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Afromontane foragers of the Late Pleistocene: Site formation, chronology and occupational pulsing at Melikane Rockshelter, Lesotho.(Chronology)(Report)

Stewart, Brian A. ; Dewar, Genevieve I. ; Morley, Mike W. ; Inglis, Robyn H. ; Wheeler, Mark ; Jacobs, Zenobia ; Roberts, Richard G.

Quaternary International, August 23, 2012, Vol.270, p.40(21) [Periódico revisado por pares]

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  • Título:
    Afromontane foragers of the Late Pleistocene: Site formation, chronology and occupational pulsing at Melikane Rockshelter, Lesotho.(Chronology)(Report)
  • Autor: Stewart, Brian A. ; Dewar, Genevieve I. ; Morley, Mike W. ; Inglis, Robyn H. ; Wheeler, Mark ; Jacobs, Zenobia ; Roberts, Richard G.
  • Assuntos: Archaeology -- Chronologies ; Groundwater -- Chronologies ; Excavations (Archaeology) -- Chronologies ; Mass Spectrometry -- Chronologies ; Universities And Colleges -- Chronologies
  • É parte de: Quaternary International, August 23, 2012, Vol.270, p.40(21)
  • Descrição: To link to full-text access for this article, visit this link: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.quaint.2011.11.028 Byline: Brian A. Stewart (a), Genevieve I. Dewar (b), Mike W. Morley (c), Robyn H. Inglis (d), Mark Wheeler (e), Zenobia Jacobs (f), Richard G. Roberts (f) Abstract: This paper provides a preliminary chronostratigraphic and palaeoenvironmental framework for the Late Pleistocene archaeological sequence at Melikane Rockshelter in mountainous eastern Lesotho. Renewed excavations at Melikane form part of a larger project investigating marginal landscape use by Late Pleistocene foragers in southern Africa. Geoarchaeological work undertaken at the site supports in-field observations that Melikane experienced regular, often intensive, input of groundwater via fissures in the shelter's rear wall. This strong hydrogeological connection resulted in episodic disturbances of the sedimentary sequence, exacerbated by other processes such as bioturbation. Despite this taphonomic complexity, a robust chronology for Melikane has been developed, based on tightly cross-correlated accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS).sup.14C with acid-base-wet oxidation stepped-combustion (ABOx-SC) pretreatment and single-grain optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) dating. The results show that human occupation of Melikane was strongly pulsed, with episodes of Late Pleistocene occupation at [approximately equal to]80, [approximately equal to]60, [approximately equal to]50, [approximately equal to]46-38 and [approximately equal to]24 ka. At least three additional occupational pulses occurred in the Holocene at [approximately equal to]9 ka, [approximately equal to]3 ka and in the second millennium AD, but these are dealt with only briefly in this paper. Implications of the Late Pleistocene pulsing for the colonisation of high elevations by early modern humans in Africa ahead of dispersals into challenging landscapes beyond the continent are discussed. Author Affiliation: (a) McDonald Institute for Archaeological Research, University of Cambridge, Downing Street, Cambridge CB2 3ER, UK (b) Department of Anthropology, University of Toronto, 1265 Military Trail, Toronto, Ontario, M1C 1A4, Canada (c) Human Origins and Palaeo-Environments (HOPE) Research Group, Oxford Brookes University, Headington Campus, Oxford OX3 0BP, UK (d) Department of Archaeology and Anthropology (Division of Archaeology), University of Cambridge, Downing Street, Cambridge, CB2 3DZ, UK (e) Research Laboratory for Archaeology and the History of Art, University of Oxford, Dyson Perrins Building, South Parks Road, Oxford OX1 3QY, UK (f) Centre for Archaeological Science, School of Earth and Environmental Sciences, University of Wollongong, Wollongong 2522, Australia
  • Idioma: English

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