Barda Balka

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Barda Balka
Location Iraq
Type Surface site
Material gravels
Periods Middle Paleolithic, Neolithic
Cultures Late Acheulean
Site notes
Excavation dates 1951
Archaeologists Bruce Howe and Herbert E. Wright

Barda Balka is an archeological site near the Little Zab and Chamchamal in the north of modern-day Iraq.[1]

The site was discovered on a hilltop in 1949 by Sayid Fuad Safar and Naji al-Asil from the Directorate General of Antiquities, Iraq. It was later excavated by Bruce Howe and Herbert E. Wright in 1951. Stone tools were found amongst a particular layer of Pleistocene gravels that dated to the late Acheulean period. The tools included pebble tools, bifaces and lithic flakes that were suggested to be amongst the oldest evidence of human occupation in Iraq.[1] They were found comparable with tools known to have been made around eighty thousand years ago.[2]

A piece of stone from the archeological site of Barda Balka, modern-day Chamchamal, Iraqi Kurdistan. The Sulaymaniya Museum, Iraq.

Similar material was found in other locations around the Chemchemal valley.[1]

A Neolithic megalith is also located at the centre of the site around which the tools were found.[2]


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