Radiocarbon dating of Ohalo II: Archaeological and methodological implications

Dani Nadel, Israel Carmi, Dror Segal

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Charcoal samples from the Early Epipalaeolithic submerged fisher-hunter-gatherers site of Ohalo II have been dated by three laboratories. The samples derive from huts, hearths, a grave and a stone installation. Twenty-five date range between 17,500-21,050 bp and average c. 19,400 bp. The thickness of deposits, the perishable building material (of the huts), the spatial organization of the camp and its rapid cover by sand and water suggest several occupational episodes, lasting not more than tens of years together. The discrepancy between the range of 14C dates and the real length of occupation are due to the statistical limitations of the dating method.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)811-822
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Archaeological Science
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 1995

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We wish to thank R. A. Housley and J. Vogel for dating three samples (each) from Ohalo II at their laboratories. Professor Nily Liphschitz has identified the macro-botanical remains. The Ohalo II project was kindly supported by grants from the Irene-Levi Sala CARE Archaeological Foundation, the Jerusalem Centre for Anthropological Studies and the L. S. B. Leakey Foundation. Field work was carried out on behalf of the Stekelis Museum of Prehistory and the Israel Antiquities Authority (1989: L. 1634, 1990: L. 1724, 1991: L. 93/91). We wish to thank Mina Weinstein-Evron for reading an early draft and providing useful comments. We also appreciate the improvements suggested by anonymous reviewers.


  • Ohalo II
  • carbon
  • early epipalaeolithic
  • fisher-hunter-gatherers
  • occupation length

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Archaeology
  • Archaeology


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