Talk:Natufian culture

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Physical Characteristics?[edit]

The article mysteriously leaves out one subject: the people themselves.

What was their physical type -- height, skull shape, etc. -- and has DNA testing been carried out? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 08:20, 16 October 2008 (UTC)

Could it be because they are anatomically modern humans? What are you, a phrenologist? Also, note: elsewhere in the article it describes the genetic testing done (see subsection "Archaeogenetics") Grant (talk) 21:16, 16 May 2010 (UTC)


Why /nəˌtjuːfiən/ and not /nəˌtuːfiən/? The word is derived from the Arabic /naˌtuːf/, isn't it? --Cbdorsett (talk) 08:19, 28 July 2009 (UTC)

Map legend[edit]

An english version would be nice, not many Wikipedians read Hebrew. :)Viciouspiggy (talk) 20:35, 3 August 2009 (UTC)


What exactly does "there does not seem to have been any similarly advanced culture at the time in the whole Near East." mean? They were economically similar to everyone around them, so the only possible way in which they could be "advanced" is by being semi-sedentary, which the article has made abundantly clear. Unless somebody has a solid objection, that line's deleted. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Sir Grant the Small (talkcontribs) 21:17, 16 May 2010 (UTC)

Anatolian Obsidian versus Ethiopian Obsidian[edit]

It strikes me odd that obsidian is Anatolian and not Ethiopian, i.e., originating from the Nile Valley just as the fish.  In light of that oddness, consider the following excerpt:


Extrusion ages of archaeological obsidian, especially as determined by the 40Ar/39Ar method, can provide reliable maximum ages for tool manufacture. In at least one case in the Middle Awash of Ethiopia, freshly extruded obsidian was used for tool making, resulting in useful maximum ages for site occupation. Hydration resulting in mobility of K and/or Ar in glass, and recoil artifacts produced by neutron irradiation, fatally affect most glass shards from volcanic ashes. The much lower surface area to volume ratio of most archaeological obsidian, however, indicates that the affected areas can be manually removed prior to analysis and the recoil and hydration problems can be easily overcome. A more important issue in dating obsidian is that of possible mass-dependent kinetic isotope fractionation during or subsequent to quenching of volcanic glasses. This is evidenced in some cases by sub-atmospheric initial 40Ar/36Ar ratios, and more generally in sub-atmospheric 38Ar/36Ar. Resulting bias can be avoided through the use of isochron ages, which do not entail the assumption of an initial value of 40Ar/36Ar as is required for plateau ages. Since step heating of glasses often yields limited variability in 40Ar:39Ar:36Ar (and therefore little spread on isochrons), another approach is to use an average value for initial 40Ar/36Ar, with concomitantly larger uncertainty than is associated with atmospheric 40Ar/36Ar, when calculating a plateau age. The 38Ar/36Ar of an un-irradiated subset of our samples validates the inference of kinetic fractionation, and potentially provides a basis for determining initial 40Ar/36Ar in samples that fail to yield isochrons, but only in samples lacking magmatic excess 40Ar. These approaches allow us to reliably apply the 40Ar/39Ar method to volcanic glasses, which has resulted in maximum ages for archaeological sites that are not amenable to traditional geochronological methods. 40Ar/39Ar geochronology can also provide information on the geological provenance of the raw material used for tool making, especially when combined with geochemical data.

Keywords: Obsidian; 40Ar/39Ar geochronology; Provenance; Ethiopia; Mass fractionation; Atmospheric argon

Source: (talk) 11:20, 16 May 2011 (UTC)

Ancient Egyptian materials and technology, By Paul T. Nicholson, Ian Shaw - Obsidian found in Egypt not Anatolian: (talk) 12:21, 16 May 2011 (UTC)

GEOCHEMICAL PROVENACE OF OBSIDIAN ARTEFACTS FROM THE MSA SITE OF PORC EPIC ETHIOPIA -,%2520ETHIOPIA.pdf+ethiopian+obsidian&hl=en&gl=us&pid=bl&srcid=ADGEESh_o_7JUHqsNS8ljv2aAQLuXSZmcAyUDSsA6HQzCrTxLUiTNUyZ0jq7zSW3lhtsCsbD0CBDi1FmsFMx2-q4XpIPjZANo6q4bYafwUaVWzd0R7jGYshply1wLgfRP_ktkGSBcs3Z&sig=AHIEtbRrJo7A6zyzv_dqQnl3zhpwvBGxSA&pli=1 (talk) 12:25, 16 May 2011 (UTC)

Epipaleolithic not Mesolithic[edit]

While the Mesolithic period label is theoretically correct in terms of date, the Natufian culture as it is exclusively found in the Levant is more correctly labelled Epipaleolithic - worth correcting for accuracy as Mesolithic is usually reserved for Europe. Zikaron (talk) 13:31, 10 October 2011 (UTC)


There seems to be a contradiction between the dates given in the opening and the Dating section? The opening states that Natufian culture existed 'from 13,000 to 9,800 years ago', but the section that follows says 'from 12,500 to 9,500 BC' - which, by my reckoning, is about 14,500 to 11,500 years ago. This looks like it needs fixing.  — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:52, 1 April 2013 (UTC)

Research -- possibly useful if found in secondary sources[edit] -- "The Natufian culture, which flourished 15,000 years ago, is well known for its complex burial customs. A new study has discovered that these ceremonies included the use of giant boulder mortars whose pounding sound informed the community that a ceremony was being held." -- Jo3sampl (talk) 00:55, 25 August 2015 (UTC)

Nice recent finding[edit]

Settles the Natufian issue once and for all:

"Craniometric analyses have suggested that the Natufians may have migrated from north or sub-Saharan Africa, a result that finds some support from Y chromosome analysis which shows that the Natufians and successor Levantine Neolithic populations carried haplogroup E, of likely ultimate African origin, which has not been detected in other ancient males from West Eurasia (Supplementary Information, section 6). However, no affinity of Natufians to sub-Saharan Africans is evident in our genome-wide analysis, as present-day sub-Saharan Africans do not share more alleles with Natufians than with other ancient Eurasians (Extended Data Table 1)."

So not SSA linked at all, like I expected.

So not Negroid at all as well:

«This view is be considered also in the case of the pro-Neolithic Natufian skull from the Levant. Aninu and Zalavar are the reasonable affiliations, which might be read as "generalized European."»

Howells  — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:14, 17 June 2016 (UTC)

Eurocentrism And Outdated Sources[edit]

"Overall, these late Natufian specimens are Mediterranean in physical type, but possibly also have a minor Negroid element.[34] SOURCE: Coon, Carleton (1939). The Races of Europe (PDF). The Macmillan Company. pp. 61–62. Retrieved 12 July 2016."

Carleton Coon, The Races Of Europe from 1939. Doesn't anyone think that these sources are too old? Then, there is the displacement of haplogroup E and Afro-Asoatic outside of Africa. The fact is that most Afro-Asiatic languages cluster in East Africa (South-, East and Central Cushitic, Omotic, Beja), with excursions into Norhteast Africa (Ancient Egyptian), Northwest Africa (Berber) and West Africa (Hausa). Most AA languages therefore cluster and originate in East Africa. At the same time, that is also where there is the greatest diversity in E haplogroups, including the E1b1b of the Natufians. There should be no dispute nowadays that the E haplogroup is a Black African haplogroup. E1b1a is the haplogroup associated with the Bantu Expansion from West Africa 3000 years ago, yet it too comes from East Africa. MrSativa (talk) 08:39, 21 January 2017 (UTC)
Absolutely. It's gone. – Joe (talk) 09:55, 21 January 2017 (UTC)