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Archaeologists from Tel Aviv University revealed that a modern man who lived in a magic cave 400-200 thousand years ago developed modern technologies for their time

Following the discovery published about a year ago about the presence of modern man (Homo Sapiens) in such an early period in Israel, it became clear that this modern man used fire, created sophisticated flint blades and knives for cutting meat and dedicated a separate place in the cave for each activity, which indicates modern behavior in a much earlier period From what they thought so far 

Photo of flint blades in Kesem Cave Photo: Pavel Shargo/The Institute of Archeology Tel Aviv University
Photo of flint blades in Kesem Cave Photo: Pavel Shargo/The Institute of Archeology Tel Aviv University

Kesem Cave near Rosh Ha'Ein, where archaeologists from Tel Aviv University uncovered remains about a year ago that indicate the presence of modern man (Homo sapiens) in Israel already about 400 thousand years ago, continues to provide interesting findings that the researchers published in the American Journal of Human Evolution of Human Evolution.

The researchers, Prof. Avi Gofer, Dr. Ran Barkai and Dr. Ron Shimelmitz from the Department of Archeology and Ancient Near Eastern Civilizations, discovered in the same cave the remains of an ancient factory for the production of knives that was used by its inhabitants, and also discovered signs of order and organization in the cave which was manifested in the allocation of special areas for various activities such as cutting Meat and its consumption around a central fire and skin processing.

The researchers found thousands of knives in the cave that looked like they came from a single production line. The knives were mainly used to cut game meat in the "kitchen" of the cave, the area that was used to prepare the food.

"The knife production process began with an informed selection of the raw materials. The people who lived in the cave collected the raw materials from the surface or mined them underground. They were looking for specific blocks of flint that would suit the knife blade manufacturing technology, explains Dr. Barkai. "When they had the block of material in their possession, they used effective methods and technologies to produce the desired blades, a job that required applying controlled blows to the stone that took into account the structure of the stone and its mechanical properties. Most knives had one sharp edge used for cutting and a blunt edge used for gripping with human hands. "The blades are the product of a well-planned production line," says Dr. Barkai, "every element of blade production, from the choice of raw materials to the production method itself, indicates sophisticated production."

According to Prof. Gopher, this is further proof that the people who lived in a magic cave express elements of what is known in modern behavioral literature. "Now we know a little more about the culture of the people of the pillar culture, which flourished during the Early Paleolithic period - 200-400 thousand years ago in the areas where Israel, Jordan, Syria and Lebanon live today." says Prof. Gopher. "For many years, archaeologists have associated systematic blade production with the late Paleolithic period in Europe, 30-40 thousand years ago, and with Homo sapiens type man and phenomena such as cave paintings.

"This is a glimpse into the day-to-day life of the people of the cave in a very ancient period. The members of the columnar culture in Kesem Cave used fire on a daily basis, and there is also evidence of dividing areas for the various activities that were done inside the cave and each activity was dedicated to a specific place. For example, the animals that were hunted and brought to the cave were butchered with flint knives in specific areas of the cave and then roasted and the meat was shared among the inhabitants of the cave, while the processing of the skins was done in another area of ​​the cave, Prof. Gopher concludes.

20 תגובות

  1. It seems to me that there is a misunderstanding about the number of knives.
    What is special about Kesem Cave is that it is located in a very strategic place in terms of food sources and it was active for about 200,000 years continuously.
    Think of the sharp but simple and cheap knives that are in every home and are used, for example, to cut a salad. When they get dull, just throw them away and buy a new knife. If for 200,000 years you throw away used knives near the house, archaeologists of the 2021 century will have a huge treasure trove of knives to explore...

    Small flint knives filled exactly this role in ancient times. Tzur is in the Land of Israel, that is, a few days' walk away at most. Expensive knives were made of imported obsidian from the few places where it is found and they are not found in quantities but near the place where they were mined.

  2. Homoconfucius

    Bartering knives, which the cave dwellers specialized in making, seems more likely than the alternatives you suggest. Bartering does not require any special intelligence.
    The life of the hominids 200,000 years ago was difficult, food was difficult to obtain as well as clothing and other means of living. Therefore, it is unlikely that the cave dwellers would waste valuable time in order to produce knives without financial reward, rituals and decorations are possible customs only in a society that does not have oppressive economic problems.

  3. It seems that the findings are not enough to declare a revolution in the exhibition of the evolution of modern spines.

    If so, perhaps it is not worth announcing too quickly a revolution in the concept of the social organization of the cousins, such as organized commerce that has been going on for 200 years.
    Inventions of thousands of knives on the site, may be due to a custom of non-stop production of knives. It may have been their duty, their tactics, or the key to the survival of the stone masses in the group.
    (For example)

  4. The only finding that seems interesting to me is that in Kesem Tunnel, in the aforementioned period, there was a workshop for the production of stone knives.

    Since the quantity of knives was above and beyond the needs of the clan or tribe that lived in the tunnel, this indicates the possibility that already at that time there was a situation of barter: the inhabitants of the cave made knives which they sold to other people. The question is what was the return they received: return in food is problematic because food does not last long, skins last a long time but how many skins do the cave dwellers need, maybe they received other types of stone tools.

    A less certain possibility is that next to the workshop for making knives there were workshops for processing game (butchering the game and preserving food, skinning, etc.).

    The claim that the knives "accumulated" for thousands of years is improbable. Because it is not in anyone's interest to establish a museum of past artifacts: a knife that has worn out is thrown into the trash outside the cave or it is thrown into a garbage pile in the cave and then disposed of outside.

