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Variation in lithic technological strategies among the Neanderthals of Gibraltar.

Shipton C, Clarkson C, Bernal MA, Boivin N, Finlayson C, Finlayson G, Fa D, Pacheco FG, Petraglia M - PLoS ONE (2013)

Bottom Line: Some of the observed patterns in technology are statistically tested including raw material selection, platform preparation, and the use of formal and expedient technological schemas.The main parameters of technological variation are examined through detailed analysis of the Gibraltar cores and comparison with samples from the classic Mousterian sites of Le Moustier and Tabun C.We attribute this change to a reduction in residential mobility as the climate deteriorated during Marine Isotope Stage 3 and the Neanderthal population contracted into a refugium.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: School of Social Science, University of Queensland, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia. c.shipton@uq.edu.au

ABSTRACT
THE EVIDENCE FOR NEANDERTHAL LITHIC TECHNOLOGY IS REVIEWED AND SUMMARIZED FOR FOUR CAVES ON THE ROCK OF GIBRALTAR: Vanguard, Beefsteak, Ibex and Gorham's. Some of the observed patterns in technology are statistically tested including raw material selection, platform preparation, and the use of formal and expedient technological schemas. The main parameters of technological variation are examined through detailed analysis of the Gibraltar cores and comparison with samples from the classic Mousterian sites of Le Moustier and Tabun C. The Gibraltar Mousterian, including the youngest assemblage from Layer IV of Gorham's Cave, spans the typical Middle Palaeolithic range of variation from radial Levallois to unidirectional and multi-platform flaking schemas, with characteristic emphasis on the former. A diachronic pattern of change in the Gorham's Cave sequence is documented, with the younger assemblages utilising more localized raw material and less formal flaking procedures. We attribute this change to a reduction in residential mobility as the climate deteriorated during Marine Isotope Stage 3 and the Neanderthal population contracted into a refugium.

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Mean summed component 1 and 2 values for different raw materials.Note that coarser grained materials tend to have higher values and finer grained materials tend to lower negative values.
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pone-0065185-g006: Mean summed component 1 and 2 values for different raw materials.Note that coarser grained materials tend to have higher values and finer grained materials tend to lower negative values.

Mentions: Four components were extracted with Eigenvalues over 1, hence these factors explain a greater proportion of the variance in the input variables than any individual input variable. The first two components accounted for 28.9% and 18.5% of the variance respectively, so almost half the variance in the input variables is explained by these two components. The component matrix (Table 9) shows that higher values of component 1 denote cores which have flat upper surfaces and a high point of intersection between the main surface and the surface below; they are relatively narrow and thick; they have high proportions of blade scars and high platform angles; the largest scar runs across a high proportion of the core face; the scar patterns on the main flaking surface are parallel; and they have few scars. Component 1 thus distinguishes between unidirectional reduction methods and bifacial radial technologies. Cores which have high values of component 2 tend to have a high number of separate platforms; high numbers of scars, multi-directionally flaked upper and lower surfaces; low cortex coverage; low proportions of blade scars; low proportions of faceting; high platform angles; and short largest scars. Component 2 thus distinguishes between multi-platform cores and more systematic Middle Palaeolithic technologies. Figure 5 shows that core types based on unidirectional or multiplatform flaking have positive values for the summed components 1 and 2, while technologies based on radial flaking have low values for components 1 and 2. Figure 6 shows variation in components 1 and 2 by raw material and indicates that the coarser grained limestone is associated with more expedient unidirectional and multiplatform flaking, while the finer grained flints and cherts and associated with systematic radial flaking, and quartzite is intermediate between the two.


Variation in lithic technological strategies among the Neanderthals of Gibraltar.

Shipton C, Clarkson C, Bernal MA, Boivin N, Finlayson C, Finlayson G, Fa D, Pacheco FG, Petraglia M - PLoS ONE (2013)

Mean summed component 1 and 2 values for different raw materials.Note that coarser grained materials tend to have higher values and finer grained materials tend to lower negative values.
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC3675147&req=5

pone-0065185-g006: Mean summed component 1 and 2 values for different raw materials.Note that coarser grained materials tend to have higher values and finer grained materials tend to lower negative values.
Mentions: Four components were extracted with Eigenvalues over 1, hence these factors explain a greater proportion of the variance in the input variables than any individual input variable. The first two components accounted for 28.9% and 18.5% of the variance respectively, so almost half the variance in the input variables is explained by these two components. The component matrix (Table 9) shows that higher values of component 1 denote cores which have flat upper surfaces and a high point of intersection between the main surface and the surface below; they are relatively narrow and thick; they have high proportions of blade scars and high platform angles; the largest scar runs across a high proportion of the core face; the scar patterns on the main flaking surface are parallel; and they have few scars. Component 1 thus distinguishes between unidirectional reduction methods and bifacial radial technologies. Cores which have high values of component 2 tend to have a high number of separate platforms; high numbers of scars, multi-directionally flaked upper and lower surfaces; low cortex coverage; low proportions of blade scars; low proportions of faceting; high platform angles; and short largest scars. Component 2 thus distinguishes between multi-platform cores and more systematic Middle Palaeolithic technologies. Figure 5 shows that core types based on unidirectional or multiplatform flaking have positive values for the summed components 1 and 2, while technologies based on radial flaking have low values for components 1 and 2. Figure 6 shows variation in components 1 and 2 by raw material and indicates that the coarser grained limestone is associated with more expedient unidirectional and multiplatform flaking, while the finer grained flints and cherts and associated with systematic radial flaking, and quartzite is intermediate between the two.

Bottom Line: Some of the observed patterns in technology are statistically tested including raw material selection, platform preparation, and the use of formal and expedient technological schemas.The main parameters of technological variation are examined through detailed analysis of the Gibraltar cores and comparison with samples from the classic Mousterian sites of Le Moustier and Tabun C.We attribute this change to a reduction in residential mobility as the climate deteriorated during Marine Isotope Stage 3 and the Neanderthal population contracted into a refugium.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: School of Social Science, University of Queensland, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia. c.shipton@uq.edu.au

ABSTRACT
THE EVIDENCE FOR NEANDERTHAL LITHIC TECHNOLOGY IS REVIEWED AND SUMMARIZED FOR FOUR CAVES ON THE ROCK OF GIBRALTAR: Vanguard, Beefsteak, Ibex and Gorham's. Some of the observed patterns in technology are statistically tested including raw material selection, platform preparation, and the use of formal and expedient technological schemas. The main parameters of technological variation are examined through detailed analysis of the Gibraltar cores and comparison with samples from the classic Mousterian sites of Le Moustier and Tabun C. The Gibraltar Mousterian, including the youngest assemblage from Layer IV of Gorham's Cave, spans the typical Middle Palaeolithic range of variation from radial Levallois to unidirectional and multi-platform flaking schemas, with characteristic emphasis on the former. A diachronic pattern of change in the Gorham's Cave sequence is documented, with the younger assemblages utilising more localized raw material and less formal flaking procedures. We attribute this change to a reduction in residential mobility as the climate deteriorated during Marine Isotope Stage 3 and the Neanderthal population contracted into a refugium.

Show MeSH
Related in: MedlinePlus