Valentina Caracuta

Valentina Caracuta
Université de Montpellier | UM1 · Institut des Sciences de l’Évolution Montpellier (ISEM)

PhD

About

63
Publications
23,321
Reads
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1,294
Citations
Citations since 2016
39 Research Items
957 Citations
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2016201720182019202020212022050100150
2016201720182019202020212022050100150
Introduction
I use archaeological plant remains to investigate a wide range of human behaviour and to identify short-term climate changes driven by both natural and anthropogenic agents. I systematically apply 14C dating to the plant remains to measure the temporal extent of environmental change or to compare climatic events on an absolute chronological scale. I measure the stable carbon isotope ratio (δ13C) of archaeological plant remains to obtain information into changes in precipitation.
Additional affiliations
October 2016 - February 2017
Università del Salento
Position
  • Researcher
Description
  • Coastal and Maritime Archaeology. Master in Archaeology. Università del Salento. Italy. Graduate students.
October 2016 - January 2017
Università del Salento
Position
  • Researcher
Description
  • Laboratory of Archaeobotany. Master in Archaeology. Università del Salento. Italy. Graduate students.
December 2012 - November 2015
Weizmann Institute of Science
Position
  • PostDoc Position
Education
November 2007 - June 2011
Università degli studi di Foggia
Field of study
  • Archaeology
May 2004 - May 2007
Università del Salento
Field of study
  • archaeology
October 2001 - April 2004
Università del Salento
Field of study
  • Archaeology