    As for the claim about the antiquity of the Spines (200-400 thousand years ago), this is probably nonsense. This is probably not the Spines Spines that existed at the earliest 150 thousand years ago. It is more likely that the inhabitants of the cave were earlier species of species (for example Neanderthals or archaic species) that existed already 400 years ago.

  5. It seems to me that haste is from the devil.
    I spoke with Yoel only from Tel Aviv University and he completely rejects the conclusions of the initial research.
    According to him, the structure of the teeth indicates that it is not Homo Sapiens at all, but Neanderthals or some species in their branch after they split from the branch that developed into Homo Sapiens.

  6. Regarding the number of knives, the answer could be that the cave was used by many generations of gays (does that sound bad???….) and it is known that gays lived in caves for hundreds and thousands of years. Findings of populations from different dates with differences of many years were found in the caves in Carmel. That could explain the thousands of knives. In addition, it is also possible that this is the place where the knives were thrown that had a defect in their manufacture or that finished their function, etc.

  7. Maybe they were very sterile people,
    And it takes a lot of time to clean remains-intestines from a stone, and they also didn't want to mix the blood of one animal with another animal (an unfounded religious belief, let's say)
    So in one evening, 4 people cut 100 animals, big and small, with 400 knives.
    Maybe we don't see the differences between the knives (as all Chinese look the same) yet, and each group of knives has its own specialty.
    The next day the women would go out to wash the knives in the river...

    And maybe this is normal at all, and almost everywhere where chipped stone tools were found - they were found in huge quantities? And that's why the researchers didn't bother to consider it.

  8. Why only Luke receives in the email? Is this a secret PDF?

    The Governor
    would be wonderful

    Maybe there are thousands there as punishment for someone. Like Bart writes 1000 times on the board, and someone will find the board 200 thousand years later

  9. The university once again publishes a false news about 400 thousand year old Homo sapiens that is not based on the cited research. Those who return to the scientist's article from 25.12.10 which is linked at the end of the present article will find in the responses the complete and corrected corrections from the university's announcement.
    That study is based on the finding of 4 teeth, one of which may be from a species of a sapiens or a Neanderthal or another related species, and at most 300 thousand years old.
    I am copying here the extracts of the explanations provided by the researchers in the original article, which do not agree at all with the university's popular messages:
    1. The population that the Shira slept in the cave belongs to an archaic Homo species of Southwest Asia, and despite certain difficulties they believe that this population is close to the population of Sehol Kapza.
    2. Long-term development of a Neanderthal population in Western Asia, and the development of a local Neanderthal subspecies.
    3. More than a single gay species is represented in the cave examples.
    Another explanation for the reality of a tooth similar to the teeth of spines could be that it is a developmental process of the teeth in a species that if we saw the whole of it we would identify it, let's say, as Arctus. Not all traits of a species develop at once. Essentially, a question arises here about a central question regarding the theory of evolution: since the oldest sure find of Spines is 160 thousand years old from Ethiopia.
    Hence, if the aforementioned tooth is really spiny, did spiny evolve twice (at least)? The migration from Israel to Ethiopia is possible, but there are no such findings regarding that ancient period. The accepted theory of evolution claims that an "advantage-carrying" feature that developed in some individual will spread because of its advantage in the general population, and in fact this theory does not allow for parallel development but prefers the claim that distance produces separate species.
    I prefer a different approach. Each individual is an "average" of two previous individuals, and carries a considerable number of mutations. In a multigenerational summary, each individual is an "average" of all members of the species. Thus, not a single mutational case sustains the changes in the entire species, nor is a parallel creation prevented, and also, in cases of meeting between distant groups, the differences between the groups are eliminated, by creating new "averages".

  10. On second thought, I wonder if man then was modern compared to the people living today in the same environment?

  11. My father, you did not exist before I was born. Like everything else, created just for me.

  12. Paleontological findings supported by genetic findings show that the "out of Africa"
    of the homo spins began less than 200 thousand years ago, so how did double time arrive in Israel before?
    The genus Homo began to create tools a little less than two million years ago - Homo habilis (the skilled man),
    The first to leave Africa was Homo erectus.
    The upright man knew how to make tools and according to paleontological (and archeological) findings existed in Asia
    Until about half a million years ago...
    So maybe the findings belong to Zakof?

  13. I don't believe the headlines anymore, not even the scientist's, which for me is sad and a red sheet for the scientist.

    Please, dear editor, try to include a link to the source article in all your news, after all, the readers of the site are intelligent and curious readers, and will be happy to continue reading.

  14. There will be more.
    Until now, to the best of my knowledge, the accepted thought was that Homo sapiens had existed for about two hundred thousand years; Do you now think that it has existed for about four hundred thousand years?

  15. The find was published a year ago and caused a lot of noise at the time which for some reason died down as it came. There are many wonderful questions in this research, first of all the existence of a modern man from 400 thousand years ago.
    In the current article it is written that thousands of meat cutting knives were found. I wonder what they did with thousands of knives and what population needs thousands of knives. Usually human groups contained 20-100 individuals. The hunters who bring the food can put it in the cave and then one or two people are needed to cut the meat.
    Thousands of knives "require" thousands of people. Does this mean that branch trade between groups started already then? hard to believe. And maybe this is a large slaughterhouse where meat and hides were processed industrially? This is also hard to believe because this requires the existence of a very large and dense population - which should show more findings for this in the field.

    What lights up a red light the most is the scant treatment of this research in the world over the past year. I don't understand anthropology, unfortunately, but there are those who do. Such a finding was supposed to change the perception of human history completely. So far, I haven't seen that there is much reference to this.

    We will continue to follow. I wish the researchers a happy and fruitful year with interesting and enriching research.
    Best regards,
    Ami Bachar

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