiin culture in the modern region of Glanodel, among others. During the fall of the Empire, there was an abundance of gold that flowed into Lhedwin, and there are excellent works in gold from this period. Gold was used to make scabbard mountings and bracteates. After the Empire had disappeared, gold became scarce and Lhedes began to make objects of gilded bronze, with decorations of interlacing animals in Lhedwinic styles. It was also during this period that the dominant, Lhedwinic religion first emerged, Trúathi.