Publications

Publications (63)
Article
Full-text available
Scientific Reports 14,000-year-old seeds indicate the Levantine origin of the lost progenitor of faba bean Close menuClose menuClose menuClose menu More detail Article | OPEN 14,000-year-old seeds indicate the Levantine origin of the lost progenitor of faba bean Valentina Caracuta, Mina Weinstein-Evron[…]Elisabetta Boaretto Scientific Reports 6, A...
Article
Full-text available
Even though the faba bean (Vicia faba L.) is among the most ubiquitously cultivated crops, very little is known about its origins. Here, we report discoveries of charred faba beans from three adjacent Neolithic sites in the lower Galilee region, in the southern Levant, that offer new insights into the early history of this species. Biometric measur...
Article
Full-text available
The major social and economic changes associated with the rise of a sedentary lifestyle and the gradual transition to food production in the southern Levant are often considered to have been triggered by climate changes at the end of the Pleistocene (∼20,000–11,000 years BP). This explanation, however, is biased by the scarcity of high-resolution c...
Article
Full-text available
The discovery of a storeroom full of barley and other cereals (L.9512) in the proto-historic site of Ebla has provided a unique opportunity to study the centralized storage system of the early city-state from a different perspective. Epigraphic evidence available within the site reveals a complex system of taxation which included gathering grain tr...
Article
Full-text available
Archaeological plant remains, used to establish a reliable chronology by radiocarbon dating, are used here to investigate trends in past rainfall intensity. The stable carbon isotope ratio in botanic remains depends on environmental conditions during the plant's life. By comparing the δ13C and 14C of selected plant specimens from 3 protohistoric si...
Article
Raqefet Cave is located in southeast Mount Carmel, Israel. It contains a long archaeological sequence with two major occupations: in the early Upper Paleolithic (Levantine Aurignacian culture, ca. 36,000–35,000 cal. BP) and the Late Epipaleolithic (Natufian culture, ca. 14,000–12,000 cal. BP). Abundant charred remains were found in the cave's depos...
Poster
Full-text available
Raqefet cave is part of a wider research project based on the archaeobotanical analysis, radiocarbon dating and stable carbon isotope analysis of plant samples from four Epipaleolithic sites on Mount Carmel. The project aims to identify the plants used by the foragers and characterize the changes in the environment and climate in the area through t...
Article
Significance The Initial Upper Paleolithic (IUP) marks a distinct cultural change possibly related to Homo sapiens dispersals into Eurasia. New radiocarbon and optically stimulated luminescence dates from the recent excavations at Boker Tachtit, Negev, Israel, show that the IUP starts as early as around 50,000 y ago, and the later IUP phase dates t...
Chapter
Full-text available
The excavation at Nesher-Ramla Quarry PPNB site (NRQN) yielded a small yet informative collection of archaeobotanical remains. The vegetal materials identified include legumes and wood charcoals, which were radiocarbon dated to the early phase of the Pre-Pottery Neolithic B (PPNB). Based on the few charcoals found, the arboreal vegetation around th...
Article
Routine quarrying activity at the Nesher-Ramla Quarry, in the Judean Lowlands, Israel, has recently exposed a new Early Holocene archaeological site located in a small natural sinkhole, one of many dolines scattered in the area, dated to the Early Pre-Pottery Neolithic B (EPPNB). It is the first site of this period to be uncovered in the narrow str...
Article
The excavation of Manot Cave (Israel) reveals intensive occupation during the Early Upper Paleolithic and provides the first continuous set of anthracological data available for the Ahmarian, Levantine Auri-gnacian and post-Levantine Aurignacian periods. The paper aims to study the vegetal landscape around Manot Cave in the context of climate chang...
Article
Full-text available
This paper presents a comprehensive review of the history of the olive in Puglia, southern Italy, from prehistory to the Middle Ages, including evidence from various sources. The primary source of information is from archaeological sites, where the remains have been found of olive pollen, stones and wood charcoal, olive presses and pottery kilns fo...
Article
Far’ah II is an open-air site in the north western Negev desert (Israel). Previous excavations in the 1970’s revealed a rich, in situ Middle Paleolithic (MP) assemblage composed of flint and limestone artifacts, animal bones and charcoal. Renewed excavation at the site were undertaken in 2017, to re-date it and provide a more accurate constrain to...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Session 60: 'Beyond the 'founder crops': new insights into understudied plant resources_Program
Conference Paper
Full-text available
18° IWGP2019-2nd Circular and call for abstract Dear Colleagues, We are pleased to inform you that more than two-hundred and seventy peers submitted pre-registration forms to 18 Th IWGP that will be hosted in Lecce at the University of Salento. You are invited to submit an abstract for consideration as an oral or poster presentation. If you choose...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
The conference will be hosted at the University of Salento (https://www.unisalento.it/) in the heart of Lecce. In order to organize our scientific activities during the week, participants are kindly requested to fill in the pre-registration form, with your personal information, a provisional title of your oral or poster presentation and the session...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
The scope of the laboratory is to extend the knowledge about identification of legumes, with theoretical and practical approaches for the study of their anatomical features. Morphological characteristics used by archaeobotanists to identify legumes are rarely illustrated or described. The earliest attempt to provide criteria for the identification...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
The Lab session on image analysis at the 18th IWGP intends to provide participants with an overview of the major techniques used to analyzed seed shape. These involve fitting some type of curve to the seed’s outline, with the resulting coefficients then beingused as variables for statistical analysis. There are several approaches that can be used...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
A major problem for the identification of millets is the large number of small-seeds species that belong to this group which present similar morphological characteristics. The lab session at the 18 th IWGP aims to refine the criteria used for the identification of millets that are found in archaeological sites and provide general guidelines for arc...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
The lab session is structured to train participants on how to differentiate between tetraploid and hexaploid wheat to ensure that this important distinction does not go unremarked in the archaeobotanical assemblage. The presence of tetraploid naked wheat was first reported by Hillmann (1983), who defined the rachis criteria for the identification...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
The Laboratory session at the 18th IWGP emphasizes a hands-on approach to identify the ‘New’ Glume Wheat (NGW) based on the morphology of the grains’ spikelet. The first identification, in 2000, of a new type of hulled wheat in Greece by Jones and colleagues paved the way for the study of this ‘new’ species that shares anatomical features of both th...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
