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Neandertal adaptations in Central Iberia: a multi-proxy investigation of the Middle Paleolithic site of Peña Cabra, Guadalajara, Spain

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... ka (Alcaraz et al., 2017); Jarama VI -Guadalajara- located in a rockshelter along the upper stretch of the Jarama, had previously been radiocarbon dated to between c. 41 and 30 ka cal BP (Jordá, 2010), although it has been re-dated by new chronometric analyses, including radiocarbon measurements of bone samples and luminescence dating (post-IR IRSL), to between c. 60 and 50 ka cal BP ( Wood et al., 2013;Kehl et al., 2013). The following sites, which have provided dates no earlier than 42 ka cal BP, must be added to this group: Abrigo del Molino -Segovia-(Álvarez Alonso et al., 2018;Kehl et al., 2017); Peña Cabra -Guadalajara-( Alcaraz et al., 2016), and in Burgos: Hotel California ( Arnold et al., 2012), Valdegoba ( Díez et al., 2014), La Mina ( Díez et al., 2008) and Hundidero (Navazo and Carbonell, 2014). ...
Article
Since 1862, one of the largest accumulations of Palaeolithic sites of Europe has been found in the Manzanares valley (Madrid, Spain). Virtually all the fluvial deposits preserved from the Lower Pleistocene to the end of the Late Pleistocene contain remains of human occupation, that date to the Lower Palaeolithic ("core and flake assemblages" and Acheulean), Ancient Middle Palaeolithic and Middle Palaeolithic, as well as Upper Palaeolithic (Solutrean and perhaps Aurignacian). A good deal of these assemblages lacked a timeframe sufficiently delimited to be integrated within the European Pleistocene general framework. In this paper we provide, for first time, a geochronological context to several tens of sites. Together with those sites for which this information was previously available, an actual analysis of information will be possible, and will allow research on: the variability on the behaviour of human groups throughout 800 ka in the same geographic framework; human groups with flake and core industry during the first half of the Middle Pleistocene; the Acheulean technocomplex between MIS 13/11 and MIS 7/6; the coexistence between the Acheulean and the Middle Palaeolithic towards the end of the Middle Pleistocene; the peopling dynamics of Neanderthal groups in the open air; the end of the Middle Palaeolithic and therefore late Neanderthal survival; the human occupation in the interior of the Iberian Peninsula during the Late Pleniglacial; and territory management during the Solutrean period.
... BP, and must be extended until c. 25.5 ka in the case of the very interior territories (Fig. S20). Since inland Iberia should be still considered as an under-investigated area compared to the coastal regions of the Peninsula, especially concerning the Upper Palaeolithic (21,23,39,46,48,51), it is important to bear in mind that this picture could change in the near future as ongoing research in a handful of sites will hopefully show new results (30,(51)(52)(53)(54)(55). S4. ...
... BP, and must be extended until c. 25.5 ka in the case of the very interior territories (Fig. S20). Since inland Iberia should be still considered as an under-investigated area compared to the coastal regions of the Peninsula, especially concerning the Upper Palaeolithic (21,23,39,46,48,51), it is important to bear in mind that this picture could change in the near future as ongoing research in a handful of sites will hopefully show new results (30,(51)(52)(53)(54)(55). S4. ...
Article
The interior of the Iberian Peninsula has orographic conditions that make this territory especially vulnerable to Quaternary climate oscillations and which actually could have made it decisive for Paleolithic human populations at critical points. For this reason, the information provided by paleon-tological sites is important for reconstructing climatic and environmental conditions during the Late Pleistocene and understanding how they influenced the species that inhabited them, including humans. Nevertheless, the archaeo-paleontological record is scarce in central Iberia for the Late Pleistocene. A central Iberian site that is key to addressing this issue is Cueva de los Torrejones, which was discovered and excavated during the nineties. Clues indicating the presence of Neandertal populations near the cave site were announced during prior field excavations, including Neandertal remains, Middle Paleolithic artifacts, and evidence of anthropic exploitation of faunal resources at the site. Here we report the new results from the recent excavations and research, including detailed studies on stratigraphy, micro-morphology, macro and microvertebrate paleontology, physical and molecular anthropology, taphonomy and zooarchaeology, and analysis of lithic and pottery remains. Our research has led to the detection of three Prehistoric chronologies recorded at the site. The oldest episode corresponds to between MIS 5 and MIS 4 in which the cave was used by carnivores. The second episode is represented by a faunal association dated to 30.0 ka cal BP and is indicative of cooler and more arid environmental conditions and, therefore, compatible with the worsening climate detected previously for MIS 3 in this area. The last episode corresponds to the Chalcolithic, directly dated to~5000 cal BP in which humans used the cavity for funerary purposes. The DNA analysis of the human remain was assigned to mtDNA haplogroup K, which was originated in the Near East and reached western Europe through the Neolithic expansion. Human occupation during the Paleolithic has been ruled out, including Paleolithic human remains and any kind of anthropic intervention on the Hermann’s tortoise and leopard as was previously proposed at the site.
