Khiamian

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El Khiam point.
The Mesolithic
The Epipaleolithic
Paleolithic
Mesolithic Europe
Epipaleolithic Europe
Fosna-Hensbacka culture
Komsa culture
Maglemosian culture
Kunda culture
Narva culture
Komornica culture
Swiderian culture
Epipaleolithic Transylvania
Mesolithic Transylvania
Tardenoisian
Schela Cladovei culture
Mesolithic Southeastern Europe
Levant
Natufian
Khiamian
Neolithic
Stone Age

The Khiamian (also referred to as El Khiam or El-Khiam) is a period of the Near-Eastern Neolithic, marking the transition between the Natufian and the Pre-Pottery Neolithic A. Some sources date it from about 10,000 to 9,500 BCE.[1] It currently dates between 10,200 and 8800 BC according to the ASPRO chronology.

The Khiamian owes its name to the site of El Khiam, situated on banks of the Dead Sea, where researchers have recovered the oldest chert arrows heads, with lateral notchs, the so-called "El Khiam points".[1] They have served to identify sites of this period, which are found in Israel, as well as in Jordan (Azraq), Sinai (Abu Madi), and to the north as far as the Middle Euphrates (Mureybet).

Aside from the appearance of El Khiam arrow heads, the Khiamian is placed in the continuity of the Natufian, without any major technical innovations. However, for the first time houses were built on the ground level itself, and not half below ground as was previously done. Otherwise, the bearers of the El Khiam culture were still hunter-gatherers, and agriculture at that time was then still rather primitive, based on what has been reported on sites of this period.[2] Newer discoveries show that in the Middle East and Anatolia some experiments with agriculture were being made by 10,900 BC.[3] and that there may already have been experimenting with wild grain processing by around 19,000 BC at Ohalo II.[4]

The Khiamien also sees a change occur in the symbolic aspects of culture, as evidenced by the appearance of small female statuettes, as well as by the burying of aurochs skulls. According to Jacques Cauvin, it is the beginning of the worship of the Woman and the Bull, as evidenced in the following periods of the Near-Eastern Neolithic.[5]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b C. Calvet. 2007. Zivilisationen – wie die Kultur nach Sumer kam. Munich. p. 126.
  2. ^ K. Schmidt. 2008. Sie bauten die ersten Tempel. Das rätselhafte Heiligtum der Steinzeitjäger. Munich. pp.283.
  3. ^ Turneya, C.S.M. and H. Brown. 2007. "Catastrophic early Holocene sea level rise, human migration and the Neolithic transition in Europe." Quaternary Science Reviews 26: 2036–2041.
  4. ^ Research pushes back history of crop development 10,000 years
  5. ^ J. Cauvin. 2000. The birth of the gods and the origins of agriculture. Cambridge. p. 25. Cf. C. Calvet. 2007. Zivilisationen – wie die Kultur nach Sumer kam. Munich. p. 127.

References[edit]

  • C. Calvet. 2007. Zivilisationen – wie die Kultur nach Sumer kam. Munich.
  • J. Cauvin. 2000. The birth of the gods and the origins of agriculture. Cambridge.
  • Klaus Schmidt. 2008. Sie bauten die ersten Tempel. Das rätselhafte Heiligtum der Steinzeitjäger. Munich. pp. 283.
  • C.S.M. Turneya and H. Brown. 2007. "Catastrophic early Holocene sea level rise, human migration and the Neolithic transition in Europe." Quaternary Science Reviews 26: 2036–2041.