One difficulty with the interpretation of strip lynchets has been caused by our traditional viewpoint: we have stood in the valley and looked up at them. In Asia terraces do start at the foot of hills and are constructed upwards. Perhaps unconsciously we have believed that strip lynchets were created in the same way. The uniqueness of these terraces may lie in their construction from the top of the escarpment downwards. Many difficulties are resolved when we stand and look at the terraces from above. Then we observe a flight of steps and perhaps it was down these that agriculture passed from downland to lowland.
It is generally believed that in Britain there were two independent agricultural origins, that primitive farmers first cultivated the light soils of the chalk downlands and western hills, and only later, after a heavy plough had been introduced from abroad by invading peoples, were the heavy soils of the lowlands tilled. Rarely is it believed that lowland agriculture in Britain developed from downland agriculture, that agriculture had undergone continuous development and that one type had merged into the other.