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 Post subject: Stone Age Europeans Get Older and Colder
PostPosted: Fri Jul 09, 2010 5:31 am 
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Stone Age Europeans Get Older and Colder


“This has significant implications for our understanding of early human behavior, adaptation and survival, as well as the tempo and mode of colonization after their first dispersal out of Africa,” wrote a team of researchers from the Ancient Human Occupation of Britain project in the July 7 Nature. The researchers describe their excavation of a site in Happisburgh, a coastal town that sits on what was once an estuary of the River Thames.

Dozens of stone tools were found in sediments deposited when the polarity of Earth’s magnetic field pointed south rather than north, a phase ending 780,000 years ago. No human bones were found, but animal fossils include the tooth of a mammoth species that disappeared 800,000 years ago, and bones of red deer that went extinct a million years ago. Pollen grains and plant fossils suggest a landscape in transition from temperate to Ice Age, which happened 950,000 years ago and again 840,000 years ago.

Until recently, it was thought that early humans stayed south after leaving Africa. The only human remains dating from around that time in Europe were found in Spain. But tentative evidence of sparse settlement in England, as well as in Germany and France, has raised the possibility of earlier northward expansion.


The latest findings reinforce that possiblity, move the dates back, and underscore just how resilient and resourceful early humans were.

“What I find amazing is that these early humans were pretty tough. They survived winters that were probably 5 degrees Fahrenheit colder than present,” said Australian National University anthropologist Andrew Roberts, who wrote a commentary accompanying the findings. “I’d want a heated house — not a hunter-gatherer lifestyle. This tells us that these early humans were better adapted to cold than we thought.” :!:



Read More: http://www.wired.com/wiredscience/2010/ ... der-euros/


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 Post subject: Advanced toolmakers
PostPosted: Fri Jul 09, 2010 5:39 am 
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Here's a nice video about the 900.000 years old advanced stone-tools recently found in Norfolk;

http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/2010/ ... tone-tools

Notice the advanced tools these proto-atlanteans were able to make, already between 860.000 - 940.000 years ago...!

Learning to survive in the north for the comming 850.000 years - these guys seem to be the prime candidate group to have developed an advanced use of the fire; to smelt metals and make these and new tools in both soft and hard metals. Note that there is one more site in Northern Europe, where some very surprising traces of humans have been found - in the so-called "Wolf Cave" on the south-western coast of Finland. The oldest date here - so far - is 450.000 yrs BP.

This made it possible not only to develop new handcrafts and finer arts (smithing) - but also to cut and work stones into bricks - and threes into planks, keels and masts as well as fine-cut sealskins and make ropes, work longfibered plants and weave cloths as well as sails.

Domesticating plants and animals for purposes of stable storages of storagable winter-food seem to be another part of their survival true the ages.

Thus they could survive, even if they were isolated on theese northern shores during the entire time of the Eurasian Ice-time. Even if the temperature would fluctuate the ice-time-climate would still be ruling mainland Europe as well as northern Asia - cleary limiting the movement of these old Anglers of the North Sea - where the Gulf Stream (the "Ocean River") would ensure ice-free coastlines - and archipelagos - even during the coldest periods. Thus theese arctic people, as well as the rest of the arctic nature, could survive even the darkest winters and the coldest periods (stadials) of the million year long ice-age of northern Eurasia. Adapting to the climate is one thing, but they also had to adapt to the long, dark winter. Then the sun is scarcely present, which actually creates a serious health-problem - since a certain amount of sunshine is needed to produce enough of the vital vitamin D2. Consequently, like the ice-bear and the arctic fox, they lost their pigmentation and grew pale; to optimize the bodys ability to consume sunrays, as soon as it came back during the flushing, arctic spring-time...

During the Eem-period, a warm interstadial from that started 130.000 years ago they were living in the Baltic Ocean as well, able to travel the rivers that reach far into eastern Eurasia. 40.000 yrs ago there were populations of these people in northern Caucasia and northern Europe - not only from England, France and Germany and Balkan, but also from the White Sea area to Altai and the Caucasian mountains. Archaelogical sites like Mamontaya Kurja, Kostenki, Arkaim and Sungir are among the more famous...

