«BULLETIN OF THE IRKUTSK STATE UNIVERSITY. GEOARCHAEOLOGY, ETHNOLOGY, AND ANTHROPOLOGY SERIES»
ISSN 2227-2380 (Print)

List of issues > «Geoarchaeology, Ethnology, and Anthropology Series». 2017. Vol. 21

Early Paleolithic Small Tool Industries of Seaside Dagestan: regional context

Author(s)
A. A. Anoikin
Abstract
This article presents the analysis of Early Paleolithic small tool industries of Seaside Dagestan and consideration of their regional context. The layer 5 of Rubas 1 site contains the most ancient complex with small tools (157 artifacts). The composition of paleontological and palynological dates together with the noted lithological features suggest that sedimentation took place in the brackish sea water during the Akchagyl period of the Early Pleistocene and have dated roughly to 2,3–1,9 Ma. In general, the Early Paleolithic technocomplex of Rubas 1 site is characterized by small artifacts size, poorly expressed typological features, and variability of tool shapes. The small tool complexes fixed in the Darvagchai 1 are younger. Available paleontological and palynological data together with the noted lithological features suggest that the lithic industry of Darvagchai 1 (layers 4–7) is roughly dated to 0,75–0,4 Ma. Therefore, the materials of the multilayered Early Paleolithic sites (Rubas 1 and Darvagchai 1) allow research of the emergence and change of the ancient industries with small tools within a significant chronological interval (~1,5 Ma). The industry of the lower Rubas 1 complex with its technological indistinctness and the presence of tools with signs of poorly organized retouch occupies an intermediate position in terms of chronology and technology between the African (Omo 57 and Omo 123) and Near Eastern (Bisat Ruhama) Early Paleolithic complexes of small tools. These unique Early Paleolithic industries were also identified in Europe (Isernia La Pineta, Vertesszolos, Trzebnica, Rusko et al.), Central Asia (Kuldara) and China (Donggutuo et al.) The geography of distribution of the Early Paleolithic small tools industries reflects, most likely, the process of one of the oldest human migrations from Africa into Eurasia. The Early Paleolithic complexes from Rubas 1 and Darvagchai 1 sites give us a possibility to consider the territory of Caucasus as one of the development centers of oldest micro-industries. However, while the small tool complexes widely spread in the territory of Europe in Early and Middle Pleistocene, the archaeological material from Rubas 1 and Darvagchai 1 sites has no parallel in prehistory of Caucasus and represents the few evidence of development of this industry in the region.
Keywords
Seaside Dagestan, Early Paleolithic, small tools industries, free-hand technology (chunks), tools assemblages
UDC
902.01/903.21
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