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Lecture 4

Archaeology Lecture Four + Readings

8 Pages
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Department
Anthropology
Course Code
ANT100Y1
Professor
Christopher Watts

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UPPER PALAEOLITHIC CULTURES
Period of cultural history in Europe, the Near East and Asia
Associated with the emergence of modern humans and their spread around the
world
Dates from about 40KYA to the Mesolithic period (about 14KYA-10KYA)
Striking development of art (e.g., painting on cave walls, stone slabs etc.)
Inventions of the bow and arrow appear for the first time
The Last Ice Age (TO)
Cold climate
Weather patterns changing due to changing ocean currents
Plants and animals were adapted to the extreme conditions
Period of when there were large game animals (known as Pleistocene megafuana)
oExamples are giant ground sloths and Siberian mammoths
Upper Palaeolithic Europe (TO)
Still continued to hunt and gather
Also began to trade with neighbouring groups
Remains have been excavated from caves and rock shelters
Tent-like structures were also built in order for warmth
Upper Palaeolithic Tools (TO)
From the roots of Mousterian and Acheulian traditions (still did flaking)
Preponderance of blades, burins, bones, antler tools and microliths
oMicroliths
Small, razor-like blade fragment that was attached in a series to a
wooden or bone handle to form a cutting edge
Two methods were used: indirect percussion and pressure flaking
Upper Palaeolithic Cultures in Africa and Asia (TO)
People hunted large animals on grasslands in North Africa
www.notesolution.com
Lived in small communities and moved regularly to follow herd of animals
Trade took place between local groups for high-quality stone used for making tools
An increased sedentary lifestyle was evident in South Asia
THE EARLIEST HUMANS IN THE NEW WORLD
Colonization of Australia by at least 40KYA, definitely with use of watercraft
Willandra Lakes region (SE Australia NSW):
oevidence of human settlement between 37 and 26 KYA due to recovered
shells, middens and campsites
The First Americans
Some debate as to when people first arrived in the Americas
Archaeological evidence likely ca. 15KYA; passage south by 14 KYA
Beringia:
olandmass linking NE Asia with Alaska
oNow with Bering Sea
Tracked migrating herds of caribou
Palaeo-Indians:
oDated to between 14 and 8KYA
oFounded in United States, Mexico and Canada
oFamous for fluted-point technology known as Clovis
Clovis sites date between (11.2KYA to 10.9KYA)
oOriginally associated with big-game hunting, now believed they also took
bison and caribou, fish, sea-mammals
oOpportunistic and very mobile; settled in a diverse array of environments
Earliest Site: Monte Verde (Chile)
oDefinitely occupied by 14KYA; may have been occupied as early as 31KYA
oGood preservation of bone and wooden artifacts
www.notesolution.com
wooden houses covered with hides
oEmphasis on plant foods (e.g., potato)
Early Arctic Populations (TO)
First cultural development in the Arctic
Earliest documented settlement dates from (8000 B.C. 5000 B.C.)
Identified by stone tools, microblades and small bifaces
Arctic Small Tool Tradition (TO)
First humans to move into eastern Canadian Arctic and Greenland
oEvolved into the Norton tradition in Alaska
oBecame Dorset culture in eastern Arctic
After the Upper Palaeolithic Period
Between ca. 20 and 14KYA, we see the following changes:
oGlaciers retreat/sea levels rise
oTemperature increase
oHumidity increases
oSome plant and animal species disappear (e.g., megafauna in the Americas)
After the Pleistocene
Many groups adapted by broadening their resource bases
oE.g., Mesolithic groups in Europe, Near East
Increased use of fish, shellfish, small mammals, seeds and nuts
Later, people began to intensify their exploitation of certain resources
oE.g., 8,000 BC in the Near East (SW Asia)
oE.g., 7,000 BC in Mesoamerica
Result: populations increased in size, greater degrees of sedentism
Soon, groups began selectively exploiting some plant and animals species
This marks the transition from food collection to food production
www.notesolution.com

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Description
UPPER PALAEOLITHIC CULTURES Period of cultural history in Europe, the Near East and Asia Associated with the emergence of modern humans and their spread around the world Dates from about 40KYA to the Mesolithic period (about 14KYA-10KYA) Striking development of art (e.g., painting on cave walls, stone slabs etc.) Inventions of the bow and arrow appear for the first time The Last Ice Age (TO) Cold climate Weather patterns changing due to changing ocean currents Plants and animals were adapted to the extreme conditions Period of when there were large game animals (known as Pleistocene megafuana) o Examples are giant ground sloths and Siberian mammoths Upper Palaeolithic Europe (TO) Still continued to hunt and gather Also began to trade with neighbouring groups Remains have been excavated from caves and rock shelters Tent-like structures were also built in order for warmth Upper Palaeolithic Tools (TO) From the roots of Mousterian and Acheulian traditions (still did flaking) Preponderance of blades, burins, bones, antler tools and microliths o Microliths Small, razor-like blade fragment that was attached in a series to a wooden or bone handle to form a cutting edge Two methods were used: indirect percussion and pressure flaking Upper Palaeolithic Cultures in Africa and Asia (TO) People hunted large animals on grasslands in North Africa www.notesolution.com
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