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Late Neanderthals at Jarama VI (central Iberia)?

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  20 January 2017

Martin Kehl*
Affiliation:
University of Cologne, Institute of Geography, Albertus-Magnus-Platz, 50923 Cologne, Germany
Christoph Burow
Affiliation:
Área de Prehistoria, Departamento de Ciencias Históricas y Geografía, Universidad de Burgos, Plaza Misael Bañuelos s/n, E-09001 Burgos, Spain
Alexandra Hilgers
Affiliation:
University of Cologne, Institute of Geography, Albertus-Magnus-Platz, 50923 Cologne, Germany
Marta Navazo
Affiliation:
Área de Prehistoria, Departamento de Ciencias Históricas y Geografía, Universidad de Burgos, Plaza Misael Bañuelos s/n, E-09001 Burgos, Spain Centro Nacional de Investigación sobre la Evolución Humana (CENIEH), Paseo Sierra de Atapuerca s/n, E-09002 Burgos, Spain
Andreas Pastoors
Affiliation:
Neanderthal Museum, Talstr. 300, 40822 Mettmann, Germany
Gerd-Christian Weniger
Affiliation:
Neanderthal Museum, Talstr. 300, 40822 Mettmann, Germany University of Cologne, Institute of Prehistoric Archaeology, Albertus-Magnus-Platz, 50923 Cologne, Germany
Rachel Wood
Affiliation:
Research School of Earth Sciences, The Australian National University, 1 Mills Road, Canberra, ACT 0200, Australia
Jesús F. Jordá Pardo
Affiliation:
Laboratorio de Estudios Paleolíticos, Departamento de Prehistoria y Arqueología, Universidad Nacional de Educación a Distancia, Paseo Senda del Rey, 7. Ciudad Universitaria, E-28040 Madrid, Spain
*
*Corresponding author. E-mail addresses: kehlm@uni-koeln.de (M. Kehl), mnavazo@ubu.es (M. Navazo), pastoors@neanderthal.de (A. Pastoors), weniger@neanderthal.de (G.-C. Weniger), rachel.wood@anu.edu.au (R. Wood), jjorda@geo.uned.es (J.F. Jordá Pardo).

Abstract

Previous geochronological and archaeological studies on the rock shelter Jarama VI suggested a late survival of Neanderthals in central Iberia and the presence of lithic assemblages of Early Upper Paleolithic affinity. New data on granulometry, mineralogical composition, geochemical fingerprints and micromorphology of the sequence corroborate the previous notion that the archaeological units JVI.2.1 to JVI.2.3 are slackwater deposits of superfloods, which did not experience significant post-depositional changes, whereas the artifact-rich units JVI.3 and JVI.1 mainly received sediment inputs by sheetwash and cave spall. New AMS radiocarbon measurements on three samples of cut-marked bone using the ultrafiltration technique yielded ages close to, or beyond, the limit of radiocarbon dating at ca. 50 14C ka BP, and hence suggest much higher antiquity than assumed previously. Furthermore, elevated temperature post-IR IRSL luminescence measurements on K feldspars yielded burial ages for subunits JVI.2.2 and JVI.2.3 between 50 and 60 ka. Finally, our reappraisal of the stone industry strongly suggests that the whole sequence is of Mousterian affinity. In conclusion, Jarama VI most probably does not document a late survival of Neanderthals nor an Early Upper Paleolithic occupation in central Iberia, but rather indicates an occupation breakdown after the Middle Paleolithic.

Type
Original Articles
Copyright
University of Washington

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