Timing of the Lower to Middle Paleolithic boundary: new dates from the Levant
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This paper reviews the numerical dates available for the late Lower Paleolithic and early Middle Paleolithic in the Levant. We also present here new electron spin resonance dates for the late Lower Paleolithic sites of Holon, Yabrud I and Oumm Qatafa. Irrespective of dating techniques used, the ages of these sites converge on oxygen isotope stage 7 at roughly 215+/-30 ka. Similarly, dates for early Middle Paleolithic sites in the region, with the exception of Tabun, fall within oxygen isotope stage 7, suggesting a relatively rapid transition from Lower to Middle Paleolithic. In the light of these findings, the "early chronology" for the region, based on the TL dates on burned flint from Tabun, is discussed.
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