Article
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We present partial results obtained in an interdisciplinary research project focused on the human settlement of the Guadalajara province (Spain) during the Middle and Upper Palaeolithic. The excavation of the Peña Capón, Peña Cabra and Los Casares sites have shown outstanding evidence for investigating population dynamics and human-environment interactions in the interior territories of the Iberian Peninsula during the Late Pleistocene. Traditionally depicted as marginal and lacking own cultural developments, these territories have provided scarce and weak data for the Middle and –especially– Upper Paleolithic, and thus the proposed interpretations on the mentioned problems have been always flawed. However, our results enable us to confirm the cultural relevance of the region under study during Upper Pleniglacial times previously considered devoid of human occupation. Also, we are now able to contribute with solid data from inland Spain to the problem of the Neandertal demise in the Iberian Peninsula and southwest Europe.
Article
Full-text available
We present partial results obtained in an interdisciplinary research project focused on the human settlement of the Guadalajara province (Spain) during the Middle and Upper Palaeolithic. The excavation of the Peña Capón, Peña Cabra and Los Casares sites have shown outstanding evidence for investigating population dynamics and human-environment interactions in the interior territories of the Iberian Peninsula during the Late Pleistocene. Traditionally depicted as marginal and lacking own cultural developments, these territories have provided scarce and weak data for the Middle and –especially– Upper Paleolithic, and thus the proposed interpretations on the mentioned problems have been always flawed. However, our results enable us to confirm the cultural relevance of the region under study during Upper Pleniglacial times previously considered devoid of human occupation. Also, we are now able to contribute with solid data from inland Spain to the problem of the Neandertal demise in the Iberian Peninsula and southwest Europe.
Article
Full-text available
Table des matières PLOS One : Acheulean technology and landscape use at Dawadmi, central Arabia 2 ScienceDirect : Murujuga Rockshelter: First evidence for Pleistocene occupation on the Burrup Peninsula 6 Ouest France : Plœmeur. Au Stole, un site d’archéologie sous-marine à valoriser 8 Pour la Science : Du pain avant les débuts de l’agriculture 10 La Montagne : Savez-vous qu'un village bourbonnais a donné son nom à une période de la préhistoire? 13 Le marin.fr : Des vestiges de filets de pêche vieux de 29 000 ans 19 Ouest France : Sibérie. Un fossile de poulain vieux de 40 000 ans extrait de la glace 20 Chine Magazine : Les premiers hommes étaient arrivés en Asie 22 SciencePost : La paresse a-t-elle conduit Homo erectus à l’extinction ? 24 Paléobox (forum) rencontres 2018 26 La Depêche.fr : Une nouvelle découverte dans la grotte de Foissac 27 Quaternaire : La formation lœssique du Pléistocène moyen et supérieur de la Jouannière à Bonneval, Eure‑et‑loir (France) : sédimentologie, géochronologie, paléoenvironnement et préhistoire 30 La Tronche en Biais : Les contours de la lignée humaine TenL65 à Tautavel 32 Actualité Houssenia Writing : Comment les peuples du néolithique se sont adaptés au changement climatique 34 ScienceDirect Quaternary International : Unravelling an essential archive for the European Pleistocene. The human occupation in the Manzanares valley (Madrid, Spain) throughout nearly 800,000 years 37
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