Prehistoric flint blade found in Spain
|This knapped piece of flint dating back 1.4 million years was discovered in the|
so-called Elephant Chasm at Atapuerca, Spain [Credit: AFP]
The discovery of the blade, which occurred this year and is considered to be “of great value,” came from a carving knife, said Eduald Carbonell, one of the directors of the dig, during a presentation of the discovery to reporters.
The site, near the northern city of Burgos, has been under excavation since 1978. In 2000 it was classed by UNESCO as a piece of world heritage.
The oldest parts of the site are 1½ million years old. Stone tools discovered here confirm the continuity of human settlement in Europe, the researchers said.
|The skull of a lion discovered at the Gran Dolonia site is shown|
in a cave at Atapuerca, Spain [Credit: AFP]
“Even though they are very archaic tools, they reflect complex activities such as recovering animals that fell into the caves,” which functioned as traps, the statement said.
Researchers have also found the remains of a large bear that is an ancestor to the modern-day brown bear. Various remains of this species, as well as those of other animals, including rhinos, giant deer, bison and wild donkeys, were found at the site.
During the current digging season, which just wrapped up, archaeologists presented another rare item they had discovered: the fossilized shoulder blade of a child between the ages of 4 and 6 dating back 800,000 years.
It was discovered in 2005, but since it was trapped in a block of calcified clay, seven years of work was needed to extract it.
Source: AFP [July 25, 2013]