Eve of Naharon

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Eve of Naharon (Spanish: Eva de Naharon) is the skeleton of a 25- to 30-year-old human female found in the Naharon section of the underwater cave Sistema Naranjal in Mexico near the town of Tulum, around 80 miles south west of Cancún.[1] The site is also related to the larger Sistema Sac Actun. The skeleton is carbon dated to 13,600 years ago, which makes it the oldest in the Americas.[2]

Other skeletons found within the cave are said to be between 11,000 and 14,000 years old.[3]

Discovery[edit]

During an excavation from 2004 to 2008, the remains of Eve of Naharon were discovered by Arturo González and his team 80 miles southwest of Cancun. González, director of the Desert Museum in Saltillo, Mexico said, "We don't know how [the people whose remains were found in the caves] arrived and whether they came from the Atlantic, the jungle, or inside the continent, but we believe these finds are the oldest yet to be found in the Americas and may influence our theories of how the first people arrived." González and his team spent a total of 4 years excavating the remains, and their discovery changed the mind of experts as to where the first Americans may have originated from.[3]

Significance[edit]

According to Arturo González, the director of the Desert Museum in Saltillo, Mexico, and the lead archaeologist of this project, the bone structure of the skeleton is more consistent with that of people from Southern Asia than that of people from Northern Asia.[3]

This similarity with Southern Asian skeletal types has called into question the timeline and geographic origin in the current theory of New World settlement by peoples from Northern Asia.[3]

This implies that people may not have come to America from North Asia through a land-bridge which is now underwater as previously thought.[3]

Various studies[citation needed] have shown that cranial morphology is much more plastic than earlier believed, and that the so-called Mongoloid look hadn't yet developed in Asia.

Many scientists believe that the first peoples of America arrived by land and by sea in coast hugging canoes from Northern Asia across what is now the Bering Strait.

The first peoples filtered into the Americas from Asia in Paleolithic times, possibly continuing to arrive until around 10,000 B.C.E, when melting glaciers submerged the land bridge and isolated the American contents from the rest of the world. [4]

According to some scholars, the salt water now covering this site may have had an effect on the accuracy of the carbon dating.[5]

The Bering Strait Theory[edit]

According to the Bering Strait theory, people from Northeast Asia crossed on a land or ice bridge (where the Bering Strait is today) and entered America through Alaska. This may have happened during the last Ice Age.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Floyd B. Largent, Jr. (June 2005). "Early Humans South of the Border" (PDF). Mammoth Trumpet. 20 (3): 8–11. Retrieved February 20, 2011. 
  2. ^ Eva of Naharon pbs.org
  3. ^ a b c d e Eliza Barclay (September 3, 2008). "Oldest Skeleton in Americas Found in Underwater Cave?". National Geographic News. National Geographic. Retrieved February 20, 2011. 
  4. ^ Foster, L. (1997). Introduction. In A brief history of Mexico (p. 6). New York, New York: Facts on File.-/
  5. ^ "Peopling Of The Americas: Eva de Naharon, A 13,600 Year Old Skeleton Found Near Tulum, Mexico".