Charred plant remains, 19,000 years old, were uncovered at Ohalo II on the shore of the Sea of Galilee, Israel. The wild barley and other edible grasses and fruits found suggest, by their ripening seasons, that the site was occupied at least during spring and autumn. The species found provide insights into the subsistence strategy of the earliest known hunter-gatherer community of the Levantine Epipaleolithic period. In addition, the remains of barley rachis nodes provide new evidence distinguishing between domesticated and wild types in ancient archaeobotanical material.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
Field work and preliminary analysis were supported by the Israel Antiquities Authority, the Irene Levi Sala CARE Archaeological Foundation and the L.S.B. Leaky Foundation. The authors are grateful to Dr. A. Belfer-Cohen and E. Hovers, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Dr. A. Gopher, Tel-Aviv University, Dr. M. Hopf, Mainz, Germany, and Dr. G.C. Hillman, The Institute of Archaeology, London, for their critical reading of the manuscript and their valuable remarks; to M. Marmorshtein and E. Silber for their technical assistance; and to Y. Langsam and T. Ankar for preparing the micrographs.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics