View Full Version : Traces of first farmers found in 14,000 year old remains from Jordan

09-06-15, 16:41
Well, what do you know? I saw this on my feed seconds after I posted about maybe we should wait until we get an early neolithic farmer from the Near East. There's bones and everything!

Here is the link to the article:

"COPENHAGEN, DENMARK—Tobias Richter of the University of Copenhagen and his team have found the 14,000-year-old bones of a child and an adult and evidence of early farming in Jordan’s Black Desert. “It’s really startling new evidence that we didn’t expect to find in this particular part of southwest Asia. And it changes the way in which we think about these hunter-gatherer communities at the end of the last Ice Age, who were on the brink of developing these new technologies of agriculture, these new ways of life that are influencing us still today,” he told Euro News (http://www.euronews.com/2015/06/08/jordan-s-black-desert-may-hold-key-to-earth-s-first-farmers/). At that time, the region received enough rain to sustain the growth of an early human settlement. “We can then identify different species of plants, which in turn will tell us what sorts of things were growing out here. It’s hard to imagine right now because it’s all desert, but back many, many years ago, it was actually really nice and very, very green, and we can tell that from these plant remains,” explained finds co-ordinator Erin Estrup."

They don't mention that they were "domesticated" plants, but I would expect that scientists from the University of Copenhagen would not be talking about farming unless they were, yes? The date is certainly right.

I hope someone has contacted the Reich lab. They're the ones who should be analyzing these bones. Since the climate turned dry, maybe they'll be able to get some good results.

Wait, here's another article:

I had never heard they had found infant bones here.

09-06-15, 17:51
Indeed, the article is not clear as to whether they had domesticated plants nor what kind of plants they grew. Did they grow cereals?
Where these people related to the Natufians?
Just enough to spark our interest, but no details.
They say patience is a good virtue.

09-06-15, 18:25
Interesting find, however as Bicicleur stated they might be connected to the Natufians. We already have some remains from a couple of sites (if not more) of the same age, and maybe older. The Natufian remains have been studied pretty well, except for dna sampling because all the material that could provide results would be dried up. However I think from the bones one can tell their diet and so on. If its a recent find it will take some time to analyze and get results.

Pax Augusta
09-06-15, 18:42

Pax Augusta
09-06-15, 18:46
Twenty Thousand-Year-Old Huts at a Hunter-Gatherer Settlement in Eastern Jordan



09-06-15, 20:30
Back to Jericho? or back to Petra?

09-06-15, 21:03
Back to Jericho? or back to Petra?

That's what I was thinking. :)

I just skimmed some of the papers listed. It's Natufian, from early to late, I think, if it's the same site this scientist previously excavated.

"Overall, the faunal reamains fit the paleoenviorenmental expectations of of a lush, water-rich environment populated by abundant game and plants that would have been available for human exploitation."

The game was mostly gazelle and there were birds and water creatures etc. Surprisingly, there were, in addition to cattle and pig, wild sheep and "equids". They had thought sheep only arrived in the later Neolithic as domesticated species. The cereal was mostly barley.

I was also surprised by the sophistication of the dwelling, given that it was only a "seasonal" camp. The houses were oval, with basalt blocks as the bottom layer, but they had fireplaces, and most surprisingly, the floor was made of fitted and worked flagstones.