Thursday, 29 December 2011

Nice stanes

It’s been suggestit that Modren humans had the edge ower the Neanderthals in social organisation. Yin aspeck o this is trade, sae it’s interestin tae see fae this article Multiple origins of Bondi Cave and Ortvale Klde (NW Georgia) obsidians and human mobility in Transcaucasia during the Middle and Upper Palaeolithic be François-Xavier Le Bourdonnec et al., that baith Neanderthals an Modrens in whit is noo Georgia (Transcaucasia) had access tae obsidian. Obsidian tuils wis fund in twa caves occupied be Neanderthals an later be Modrens. The authors haes identified yin o the places that the obsidian cam fae. It’s no a prohibitive distance (a maitter o 170 km), bit ither sources are twice that.

They cite seemilar recent results fae Hungary for obsidian and the Czech Republic for rock crystal, an note that “even greater distances are attested for flint in areas where artefact quality raw materials are absent or rare”.

There’s ay some doot whan tryin tae link objecks tae the fowk that made thaim, bit it daes leuk like the Neanderthals wis ontae the obsidian first an the Modrens learnt tae wirk it fae thaim: “Neanderthals and later Modern Humans apparently employed the same behaviour with regard to how they worked their obsidian, which raises the question of an eventual transmission of this tradition.”

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