The beginning of agriculture is seen as the major transition in the human past, a changeover that strengthened sedentary lifestyle, drastically reduced the risk of famine and the dependence on the environmental conditions, and ultimately, allowed the human population to prosper. Archaeological and genetic discoveries have shed light on the most...
Research Proposal
Full-text available
The beginning of agriculture is seen as the major transition in the human past, a changeover that strengthened sedentary lifestyle, drastically reduced the risk of famine and the dependence on the environmental conditions, and ultimately, allowed the human population to prosper. Archaeological and genetic discoveries have shed light on the most rel...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
The major social and economic changes associated with the rise of a sedentary lifestyle and the gradual transition to food production are often considered to have been triggered by climate changes at the end of the Pleistocene. The end of the Pleistocene was characterized by significant climate changes, which, although global, affected various hum...
Chapter
Full-text available
This paper presents the results of the first archaeobotanical investigation carried out by the University of Salento archaeological team during the 2015 field season at the site of Amheida/ Trimithis in Dakhla Oasis, Egypt. The bulk of the recovered material consists of seeds and fruits from midden deposits that lay under the foundation of an upper...
Article
Full-text available
The timing of archeological industries in the Levant is central for understanding the spread of modern humans with Upper Paleolithic traditions. We report a high-resolution radiocarbon chronology for Early Upper Paleolithic industries (Early Ahmarian and Levantine Aurignacian) from the newly excavated site of Manot Cave, Israel. The dates confirm t...
Article
Keywords: Lime plaster Lime kiln Pyrotechnology PPNB FTIR Micromorphology Radiocarbon A B S T R A C T The Pre-Pottery Neolithic B (PPNB) is the first period in human cultural evolution that is characterized by the extensive production of lime plaster for architectural, decorative and ritual purposes. The production of large quantities of lime plast...
Article
Full-text available
New discoveries of legumes in the lower Galilee at the prehistoric site of Ahihud in Israel shed light on early farming systems in the southern Levant. Radiocarbon dating of twelve legumes from pits and floors indicate that the farming of legumes was practiced in southern Levant as early as 10.240–10.200 (1σ) ago. The legumes were collected from pi...
Article
Full-text available
New discoveries of legumes in the lower Galilee at the prehistoric site of Ahihud in Israel shed light on early farming systems in the southern Levant. Radiocarbon dating of twelve legumes from pits and floors indicate that the farming of legumes was practiced in southern Levant as early as 10.240–10.200 (1σ) ago. The legumes were collected from pi...
Poster
The site of Eshta’ol is situated in the Judean foothills region on a moderate slope on the western bank of the Nahal Kisalon riverbed. The region has a typical Mediterranean environment with an average annual precipitation of 500-600 mm and is covered with forest vegetation. During the past decade, several excavations conducted at the site uncovere...
Poster
Full-text available
The site of Eshta’olis situated in the Judean foothills region on a moderate slope on the western bank of the NahalKisalonriverbed. The region has a typical Mediterranean environment with an average annual precipitation of 500-600 mm and is covered with forest vegetation. During the past decade, several excavations conducted at the site uncovered r...
Article
Full-text available
Three engraved limestone plaquettes from the recently excavated Epipaleolithic open-air site Ein Qashish South in the Jezreel Valley, Israel comprise unique evidence for symbolic behavior of Late Pleistocene foragers in the Levant. The engravings, uncovered in Kebaran and Geometric Kebaran deposits (ca. 23ka and ca. 16.5ka BP), include the image of...
Article
Full-text available
The ‘Nahal Efe project’ is a Spanish-Israeli joint initiative launched in 2015. Its aim is to improve understanding of the settlement history of the Negev during the Pre-Pottery Neolithic B (PPNB), a period when small-scale mobile foraging groups exploited both highlands and lowlands, probably on a seasonal basis (e.g. Bar-Yosef 1984; Goring- Morri...
Article
Full-text available
A key event in human evolution is the expansion of modern humans of African origin across Eurasia between 60 and 40 thousand years (kyr) before present (bp), replacing all other forms of hominins. Owing to the scarcity of human fossils from this period, these ancestors of all present-day non-African modern populations remain largely enigmatic. Here...
Article
Full-text available
Charred plant materials found in archaeological contexts are usually considered the most reliable remains for radiocarbon dating. Usually, seeds and fruits are preferred to wood fragments because their short lifecycle reduces the range of uncertainty of the 14 C measurement. A selection of short-lived samples, mainly from barley and wheat, from the...
Article
Our ongoing research has revealed that Manot Cave was intensively occupied during the Upper Palaeolithic period. Located within the Mediterranean woodland region and with its multi-layered units and thick archaeological accumulations, Manot Cave has the potential of refining the Levantine Upper Palaeolithic cultural sequence. This is especially tru...
Article
Full-text available
Archaeological research conducted in Gujarat (North‐Western Indian Peninsula) has revealed intense human occupation during the Mesolithic and Bronze Age periods. Recently, the North Gujarat Archaeological Project (NoGAP) has initiated a series of investigations to understand socio‐ ecological dynamics in this area through the systematic collection...
Article
Full-text available
The eastern Mediterranean region witnessed changes in human culture of the highest importance between ~9000 and ~2500 cal. BP (7000—500 BC) and over the same time period was affected by very significant shifts in climate. Stable isotope data from lake and deep-sea sediment cores and from cave speleothems show an overall trend from a wetter to a dri...
Article
The identification of ancient climate fluctuations represents an hard challenge for studies intended to outline the human–environment interaction in fragile ecosystems. The aim of this work is to test the potentialities of carbon stable isotopic content of AMS-dated archaeological plant remains as tool to infer variations in rainfall/temperature re...
Article
We use AMS (Accelerator Mass Spectrometry) techniques for the simultaneous analysis of carbon stable isotopic values and 14C dating on charred plant remains found in the archaeological site in Ebla (Syria) and propose the diachronic variation in δ13C plant values as a possible palaeoclimatic tool.Both anthracological and carpological remains, usual...
Article
Full-text available
Recent studies have highlighted the relationship between human action and climate change in the Near East. This perspective is confirmed also by the results obtained from the analysis of 21 plant remains coming from Tell Mishrifeh. These samples have been submitted to AMS and IRMS Mass Spectrometry in order to evaluate the Carbon isotope values. Th...
Article
Full-text available
The results of anthracological investigations of Late-Roman/Early-Medieval smithing earths from two different archaeological contexts are here presented. The sites are located in two diverse environmental settings of Apulia region (SE Italy): P.tta Epulione, in the southern part and Faragola village in the north. Despite the great number of species...

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