Bone tools were made as early as 400,000 years ago

Archaeologists have studied nearly a hundred ivory tools, some of which were made about 400,000 years ago.

The discovery may change our perceptions of what early human relatives, such as Neanderthals, really knew how to do so-called early Paleolithic period in the latter days.

They seemed to have made and shaped bones tools for every departure: cutting meat, handling leather, and wedges that gave more power to breaking bones.

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Bones were found years ago, but now they have been studied closely. The site is near present-day Rome, in an area called Castel di Guido.

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In ancient times, the region had prehistoric forest elephants (Palaeoloxodon) a popular drinking spot. That species is already extinct. The current African forest elephant is closely related to it.

Many of the elephants also died at the drinking spot. Therefore, piles of ivory have been found in the area and also traces of the kind of tools made by modern man’s predecessors.

The collection of hand axes and many other tools shows that the ancient people who lived in the Castel di Guido area knew how to work bones for different needs.

In the Castel di Guido area, hand axes were also found for every departure. Photo: Villa et al. PLOS One

According to archaeologists, they actually set up a production line for bone tools. They used methods not verified by other archaeological excavations, at least not as extensively.

“Elsewhere, there aren’t as diverse bony tools,” says the archaeologist Paola Villa From the University of Boulder From the United States.

“In Castel di Guido, the ancestors of modern man broke pieces of elephant’s long bones that could be used to make various bony tools. This kind of skill became more common elsewhere much later. ”

The variety of tools is probably due to the fact that there was a lot of ivory in use that could be tried. There were hardly any suitable stones in the area for making similar tools.

About 400,000 years ago, Neanderthals (Homo neanderthalensis) only made their entry into Europe. Villa thinks the inhabitants of Castel di Guido were Neanderthal people.

He told the time of the bone workshop scientific journal PLOS One.


Source: Tiede by www.tiede.fi.

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