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‘Ubeidiya

An update to Vol. 4, pp. 1487–1488.

By Ofer Bar-Yosef

Eight additional excavation seasons were conducted at ‘Ubeidiya from 1988 to 1999. They were under the directorship of E. Tchernov, J. J. Shea, and O. Bar-Yosef, jointly with C. Guérin (four seasons) and G. Bosinski (four seasons). The aim of these eight seasons was to address biostratigraphic comparisons with adjacent regions such as the Caucasus; the formation processes that created the mosaic environments of lake, woodland, and steppe at ‘Ubeidiya; and the question of Lower Pleistocene hominid dispersals as reflected in the behavioral strategies of Homo erectus c. 1.4–1.5 million years ago. While the dating of the Early Acheulian industry at the site remains an important subject, it has yet to be achieved. Its importance is highlighted by the presence of human fossils and an early flake and core industry at Dmanisi (in the Republic of Georgia), which are dated c. 1.7 million years ago. If the latter site represents the first wave of migration “out of Africa,” then it is possible that the Early Acheulian at ‘Ubeidiya represents the second major movement into Eurasia.

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