30-20.000 yrs ago there were numbers of large, massive glaciers braking up and gliding inot the world oceans. Consequently the ice-meliting rocketed and the climate of the northern continents became seriously colder during the peak-periods of ocean-ice-melt. Though, since the present area of NW Germany and Denmark was only islands - the Gulf-stream that hit Biscay and the English channel it would go through to the Baltic Sea and the Finnish bay - to run out over the present lakes in Carelia and reach the White Sea. Today it is well-known that this area, all up to the eastern Kolan penninsula and the shores of the Barent Sea were FREE of ice over the last 120.000 years, at minimum. From the Eem interstadial until the cold period of the Dryas period (11-14.000 years ago) the Fenno-Scandians penninsula would actually be an ISLAND - far larger than Egypt and Libya combined...

Not before the end of the last stadial (cold-period) - called Younger Dryas and ending 11.000+ years ago - theese guys were finally able to get out of the north-western isolation and reach the Mediterranean. Here they initated stable connections with the old (tropical) populations of the Meds, starting cultural inter-change and trade on a regular basis -just as Solon told Critias...

In the memory of these Atlanteans - who started a specific colony on Crete that spread all around the Med - were obviously a recapitulation of what happened to them at the end of the last ice-time, when it says that the mayor part of Atlantis "sunk".

What modern geology tells is that - at the end of ice-time - the large inland ice-caps of Fenno-Scandia sloped down to the ocean-level, basically during the periods called Older and the Younger Dryas. The last one out were the southern part if Finnland, where the Finnish archipelago was overrun between 10.000 and 11.000 years ago. As the entire south of Finland were overran and subdued - of a 2 km thick and 400 km wide ice-lobe - the central area of these people would be pressed down under water-level as well as overrun by the giantic glacier. The gliding ice-cap didn't stop before it reached the southern side of the Finnish Gulf, were it melted down to create the upper layers of todays Estonia, where the gravel as well as the famous boulders are proven to come from middle and southern Finland. Thus the name of the land is connected to its rare collection of boulders; E-ston-area/ia...

8-11.000 years ago the last glaciers and ice-dammed lakes of North America rushed into the N Atlantic. Combine that with the Scandiavian and N-Russian glaciers that went the same way during the same period and we may have an explanation to the rise in sea-level that is due to have occurred between 8.000 and 20.000 years ago. Though we may understand that Solons and other stories about the great flooding actually rings throgh, as true...

Atlantis is less and less of a mystery - but steadily becomming a higly significant and thus very important part of human history. It is already clear that the historical parts of Plato have a specific value to western culture. To comprehend the entity of it is obviosuly another step of progress in our modern, scientific, search to understand ourselves - as civilisation, culture and nature...


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 Post subject: Re: Stone Age Europeans Get Older and Colder
PostPosted: Sun Jul 11, 2010 8:25 am 
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One freezing day late in 2001 two amateur archaeologist changed European history...

For Paul Durbidge and Bob Mutch the foreshore at Pakefield, south of Lowestoft, Suffolk, is precisely where they want to be during winter-days - when the storms are up. Because it's then that old fossils are exposed.

Durbidge and Mutch have been collecting on this beach for years; they have assembled a huge and academically valuable collection of animal bones. In 2000, though, they heard that along the coast in Norfolk, someone had found a flint handaxe that was 500,000 years old. It would have been made by a distant ancestor of Neanderthals, and as far as Britain was concerned, was as old as early humans got. This gave Durbidge and Mutch an idea. They knew their animal fossils from Pakefield were older than that. What if we have flints here too, they thought? "We had a gut feeling about Pakefield," says Durbidge.

Late in 2001, they hit the jackpot: during an excavation, they found a small flint flake. To the uninitiated, it's just a chip of stone, the sort of thing you might prise out of your sandal. But the two friends saw it for what it was: a diamond amid dross. That little chip of flint had been shaped by the hand of one of the very first Europeans.

Late last month, the journal Nature announced the discovery of 700,000-year-old stone tools in Suffolk - pushing back the date of arrival of early humans in northern Europe by 200,000 years. Buried in the list of 19 authors were the names of Mutch and Durbidge.

While their address was given as Lowestoft Museum, they are not on the staff: in a great British tradition of "amateur" scientists and explorers, Mutch and Durbidge are unpaid and answerable to no one. Without them, the flints might never have been found. In our regulated, budget-driven world, it turns out that it's still possible for the independent visionary to rewrite history.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/2006/ ... rchaeology


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