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... 1 is a hitherto little known Natuian site sit- uated in the northern Badia region of eastern Jordan (Fig. 1). The site was irst identiied during survey in 1993 (Betts 1993;1998: 25-26) followed by a brief ex- cavation in 1996. This initial test excavation revealed part of a structure with a paved loor, buried by in situ deposits teeming with lithic artefacts and faunal remains ( Fig. 2). In October and November 2012 a team from the University ...
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... are several other worked stone objects, in- cluding stone rings (made from both basalt and limes- tone), as well as a number of incised objects (Fig. 9, 11-15). The latter include one polished pebble incised with two crossed lines and a hammerstone with a circular incision around one end. Other rare objects include a number of beads made from stone, bone and marine shell. All the shell beads recovered to date were made from dentalium shells, indicating that the site was linked into ...
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... a circular incision around one end. Other rare objects include a number of beads made from stone, bone and marine shell. All the shell beads recovered to date were made from dentalium shells, indicating that the site was linked into long-distance exchange networks. A small number of bone tools were also recovered. These include several points ( Fig. 9: 5-10), as well as an incised piece of bone, possibly the fragment of a handle ( Fig. 9: ...
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... from stone, bone and marine shell. All the shell beads recovered to date were made from dentalium shells, indicating that the site was linked into long-distance exchange networks. A small number of bone tools were also recovered. These include several points ( Fig. 9: 5-10), as well as an incised piece of bone, possibly the fragment of a handle ( Fig. 9: ...
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... gradually in all other directions. The site is slightly disturbed by modern tracks to the north, south and east. One possible circular structure was noted during the walkover. Surface material was collected from a single north-south transect, 80 meters long and 2 m wide. This resulted in a collection of 395 chipped stone artefacts (see Table 1, Fig. 10). Ground stone artefacts were also ubiquitous on the surface but were not collected at this stage. Although bladelets were numerous in this assemblage, lakes were represented in almost equal numbers. Both bladelet and lake cores were present. Betts (1998) suggested that the site was probably late Natuian, but this was based on a ...
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... stage. Although bladelets were numerous in this assemblage, lakes were represented in almost equal numbers. Both bladelet and lake cores were present. Betts (1998) suggested that the site was probably late Natuian, but this was based on a limited surface collection. The 2012 surface collection pro- duced a number of long and wide Helwan lunates ( Fig. 10: 1-5), which seem to suggest an early Natuian date for the ...
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... In places it seems to be retained by a semi-circular stone alignment, which could repre- sent part of a buried structure. Although one grinding stone was seen lying ca. 50 m to the west of the site, there was no ground stone visible on the surface of the mound itself. A surface collection at the site yielded 244 pieces of chipped stone (Table 2, Fig. 10) and 6 fragments of greenstone. The collection contained a signiicant number of bladelets and small lakes, but only few cores were found. Amongst the retouched pieces was one broken el-Khiam point (Fig. 10: 18 Table 1 Chipped stone from Shubayqa 3. Table 2 Chipped stone from Shubayqa 6. and ten perforators (Fig. 10: 12-17), together ...
Context 8
... was no ground stone visible on the surface of the mound itself. A surface collection at the site yielded 244 pieces of chipped stone (Table 2, Fig. 10) and 6 fragments of greenstone. The collection contained a signiicant number of bladelets and small lakes, but only few cores were found. Amongst the retouched pieces was one broken el-Khiam point (Fig. 10: 18 Table 1 Chipped stone from Shubayqa 3. Table 2 Chipped stone from Shubayqa 6. and ten perforators (Fig. 10: 12-17), together with many notches, retouched lakes and retouched/backed bladelets. On the basis of the overall technology and the single el-Khiam point it can be tentatively sugge- sted that this site may date to the PPNA. The ...
Context 9
... of chipped stone (Table 2, Fig. 10) and 6 fragments of greenstone. The collection contained a signiicant number of bladelets and small lakes, but only few cores were found. Amongst the retouched pieces was one broken el-Khiam point (Fig. 10: 18 Table 1 Chipped stone from Shubayqa 3. Table 2 Chipped stone from Shubayqa 6. and ten perforators (Fig. 10: 12-17), together with many notches, retouched lakes and retouched/backed bladelets. On the basis of the overall technology and the single el-Khiam point it can be tentatively sugge- sted that this site may date to the PPNA. The presence of many drills and greenstone fragments suggests that greenstone bead production may have been important at ...

