Researchers say South African caves may be the oldest human “house”


Entrance to the Wonderwork Cave, which houses the famous Bushman paintings, Kuruman, and Northern Cape & # xa0; -Greatstock / Alamy Stock Photo & # xa0;

Entrance to Wonderwork Cave, House of Famous Bushman Paintings, Kuruman, Northern Cape-Greatstock / Alamistock Photo

Researchers believe that they may have found the earliest known human “house” in a South African cave, where there is evidence of household chores dating back two million years.

A Canadian and Israeli team found traces of fire and hand tools for the first time in history, at least a million years ago, in a 140-meter-deep Wonderwork cave in the southern Kalahari Desert.

The caves have been studied by archaeologists since they were first discovered by local peasants in 1940, creating a steady stream of archaeological progress.

In 2009, researchers recorded the oldest evidence of non-functional symbolic objects in the form of crystals collected by early humans.

In a new paper published in Quaternary Science Reviews, Ron Shaar, Ari Matmon, Liora Kolska Horwitz, Yael Ebert, and Michael Chazan found burnt bones, stoneware, and soil, as well as ashes at least 30 meters from the mouth of the cave. Explains the evidence in detail.

Wonderwork Caves, Underground Caves, Archaeological Excavations, Kuruman, Northern Cape Interiors --Greatstock / Alamy Stock Photo

Wonderwerk Cave, Underground Cave, Archaeological Survey, Kulman, Northern Cape Interior-Greatstock / Alamy Stock Photo

Researchers do not believe that this was an open burning that residents could start on their own. “There is no combustion function like Kesebu. [a cave in Israel].. We’re talking about burnt patches, not properly constructed hearths, “Professor Chazan told an Israeli newspaper. Haaretz..

However, lightning strikes and wildfires are not possible far inside the cave, so the flames may have been “harvested” and carried there by the inhabitants instead.

By analyzing many layers of soil, the team was able to create stunning images of early human evolution. This record begins with the early “Oldowan” tools (simple tools made by carving stones from each other) and continues to the hatchet a million years ago.

“Here’s the cave is a milestone in these very dramatic events in human evolution. Professor Howitz, co-director of the Wonderwork Cave Expedition, said that there are other places I know. Certainly not in sub-Saharan Africa, I don’t think we have the complete sequence of human occupation for 2 million years. National post In Canada.

The discovery still leaves many unanswered questions, especially what those early inhabitants were using fire and tools for exactly.

“Now it’s all about how we can put together a coherent picture of how life has changed over this incredibly enormous period,” said Professor Chazan. Was Position.. “We don’t understand their lives in the long run. We have far more questions than answers, but working together can take us one step further.”

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