Citations

... A number of Early Epipalaeolithic (ca 22 000–17 500 cal BP) sites excavated in the dry steppe and desert environments around the Azraq Basin yielded very occasional caprine bones (see below for more detail) hinting at a wider distribution of either wild sheep or goat in an area beyond the known range of these species in the Late Pleistocene. There has been a dearth of sites excavated in moister environments towards the foothills of the Jebel Druze and the excavation of sites at Shubayqa provide the first large and well-dated faunal assemblages in this region[31][32][33][34]creating a new window into past faunal distributions. ...
... Shubayqa 1 and Shubayqa 6 date to the Natufian and PPNA respectively and are both located on the northern side of the Qa' Shubayqa approximately 900 m apart. The stratigraphic sequence of Shubayqa 1 is divided into a number of phases that represent occupation in the Early Natufian and, after a hiatus, further occupation in the Late Natufian[31,32]. The sequence is dated by 22 Accelerator Mass Spectrometry (AMS) dates with 17 from the Early Natufian sequence (approx. ...
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Wild sheep (Ovis orientalis) bones recovered from the Natufian site of Shubayqa 1 demonstrate a wider distribution of mouflon in the Late Pleistocene of the Southern Levant than previously known. Early Epipalaeolithic sites are common in the limestone steppe region of eastern Jordan but have yielded only a handful of caprine bones that cannot be identified to species level and few faunal remains from excavated Late Epipalaeolithic sites have been reported. Analysis of animal bone from Shubayqa 1 suggests a significant population of wild sheep could be found concentrated in the basalt desert environment of eastern Jordan during the Late Pleistocene, especially where higher rainfall over the Jebel Druze provided more water. A population of wild sheep was still present in the Pre-Pottery Neolithic A when the nearby site of Shubayqa 6 was occupied. Hunting of diverse, locally available resources including wild sheep at the end of the Pleistocene illustrates the flexible and adaptive exploitation strategies that hunter-forager groups engaged in. This provides further evidence to the increasing body of data showing the creative and opportunistic approach of terminal Pleistocene groups allowing continued occupation even in more marginal environments in a period of environmental change.
... Although on a smaller scale, substantial and repeatedly occupied EP sites are known from the Uwaynid area to the southwest of the oasis (Garrard and Byrd, 2013), and excavations at the Early and Late EP site of Ayn Qasiyya in the oasis itself indicate repeated and persistent use of this marsh environment, including for interring human remains (Richter et al., 2010a, b). Previous and current work at Late EP and early Neolithic sites in the Shubayqa area to the north document intensive use of these open spaces as well (Betts, 1998; Richter et al., 2012, 2014). If we step back even further to look at the southern Levant, we see a similar attachment to particular places. ...
Article
Full-text available
With a specific focus on eastern Jordan, the Epipalaeolithic Foragers in Azraq Project explores changing hunter-gatherer strategies, behaviours and adaptations to this vast area throughout the Late Pleistocene. In particular, we examine how lifeways here (may have) differed from surrounding areas and what circumstances drew human and animal populations to the region. Integrating multiple material cultural and environmental datasets, we explore some of the strategies of these eastern Jordanian groups that resulted in changes in settlement, subsistence and interaction and, in some areas, the occupation of substantial aggregation sites. Five years of excavation at the aggregation site of Kharaneh IV suggest some very intriguing technological and social on-site activities, as well as adaptations to a dynamic landscape unlike that of today. Here we discuss particular aspects of the Kharaneh IV material record within the context of ongoing palaeoenvironmental reconstructions and place these findings in the wider spatial and temporal narratives of the Azraq Basin.
Article
Full-text available
Experimental archaeology at a Natufian site in the Southern Levant documents for the first time the use of 12,500-year-old rock-cut mortars for producing wild barley flour, some 2,000 to 3,000 years before cereal cultivation. Our reconstruction involved processing wild barley on the prehistoric threshing floor, followed by use of the conical mortars (a common feature in Natufian sites), thereby demonstrating the efficient peeling and milling of hulled grains. This discovery complements nearly 80 years of investigations suggesting that the Natufians regularly harvested almost-ripe wild cereals using sickles hafted with flint blades. Sickles had been replicated in the past and tested in the field for harvesting cereals, thusly obtaining the characteristic sheen along the edge of the hafted flint blades as found in Natufian remnants. Here we report that Natufian wide and narrow conical mortars enabled the processing of wild barley for making the groats and fine flour that provided considerable quantities of nourishment. Dishes in the Early Natufian (15,000–13,500 CalBP) were groat meals and porridge and subsequently, in the Late Natufian (13,500–11,700 CalBP), we suggest that unleavened bread made from fine flour was added. These food preparing techniques widened the dietary breadth of the sedentary Natufian hunter-gatherers, paving the way to the emergence of farming communities, the hallmark of the Neolithic Revolution.